Sail To The Coronado Islands

September 13, 2010 by  
Filed under Sailing San Diego Bay

coronado islands

The Coronados consist of four islands that are about 15 miles southwest of San Diego and about 8 miles northwest of Tijuana. While people make the short trek for fishing, diving and sailing, the Coronado Islands are actually a Mexican wildlife refuge and humans are not allowed on the land of these islands. However, there are a few interesting exceptions to that rule.

Once upon a time back in the 1920’s and 1930’s, there was an area called Smuggler’s Cove. America was struggling with Prohibition and this little place, just a stone’s throw from the United States, was a perfect haunt for boozers and smugglers. Where there’s booze, gambling follows and up from the cold Pacific waters rose a two-story casino in 1933. The area was later renamed Casino Cove. The casino action even attracted the Hollywood partiers such as Charlie Chaplin and Mae West. The heyday of this hell raising hamlet was silenced by the Great Depression. In 1935, Mexico put the kibosh on casino gambling. What remains of this beacon of bombastic activity is the concrete it stood upon and the old steps leading to the brothels that bemused suitors above the casino.

The islands offer many interesting visuals including the wildlife that are not typically seen on land surrounded by water. There are rabbits and mice. Go figure. Where there is an absence of humans on these island shores, there is an abundance of animal life on and around the islands. On any given day, you can spot whales, brown pelicans, cormorants, oyster catchers, brown and blue-footed boobies (go ahead and laugh), sea lions, otters, seals. and elephant seals (on the Middle Island.) Flipper and hundreds of his friends frolic in the waters close to the northern most island. Even burros can be seen out there. Yes, burros. Who knew?

Depending on the winds, the trip can feel longer than the three hours it takes to reach the northern most island. The ocean becomes bluer and the dolphins become more plentiful as we draw closer to them. The Coronado Islands sit just off the coast of Tijuana Mexico and San Diego. To get a good look at them though, plan on making this an all day trip. You don’t have to wait, simply book a trip today and you may even catch a glimpse of the mysterious blue-footed boobies that call the island home.

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