TERRA Commercial Real Estate ROCKY POINT MX (638) 110-0471 USA (623) 335-5856
El Tapeo (on Laos Mar Hotel)
open Wednesday to Sunday
South Side Jillz
“Glide down a dune at full speed, break the wind, find your balance, feel the adrenaline and the freedom the desert provides!” This is sandboarding.
I was working on an article about different activities you can find in Rocky Point, when I first contacted Emmanuel Ortega via Facebook to see if I could talk to him about the little-known sport of sandboarding (well, at least here in town). I had been told he was the one to talk to, and his answer was a resounding yes.
You wouldn’t know it from his down-to-earth, relaxed, let’s get together and just hang attitude, Ortega of RP Sandcrew has been featured in extreme sports magazines, and has stood on the podium in international sandboarding competitions!
Rather than an interview, however, Emmanuel told me it would be better to live the experience. I loved the idea so we set up a time. We got together on a Thursday, May 10th, (yes, Mother’s Day in Mexico). There is no better way I could have spent Mother’s Day, along with my daughters and the desert dunes…
In the morning, after we got some supplies from OXXO, we were on our way in Emmanuel’s car down the dirt road that takes you out to the oyster farm, just off the highway towards Caborca. My daughters were, like always, chatting the entire way.
Once we got to our destination, our eager instructor unloaded the boards, which were larger than I had expected, and we walked to the top of a dune known as “Oyster farm dune”. From there you can really appreciate the desert scenery (and how steep it actually is!), along with the oyster farm, and even more dunes.
It was a hot sunny day, but our excitement easily won over!
Before we actually did glide down the dune, Emmanuel told us how he’s been sandboarding for a number of years now and how it’s allowed him to meet other sandboarders and visit other dunes, right up with those of Puerto Peñasco.
“There’s the Reina dune in the Gulf of Santa Clara, the largest in Mexico; there’s the dunes of Baja California, and I’ve also been to those of Samalayuca in Chihuahua. There are a lot of people who (sandboard), and it’s done in other parts of the world wherever there are dunes. Here, there´s the dunes near the oyster farm and those near the Schuk Toak (Visitors Center of the Pinacate Biosphere Reserve),” he explained, “the Schuk Toak dunes are more difficult to access; and there’s dunes near Sandy Beach.”
The particular boards we had for that morning were snowboards (provided by Emmanuel), but they are perfectly fit for sand.
Loaded with a sense of confidence the brief conversation with Emmanuel had left me, I glided down the dune first time sitting down. I guess I wasn’t that confident yet. It all seemed quite easy and smooth, and right behind slid down my daughters who did not stop screaming and giggling from excitement the entire time.
Ok, now it was time to finally go down standing on the board. Boots strapped on, the board, look at the camera and pretend to be brave, a hop, skip, and a jump later here we go!
As you glide down the dune you understand how people get addicted to this sort of activity! What adrenaline! Nothing touching you other than the sand and air, the ever-increasing speed, and no specific point to get to. Just go.
After my third trip down the dune (and many more falls!), and getting tired from the trips back UP the dune, it was great to sit down and have a dozen fresh oysters with salsa and lime, and some ceviche tostadas at the oyster farm right next to the dune.
This extreme sport, recreational activity, or however you like to categorize it, has no major complications. Everyone from kids to adults can enjoy this adventure, all you really need is comfortable clothes, sun-block, a nice shade for breaks, and a lot of energy (ah yes, and a board)!
So get out there, gather your friends and your family! Locally, boards can be rented directly from Emmanuel at around $200 pesos each. Best way to contact him is Cell phone: 638 384 0216.
If you’ve got your own board, that’s good too. Sandboarding is a gift that Rocky Point offers, offering natural spaces incomparable to many in the world. Yet, keep in mind – trek it in, trek it out – or rather picking up after a fun day on the dunes, making sure we keep these treasures clean and intact.
