Traveling To Cabo In January: Winter Vacation Guide

Cabo is known for its breathtaking natural beauty, vibrant nightlife, and exquisite cuisine, making it a popular tourist destination that is particularly enticing in January.

As the winter chill envelops most regions, this sunny slice of heaven offers the perfect escape, where you can bask in the warm rays, indulge in thrilling adventures, or simply unwind on pristine beaches.

In this article, I will guide you through the wonders of Cabo in January, providing insights on why this month is an ideal time to visit and how you can make the most of your unforgettable trip.

Traveling to Cabo in January

Is January A Good Month to Visit Cabo?

Cabo is generally known for its delightful warm weather and is a great destination to visit throughout the year, particularly for those seeking to escape the winter blues. However, there are certain months when the heat can be quite intense, making it a bit uncomfortable to spend time outdoors.

Fortunately, January is considered one of the better months to visit Cabo, as the weather is super pleasant. It is one of the few months in the year when Cabo is consistently chilly and dry. This means that sports like hiking or golf will not leave you sweating profusely as they might in other months.

And if that’s not enough to convince you, January also marks the peak of the whale-watching season in Cabo. Gray whales embark on their annual migration from the Arctic to the warm waters of Baja California during this time.

Here are some Pros and Cons of visiting Cabo in January:

The weather is perfect for outdoor activitiesCrowded spots in January
There are plenty of events and activities to keep you entertainedHigher prices in January due to peak season.
January is the peak whale-watching season

Weather in Cabo San Lucas in January

Oh, you’re in for a treat if you’re planning a January vacation in Cabo San Lucas! As far as the weather is concerned, visiting this time is simply delightful.

If you’re not a fan of scorching hot tropical vacations where you feel like you’re constantly melting under the sun, then Cabo in January will be your happy place.

Let’s talk about what you can expect in Cabo San Lucas in January. It’s a great time to visit, so let’s dive into the details!

Temperatures in Cabo in January

January in Cabo San Lucas offers mild and comfortable temperatures. During the day, you can expect highs ranging from around 24 to 26 degrees Celsius (75 to 79 degrees Fahrenheit). It’s perfect for enjoying outdoor activities without feeling too hot.

At night, temperatures typically drop to around 15 to 17 degrees Celsius (59 to 63 degrees Fahrenheit). So, pack some layers to stay cozy during the evenings (more on that later).

Rainfall in Cabo in January

January is part of the dry season in Cabo San Lucas, which means you won’t have to worry much about rain.

On average, Cabo receives less than an inch of rainfall during this month, and there are only a few rainy days. Therefore, you can expect mostly clear skies and plenty of sunshine throughout your stay.

Cabo Sea Water Conditions in January

If you’re planning to take a dip in the sea, you’ll be happy to know that the water conditions in Cabo are quite favorable in January.

The temperature of the seawater ranges from around 21 to 24 degrees Celsius (70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit), which is still comfortable for swimming and enjoying water activities.

Plus, the sea is usually calm during this time, making it perfect for snorkeling, diving, or even going on a fishing adventure.

Sunset and Sunrise in January

January offers some beautiful moments to witness the stunning sunrises and sunsets in Cabo San Lucas. On average, the sun rises between 6:50 a.m. and 7:00 a.m., giving you a chance to start your day early and catch the morning beauty.

As for sunsets, they occur between 5:30 p.m. and 6:10 p.m., providing a magical backdrop to end your day. Generally, in January, you’ll have around 11 hours of daylight, so plenty of time to enjoy the beauty of this coastal paradise!

Can You Swim In Cabo In January?

Cabo San Lucas in January

Well, January in Cabo isn’t exactly known for its blazing heat. During this time of year, the water temperatures in Cabo San Lucas typically hover around 70 Fahrenheit (low 20 degrees Celsius).

Now, let’s be honest, that’s not what most people would consider warm and inviting. It’s more on the side of “refreshingly cool” or “brisk,” if you will.

Sure, you can still go for a swim and take a dip in the ocean. I tried to make it a daily ritual during my stay. But unless you catch a hot day or hit the water during the warmest time of the day, it’s not exactly the kind of water you’d want to leisurely lounge in for hours on end.

So, if your main goal is to swim in nice, warm water, January might not be the best time to visit Cabo. It’s not out of the question, but you might have a better experience during other months when the water is a bit more inviting.

Further reading: why can’t you swim in Cabo?

Is Cabo crowded in January?

