The Best Way to Eat (and Drive) Your Way Through Baja California

baja california road trip
 Photograph by Acre Gina & Ryan Photography/Acre.

Surf gringos have been road-tripping around Baja Sur for years. But remote beaches aren’t the only reason to rent a Jeep in Cabo San Lucas and set off north. Inland from great surf spots like Punta Gorda, dozens of farms are fueling one of Mexico’s most exciting food scenes, with many boutique hotels now hosting farm-to-table restaurants.

In fact, after flying into Cabo San Lucas International Airport, you can get some of Mexico’s best tacos just 15 minutes away, at local favorite Las Guacamayas, in San José del Cabo. From there, road trip north along the Atlantic Coast, but not before heading to the Cape, a boutique hotel that fronts a stellar surf break and is home to Manta, where the father of modern Mexican gastronomy, Enrique Olvera, turns out octopus anticucho with chorizo mayo and cured cactus salad. Continuing on to Todos Santos, the hip new Hotel San Cristóbal is a great base for exploring the singletrack trails of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains, one of which leads to chef Javier Plascenia’s latest restaurant, Jazamango, where dishes like pressed lechón are complemented with ingredients brought straight from the surrounding gardens.

Cross over to the Sea of Cortez side of the peninsula and on the way there’s wood-fired pizzas at Caffe El Triunfo and, looping back south, Acre, which serves ambitious tasting menus, has an on-site distillery, and recently added 12 treehouses for overnight rentals. In other words, the days of roughing it while on the road in Baja are over.