With literally thousands of accommodation options, it can be overwhelming trying to find a budget friendly hotel in the area. But there are plenty of cheap hotels in Cabo San Lucas, ranging from international hotel brands like Holiday Inn Express and Fairfield Inn, to small, locally owned boutique hotels like Baja's Cactus and Siesta Suites.
Unlike other parts of Mexico, the high season in Cabo San Lucas runs during the fall months, from November through March and early April. Hotel prices are the highest during this peak time.
During the low season of June to mid-November, you will be able to find the best prices on hotels in Cabo San Lucas. Consider traveling during June and July to enjoy calm, warm weather and low hotel prices, yet avoid the tropical storm season that picks up in September.
If your travel plans allow, September into early October is considered by many to be the perfect time to visit Cabo San Lucas. By late September, the hurricane season is winding down and peak season hasn’t yet begun, so this is the best time of year to enjoy fantastic, warm weather and score a cheap hotel in Cabo San Lucas.
Cabo San Lucas, once a sleepy fishing village, is now a high-energy beach vacation destination.
The centerpiece of Downtown Cabo San Lucas is a bustling marina, teeming with private yachts and sport fishing boats. Here you’ll find many familiar dining spots like Hooters, Johnny Rockets, and Ruth's Chris, as well as restaurants unique to Cabo San Lucas, such as sushi at Japango and Mexican at Ole!Ole!.
If you’d like to enjoy the great restaurants and fun nightlife in Cabo San Lucas, search for hotels located right in the Downtown neighborhood.
Playa Grande Resort in Downtown Cabo San Lucas offers a fantastic value year-round. This charming, Mexican hacienda-style boutique hotel in Cabo San Lucas is located right on the beach and only a few minutes walk from the bars and restaurants in Downtown Cabo. Because of this ideal location, Playa Grande Resort tends to sell out early during peak season, so be sure to book early.
Also consider the Hotel Santa Fe Cabo San Lucas for a budget-friendly hotel option in the Downtown neighborhood. With cozy rooms decorated in traditional, bright Mexican colors, you’ll have all the amenities here for a fraction of the cost of the larger Cabo San Lucas resorts.
For a splurge, consider the Pueblo Bonito Pacifica Resort and Spa. This all-inclusive resort is known for their cozy, beach-side fire pits and elegant bars and restaurants on site. From Pueblo Bonito Pacifica, you can walk to downtown bars and restaurants in only ten minutes or use the hotel’s shuttles, which can be organized by the concierge.
With so many fun restaurants and bars, most people opt not to stay in all-inclusive resorts while in Cabo San Lucas. You’ll find a wide range of dining options at every price point.
Edith’s Restaurante consistently ranks as one of the best restaurants in Cabo San Lucas. Run by a Mexican woman, this restaurant offers fine-dining Mexican fare and has been a fixture on the Cabo foodie scene for a number of years.
For something more casual, consider Solomon’s Landing. This restaurant started as a taco stand, and now dominates the waterfront just behind the Wyndam Los Cabos.
If you are planning a romantic evening, consider Sunset da Mona Lisa. Built into the cliff, you can dine al fresco overlooking the Sea of Cortez.
Also set atop a bluff and located in the Capella Pedregal hotel, El Farallon’s menu features fresh fish and meat, including parrot fish, ribeye steak, and, of course, the irresistible local chocolate clams. All dishes at El Farallon come with a trio of the day's appetizers, which change daily, as well as two side dishes.
The Sabor a Cabo Culinary Festival, which takes place every December, is the best way to experience as many restaurants as possible, meet local restaurateurs, and connect with other traveling foodies. Bringing together some of the world’s best chefs to showcase their gourmet creations, the Celebrity Chef Dine Around is a favorite part of this multi-day event.
You will likely not need a rental car during your stay if you plan on staying in the Downtown Cabo San Lucas area. With plenty of amazing transfer companies in the area, it’s not difficult to find a company to safely get you where you need to go.
If you book a private vehicle, expect a Chevrolet Suburban or large van that can usually take between 4-8 people. Shared transportation is usually a 9-passenger van. As is typical across Mexico, tips are not included, but it is appropriate to tip any driver who goes out of their way to help you.
If you’ve booked a condo, villa, or other vacation rental, consider making a shopping stop while en route, which you can arranged in advance. This will typically cost you an additional US$30 for driver waiting time. There are a number of shopping options, including a Mega, Costco, and Walmart, all on the main highway between the airport and Downtown Cabo San Lucas.
Before booking your transfer, be sure to confirm your selected transfer company is allowed to provide transportation back to the airport. Some resorts have an agreement with the taxi group that allows only taxis to leave their property. Be sure to clarify before you book that the company can handle your round-trip transfer needs.
Los Cabos is home to several U.S. and Canadian expats who only spend a portion of the year in Los Cabos. As a result, you’ll find a plethora of rooms and full homes owned by these expats available throughout the year. On Airbnb, you will find plenty of cheap rooms available in these condos, houses, and hostels in Downtown Cabo San Lucas and beyond. For as little as $20 per night for a private room, this is a great way to save money on accommodations when traveling to Cabo San Lucas.
Multi-bedroom condos in the heart of Downtown Cabo San Lucas, including fully equipped kitchens and other amenities, such as a pool on site, run about $150 per night.
In addition to restaurants and nightlife, there are many activities to keep you busy during your time in Cabo San Lucas. Not surprisingly, many activities in the area take place in the ocean and on the beach.
Snorkeling at Los Arbolitos Beach, where you can see coral reefs and a host of unique sea life, is a popular day trip from Cabo San Lucas.
Also, as early as October through as late as March, the annual migration of gray whales occurs. View thousands of whales in the various shallow lagoons around the Baja Peninsula. In fact, many go all the way to the Sea of Cortez, which means they pass right by Cabo San Lucas. An average whale watching tour lasts three to four hours.
Another popular activity in Cabo San Lucas is visiting the Land’s End rock formations by water taxi. You’ll find water taxis clustered near the downtown marina. These taxis aren’t metered, but rates are usually affordable, ranging between $3 and $10 each way to Land’s End. Located at the southern end of Cabo San Lucas and sandwiched between Playa del Amor and Playa del Divorcio, these rock formations were created from the rough winds that wrap around the southern Baja peninsula. Keep your eyes open for sea lions, which are frequently seen in this area as well.
There is a huge amount of competition among activities operators. Be sure to ask around as much as possible and bargain with the tours and activities salespeople to get the best price.
It is also important to keep in mind that in the center of Cabo San Lucas, you cannot swim in the ocean. The water here has dangerous riptides and undertow that can quickly pull you out to sea. This causes many accidents and deaths each year.
If you’re looking to cool off in the ocean, consider driving up to Todos Cantos or Cerritos Beach, both hot spots for surfing and only about 30 minutes from downtown Cabo San Lucas. Also consider asking locals for the best surfing beaches, and follow their lead, as many of these beaches are unmarked, hidden gems.
© 2015 Hipmunk, Inc. Hipmunk is a trademark of Hipmunk, Inc.
© 2015 Hipmunk, Inc. Hipmunk is a trademark of Hipmunk, Inc.