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Paraiso del Mar, La Paz

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Baja California Sur

Baja California Sur (in English: South Lower California) is one of the 31 states of Mexico. Before becoming a state on October 8, 1974, the area was known as the South Territory of Baja California. It has an area of 3.57% of the land mass of Mexico and comprises the southern half of the Baja California peninsula, south of the 28th parallel. It is bordered to the north by the state of Baja California, to the west by the Pacific Ocean, and to the east by the Gulf of California, also known as the Sea of Cortez (Mar de Cortés).

As of 2005 the population was 512,170. The state is home to the tourist resorts of Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo. It also includes Loreto, the historic first capital of all three Californias (Baja California Sur, Baja California, and California). The largest city and capital is La Paz, a major eco-torism destination and historic landmark. La Paz become Baja California’s capital in 1829 when Loreto was leveled by a hurricane. Almost half of the state’s population live in La Paz.

The waters off Baja California are home to several species of great whales including Blue, Fin, Bryde’s, Humpback, Orca, Sperm, and many others. This is perhaps the richest area in the world for whale and dolphin diversity. There are plenty of excellent scuba diving and snorkeling locations in the Sea of Cortez due to the fantastic diversity of marine life. The convergence of tropical influences from the south and temperate conditions from the north bring together an amazing array of species. There are week-long beach camping kayak tours of the wilderness islands in the Loreto Marine National Park. This region has long been regarded as one of the best places for fishing. Marlin, sailfish, tuna, yellowtail, wahoo, roosterfish, and dorado are abundant in the blue waters surrounding the peninsula. Various archaeological sites can be toured in the rugged mountains.