Reporting from somewhere in La Paz, real time:
La Paz and Baja Mexico are different places today than when we left in December. Here’s what you may want to know about La Paz as of today (Saturday, April 4th 2020):
– The entire Malecon in La Paz is closed and patrolled by police as of yesterday (Fri) to keep everyone off it, especially as Mexico goes into the Semana Santa holidays (starting tomorrow- Sunday April 5th). We went through at least two road blocks getting through the road beside the malecon but today there’s no road blocks cause they simply blocked the road leading through the malecon.
– Families are to stay at home or on their boats and not to go out together (YES, this means that two or more of you CANNOT walk your dog!).
– Beaches in Baja Sur are closed.
– Police and Military in Baja are enforcing the orders for closed beaches and no roaming the streets, meaning they’re serious about folks walking around, especially after dark.
– All hotels, B&B’s and airbnb’s are closed until further notice.
– All tourist tours, dive tours, cruises and fishing excursions are closed.
– Malls, movie theaters..ect are closed in La Paz.
– Baja Ferries have reduced their shipping and sailing schedule by 50%.
– Starting Thursday, 02 April the Mexican Navy was interviewing OUTGOING sailboats for COVID related demographic information as sailboats left port.
– The port of La Paz is open…but all recreational boats are strongly encouraged NOT to go out for daysails and NOT to go back and forth to the islands….as recreational boating can be shut down.
– Most large grocery stores are open but only allowing (1) one family member at a time to enter to go shopping. In the grocery store today,,,,I identified the gringos easily cause they’re the only ones NOT wearing some sort of face shield.
– As of today, (at Chedraui) you could only purchase (3) three bottles of any alcohol.
– Most stores are limiting the number of people inside the store…at the autoparts store yesterday…I stood in line to get into the store. They didn’t have what I needed.
– There are rumors of all alcohol sales in Baja shutting down…either tomorrow (Sun) or Tuesday.
– Every afternoon there’s both Mexican police and military making announcements on the highways and by inflatable RIB reminding citizens to stay home after dark and reminding them that only one adult is allowed to go out at a time. I’ve now heard this multiple times as the RIB’s come by the Marina and broadcast at high volume. (In fact, they’re coming by right now as I write…blasting techno music and telling us in very loudspeaker to keep off the streets and wear mouth covers!)
– Bars and restaurants in La Paz are closed…with a few doing take-out or food deliveries but most places barred and shut down.
– The fuel dock at Marina Costa Baja is still open, but because of the super-yachts taking on fuel….getting an appointment to fuel is highly encouraged. This is the only fuel dock operating in La Paz that I know of…but jerry jugs work well too!
– I’ve been out to several of the largest grocery stores in La Paz in provisioning and here’s the only shortages I’ve noticed: hand-sanitizer, medical alcohol, yeast, there was no flour at one store, batteries, eggs are being limited to one pack per family, toilet paper packs are being limited to three per family…but I’ve not noticed other shortages.
– Most marine related business’s have been deemed non-essential and are now closed. In La Paz this includes the chandleries, dive services, mechanics, cruising supply companies, riggers and outboard repair services. Don’t come here thinking of getting boat work done…as it ain’t happening right now.
– Marina’s have closed thier gates and offices…email or call if you need services-
– Club Cruceros is closed until further notice.
– No gatherings, sporting events, outdoor activities or much other fun is allowed right now if you want to keep off the police radar.
– You will see increased presence of Mexican Military and Police in the La Paz area…they are not there to harass you but to enforce the orders of the Baja Government.
– Worst of all…Grupo Modelo (Ambev) announced it’s closing in Mexico due to being a non-essential business. This means production of Corona, Modelo and Pacifico have ceased. Anyone want to do a beer run for me?
When we left the US, part of the draw to cruising was the opportunity for self-sufficiency and pioneer spirit that has started to disappear in our world of instant convenience and entitlement. In the months of cruising we’ve done, we’ve noticed how seductive and easy it is to slip into a marina. But most marinas here are in larger cities which mean more people and more opportunities to get sick…so these are the last places we want to be right now. Both of us love being on anchor and look forward to getting back out into anchorages. Our take on this is that we use what we’ve got on board and we’re responsible for what happens on the boat. Communication and blogging won’t be as easy, but we’ll manage the best we can.
Wanna help support us as we start the next 6-months exploring the Sea of Cortez? FOLLOW us and buy us a beer on our Patreon Page….before all the beer dries up!
Note: The info I’ve included in this post is as accurate as I could make it as of today but with things rapidly changing in real time, the situation could be very different when you experience it.