Snorkeling in Cabo Pulmo Mexico, aka Paradise

This past Thursday we were able to return to our boondocking beach in the Cabo Pulmo National Park. When we were there previously we scouted out a different spot to park on the same beach. Our goal was to be closer to the snorkeling part of the beach.

We'll post more about Cabo San Lucas and the Dog Training in a bit, but I wanted to update you all on what it's like living in paradise! While we were in Cabo San Lucas we were paying $26 USD a night to have a spot in a parking lot. While we had some shade we had to run the A/Cs all day due to the lack of breeze. It got to be 95+ in the RV when we forgot to run them when we left for the day. To plan your next adventurous trip go to

Cabo Pulmo, while it has the same amount of sun and very similar temperatures, has an almost constant breeze (typically 10-20 MPH) so we can live without electricity (A/Cs) for a long time! We love the breeze here!


The view from our house. Paradise. And yes the snorkeling right out that door is great!  Our last parking spot was in the direction this looks on the other side of the bay.


The kids woke up early so we hiked up this small hill to see the effects of the sunrise.


Taken from the top of that hill, a panoramic of where we're camping. (Visit to see the image to open in a larger view, you can see Gracie in the middle)


Gracie in her new boondocking spot. You can see the trail we previously hiked in the background. We're still debating as to which spot is better, this one is right by the free snorkeling spot, the other is right by the palapa we built which has undergone some major upgrades.


Becky and the kids about 10 minutes after getting out of bed. Pretty fun way to start the day!


Panoramic (click to see larger). On the left is what we call Rock Beach and the right hand side is Pulmo Bay. The rocky point on the far right is Los Arbolitos.


Kody chilling on top of the small hill, there was a steep drop off, about 50 feet to the water. We had a tough time not freaking out about the kids standing on the edge since the edge was gravel.


This is the boat launch which is no longer used. It makes a perfect spot to start a snorkel swim. Rumors have it that an agency, big island boat rentals, is planning on providing snorkeling and other water sports to tourists here.


We met some friends and decided to try to hike to the sea lion colony which is between Los Arbolitos and Fralies. This was as far as we could hike, but the crystal clear water made the hike worth it. This is the opposite side of the Pulmo Bay and so the rock point you see in the background is where Gracie is parked. We could actually see her from here.


A funny thing that I've learned on this trip is that the awesome turquoise waters give an indication that snorkeling might be good, but the best snorkeling is not in the turquoise water. That bright color comes from the sand at the bottom reflecting the sunlight. The fish hang around the coral and rocks, so the best snorkeling here was to do a loop around the white rock in the middle, or to stay on the right hand side going around those exposed rocks. Still the turquoise water is AWESOME to swim in!


Tim and Victoria from (our new friends) joined us on this hike/snorkeling adventure. We all had a blast trying to get to the sea lions. It was about a 20 minute hike from the parking lot to the snorkeling beach.


The Los Arbolitos parking lot. It's actually a pretty sweet beach with palapas, a restaurant, and gear for rent (kayaks, snorkeling gear and more). However this is more of a swimming beach the snorkeling was a 20 minute hike away. Becky and I plan to attempt to get to the sea lions another way another day. At least we hope to!


Funny thing is someone told Tim he could park his rig down here. (Tim and Victoria live in a 35' 5th wheel). While technically he could have fit in the parking "lot" it was extremely soft sand and he would have gotten stuck just getting in, not to mention getting positioned right etc. The caretaker/cook/rental agents live here in the permanent RV and charge $2 per person ($30 pesos) to park. Pretty steep for Mexico standards, $30 pesos per car would have been more reasonable.


Gracie is parked on the little point that is near the scuba diving spot called "Shipwreck" before visiting which make sure you know how to choose a scuba mask and all other gears as having the best equipment can ensure you the best scuba experience. We drove to Los Arbolitos and tried to hike to the sea lion colony (note the snorkeling flag there) However we ended up hiking to the point just east of Los Arbolitos where the yellow snorkeling flag is near El Islote.


Here's another map this time turned. Gracie is parked on the point of land on the left side. We hiked to Playa La Sirenita hoping to make it to the sea lion colony. Perhaps on another try. Funniest thing about this map... we've been snorkeling around the point where Gracie is parked, and enjoying every minute of it. However it's not "good enough" to make it to the map as a good snorkeling spot.


If you zoom way in on this picture you can see Gracie across the Cabo Pulmo Bay.


Selfie of our hiking and snorkeling crew. Tim commented on our blog post about the hike in Cabo Pulmo thanking us for the Palapa we built. It was really cool to hear that someone was using the palapa! (We wrote our website URL on the palapa). When we arrived back in Cabo Pulmo on Thursday Tim and Victoria were still there and ended up helping us get unstuck. (Forgot to take pictures of that one!) Tim is a real estate investor and manager in Florida. He has someone managing the property and collecting rent. Victoria is a traveling nurse, so she works for 2-3 months in a hospital and then they travel for 2-3 months. Her last stint was in Tucson Az and her next will hopefully be in Southern California. This gives them their desired lifestyle. We had a lot of fun seeing how much our values aligned (not too many people would desire to boondock on the beach down a dirt road in Mexico where the nearest grocery store is a 30+ minute drive away).


The thing about this lifestyle is we get to make new friends quickly, but we also go our separate ways. This is Tim and Victoria's rig heading to Cabo San Lucas to continue their journey. This is the second set of friends we've made on this beach and have had to watch drive away. The kids are just starting to get burned out on the saying goodbye. Hopefully we'll meet again, on some road, somewhere.


These sunrises never get old!


Josiah made us pancakes... it's fun seeing Alia and Josiah grow and desire to learn new things.


This kid. His love language is touch, and he loves technology... so when we were walking with the selfie stick out, he found the opportunity to snap a selfie. I love him and I love this shot of him.

All this in the first 48 hours of arriving back to Pulmo, which in the Kortman's lexicon means Paradise. Here's hoping we can hike to the sea lions another day.

We'd love to post pictures of our snorkeling adventures, but the waterproof cases we have for our iphones aren't working well. (Becky's leaked and the phone is on rice right now, Paul's doesn't take clear pictures underwater and will switch to video or panoramic mode at random. So we're thinking the only way to show real pics/videos of our snorkeling adventures is to get a GoPro. We were wondering if you appreciate our writing and storytelling enough to contribute to an fund to raise money for a GoPro and accessory kit purchase. If so, email us, comment here, or comment on Facebook letting us know you'd like to help financially. We'll set up the campaign if enough people say they'd like to chip in.

Becky Kortman

I'm a homeschooling, world traveling, Jesus follower who is a wife and mom of 4 kids, In all my travels, I am looking for places that fit with my soul and feel as much like 'home' as they can this side of heaven.

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