January marks the high tourist season in Cabo, as many visitors from colder regions flock to the area to escape the winter weather. The New Year’s holiday period, including the days leading up to and following January 1st, sees an influx of travelers looking to start the year off in a beautiful tropical setting.

The influx of tourists in January means that you can expect larger crowds at popular attractions, especially in the downtown area, resorts, and restaurants. Therefore if you are planning to come in the beginning of January, I recommend making reservations in advance for accommodations, dining, and any activities or excursions you may be interested in.

If you prefer a quieter and less crowded experience, you might consider visiting from Jan. 2 to Jan. 10. During that week, people go back to work and school, so there are fewer crowds and the weather is often nice. After that, it gets busy until around mid-April.

Best Things to do in Cabo in January

As an avid traveler myself, I’ve put together a list of the best things to do during this time of the year.

1. Whale watching

Whale watching in Cabo in January

One of the most anticipated activities of the year is whale watching in Los Cabos. Whale-watching season in Cabo runs from mid-December to mid-April, but the best time to see whales is from January to March. This is when the whale population is at its peak and the whale activity is the highest.

You will have a 90-95% chance of seeing humpback whales during this time. You can also see other species of whales, such as gray whales, blue whales, fin whales, and orcas, as well as dolphins, sea lions, and other marine life.

I have experienced numerous whale-watching tours in Cabo and these are my preferred options:

Pez Gato Amazing Adventures

Pez Gato provides a thrilling whale-watching tour priced at $78 for adults and $39 for children, lasting around two hours. Their tour includes snacks and an open bar offering unlimited drinks. Their tours go the extra mile by providing hassle-free transportation to and from your hotel.

Cabo Expeditions

Hop on their Zodiac-style boat and get up close to these magnificent sea creatures. Adults can enjoy the tour for $85 USD, while kids aged 5-10 can join for just $59 USD. The tour lasts for 2.5 hours.

2. Enjoy the Beaches

The best part about visiting Cabo in January is the beaches. Not all of them are swimmable though. Medano Beach in Cabo San Lucas, Playa Palmilla in San José del Cabo, and Lovers Beach are popular choices.

Spend your days soaking up the sun and relaxing. You can try activities such as swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, paddle boarding, kayaking, jet skiing, and parasailing. You can double the fun of it by giving those beach vendors a chance and score yourself a cool Mexican souvenir! It’ll be a sweet little reminder of your amazing time in Cabo.

Further reading: best swimmable beaches in Cabo

3. Go sport fishing

fishing in Cabo in January

If you’re into sport fishing, you’re in luck because January is the perfect time to cast your line in Cabo San Lucas. You won’t want to miss out on the chance to reel in some impressive blue and black Marlin. That’s not all! You can also expect to find a decent number of Yellow Tuna, Dorado, and Wahoo swimming around.

Here’s the scoop on prices: A 4-hour private fishing trip in Cabo San Lucas on a smaller boat is $340. A 40ft charter for a half-day trip costs approximately $695, and an 8-hour private trip ranges from $1250 to $1350 in price.

I’ll share with you some of my favorite fishing charters that you might want to consider.

4. Play a round of golf

Cabo San Lucas is home to several world-class golf courses designed by renowned architects, offering both challenging play and breathtaking views.

Some of the top golf courses in Cabo include:

Cabo del Sol Ocean Course

Designed by Jack Nicklaus, this course is consistently ranked among the best in Mexico. It features stunning ocean views and challenging holes.

Diamante Dunes

Designed by Davis Love III, this course is known for its dramatic coastal dunes and challenging layout. It offers a unique golfing experience with breathtaking views.

Quivira Golf Club

This course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, is located in the Pacific Ocean. It showcases stunning cliffs, desert landscapes, and oceanfront holes.

Palmilla Golf Club

Designed by Jack Nicklaus, this course features three nine-hole courses: the Arroyo, the Mountain, and the Ocean. Plus, you might even spot some wildlife while you’re out there, adding to the overall experience.

Pro Tip: Looking to save on golf in January? Check out for last-minute discounts on tee times 10 days or less before you play. There are one or two “Hot Deals”, usually every day, and half the current price.

5. Go Zip-lining

If you’re looking for some adrenaline and adventure, you should try ziplining in Cabo. You can soar over the desert, the canyon, and the sea on some of the longest and fastest zip lines in Mexico.

There are several options for ziplining in Cabo, but one of the most popular ones include

Cabo Adventures

Cabo Adventures offers a thrilling outdoor zip line adventure tour that includes zip lining, hiking, rappelling, and a fun Polaris UTV off-roading excursion.