So, get on that board and jump, feel the adrenaline!
Contact information: US 520-407-6054, Mexico 638-383-2802 Calle 4ta y Recinto portuario just before you enter the old port next to the marina.
SUPing the Sea of Cortez!
The serene waters of the Sea of Cortez practically command you to gaze at dolphins on the horizon, sail across its surface, or test one’s balance on a stand-up paddle board. A few years ago, Rocky Point SUP first began offering rentals off the beach. Adventure companies then added a board or two to their gear, and more folk could be spotted paddling across the smooth sea on their own.
Now, “SUP’ing the Sea” can be found in Puerto Peñasco, being the only SUP’ing company that’s not a boat service with a permit from the Harbor Captain to operate on the sea.
Just recently, owner Donia Molieri sent in spectacular shots of new SUP’ers who all managed to stand-up on their boards for the first time and make their way across the estuary near Cholla Bay. Donia explains, “It was a beautiful day in Cholla, which is a great option when it’s a little too windy on Sandy Beach.” This particular group, which was playfully captured by SUPing’s drone, included two adults and 7 kids ranging in age from 7-18, from Phoenix.
Molieri adds while they prefer appointments in order to arrange best spots due to wind and tides, on calmer days SUP’ing the Sea can be found in front of Casa Blanca and Princesa.
Rocky Point offers varied beach landscapes from soft fine sand to more rugged and rocky seascapes, often varying due to the extreme high and low tides the area is known for. Some of the most popular beach areas can be found along Sandy Beach to the North of the city, or Las Conchas beaches towards the South. Playa Bonita and the very popular Playa Hermosa stretch down from Sandy Beach towards town. On the southeastern side of Rocky Point, Mirador beach offers rockier terrain as it winds down from the base of Whale Hill toward Las Conchas. Beyond Las Conchas, Playa Encanto picks up again after the Morua Estuary and the beaches near Mayan Palace even further South are among the most beautiful in the area.
The city currently offers three challenging courses for the golf enthusiast. Both the Peninsula de Cortez Golf Course at Mayan Palace, just South of town, and the meticulously landscaped back nine at Laguna del Mar were designed by Jack Nicklaus. The Links at the Las Palomas Beach and Golf Resort were designed by Phoenix-based group Forrest Richardson & Associates.
CEDO and NaturArte
Located in the popular Las Conchas area, next to its newly restored whale skeleton landmark, theIntercultural Center for the Study of Deserts and Oceans (CEDO) provides educational and conservation programs about the Northern Gulf of California and its coastline. CEDO, which recently celebrated its 30th anniversary, offers a variety of eco-adventures including kayak tours through the Morua Estuary, ecotours to local oyster cooperatives, boat tours to Isla San Jorge (Bird Island), and exploration through the diverse underwater world of tidepools
Pinacate Reserve and Schuk Toak Visitors Center
Just North of Puerto Peñasco is the Pinacate and Great Desert of Altar Biosphere Reserve, considered one of the 13 wonders of Mexico. Rich in biological diversity, the Pinacate Reserve includes astounding Maar craters and mysterious lava flow sceneries. Pinacate’s Schuk Toak Visitors Center, an ecologically friendly construction built amidst the remains of lava flows is located just off the main highway into Peñasco at KM 72..
Malecón & Old Port
The Old Port area of Rocky Point houses restaurants, popular bars, art galleries, tourist shops and stands, fish market stops, and a large plaza for events such as the Fall Cervantino cultural festivities and the annual motorcycle rally held in November. *Note* This area has been undergoing serious renovation for about a year and there may be detour signs guiding you to the finished Malecon.
Horseback riding on the beach
Cue the romantic music, the sun going down over the water, and hoof prints making their mark in the sand. Beyond jet-skis racing across the waves, or a banana boat bouncing along near the shore, another of Rocky Point’s fun activities is horseback riding on the beach.
