Perched on the US border with Mexico, the city of Tijuana has a well-earned reputation as a Prohibition-era party town, and attracts visitors from across California and beyond to come and experience the unique atmosphere.
On the American side, just 20 miles north, is San Diego, where a number of tour companies run trips to Tijuana throughout the year. We’ve picked out some of the best.
FROM $65 PER PERSON
Led by an experienced local guide, this fascinating walking tour is an ideal introduction to Tijuana for first time visitors to the city. The tour begins at San Ysidro Transit Center at 1pm and invites you to take a leisurely walk to many of the city’s main sites, landmarks and places of interest, plus a number of its lesser known nooks and crannies. During the tour you’ll get to hear local music and sample some of the traditional food and drink enjoyed by Tijuana natives. The tour ends at San Ysidro International Port of entry where you’ll be waved off with a satisfied stomach, a wealth of knowledge about this captivating city, and a shedload of memories to boot. Food tasting and a full lunch is included in the admission price, while alcohol can be purchased at your own expense.
FROM $50 PER PERSON
Run by a talented and knowledgeable local writer and photographer, these fun-packed tours are designed for intimate groups no bigger than 8 and centre around Tijuana’s thriving food and craft beer scene (the craft beer of the Baja region is known to be the best around). Tours are often highly improvised, creating a sense of spontaneity and fun, and the fascinating stories come thick and fast. Some of the regular highlights include stopping off for a drink in a dive bar (renowned for their dark lighting and colourful characters), and sampling locally brewed craft beer and the traditional Mexican liquor known as mescal. Sustenance comes in the shape of mouth-watering street tacos. For a wilder experience, the host has also gained a reputation for organising raucous bachelor parties. Guests must make their own way from San Diego, which is only a 30-minute journey by road – just be sure to bring a valid passport.
FROM 47.99 PER PERSON
This 4-hour sightseeing trip immerses guests in the Tijuana experience. After being picked up from your San Diego hotel, you’ll make the short coach ride south to Tijuana during which your guide will began regaling you with fascinating facts about the city. You’ll pass the Avenue of the Heroes, noted for its many monuments and sculptures of local heroes, as well as the historic entertainment centre of Agua Caliente and its buzzing casino. You’ll also get to explore the shops and galleries of Avenida Revolución, before grabbing a drink at a bar or heading to a local restaurant to enjoy some Mariachi music over an authentic Mexican meal (at your own expense). After the tour, you’ll be dropped off back at your hotel.