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Ensenada .... worth getting off the ship?


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  • 3 weeks later...

Active and love a good workout? How about the Ziplining & Canopy Tour? There's horseback riding, the blowhole & outdoor flea market, wineries, shopping, eating...tons to do! Heck, we even went Snuba Diving one time! (snorkel + scuba without the need for a certification)

 

Don't underestimate this fun little port. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

We were on the Sapphire in April. We took the Princess winery tour in Ensenada. You got out of town and up into the hillsides. Our tour guy was funny and entertaining. The first stop was the big winery where we saw some of the wear house and tanks and caskets. We wish we could have heard more about the whole process. We then went into a nice room to taste wines..and enjoy some cheese and bread. Then we could purchase if we wished.. No pressure...pretty grounds. The we drove down the hill to a homey little winery.. Sat outside, got tickets to taste more wines. We were not sure what to do there?? Then they brought out snacks and then suddenly there was pizza.. We had no clue it was coming.. Just hung out for awhile . Just kind of chilled.. We got our free bottles of wine plus the one we bought. We were allowed to carry it right on board. Pleasant enough. When we got back to the ship the winds had kicked up very badly. So we skipped the shopping in town. Just bought some vanilla from the shops at the port. Relaxing stop.

 

 

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The Valle de Guadalupe just outside Ensenada is a phenomenal wine and food destination. It's often compared (with good reason) to Tuscany. It's home to dozens of wineries and many excellent restaurants. I would make a plan to spend the day there.

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We've been to Ensenada many times on cruises. We always go into town or take the winery tour. There is a nice art gallery and the cultural center, which are both just outside the port on the main road. There is usually some kind of local cultural event at the center..........children's dance, children's orchestra, etc. The Mexican art is fantastic. Best of all, the center and art gallery are free.

 

The aquarium is (slowly) getting finished.

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The museum right across the exit of the cruise port is worth a visit. Some tours stop at the cultural center part at the back but not many people visits the museum. Only $2 pp entrance fee a lot of info about the history of Baja. More detail on my blog if interested.

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If you have any interest in food, Ensenada is a fantastic port of call. It has the full range. Street food- La Guerreense, La Fenix; casual - Tres Muelles; fine dining - Manzanilla, Sano Steakhouse.

 

 

We've been eating at Taquiero Lindo (next to Hussong's) for tacos, Birria La Guadalajuara for birria and Potrero Viejo for gorditas.

Always get a paleta (popsicle) afterwards, usually we go to the larger one up the street from Taquiero Lindo.

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Talked to one of Javier Plascencia's cooks a while back about the Ensenada food scene. When I mentioned lobsters he just laughed and said that that was tourist food. Evidently the "lobsters" come from the Philappines.

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  • 1 month later...
Good morning,

 

We'll be on a short 4 day cruise in January on the Sapphire anchoring at Catalina and docking in Ensenada. We've cruised Princess in Europe and Alaska and have always done some great shore excursions. My "gut" is telling me that there isn't much to do/see there. My "gut" is also wondering if we do go ashore should we worry about eating the seafood?

 

Would love to hear back from those of you who've been there. Thanks in advance.

 

Mike

 

 

This reply to late to help the others on this particular posting BUT if anyone else checks ... at least get off the ship and walk to the small shopping area that is inside the port and buy a bottle of a liquore called CONTROY. It's about $10 for a one liter bottle (probably even cheaper in town). It taste just like the very pricey Contreau. Rumor has it that Controy is made by the same company but it's made for the Mexican (or Latin?) market and is not available in the States. If you love margaritas, just wait until you taste them with a little of Controy added to your Tequila and whatever else you put in your margarita. I try to go to Mexico at least once every 2 years just to stock up on this liquid gold.

 

Molly

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A few have already recommended it, but we took a winery tour to the Guadalupe Valley. We went to LA Cetto, great tasting and nibbles plus a free bottle of wine (brought it home for older dd. She said it was good, light and fruity), and Casa Doña Lupe. This winery was more homespun. Nice tasting and snacks. Shop had wonderful olive oils and herbs too. In the afternoon, we walked to the fish market. Lots of small places across from it for great fish tacos and fish cocteles. It is quite easy to have a very pleasant time in Ensenada.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been to Ensenada many times, by land and sea, and really enjoyed it. We've been to La Bufadora many times, it's always an adventure and fun. great tacos. The Blow Hole itself is good to see and varies by weather and tide. Sometimes we just walk around a little and then head back to enjoy the nearly empty ship. We did the winery tour in December and would definitely do that again. This April we tried something new...a 1 1/2 hour massage. It was wonderful. Less than half of the price on the ship. I will definitely do this again:)

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Walk to the fish market. It's on a narrow street and directly across from it are quite a few small, open front restaurants. They have good ceviche, available with many types of fish. Great fish tacos as well. They usually don't take credit cards but do take pesos or dollars. A bit of Spanish helps too!

