Visiting La Ventana: Mexico’s Kiteboarding Capital

Kites on the beach in La Ventana

La Ventana, Mexico is Baja’s outdoor adventure and wind sports capital: beautiful beaches with crystal clear, warm water for snorkeling, miles of trails snaking through the desert, and countless kiteboarders flying across the bay.

La Ventana is a small fishing town located on the east coast of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula. Its northerly El Norte winds have made it increasingly popular with kiteboarder, who have nicknamed it “Hood River South.”

Although many refer to the entire populated area as La Ventana, the community is actually made up of two towns: La Ventana on the southern end and El Sargento to the north.

The towns are right on the shore of Bahia de la Ventana, a large bay within the calm waters of the Sea of Cortez, with a massive island, Isla Cerralvo, on the eastern horizon.

This travel guide to La Ventana, Mexico covers everything you need to know to plan your trip, including the best time to visit, where to stay, what to pack, and things to do.

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Playa Central

How to Get to La Ventana, Mexico

The nearest international airport is Los Cabos (SJD), about two hours driving time south of La Ventana, Mexico. There is a closer airport about 40 minutes away in La Paz, but it has mostly domestic flights.

The easiest way to get to La Ventana, Baja California Sur is to find a cheap flight to Los Cabos, book a rental car, and then drive two hours north to La Ventana Bay.

We recommend DiscoverCars for finding the best deals on rental cars in Los Cabos.

Read Next: What You Need to Know Before Renting a Car in Mexico

Another option is to take a taxi from Los Cabos or book a private transfer from La Paz. There’s also a daily bus from La Paz to La Ventana.

A popular alternative to flying is to do a classic Baja California road trip down Mexico’s trans-peninsular highway 1. Many kiteboarders visiting La Ventana drive their own RV or camper vans with all their gear and stay the entire windy season.

Don’t forget to buy Mexican auto insurance (it’s mandatory) if you drive your American or Canadian car into Mexico. >>Get a Quote Today!

Read Next: The Complete Guide to Mandatory Mexican Auto Insurance

Best Time to Visit La Ventana, BCS

La Ventana wind season is from October through April, with peak wind in January and February. The wind picks up every afternoon from noon until sunset and is usually around 15-25 mph.

In the winter months, the average highs are around 80F with lows around 55F, while the summers can get up to 100+F.

For cooler temperatures and peak wind conditions, we recommend visiting La Ventana in January or February.

If you’re not into wind sports, then visit in late spring or early fall when the water and climate are warm and the winds aren’t as strong.

Read Next: 8 Tips for Visiting Baja, Mexico

La Ventana, Mexico Safety

La Ventana is a small community in Baja California Sur (one of Mexico’s safest states) that’s quite safe, with occasional petty theft being the main safety concern.

Of course, you don’t want to think about everything that can go wrong on your trip, but emergencies do happen and that’s why you need travel insurance. >> Get a Quote Today

World Nomads Travel Insurance provides trip protection, coverage for 200+ adventure travel activities (including coverage for wind sports!), emergency medical insurance and evacuation, and gear protection.

A beachfront vacation rental near El Sargento

Where to Stay in La Ventana

From camping to beach front rentals to boutique hotels, La Ventana has plenty excellent options for places to stay.

La Ventana, Mexico Hotels

Ventana Bay Resort: an eco-friendly beach front hotel with an onsite kiteboarding school and rentals

ChiloChill Glamping: a luxury camping experience right on the sand with its own beachfront bar

La Ventana Hostel: a budget-friendly option with dorm beds and a shared kitchen a short walk away from the beach

La Ventana Rentals

Many wind sports enthusiasts and digital nomads stay in La Ventana for the entire winter season, so make sure to book a rental ahead of time. There are a number of beautiful vacation rentals in La Ventana with fast, fiber optic internet and gorgeous views of the sea.

VRBO (Vacation Rentals By Owner) is an excellent option for finding a place to stay in La Ventana. Vacation rentals offer a better value compared to most hotels and you get to experience life like a local.

La Ventana Beachfront Villa: Located above La Ventana’s best beach, this 3-bedroom villa has two separate homes that sleep 9 people and is perfect for a family or group of friends. Beautiful ocean and mountain views, fast internet, 3 standup paddle boards included, and a short walk to the beach, kiteboarding schools, and restaurants.

La Ventana Studio: This cozy studio has a king size bed and a bed sofa (perfect for kids), fully equipped kitchen, and access to the exclusive community amenities (pool, gym, massage area, restaurant, playground, free bicycles and kayak) in Club Cerralvo. It’s located a short walk to La Ventana Beach.

