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Tijuana Baja California Norte

Mark asks…

How long is the US mexico border?

Tijuana answers:

The international border between Mexico and the United States runs from San Diego, California, and Tijuana, Baja California, in the west to Matamoros, Tamaulipas, and Brownsville, Texas, in the east. It traverses a variety of terrains, ranging from major urban areas to inhospitable deserts. From the border crossing at El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, to the east, it follows the course of the Rio Grande (Río Bravo del Norte) to the Gulf of Mexico; from the same binational conurbation westward to the Pacific Ocean, it crosses vast tracts of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts, the Colorado River Delta, and the northernmost tip of the Baja California Peninsula.

The border’s total length is 1,951 miles (3,141 km), according to figures given by the IBWC (International Boundary and Water Comission).

Paul asks…

Is the poor housing market in the US affecting the housing market in Baja Norte Mexico and in what way?

Tijuana answers:

Yes it is…

Houses in California are overpriced, this means that more and more people are looking to retire elsewhere. Baja offers them the proximity to the States, coveted beach front property, and all at a significant lower price. From Tijuana to Ensenada, developers are investing at a very rapid/aggresive growth. Donald Trump is already breaking ground on his new condo complex. Which in turn causes real estate to appreciate at a very rapid pace.

John asks…

what is the mexican-california border like?

is it dangerous?i want to go there in the summer

Tijuana answers:

Boro…

There are many things to do in the Border region. The popular party spots are of course Avenida Revolucion in Tijuana and Rosarito Beach. There are clubs for every interest, but of course they have been hit badly by the decline in tourism. There are universities in Tijuana and Ensenada, so the clubs there will have more locals than in Rosarito… Where there are more tourists and fewer locals.

There is a nice cultural center with an IMAX theater along the Plaza Rio in Tijuana; duty free shopping for things like perfume, silks, porcelain art, etc. Also great shopping for handmade cloth from Oaxaca, Talavera from Puebla, silver from Taxco.

Mexicali is the State Capital of Baja California and also has universities. Young people = clubs and youthful activities.

You only ask about danger without telling us the kinds of things you want to do… I live in Baja Norte and I can tell you that if you don’t get drunk, go out late and in neighborhoods where you know instinctively you shouldn’t visit, and use common sense, there is little danger.

In every case of the recent violence, it has been directed at those involved in drugs and the drug cartel war. Mexico is not the place to be involved with drugs in any way… It is not a place to break the law. No innocent tourist of foreign resident has been negatively impacted in any way. Please notice I said “innocent.”

Not all forms of crime has been eliminated by any stretch. The US deports the worst of the worst, and dumps them at the border. Tourism is down; unemployment is up. Desperate people do desperate things… And that is true on both sides of the border. So it is up to you to stay in the commercial and tourist areas. Don’t leave your brains in the US when you cross the border. Stay with your friends; have fun, but don’t be careless.

Other things to do; places to mention.

Tecate is right on the border and has a brewery… Yup, Tecate Beer comes from Tecate! They claim the water there is what makes the beer good, but they also claim the water makes for some great pastry, and boast of the best “pan” (breads) in Mexico. In truth, the bread and pastry there are pretty good! Also in Tecate is a great health resort… What we used to call a fat farm! But they have a great golf course, restaurant, etc., all designed for healthy resort style living.

Ensenada is pretty touristy in the downtown area because of the cruise ship terminal. Unless you know the nicer shops in Tijuana, some of the more upscale shopping can be done in Ensenada. La Bufadora is a natural phenomena found only in a few places in the world; and Tiger Woods is designing a golf course there… The developers promise it will be among the most exclusive in the world. Exclusive = expensive.

In the Pabellion/Pavilion Shopping center in Rosarito one of the best duty free perfume stores resides. South of Rosarito is becoming famous for the many art galleries, rustic furniture, marble, iron and stone work. Also there is the former Fox Studios where Titanic, among others was filmed.

South of Rosarito… East of Ensenada is Valle de Guadalupe; Guadalupe Valley. When Spain invaded Mexico, it brought some wine grape vines to Baja. Some of the oldest vines are now producing great boutique wines in Valle de Guadalupe… Some really fantastic, big, bold reds! The area also has some great organic cheeses, olives, olive oils and all of the derivative products. Part of the valley was settled by Russians, and has made for some interesting products.

In the Playas de Tijuana they are just now finishing a beautiful boardwalk. In Rosarito there are some great seafood restaurants… Fresh fish from the Pacific Ocean. Puerto Nuevo Lobster village is famous for… You guessed it… Lobster dinners!

I’m sorry this isn’t very well organized… I am writing off the top of my head. While I live in Baja, I am a north American and was raised in California. For those who think that the border region is only Avenida Revolucion belies a real lack of interest in discovering anything about the region. It’s like saying the only thing in Southern California are the freeways.

But you do have to get out of downtown Tijuana or centro border cities. There is lots to do and interesting people to meet… But it is too easy to look at only the surface. I hope you come here and do more than have your picture taken on a burro painted like a zebra and buy Viagra! But both can be fun, by the way, and if that is what makes you happy, there is plenty of that too.

Come on down and look for the things that interest you. I bet you find it!

Suerte,
~K

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