Whales, Golf and a Tale of Two Cities…

by Gabriel Arcoleo

One thousand four hundred and sixty-three miles separates Cabo San Lucas, Mexico from Monterey, California, yet, in many ways, they could not be any closer. Both San Lucas and Monterey are the capitals of Whale watching and golf respectively in their own country. The two cities are World renown destination spots with some of the most scenic shoreline to mountain transitional terrain on the planet. From modest fishing communities to billion-dollar resorts, San Lucas and Monterey can both attribute much of their success to three basic things … location, location, location.

Each year San Lucas and Monterey share a special relationship with the whales as they travel between their feeding and breeding grounds. The very same whales that veer into the Monterey Bay for its nutrient rich deep-water canyon also turn around Land’s End before bee-lining for the warm water of the Sea of Cortez. This continuous cycle has allowed each community to build robust tourist and site seeing business’s around whales. Geographical limitations and migrating whale routes limit the access most cities along the route have to the whales, and that’s what makes these two cities uniquely special. They literally have whales in close proximity on a daily basis near year-round. Neither location is the beginning, or the end, they are both just part of the journey that builds a common understanding of each other and the whales.

Cabo is the type of golf destination that will make you wonder if it’s the best you’ve ever visited and the same can be said about many of the golf courses on the Monterey Peninsula. You’ll play on surreal mountains-meet-desert-meets-tropics courses that look like green oases against the craggy terrain. Some of the ocean front greens are immediately reminiscent of greens from the Monterey Peninsula and Pebble Beach. The endless connection of golf and ocean is played out each day in each location building the ties that bind these two cities.

The more I analyzed the two, the clearer it became that it was not just golf and whales that these two cities share. They both share an immense history in auto racing with the Baja 1000 and Laguna Seca Raceway. The food, shopping, diving, sailing, and mindboggling resorts attract tourism from around the world and contribute to their unique commonalities. Sister Cities are defined as relationships that promote cultural and commercial ties. They are intended to foster friendship and understanding between different cultures as an act of peace and to encourage trade and tourism between the two. Both San Lucas, Mexico and Monterey, California would be hard pressed to find a better friend with mutual interests and common goals to call it’s sister.