Ejido La Ventana Campground

Camping in La Ventana

Campground Ejido de La Ventana: Popular beachfront campground with bathrooms and showers (no hookups), walking distance to all of the action in La Ventana and next to the Playa Central kiteboarding hub with wifi, rentals, restaurant/bar, and lessons.

Camping Rates: $250 MXN/night dry camping

Campground El Sargento: RV sites with full hookups, wifi, flushing toilets, and hot showers located on a bluff overlooking El Sargento Beach.

Camping Rates: $250 MXN/night dry camping, $350/hookups, and $500/hookups with sea view.

Playa Agua Caliente: Dispersed camping on the northern edge of El Sargento, walking distance from natural hot springs. No amenities or trash pickup.

Camping Rates: Free!

Best Things to Do in La Ventana, Mexico

Sign in La Ventana, Mexico

Kiteboarding in La Ventana Bay

Whether it’s kiteboarding, windsurfing, or wing foiling, La Ventana is the perfect place for practicing wind sports. The calm water and consistent winds make it an excellent spot for both beginners and experts.

There are many kiteboarding schools and shops in La Ventana to choose from for taking lessons and renting gear. Nomad Kitesurf School is a popular and well-reviewed kiteboarding school that also offers equipment rentals.

Kristina soaking in the hot spring pools

Soak in the Hot Springs

Playa Agua Caliente, or Hot Springs Beach, is a beautiful beach on the northern end of El Sargento where you can soak in natural hot springs for free!

Time your visit for when the tide is low because the hot springs are located directly under the sand and pebbles along the shoreline. Bring a shovel (or just use your hands!) to dig out your own personal hot springs pool to relax in and watch the mobula rays jumping across the sea.

Read Next: Puertecitos Hot Springs: Baja’s Secret Pools by the Sea

Ride the Mountain Biking Trails

La Ventana and El Sargento has some of the best mountain biking in Baja California Sur. There are over 70 trails that span 131 kilometers, with two separate sections. The La Ventana mountain bike trail maps are available for use offline on the Trailforks app.

The south trail system (flatter and best for beginners) winds through a giant Cardón cactus forest on the southern end of La Ventana. The north trail system climbs up above the hills overlooking Playa Agua Caliente (Hot Springs Beach). The La Ventana mountain bike trails are well-maintained by La Ventana Area Mountain Bike Association (LaVAMBA).

La Ventana mountain bike rentals are available at multiple shops in town, including Cacachilas Bike Shop (also does repairs) and Ventana Wind Sports.

A no wind day in La Ventana Bay

Enjoy a Calm Morning on the Water

Kayaking, standup paddle boarding, and snorkeling are all popular activities to do in the mornings before the winds pick up during the windy season. There are places along the shore to rent kayaks and SUPs, but it’s best to pack your own inflatable kayak.

The reef in front of the undeveloped beach area north of El Sargento is a good spot for snorkeling. Nearby Bahia de los Muertos and Punta Arena are also good snorkeling spots.

Incredible views from the hiking trail to Punta Gorda

Hike the Punta Gorda Trail

One of the most beautiful hikes in Baja, Punta Gorda trail winds through a cactus wonderland along cliffs overlooking the bay and ends at a rocky beach that’s perfect for snorkeling and a picnic.

You can find all of the La Ventana hiking trails on the Trailforks app.

Read Next: The Ultimate Day Hike Packing List

Explore Cerralvo Island

Isla Cerralvo was recently renamed Isla Jacques Cousteau, but most locals still call it by its original name. It’s the mostly uninhabited, 18-mile-long island visible on the horizon across the bay from La Ventana.

Hiking and snorkeling tours to Cerralvo Island from La Ventana are available locally by boat.

Swim with Whale Sharks

Swimming with whale sharks is a must-do activity when visiting Baja. Whale sharks (Don’t worry! They’re harmless.) are the world’s largest fish and they live in the warm water bays along the Sea of Cortez.

If you’re in La Ventana during whale shark season (October-April), book a tour led by a local marine biologist out to swim with whale sharks in nearby La Paz Bay. La Paz is the capital of Baja California Sur and only about 1 hour away from La Ventana.

Take a Boat Tour to Espiritu Santo Island

Espiritu Santo Island National Park is an uninhabited island off the shores of La Paz on the Sea of Cortez. It’s home to beautiful beaches, sea lion colonies, and an abundant marine life. Isla Espiritu Santo a popular destination for boat tours, diving, snorkeling, kayaking, and camping trips.

