Most of the cruisers transiting the southern Sea of Cortes this summer are enjoying a stop at Bahia Candeleros (aka Ensenada Blanca), a little south of Loreto and Puerto Escondido.
Besides being a lovely bay, there is a beautiful, luxurious hotel, Villa del Palmar, that is at least at present cruiser-friendly with Wi-Fi, a small tienda (shop), two restaurants, poolside bar service and a two-for-one happy hour.
Furthermore, there’s a little village at the south end of the bay, Ligui, (less than a half mile from the primary anchorage, where we can dinghy in and take a short (quarter mile?) walk to a nice little market with some fresh produce, frozen meats, etc. This is really the first, best grocery shopping available on the Baja’s east coast when you head north from La Paz (the Agua Verde tienda/s can also be worth a stop albeit with a more limited selection, particularly of cold items).
The nearby town of Loreto has better shopping but typically requires a taxi/hitchhike/rental car to get there as it is about 15 miles from the Pt. Escondido boat harbor. Only on rare, benign conditions can a boat anchor directly off Loreto. If you’re visiting Pt. Escondido, definitely stop at Pedro’s tienda at the marina, he has greatly increased his shop size and inventory this year.
One day we were lucky enough to enjoy watching the Indy 500 race at one of Palmar’s restaurants. Access to live TV, and in English, is a real treat down here. We had a very nice taco lunch (even if a little more expensive than street-side vendors) and a pleasant visit with our friendly and bi-lingual server Olismar.