The tour lasts for approximately 3.5 hours and provides breathtaking views of the UNESCO-protected biosphere reserve. You can also enjoy delicious handmade quesadillas at the end of the adventure. This tour has been rated as one of the top 10 experiences in the world on Travelers’ Choice.

Wild Canyon Adventures

With a 1-day park pass, you can enjoy camel rides, horseback riding, off-road UTVs, bungee jumping (or a swing from 300 feet high), and unlimited zip lining. Don’t miss driving a UTV over the Los Cabos Canyon Bridge, one of the longest-hanging wooden bridges in the world.

Transfers to and from the park are included, and it’s just a 20-minute drive from Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo.

Tip: Wear long pants and closed-toe shoes for zip-lining in Cabo San Lucas.

6. ATV and Desert Tours

Hop on an all-terrain vehicle and rev up your engine as you set off on a guided tour across the desert. The Baja desert offers a diverse and stunning backdrop, showcasing the raw beauty of the region.

You will find many companies selling their tours. Most of them have similar prices, but here’s a little tip: some of them might be open to negotiating a bit.

I managed to snag a sweet deal at around $70 for my awesome Baja California desert tour. It was a thrilling ride on canyon trails that lasted about 2 hours. Definitely worth every penny!

7. Water taxi ride to Land’s End

Water taxi in Cabo in January

Taking a water taxi ride to Land’s End in Cabo is an absolute must-do activity in January. These small wooden boats are constantly shuttling people between the marina, Land’s End, and Medano Beach.

It’s a scenic and exciting way to explore the stunning rock formations and the famous arch at the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula. Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife too! You might spot adorable sea lions lounging on the rocks and so much more.

A roundtrip water taxi ride will cost you around $20 to $30. I’ve found this shared boat to be the most affordable option. Want to kick it up a notch? Opt for this all-glass boat tour instead!

8. Take a Sunset Sailing Cruise

Sunset cruises in Cabo offer breathtaking views of the coastline, the iconic Los Cabos Arch, and Lover’s Beach. You can choose from various sunset cruise options, such as the Los Cabos Luxury Sunset Sail, the Sunset Cruise from Cabo San Lucas, or the Sunset Mexican Dinner Cruise.

Tours can be reserved online ahead of time and typically have a starting price of approximately $100 USD, which can vary of course. These cruises depart from Cabo San Lucas marina and each offers unlimited drinks, food, and live music.

9. Taco expedition: savor the flavors

If you’re a fan of tacos (and honestly, who isn’t?), you absolutely have to join the Cabo taco-tasting tour. With options like this Cabo taco-tasting tour or this award-winning food tour, you’ll get the chance to visit five incredible family-owned eateries.

And when it comes to finding the best tacos in Cabo, you can’t go wrong with places like La Lupita Taco & Mezcal and Metate Cabo. These local gems serve up mouthwatering tacos.

And the best part? The incredibly affordable prices – some cost a mere $2 or $3 USD each! Can you believe it?

10. Visit San José del Cabo Art Walk

The Art Walk in San Jose del Cabo is a fabulous way to spend your Thursday evenings in January. The galleries have gained quite a following over the years, and it’s not hard to see why.

These galleries organize captivating lectures and wine tastings. How fancy, right? You might even get the chance to meet the incredibly talented artists behind the masterpieces.

The best part? The Art Walk is absolutely free! Yep, you heard me right. It won’t cost you a dime to soak up all that cultural goodness.

11. Enjoy Nightlife

nightlife in cabo in January

When the sun sets, the city comes alive with a vibrant energy that draws in both locals and tourists. If you’re looking for a fantastic nightlife experience in January, Cabo is the place to be!

Whether you’re up for a chill evening with your buddies or ready to dance the night away, I’ve got some great suggestions for you. Check ’em out:

  •  Visit the Cabo Wabo Cantina: This iconic hotspot was founded by rock legend Sammy Hagar and has become a legend in its own right.
  •  Explore the Marina District: The marina area is a hub for nightlife in Cabo. Many establishments feature live music, DJs, and themed nights to keep the party going.
  •  Experience the Medano Beach Scene: Medano Beach is not only a popular spot for sunbathing and water activities during the day, but it also offers a lively beachfront nightlife. Numerous beach clubs and bars line the shore, offering a mix of music, drinks, and dancing.
  •  Take a Bar Crawl: If you’re up for an adventure, join a bar crawl. These organized tours typically take you to some of the best bars and clubs in town.

Special Events & Festivals in Cabo in January

Here is a sneak peek into the exciting special events and festivals happening in Cabo in January. Trust me; you won’t want to miss out on all the excitement!

