Right at the southern tip of Baja California Sur, Los Cabos is a popular destination for anyone looking for sun, sand and sea. Once a sleepy fishing village, it grew in the 80s and ’90s to become the sparkling resort it is to this day.
Los Cabos is split between two cities, both of which offer something completely different. For this reason, it’s best to be aware of what’s on offer in each before deciding where to stay in Los Cabos.
To help you out, we’ve figured out the three best places to stay in Los Cabos. Combining our personal experience with hints and tips from locals and travel experts, we’ve found the top accommodation picks in each area.
Best Airbnb in Los Cabos – Beach Condo
Airbnb Plus properties are hand selected for their gorgeous interiors, unbeatable locations and impeccable guest service. This gorgeous condo is just outside San José del Cabo, offering a secluded beachfront location away from the big crowds.
Best Hostel in Los Cabos – Cabo Inn
This quirky inn offers some great social facilities and super affordable rooms. You’ll get to enjoy your own private space for about the same price as a bed in a hostel dorm, as well as regular social events throughout the week. This really is the best of both worlds.
Luxury Hotel in Los Cabos – ME Cabo
This five star hotel is the perfect getaway right in the heart of Cabo San Lucas. It comes with its own private stretch of beach away from the huge crowds in the public areas, and provides access to one of Mexico’s best beach clubs. It’s a bit of a splurge, but worth every peso.
Playa El Medano is the beating heart of Cabo San Lucas. The beach stretching along the coast comes with peaceful sunbathing spots, epic water sports providers and a 24/7 choice of restaurants and bars. This is where tourists from across the world come to relax.
San Jose del Cabo
Depending on what tour guide you’re reading, San José del Cabo is often considered a completely different city. We have to agree with this sentiment! San José del Cabo doesn’t have as many tourists as its closest neighbor, giving it a completely different vibe.
Sandwiched between Downtown and El Medano, Marina is a super central neighborhood that keeps you well connected with all of the action in Cabo San Lucas. The marina itself is packed with restaurants offering everything from street tacos to upmarket seafood.
Los Cabos Top 3 Neighborhoods to Stay in
Split between Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo, Los Cabos is an incredibly diverse destination. Within a few minutes drive you can explore rugged scenery, kick back on peaceful beaches or party with locals among some of the best nightlife in Baja California.
El Medano is the main hub of the city, and is home to the most popular beach. By day it’s all about water sports and sunbathing, and by night the area comes alive with parties and a spectacular culinary scene. If you’re a first time visitor, El Medano is a great place to get to know the area.
If you’re traveling Mexico on a budget, San José del Cabo is the best place to stay in Los Cabos. There’s less tourism here, so you’ll get to enjoy local prices on accommodation and food.
The Marina district is a quieter area, but still within walking distance of all the action in El Medano. This makes it a popular option among families visiting Los Cabos. You can also enjoy a more upmarket restaurant selection here, as well as some great tours on both land and sea.
Still not decided? There’s so much to explore here, so choosing where to stay in Los Cabos can be tricky. Read on for more detailed guides on each neighborhood, as well as the best accommodation and activities on offer.
Playa El Medano is the beating heart of Cabo San Lucas. The beach stretching along the coast comes with peaceful sunbathing spots, epic water-sport providers and a 24/7 choice of restaurants and bars.
For first time visitors, El Medano is the best connected place in the city. You’ll be within walking distance of all the best neighborhoods in Cabo San Lucas, and there are plenty of public transport connections to San José del Cabo.
Best Airbnb in El Medano – Mexican Design
This gorgeous Airbnb Plus property combines modern comfort with traditional Mexican design. Rustic wood fixtures give the apartment a natural feel, while colourful flourishes add a sense of creativity. Sleeping up to six people, this Airbnb has ocean views and is perfect for groups or larger families.
Best Hotel in El Medano – ME Cabo
This extravagant five star resort is adult oriented, ideal for couples looking for a romantic Mexican beach break. The rooms are spacious, with rainfall showers in the en-suite bathrooms and luxury touches to make you feel right at home.
Best Resort in El Medano – Club Cascadas
This elegant condo is located right on the beach in El Medano. Rooms are decorated with sparkling design and quirky fixtures, adding an artistic atmosphere. The resort includes a barbecue area and clubhouse, making this a great choice for families.
Club Cascadas is one of our favourites in Los Cabos but they’re not taking guests right now. We’re not sure if they’re closed for good but we hope they’ll come back soon.
Things to See and Do in El Medano:
- Get your heart rate up and enjoy some unforgettable views in this highly reviewed pacific sunset hike along the El Medano coast.
- For a faster thrill, this adrenaline packed flyboarding experience is an epic way to spend a day under the Baja California sun.
- Playa El Medano is the most popular attraction in the area with stunning rock formations on one side, and a bustling coastal resort on the other.
- While the nightlife in El Medano is great, take the five minute walk into Downtown where the real party is every night of the week.
We’ve tested countless backpacks over the years, but there’s one that has always been the best and remains the best buy for adventurers: the broke backpacker-approved Osprey Aether and Ariel series.
