Puerto Peñasco began as a
small, quaint fishing village on the Sea of Cortez. Today, although offering
every modern convenience, it still retains much of the traditional charm and
culture of those early days. The Sea of Cortez, or Gulf of California, has long
been known for its deep blue waters and white sand beaches. The resort regions
are easily accessed via modern, divided highways from both Arizona and Southern
Puerto Peñasco is just 60
miles southwest of the U.S.-Mexico border. It is approximately a 3.5-hour drive
from Tucson or Phoenix. No car permit or visas are necessary, as Rocky Point is
located in a "Free Zone". The weather offers typically warm temperatures and
clear skies, especially in the evening. The climate is more moderate than
Arizona, being slightly cooler in the summer and slightly warmer in the winter.
Rocky Point started as a
fishing village in the 1930's and gradually developed into one of the largest
shrimp producing areas in the Sea of Cortez. During the Prohibition era in the
U.S., an enterprising businessman, Johnny Stone, visited Puerto Peñasco (Rocky
Point). Realizing the potential of this village to attract wealthy Americans to
vacation and fish, Stone built the town's first hotel, drilled a well, and
opened for business.
Al Capone, who was among
his clientele, brought friends along to enjoy the climate, drink, gamble, and
deep-sea fishing. But it was not until years later when it was slowly discovered by
some Americans as an alternative for retirement and vacation. Rocky Point is
surrounded by the Sonoran Desert on one side and the Sea of Cortez on the
other. Unique ocean conditions in this town create extreme tides of up to 23
ft. between high and low, and this also produces a unique marine life.
Swimming in the area is
very safe and emulates lake conditions with no rip tides and a very calm water.
You can watch the sunrise and the sunset on the same ocean horizon. There are
many places to visit while in Rocky Point, such as the Pinacate Mountains, which
geographic condition was ideal for NASA's training for the Lunar mission due to
its similarity to the moon's surface. San Jorge island and its sea wolves, the
Intercultural Center for the Study of Deserts and Oceans (a 55-foot long whale
skeleton is near the entrance of the facility), and the sand dunes of the Altar
Rocky Point is sunny almost
year-round with practically no rainfall. Rocky Point offers many sporting
events including sailing, fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing and
automobile and motorcycle racing just to name a few. There are as well rentals
on most sporting equipment.
Rocky Point offers
everything from relaxing with a cold margarita on a magnificent sunset cruise,
to shopping in the mercado, or along the local stands near Cholla Bay. Fresh
catch of the day can be purchased and fleeted for you at the fish market. Summer
and winter alike, let the seasons be your inspiration. Puerto Peñasco has a
whole orchestra of amenities to offer you a real symphony of pleasure. Come as a
family, with a group, alone, or as a couple and get a taste of Mexico at it's
Puerto Peñasco (Rocky
Point) offers the exotic charms of a foreign locale within easy traveling
distance of many U.S. locations. Nestled between the Sea of Cortez and the
desert landscape of El Desierto de Altar, Rocky Point provides easy access to
all the amenities of the region. The people are friendly and many speak great
English, so communication is generally not a problem.
The beautiful beaches
stretch for 100 kilometers along the surrounding coastline. Among the most
notable is Playa Arenosa (Sandy Beach) - Princesa de Penasco's own beach. The
warm, sunny climate and the abundance of ocean wildlife add to the appeal of
this seaside retreat. Swimming, snorkeling, SCUBA diving, water skiing,
parasailing, and other water sports can be enjoyed virtually all year long, not
to mention the wonderful fishing, clamming and oyster beds!
You can dine in one of the
many restaurants available in Puerto Peñasco - and all minutes from the Princesa
Resort. These range in style from quaint Mexican style cantinas to eating
establishments so Americanized they actually import some of their ingredients.
"Shop till you drop" takes
on a whole new perspective in the Old Port area of Rocky Point, offering sights,
sounds and bargains to be savored. You'll find everything from open-air stands
with T-shirts, jewelry and other wares, to upscale boutiques featuring fine art,
local craftsmanship, clothing, and furnishings from rustic to elegant.
Weather: Rocky Point enjoys
mild winters and warm summers with sparkling ocean waters and cool breezes to
match. The average sea temperatures are very close to the outside air. The
winter months bring some rainfall to this desert area, as do the "monsoon"
months of late summer.
Tides: This northern region
of the Gulf of California experiences one of the greatest tidal shifts in the
world. Twice a day, the ocean will rise and fall as much as 24 vertical feet.
The entire area around Rocky Point has been of scientific interest for marine
biologists for years. This extreme tidal shift makes for excellent tide pooling
as many of the beach areas reveal large tide pools at low tide.