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I have to admit that I have never been there, and probably never will, but I cannot fail to comment. I often see "we are porting in....(insert port name here)...is it worth going ashore?......My opinion....why not? If it were not safe, the ship would not stop there!!!! Get off the darned ship, wander, explore, see something different! Enjoy a new experience! Be just a tiny bit adventurous! You might even find that you enjoy yourself!

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Talked to one of Javier Plascencia's cooks a while back about the Ensenada food scene. When I mentioned lobsters he just laughed and said that that was tourist food. Evidently the "lobsters" come from the Philappines.

 

Too funny!:D:D:D

 

I've been to Ensenada many times, by land and sea, and really enjoyed it. We've been to La Bufadora many times, it's always an adventure and fun. great tacos. The Blow Hole itself is good to see and varies by weather and tide. Sometimes we just walk around a little and then head back to enjoy the nearly empty ship. We did the winery tour in December and would definitely do that again. This April we tried something new...a 1 1/2 hour massage. It was wonderful. Less than half of the price on the ship. I will definitely do this again:)

 

Where did you get your massage at?

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When we booked our cruise I researched things to do in Ensenada. We decided on a winery tour but wasn't to hip on a big bus tour thru the cruise line. We booked a private tour with Mariana from toursbylocals. It was awesome. Our guide was very knowledgable and knew the vintners personally. We ended up visiting 4 wineries (had to pay for only one) plus had an amazing lunch. We bought 20 bottles of wine ( yes we had to check it but customs was a breeze). The wine country was very nice and this was one of the best excursions we have ever done.

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When we booked our cruise I researched things to do in Ensenada. We decided on a winery tour but wasn't to hip on a big bus tour thru the cruise line. We booked a private tour with Mariana from toursbylocals. It was awesome. Our guide was very knowledgable and knew the vintners personally. We ended up visiting 4 wineries (had to pay for only one) plus had an amazing lunch. We bought 20 bottles of wine ( yes we had to check it but customs was a breeze). The wine country was very nice and this was one of the best excursions we have ever done.

 

Was the price you paid per person or by group? Thanks for the lead, I've been to Ensenada twice and looking for a different type tour, this one sounds great!

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We had rather just stay on the ship! :)

LuLu

 

Why? Not meaning to be snarky, just curious as to why you would cruise to Mexico, only to stay aboard ship? Is there something about this particular port, or is it just your personal preference to stay aboard while the crowd goes ashore?

My bride and I have never been there, and are both curious.

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Why? Not meaning to be snarky, just curious as to why you would cruise to Mexico, only to stay aboard ship? Is there something about this particular port, or is it just your personal preference to stay aboard while the crowd goes ashore?

My bride and I have never been there, and are both curious.

 

You are not being snarky in the least and I totally understanding your asking.

If we had not been there, we would also get off the ship. Hope you will.

Thing is we have and just don't care for this port of call and had rather stay on the ship.

When coming back from Hawaii, Ensenada is basically a "port of convenience" to comply with going from one US port to another.

LuLu

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You are not being snarky in the least and I totally understanding your asking.

If we had not been there, we would also get off the ship. Hope you will.

Thing is we have and just don't care for this port of call and had rather stay on the ship.

When coming back from Hawaii, Ensenada is basically a "port of convenience" to comply with going from one US port to another.

LuLu

 

Ahhh...got it. Thank you for your response. We've cruised Hawaii, but rather than spend days a sea, we fly to HNL and then catch the ship. Personal preference. Not a thing wrong with either.

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We love Ensenada. We grab shrimp cocktails at the marina, then head over to Hussongs for a few beers.

 

Heh, I was going to ask about Hussong's. I've heard it's kind of a tiny little dive but I've also heard it's a perfectly safe tourist destination. Can you tell me a bit more about it?

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Heh, I was going to ask about Hussong's. I've heard it's kind of a tiny little dive but I've also heard it's a perfectly safe tourist destination. Can you tell me a bit more about it?

 

 

For a bar built in the 1890's it's not too bad. Recently there has been a sign "No One Under 21 Allowed" on the entryway.

Next door is Taquerio Lindo. Excellant tacos. A few doors up, in a lime green building is the paleta store. Fresh fruit popsicles for $1.

Just be careful of the sidewalks, they have holes in them.

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