Want more deetz on why these packs are so damn perfect? Then read our comprehensive review for the inside scoop!View on Osprey View on REI
2. San Jose del Cabo – Where to Stay in Los Cabos on a Budget
San José del Cabo is often considered a completely different city, as its lack of tourists gives off a totally different vibe. This is the place to be if you want an authentic slice of Baja California culture.
Whether you’re looking for tasty tacos or epic excursions, these tend to be much cheaper in San José del Cabo. Accommodation is also much more affordable here, ideal if you’re traveling on a tighter budget.
Best Airbnb in San Jose del Cabo – A&R Luxury
Don’t let the word luxury fool you – this is a super affordable option for visitors in Los Cabos. The studio-style apartment comes with a small balcony offering gorgeous views towards the city centre, which is only a five minute walk away. The minimalist design offers a serene atmosphere to the interiors, and there are some common areas shared with other guests.
Best Condo in San Jose del Cabo – Beach Condo
We don’t often include Airbnb Plus properties in our budget pick, but this apartment is super special. Whilst you’ll have to splash out a little, it is one of the more affordable options in the area. Its secluded location means you get to enjoy the coast all to yourself, and the pool area comes with gorgeous views along the beach.
Best Hotel in San Jose del Cabo – Hotel Tropicana Inn
This cute little three star hotel lets you stay in Los Cabos without breaking the bank. Despite the low prices, they offer some great extras to ensure a relaxing stay. It’s a little bit further out of the city, so we do recommend this for those with a car. Guests can enjoy a complimentary breakfast each morning, and make full use of the onsite pool.
Things to See and Do in San Jose del Cabo:
- Learn about the long and fascinating history of San José del Cabo in this excellent walking tour through the city centre.
- You can’t visit Mexico without sampling the delicious tacos . Let a local culinary enthusiast take you to the best spots in town in this mouthwatering experience.
- Head just outside of San José del Cabo for some secluded beaches where you can enjoy peace and quiet away from other tourists.
- Just outside Plaza Mijares you’ll find the city centre, home to a selection of locally owned art galleries offering insight into Baja Californian creativity.
3. Marina – Best Area in Los Cabos for Families
Sandwiched between Downtown and El Medano, Marina is a central neighborhood that offers some of the best accommodations in Cabo San Lucas. The marina itself is packed with restaurants, offering everything from street tacos to upmarket seafood.
For families heading to Los Cabos, Marina is a little quieter than the other city centre regions. That being said, there are still plenty of activities and excursions on offer. The Marina is particularly good for water sports and boat excursions.
Best Villa in the Marina – Villa Pacific West
Airbnb Luxe goes far beyond what even their Plus range offers. These properties provide luxury add-ons to make sure you feel truly pampered throughout your stay. Airport transfers, dining and childcare are all offered among other exclusive services. You’ll also get to enjoy unspoiled views of the ocean thanks to the floor-to-ceiling windows and private pool terrace.
Best Budget Inn in the Marina – Cabo Inn
This budget-friendly accommodation actually has an intriguing history. It was once a hugely successful brothel in the heart of the city, but has operated as a hotel since the. Operated by locals, it really doesn’t get any more authentic than this.
Best Resort in the Marina – Marina View Villas
This four star hotel is our top accommodation pick for families in Los Cabos. The colourful architecture harks back to local tradition, whilst the modern furnishings in the rooms offer optimum comfort. The laid-back pool area is perfect for kids and adults alike, with plenty of sun loungers for everyone. There are a few great museums within walking distance.
Things to See and Do in the Marina:
- For something a little more laid-back that the whole family can enjoy, head on this paddle board and snorkeling experience departing from the marina.
- Prefer a more balanced ship? This humpback whale watching excursion gets you up close to some of the most majestic wildlife in the Pacific Ocean.
- The Museum of Natural History offers interactive exhibits dedicated to the Los Cabos coast, wildlife and rock formations.
- There are so many good restaurants in the area, but our favourite has to be Cabo Wabo Cantina that offers typical Mexican grilled cuisine.
Stash your cash safely with this money belt. It will keep your valuables safely concealed, no matter where you go.
It looks exactly like a normal belt except for a SECRET interior pocket perfectly designed to hide a wad of cash, a passport photocopy or anything else you may wish to hide. Never get caught with your pants down again! (Unless you want to…)Hide Yo’ Money!
FAQs About Where to Stay in Los Cabos
Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Los Cabos and where to stay.
What To Pack For Los Cabos
Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.
Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.
Hanging Laundry Bag
Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.
Sea To Summit Micro Towel
Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.
Forget about Poker! Monopoly Deal is the single best travel card game that we have ever played. Works with 2-5 players and guarantees happy days.
Grayl Geopress Water Bottle
Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!
Check out my definitive Hotel Packing list for even more top packing tips!
Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for Los Cabos
ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.
They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.
SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!
Click the button below to learn more about SafetyWing’s setup or read our insider review for the full tasty scoop.
This jewel of the Mexican coastline is bursting with upbeat nightlife, stunning beaches and intriguing cultural attractions. Between Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo, the area offers a little something for everyone.
If we had to pick one neighborhood that really stands out, it would be San José del Cabo. Offering a more authentic vibe, you’ll get to experience history, culture and incredible beaches.
That being said, the best place for you depends on what you want out of your trip! We hope this guide has helped you narrow down your options for where to stay in Los Cabos.
Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!
And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!