Louise Speaks: How can you go to San Diego for a weekend and not take a trip to Tijuana? Well I hadn’t been there for over 35 years so we said what the heck. My daughter joined us on this trip so it made for an even better journey. The trip started when my daughter noticed that my passport had expired…not good when you’re headed for Mexico…But after talking to the tour company, they assured me that all would be okay. Everyone was nervous, including me, but I was up for a new adventure and figured this is was a good way to start.
Tijuana www.tijuana.com is the most visited border city in the globe; and is approximately 15 miles from its sister city of San Diego. Over fifty million people annually cross the border between these two cities. This metropolitan crossing makes the San Yisidro Port of Entry the busiest land-border crossing in the world. It is estimated that the two border crossing stations between the cities of San Diego and Tijuana account for 300,000 daily border crossings alone. Tijuana is a very commercial town as well as a border town. There are major hotels and other restaurants besides the shops and venders you meet on the streets. The tour took us to the part of Tijuana that tourists want to see…to make you feel like you are in Mexico when San Diego is just up the street.
The bus dropped us off in the center of town and told us to have a good time and be back in four hours. Easy enough…what could possibly happen in 4 hours? You got it…absolutely nothing. Tijuana is a highly Catholic populated town as is any Mexican city. In the four city block town that we strolled through there were several large, and I do mean cathedral large churches. There didn’t seem to be that many people to warrant so many large churches, but then again we didn’t tour the entire town. I’m sure if we had gone into the commercial Americanized part of town we would have seen more businesses and more people. We were taken to the tourist trap….the part where vendors follow you asking you to buy their goods.
We did do our fair share of shopping, and eating, and of course how can you pass up $3 Margarita? I will say though, that the people of Tijuana have done a great job cleaning up the town and making it tourist friendly. The streets were clean, the people were friendly and the churros were excellent, did I say how good a $3 Margarita can be? We did see the worms in all the bottles of tequilla but we passed on that activity.
I did manage to cross the border without any problems, even with an expired passport…not something I’d recommend but it all worked out okay. Although this was a fun way to spend an afternoon, I think a trip every 35 years is good enough. I enjoyed the sites and it was great weather to walk around, we did get some good deals, but I think I would have preferred a day at the beach. That being said I would rate this stop a C.
Thelma Speaks: Hum…well it was fun to have company on this out of country adventure for sure! The bus driver made the trip a great adventure and I would suggest taking the bus down to the city. We saw huge churches and tons of people while walking into shops that were full of tourist collectibles. My favorite was not shopping but seeing the people and how they were trying to make a living. They work hard to keep business coming into their shop. A picture with a burro has to be taken on the corner and we were no exception! The day was okay but not a place to spend days or for that matter more than a couple of hours. Oh did we say sitting at the bar and waiting for the bus to go back to the USA was a great way to spend some time with the $3 margarita?
Did I say the bus driver was fantastic, the people were friendly but… the day was not a wonderful adventure so I would rate this stop a C-.