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Explore the Rich History of Cabo San Lucas


Thinking of booking a Cabo adventure tour? You’re not the first! The azure waters and lush tropical greenery has been attracting adventure seekers for nearly 500 years. Conquistadors, pirates, and adventurers of all types have explored the secluded coves and basked in the warm sun of Cabo San Lucas and the entire Baja peninsula since the 1500s. Today tourists come for the beautiful scenery and inviting atmosphere but be sure not to leave without learning some of the colorful history of this area.

In 1535 Hernan Cortez first set foot on the Baja peninsula at La Paz and claimed it in the name of Spain. In his travels Cortez encountered a shipwreck survivor who told him of an island that was just ten sailing days north of his headquarters at the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The survivor recounted tales of gold and pearls and told Cortez that beautiful Amazons lived there. Cortez came to believe that the survivor was talking about the mythical island of California said to be ruled by Calafia, an Amazon queen. With visions of beautiful women and untold riches in his head he gathered three galleons and set sail with 600 men and women. Days later his ships blew into the serene bay that he dubbed Santa Cruz. He found no Amazons, no gold, and no pearls, so Cortez wheeled around and headed south back to Mexico.

Two years later in 1537, the navigator on that expedition, Francisco de Ulloa, actually laid eyes on Cabo San Lucas for the first time. It is he who is credited with discovering Cabo; archaeological records show that this region has been inhabited for at least 10,000 years. Once this land became property of Spain, Jesuit missionaries came to try to Christianize the native Pericu people. In 1734 the tribes revolted destroying their mission. No ruins of the original mission remain but you can visit the rebuilt church in the town square also known as Parque Amelia Wilkes. You can also check out some historical drawings of San Jose Del Cabo Anuiti.  

Eventually the Spanish also began using Cabo as a stop along their trade route funneling the wealth gained in the colonies back to Spain. During this time period you can bet that where there are ships laden with treasure there are pirates! There were many attempts made on the yearly caravan of riches back to Spain. Sir Francis Drake himself was said to have a carried out one of these raids in the 1570s. In 1587 English Pirate, Thomas Cavendish lay in wait out at Land’s End and sank the Spanish Galleon, Santa Ana making off with a fortune in gold, pearls, and silk. As you take a sunset cruise at Land’s End you can imagine the days of swashbuckling and treasure hunting from the younger days of Cabo and keep your eye out for the Jolly Roger on the horizon. You can even book a diving adventure, who knows what you might find under the waves!  This area is also famous for its waters teeming with fish. You can book a fishing expedition or tour the historic tuna cannery in town. There’s no end to the sites you can see in Cabo.

Cabo Pacific Tours has an experienced team of travel industry professionals that have been living and working in the Los Cabos area for over 27 years.  No matter where your adventure leads you, we will provide you with quality and safe transportation service in Cabo.  Contact us today and let our guides take you to the most spectacular and historical destinations and provide you with expert advice for the best experience for everyone during your trip.