Mision Nuestra Señora del Rosario de Viñadaco

Founded on July 20, 1774 as the first Dominican mission in (Baja) California. In 1802 the spring went dry, so the mission moved down the valley to its second site close to the river, known today as ‘Rosario Abajo’.

To La Bocana Beach

Using the high and dry road, it is about 5 1/2 miles from Highway One to the beach. The ‘river road’ is shorter, but may require 4WD.

The beach, looking south… A large lagoon is just off the photo, to the left. It offers calmer and warmer water recreation.

‘Baja Angel’ pours a cold Pacifico at La Bocana.

At the north end of La Bocana is this attractive rock point.

Oh what a feeling!

4 1/2 years and 130,000 miles of superior performance from my 2001 4WD Toyota Tacoma has me singing the praises!

Mision del Rosario (Abajo)

The ruins at the second site of the mission which operated from 1802 to 1832. This site is in the older village along the road that goes to Punta Baja or to La Bocana via the ‘river road’.

The mission’s adobe walls are mostly melted mounds … over 200 years after it was built.

Hugo Lopez

In the Baja Cactus Motel and ‘Tacos Mision’ café, are several paintings of Baja landscape and culture. They are the work of Hugo Lopez who runs the café, on the east side of town.

The Cataviña desert and …

Hugo’s rendition of Mision San Borja is on display at Tacos Mision.

LA LOBERA (Sea Lion Crater)

Actually a huge sea cave with a sky light! The unmarked good road leaves Hwy. 1 at Km. 47.5 (6 miles north of El Rosario’s Pemex station), and goes 3 miles to the parking area next to the rope-fence surrounded ‘crater’. Ignore the private property/ keep out (in Spanish) signs, half way in.

Looking over the ‘crater’ to the sea entrance. Day parking is 20 pesos, camping is 70 pesos. In the distance, a future sea food restaurant with a stunning view.

Some interesting sea scape is nearby at La Lobera.

The coastline here was simply awesome…

A sea lion was ‘spy hopping’ (peeking up from the ocean) at Elizabeth and I.

Many small craters like this one, make tide pools at low tide.

To the north of the three level (future) restaurant the coastline was equally striking. The setting sun created some great lighting.

Sunset at La Lobera, Saturday May 28, 2005.

Sunday morning we have breakfast at Mama Espinosa’s. Here Antonio and Lorenia Muñoz (owners of Baja Cactus Motel and Pemex) chat with Mama Espinoza’s daughter Roli.

El Rosario Community Museum

Located in an old school building in El Rosario de Abajo, along the road to Punta Baja, Antonio gives us a tour inside.

Many displays are inside…

Here is a model of the nearby mission, as it was.

This table was full of local area fossils.

Antonio sees his family’s original gasoline selling operation in a photo taken well before World War II.

Antonio’s family was an important part of El Rosario’s history. Both his grandparents’ photos are on display.

We say our goodbyes to Antonio and Lorenia at the Baja Cactus Motel and head north. Near El Consuelo (10 miles north of El Rosario) we check out the coast.

Looking north towards Bahia San Quintin.

La Bufadora

We drive out to Punta Banda to see the famous blow hole.

Even with the small surf this day, a few big sprays were created!

Baja Rocks!

Another great weekend in Baja was enjoyed. The peninsula has so much to offer anyone who loves the outdoors. El Rosario used to be considered just a place to get gas… As you can see, it has a lot more to offer.

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