April 5, 2016 2:50 am

The Pearl Steinbeck’s novel “The Pearl” about a pearl diver from La Paz was the first thought that came to mind after seeing, PLaya El Tecolote and this month’s gem.  As with many of Baja California’s natural gems, you’ll have to hunt them out. Anyone that has ever searched for such precious spots knows part of the mystique and allure are their remote access and isolation. El Tecolote Beach is no different, it sit’s north east of the City of La Paz and is surrounded by mountains.  On your way to Tecolote you’ll pass some of the most photographed beaches in Baja California. With the tip of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountain range to your right and the crystal clear Bay of La Paz on your left, the ride itself is magical. Just a 15 minute drive up highway 11 you’ll find the parking area and access to the beach. The beach is an amazing spot for swimming, sunning, beach combing and yes even camping. It is a long expanse of mostly white sand beach dotted with palapa style restaurants. The restaurants specialize in fresh sea food and serve some of the most amazingly tasting dishes in Baja California. Only at Tecolote can you see fisherman catching your dinner while you enjoy freshly made guacamole salsa. The beach is a local hot spot. During the summer months locals begin to fill up the parking lot around sunset. Nights of wading in the ocean with the moon above and live bands playing in the background is surreal and the reason many make the pilgrimage. During the day boats taxi visitors to and from Espiritu Santo Island just off shore and insight of the beach. As the day turns to night the restaurants at Tecolote turn into bars with characters found in Hemingway novels. A unique combination of intellectuals and artists, white shirts, facial hair and sun drenched faces converge on Tecolote nightly.  A collection of dated straw hats, beer’s in tow, all with their own unique story’s reminiscent of tales from Key West’s Sloppy Joes in the mid 1950’s. Tecolote is special and the history, the land and its people are all parts of the reason I call this location, a hidden gem.]]>