New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve is a highly anticipated celebration all around the world, and Cabo is no exception. Cabo San Lucas provides a fantastic backdrop to welcome the New Year with joy, excitement, and a touch of tropical paradise.

And since you’re in Mexico, why not embrace the local traditions and ring in the New Year like a true local?

According to Mexican traditions, for good luck, you’ll need a new pair of underwear. Choose red for love, yellow for wealth, green for health, or white for peace.

Before midnight, eat 12 grapes for luck. Each grape represents good luck for each month of the upcoming year. It’s like a delicious way to ensure twelve months of sweetness and fortune.

Lord of the Wind festival

The Lord of the Wind festival is an exhilarating event that showcases the thrilling sport of windsurfing and kiteboarding. It usually takes place from January 22nd until January 26th in Los Barriles, a small town near Cabo.

This festival attracts skilled athletes from around the world who compete in various categories, demonstrating their impressive skills on the water. You can enjoy watching the breathtaking performances, cheering on the competitors, and soaking up the lively atmosphere.

Feast of San Antonio

The Feast of San Antonio, also known as the San Antonio Abad Festival, is a traditional religious celebration observed in many parts of Mexico, including Cabo. It takes place on January 17th each year.

The festival honors Saint Anthony the Great, the patron saint of animals. During this event, locals bring their pets, livestock, and working animals to be blessed by a priest.

It is believed that this blessing will protect the animals from harm and bring good fortune. The festival often includes parades, music, dancing, and traditional Mexican cuisine.

Tips for Planning Your Trip To Cabo In January

To help you plan your trip in an easy way, Let me share a few tips that I’m sure you’ll need.

Flights and Accommodations Tips to Visit Cabo in January

flights tips to visit Cabo

January is a popular time to visit Cabo San Lucas, as many travelers escape the winter weather in other parts of the world. Therefore, prices for flights and accommodations tend to be higher during this period.

To secure the best deals and availability, I recommend booking your flights and accommodations at least three to six months in advance. Start gauging prices in August and September. These are the cheapest months and offer great deals.

What to Pack for Cabo in January?

Here’s a packing list of what I think would be best to wear in Cabo in January!

Light layers: Although the days are warm, the evenings can get cooler. Bring a light jacket, cardigan, or sweater to layer over your outfits when needed.

Lightweight and breathable clothing: Pack plenty of shorts, T-shirts, tank tops, and sundresses for the warm daytime temperatures. Choose lightweight fabrics like cotton or linen to stay cool.

Comfortable walking shoes: Cabo offers plenty of opportunities for exploration, so pack comfortable walking shoes or sandals for sightseeing and outdoor activities.

Beach essentials: Pack a beach towel, swimwear, beach bag, flip-flops, and a cover-up for when you’re not in the water.

Casual evening wear: For dinners and evenings out, pack casual yet slightly dressier attire such as sundresses, lightweight pants, or a nice shirt with a skirt or shorts.

How Much Money to Budget to Visit Cabo in January?

The amount of money you’ll need to budget depends on a few factors like your travel preferences, accommodation choices, and how long you plan to stay. But don’t worry, I’ll give you a rough estimate to help you get started!

The average daily cost per person for a vacation in Cabo San Lucas is around $135. This includes expenses for meals, local transportation, and accommodation. On average, travelers spend around $50 on meals per day and $27 on local transportation.

I hope this gives you a helpful starting point for planning your trip to Cabo!

Is Cabo Safe to visit in January?

Absolutely! Cabo San Lucas is indeed a safe place to visit even in January. Cabo San Lucas has a relatively low crime rate compared to other tourist destinations in Mexico.

The city has a strong police presence, both in tourist areas and throughout the city, which contributes to the overall safety. However, like any popular tourist destination, it’s important to exercise some common-sense precautions during your visit.

Note: Check updates from the U.S. Department of State about travel advisories to get the most up-to-date information on safety concerns, if any.

Further reading: Top safest cities to travel to in Mexico

Final Thoughts

So, why should you choose Cabo as your January travel destination? Well, apart from the pleasantly warm and sunny weather, this idyllic paradise offers an array of exciting activities, allowing you to create lasting memories.

Whether you seek relaxation amidst stunning natural landscapes or exhilarating adventures, Cabo caters to all your desires. So, pack your bags, bring your sunblock, and get ready to immerse yourself in the enchanting world of Cabo this January. I guarantee it will be a journey you will cherish forever.

See you in Cabo!