Joe Houchin, writer for the Sonoran Resort blog, shares terrific information about saddling up and taking to the sand – and other spots in town – on horseback. Read his recent article here:
In addition to individuals along the beach offering horseback rides, you can stop by El Establo on Plutarco Elias Calles (turn right off Calle 13 near Sushi Sun and continue straight about 5 blocks or so), or call Juan Antonio @ El Establo 380-8568 (Spanish/Español).
Yee haw….. olé!
If you like getting wet and thrashed about on a inflatable raft going at fast speeds then this is for you. The people in charge of driving them usually charge anywhere from 10 to 20 USD depending on how many minutes you choose or how many minutes they say when they quote you on a price. They take you out in the ocean, not too far from shore. You hold onto the handles on the raft and at first, they start out slow, then they go fast and you hit those waves pretty hard. Go for it and try it out! I almost fell off but my other friends fell off completely. Hang on for dear life!
Rocky Point jet skiing
Have you ever wanted to try Jet Skiing but never had a chance? Now is your opportunity, rent a Rocky Point Jet ski. If you have stayed at a Rocky Point resort you have seen the Rocky Point jet skis in the Sea of Cortez along the Sandy Beach resorts. Sometimes the handler is on the beach and can direct you on how you can rent a Rocky Point jet ski.
SUP is the exciting, challenging, and balance testing sport of Stand Up Paddleboarding – and it’s now in Puerto Peñasco! With origins in Hawaii, in recent years SUP has attracted surf enthusiasts from beaches hugging far coasts, rivers, and lakes to popular hot spots in Mexico including Los Cabos and now Rocky Point. Whereas with surfing you need some waves, in all reality Stand Up Paddleboarding can be done on any body of water (though admittedly calm waters to begin with is a plus). Gliding atop the surface, paddle in hand, SUP combines aspects of surfing and, well, kayaking, into an adrenaline filled experience of nearly walking across the water.
For a Swashbuckling Adventure on the high sea, come along with us on the 80 foot REY del MAR . Her Captain and crew provide you with great service, entertainment and an evening loaded full of fun and excitement on a Sunset Cruise that you're sure to enjoy !
SUNSET CRUISE: Departure times will vary with the seasons. Trips depart Daily from Rocky Point harbor for an exceptionally smooth cruise. This fantastic voyage includes free drinks and 2 fish tacos. Bring your camera for great photos of the sun as it slowly sets beyond the horizon on the Sea of Cortez. PRICE $20.00 per Adult, Children 8 to 15 Half Price, 7yrs. and under are FREE
Activity, Ultralights & Parasailing
So what is an Ultra Light Flight? An Ultra Light-Flight (Light-Flight for short), is a lightweight aircraft that uses a slightly larger version of a hang glider wing. The speed at which the aircraft can travel may vary depending on the style of the wing. Some are built to fly as fast as 80 miles an hour, while others are slower, around 35 miles an hour. Light-Flights can provide quite the adrenalin rush, while still managing to be safe. According to Ian, a Light-Flight pilot in Rocky Point with many years of experience, pilots are trained to respect the weather conditions and use good judgment and often spend time practicing various landing maneuvers. “The Light-Flights provide an exhilarating experience and are well worth it,” according to the pilot. Group rates are also available if you have more than 2 people who want to fly. Light Flights can be found toward the end of Sandy Beach road.
Don’t wear a dress on a speed boat: Venture to Bird Island (Part II)
We first came upon a small rock where there were three different types of birds just there; one had a blue neck and was doing an erotic dance for a very indifferent mate.
“Before anything else, I’d like to go around so you can see the island…while we choose the perfect spot to swim,” Oscar explained. Suddenly an entire orchestra of barks and calls rang out, welcoming the boat.
There were sea lions of all sizes; from babies that barely made their way to the shore, to enormous machos with their respective forehead bump, each protecting their harem.
Direct MEX 011-52-638-110-0471 Diret USA 623-335-5856