Book a boat and snorkeling tour to Isla Espiritu Santo to explore its underwater treasures and swim with the sea lions.

See the Famous Balandra Beach

Playa Balandra was recently voted as the most beautiful beach in Mexico and has since become one of the most popular beaches in Baja. The beach has turquoise blue, calm water and white sand with palapas lining the shore. It’s located inside the extremely shallow Balandra Bay, where you can wade from one side of the bay to the other to check out the mangroves.

Take a tour to Playa Balandra to snorkel and relax on one of Mexico’s most beautiful beaches.

Visit El Triunfo Mining Town

For a bit of Baja history and a change of scenery, take the 30-minute drive into the mountains to the old mining town of El Triunfo. Tour the mining ruins, stroll around the quaint Mexican town, and enjoy a delicious meal at one of the many highly-rated restaurants.

Surfing in Todos Santos

Todos Santos is a charming town and popular surfing destination that’s only a little over 1.5 hours from La Ventana. The sandy shore and long waves make Playa Los Cerritos the best spot for beginners learning to surf.

There are multiple surfboard rental stands and surfing schools to choose from along the shore at Los Cerritos Beach.

Kristina greeting the gray whales in Laguna San Ignacio

Go Gray Whale Watching

Getting face-to-face with a giant gray whale is one the most incredible wildlife encounters on Earth. There are multiple bays on the Pacific side for gray whale watching in Baja, but the closest one to La Ventana is Magdalena Bay.

Gray whale season in Magdalena Bay is January-April and that’s when mothers swim down from colder northern waters to give birth and raise their calves in the warmer water bays of Baja.

Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience! If you’re in La Ventana during whale watching season, make sure to book a boat tour to see gray whales up close.

Relaxing on the beach in La Ventana, Mexico

What to Pack for La Ventana

La Ventana is a small fishing town with laid-back vibes where people walk around in casual beach wear. You won’t need to pack much more than beach attire and sun protection for your trip.

Here are some essentials to pack when visiting La Ventana:

Reef-safe sunscreen: Please, please, please don’t use “regular” chemical sunscreen when going into any natural water source! The chemicals are kill coral, and are toxic to animals and plants. We only use mineral SPF because it’s much safer for the environment and our skin. This one is our favorite because it doesn’t burn when it gets into our eyes and rubs in easily.

Travel towel: This towel absorbs 4x its weight in water and packs down into its travel bag. It wrings out practically dry and has a secure hanging loop so it won’t fly away when the Baja winter wind hits.

UPF shirt: These shirts are the best for Baja sun protection! They are made from lightweight UPF materials (basically SPF for clothing) and have flaps for airflow that helps you stay cool.

Wide-brim hat: It’s the classic Baja Hat. A super wide-brim, straw hat that protects your shoulders and upper back from the sun. Plus, it dries quickly when it gets wet.

Snorkel and mask set: Definitely buy this BEFORE you head into Mexico. Adult snorkel sets are hard to find down here unless you’re in a major city’s dive shop. It’s tempting to buy a cheap set or a full-face mask, but don’t. You’ll have a much better snorkel experience if you invest in a quality snorkel and mask set like this one. Otherwise, water can and will leak into your mask and snorkel and that can be a hassle for beginners. We use this spray to prevent fog from building up on the inside of the mask.

Mexico guidebook: More of an intro to Mexico and its culture than a directory of attractions and accommodations, but if you really want to explore Mexico and immerse yourself in the culture, you need this book to figure out how things work (or don’t) around here. The People’s Guide to Mexico is the classic guide to “living, traveling, and taking things as they come” in Mexico.

Baja travel guide: A Baja-specific guidebook with detailed maps and plenty of listings for places to stay, where to eat, and top attractions.

Palapa on the beach in Playa Agua Caliente

Final Thoughts on La Ventana, Baja California Sur

La Ventana makes for the perfect home base for kitesurfers and mountain bikers looking to explore Baja’s thriving wind sports and outdoor adventure scene.

La Ventana is a short driving distance from La Paz, Todos Santos, and Los Cabos, allowing for multiple day trips out to some of Baja’s most popular destinations during your stay, while coming back to a quiet and lesser known fishing town.

Looking for more things to do in Baja? Check out these articles:

Have you been to La Ventana? Leave us a comment below with your favorite things to do in the area.

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