Private Journeys

Self-drive Mexico: Discover Baja California and the Sea of Cortez

12 days from £1,600pp

Mexico

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Essentials

Transport

Three domestic flights. Self-drive car: Chevrolet Aveo or similar with air-conditioning.

Accommodation

We have chosen properties oozing with character and colonial references, with a real Mexican feel. The hotel in San Ignacio is basic but it is the nest available.

Meals

Breakfast daily; lunch days 2,6.

Guides

We carefully select our local partners, some of whom we have worked with for over 30 years. Their English-speaking guides understand the expectations of our clients very well, and are consistently singled out for praise by the latter on their return.

Summary Of Nights

12 days, 11 nights: Mexico City 2; Loreto 2, San Ignacio 3, Loreto 1, La Paz 3. 

Currency

The unit of currency in Mexico is the Mexican peso.

How To Take It

Cash machines are available in all major cities and towns, and so taking a debit or credit card with a PIN number is the most convenient way of withdrawing money while on your trip, and in most shops and restaurants you can also pay by card. However, since cards can get lost, damaged, withheld or blocked, you should not rely exclusively on a card to access funds. We recommend that additionally you take a reasonable quantity of US dollars cash (no more than is covered by your insurance), which you can exchange into local currency. Dollar bills should be in good condition, soiled or torn bills may be refused. You can take sterling, but the exchange rate is not always competitive or even available, restricting the number of places where you can change money.

Daily Spend

It is very difficult to give a guideline for essential expenses but a budget of around US$40 will cover food, drinks and the odd souvenir. Eat at the best restaurants and you may pay more.. 

Tipping

Local guides and service workers will welcome a gratuity: they often rely on their tip as a significant proportion of their income. It is useful to have spare change for waiters, hotel porters, taxi drivers etc. It is common to leave 10 – 12% in restaurants. Tipping guidelines can be found in our Briefing Dossier.

Insurance

Travel insurance is essential. Details of our recommended policy can be found on our Travel Insurance page. 

For the car, additional Liability and Loss Damage Waiver (CDW without excess and inclusion of theft protection) is included as well as Personal Accident and Third Party insurance.

Visas

Holders of a full British passport do not require a visa, although passports must be valid for at least 6 months after the trip begins. Anyone with a different nationality should enquire with us or check with the relevant consulate.

If flying to the US, or via the US you will need to fill in your online ESTA application.

Airport Taxes

If you have purchased your flights through Journey Latin America, the international departure tax is usually included in the ticket.

Journey Grade

This holiday is suitable for all able, reasonably fit visitors. . 

Climate

In Mexico City and the mountains towns the climate is temperate all year round and, because of the altitude it never gets too hot. Temperatures can drop to freezing in Mexico City over the winter months.

Baja California enjoys 300-360 days of sunshine a year, year round temperatures in the 20°s and 30°s C tempered by sea breezes, and little rain. The sea is colder on the Pacific side because of cold currents. 

Clothing And Special Equipment

Bring practical, comfortable clothing and a light-weight jumper. If you plan to eat in smart restaurants in Mexico City, although clothing is not formal (no need for jacket and tie), something quite smart would be appropriate. 

Strong, comfortable shoes or trainers are advisable and you should bring insect repellant, sun block, sun glasses, and swim wear. 

Please get in touch with the office before departure if you have any doubts.

Vaccinations

Preventative vaccinations are recommended against the following; typhoid; polio; tetanus; hepatitis A. For specific requirements you must consult your GP.

You can also find helpful information on the Masta Travel Health website. 

Country info

When is the best time to go to Mexico?

It’s a year-round destination. Over half the country enjoys temperate highland weather, while the coasts are mostly sunny, hot and relatively humid. The northwest has an arid desert climate. Elsewhere most rain falls from Jun to Sep though precipitation can be expected up to Nov. Hurricanes are possible around the Gulf of Mexico and Yucatán Peninsula Jul - Nov.

What is the official language of Mexico?

Spanish and indigenous languages.

What is Mexico's official currency?

Mexican peso. Notes can be withdrawn from the many ATMs using a UK credit or debit card. You may have to ask your bank to authorise withdrawals before you leave leave UK, and amounts are limited to about £100.

What is the time difference between Mexico and the UK?

GMT -6 hours and - 7 hours in Southern Baja California and the Copper Canyon.  

What other countries combine well with Mexico?

A visit to neighbouring Belize, where there are luxury eco-lodges, superb diving and snorkelling all embraced in British Caribbean cultural heritage.

What are the festivals, cultural and sporting events in Mexico?

Independence Day, 16 Sep Celebrations throughout the country.
Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, 1 - 2 Nov. Celebrated throughout the country.

What's included in the price

  • Services of our team of experts in our London office
  • Services of Journey Latin America local representatives and guides
  • All land and air transport within Latin America
  • Self-drive car hire for one week
  • Accommodation as specified
  • Meals as specified
  • Excursions as specified, including entrance fees

Included Excursions

  • Full-day guided tour of Mexico City and Teotihuacan pyramids
  • Whale-watching expedition in lagoon at San Ignacio (in season)

What's not included in the price

  • Tips and gratuities
  • Meals other than specified
  • International flights to Latin America
  • Airport taxes, when not included in the ticket
  • Optional excursions
  • Fuel for hire car

What's included in the price

  • Services of our team of experts in our London office
  • Services of Journey Latin America local representatives and guides
  • All land and air transport within Latin America
  • Self-drive car hire for one week
  • Accommodation as specified
  • Meals as specified
  • Excursions as specified, including entrance fees

Included Excursions

  • Full-day guided tour of Mexico City and Teotihuacan pyramids
  • Whale-watching expedition in lagoon at San Ignacio (in season)

What's not included in the price

  • Tips and gratuities
  • Meals other than specified
  • International flights to Latin America
  • Airport taxes, when not included in the ticket
  • Optional excursions
  • Fuel for hire car

Inspired by this trip

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

View Extraordinary Inspiration
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Real Latin America Experts

  • Paul Winrow Giffen
    Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Consultant

    After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.

  • Lina Fuller
    Lina Fuller - Travel Consultant

    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

  • JimAshworth
    Jim Ashworth - Travel Consultant

    Jim first caught the Latin American travel bug in 2001 when he decided at the last minute to join a friend travelling around Central America – he hasn't looked back since.

  • Carrie Gallagher
    Carrie Gallagher - Travel Consultant

    A former JLA tour leader, Carrie brings a wealth of on-the-ground experience to our London-based Escorted Groups team.

  • Hannah Donaldson
    Hannah Donaldson - Travel Consultant

    Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is an invaluable part of our Group Tours team.

  • Kathryn Rhodes
    Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Consultant

    Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.

Meet the team