It's 2021 and we've been stuck inside for a year now, so I'm guessing I'm not alone when I ask who else wants to take a virtual vacation! Today we're going to travel virtually to the Cinderella of the Pacific, Ensenada, Mexico.
Planning a vacation has become more complicated these days. Airlines are offering fewer flights, schools are unable to predict when they’ll be open or closed. You may be like many others who are tightening their budgets while they spend more time at home.
Traveling to Ensenada, Mexico (virtually)
Maybe you've been able to save money by avoiding that daily coffee run, or maybe your food bill has skyrocketed because your entire family is home all day now. Either way, we can dream together about a vacation to Mexico.
Mexico is a large country, so I'll be covering the Ensenada area, but if you like learning more about Mexico via virtual tours, let me know and I'll create some more! 🙂
Even when we're home all the time, taking time off is essential for your mental and physical health. That’s especially true when you’re struggling with stressful situations.
Even when everything is closed, you can create your own magic. Try these ideas for making your next vacation a virtual adventure. If you have children, turn your tour of Mexico into something educational!
Ensenada is the third largest city in Baja California. With a population of over half a million people the city is big, really big, yet somehow feels much smaller. There’s a laid back, almost slow pace to life here.
People don’t rush around in a hurry. Most businesses don't even open up until 10 or 11am and the people are friendly and courteous. Not what you would expect from a city that is a destination for cruise ships from around the world year round, that hosts the largest off-road race in the world, the Baja 1000, or that has one of the busiest and biggest commercial ports in Mexico.
That is part of what makes this place special, it's an international hotspot with a diverse mix of people, yet it still retains its old world Mexico charm and culture. There’s so much to love about my new found home. I want to share just a few of my favorite things here with you. I know you will fall in love with this Cinderella city too.
Planning a Virtual Vacation Online
The internet gives you instant access to any venue or experience. Design an itinerary based on your personal interests. You can use websites like inspirock to plan your future trip to Ensenada, as well.
Do you love art and history? I sure do! Beautiful museums all around the world offer free virtual admittance to enjoy their exhibits, lectures, artist talks, and more. Mexico is no exception. Ensenada, and all of Mexico really, is rich in history. You'll get an experience here like no other!
Cultural Center of Ensenada
While this museum is definitely one you want to see in person (and you can visit for only $1USD), the photos are quite amazing, too.
In 1930, the Cultural Museum of Ensenada was known as the Hotel-Casino Playa. It closed in the 1940s, but the original building is still standing. Located across the street from where the cruise ships dock, it's a quick hop, skip, and jump to visit.
Museo de Historia de Ensenada
The Ensenada History Museum, Museo de Historia de Ensenada, is next up on our virtual vacation. It has 6 rooms: the Indigenous Room, the Cave Room, the Prehistory Room, the Navigators and Explorers Room, the Mission Room and the Mining Room.
Unfortunately, the official website isn't the best; but Google is always a wealth of information and a great place to start.
Museo de la vid y el vino
An astonishing 90% of Mexican wine comes from Valle de Guadalupe, an area only 30 minutes from the Centro of Ensenada. Many have compared the Valle to Napa in California. Spend the day touring any of the over 200 wineries and enjoying tastings of all kinds of award winning wines.
You can drive miles on a dirt road to get to a sophisticated world class restaurant where you’ll enjoy a six-course meal with full wine pairings for every dish. The abundance of wine also means you can find plenty of delicious local wine at very affordable prices in the area, so make sure you stock up on a few bottles for your home.
Dive in to the history of winemaking in Guadalupe Valley at Museo de la vid y el vino. I've tasted dozens of wines, and the only wine I enjoyed was a very sweet dessert wine I tasted in Ensenada. I can't wait to go back!
Visiting the Bay
I was on a video call with my friend the other day, and she mentioned she kept seeing the word “bahia” around town (in Ensenada). It reminded me a lot of San Diego because San Diego is also the bahia, or bay.
One of our main reasons for wanting to move to Mexico, Ensenada specifically, was the proximity to the ocean. We are still considering a few other places, like San Felipe, but Ensenada had a similar (but slower) vibe to California when we visited.
Tour Mexico with 360 Virtual Tours. While they don't specifically have views of Ensenada, there are many other cities and states in Mexico you should visit!
Experience Mexico These 3 Ways
- Explore history. Journey back in time. Investigate famous battlefields and ancient dynasties. Check out digital collections at the Smithsonian Institution or guided tours.
- Watch animals. Explore and discover animals native to Mexico, and watch live animal cams of those furry (or scaly!) creatures.
- Always keep learning. If you want a more in-depth experience, dig deeper. Learn Spanish online, using apps like duolingo or websites like Babel. Follow QROO on YouTube, as he details his expat experience in Mexico and teaches Spanish.
Plan a real trip to Mexico
Virtual tours are great, but I hope you'll also consider an actual trip to Mexico, post-COVID. 🙂 For now, it's important that we stay home and don't travel for leisure, no matter how stir crazy we may get. Let's protect the people of Mexico by enjoying photos for now, while planning our trips for later!
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