Rediscover Tijuana and its Suburbs

You know you are in Mexico when you see this!

You know you are in Mexico when you see this!

Welcome to Mexico!

Welcome to Mexico!

Fierce warrior welcomes you

Fierce warrior welcomes you

Thanks to its proximity to Southern California, the “Gateway to Mexico” was the Jessetters’ first international location of travel back in the early 2000s. Back then, Tijuana was a go-to destination for underage college kids (including the Jessetters) looking for cheap booze, dirty nightclubs, and some zonkeys. Many things can change in the course of a decade though. Fast forward to the late 2000s and increased border violence, drugs, and passport restrictions decimated the tourist industry in the area.

Very scenic

Very scenic

Huge statue on the way to Puerto Nuevo

Huge statue on the way to Puerto Nuevo

Hanging out in Puerto Nuevo

Hanging out in Puerto Nuevo

Puerto Nuevo

Puerto Nuevo

Puerto Nuevo shopping area

Puerto Nuevo shopping area

Thanks to a resident Jessetter, we recently had the opportunity to return to Tijuana and the surrounding areas for the first time in many years. It was a bit refreshing to re-experience the area as a seasoned traveler in their 30s compared to a college-aged kid just interested in the nightlife. We were able to enjoy nice restaurants with AWESOME food, decent shopping, and some fun touristy things. While it is still considered big, bad TJ, it doesn’t seem quite as bad as it had been. You just have to be smart and attentive when you are out and about.

Pretty Horses Rescue

Pretty Horses Rescue

Pretty Horses Rescue front gate

Pretty Horses Rescue front gate

3 Jessetters

The Three Jessetters

On the road to recovery

On the road to recovery

Awesome stray dog at Pretty Horses

Awesome stray dog at Pretty Horses

Lagging behind as usual

Lagging behind as usual

Cleanest outhouse ever

Cleanest outhouse ever

Not the most comfortable

Not the most comfortable

Mexican selfie!

Mexican selfie!

Mrs. Jessetter on her horse

Mrs. Jessetter on her horse

One of the coolest activities we enjoyed during our stay was horseback riding in Puerto Nuevo at Pretty Horses Rescue. Though difficult to find, this place is run by friendly people that are doing incredible work saving and rehabilitating horses. We took an enjoyable one hour horseback ride through the country for $45/person. It was nice to know that the money was going to feed and help these horses that had been abused and neglected, some of which were in really bad shape. This place also takes care of some dogs, chickens, rabbits, and pigs. If you want to pay a visit, just make sure to follow all the “Pretty Horse” signs.

Great restaurant

Great restaurant

The Jessetters enjoying dinner

The Jessetters enjoying dinner

Best Beet Salad In The World!

Best Beet Salad In The World!

So good

So good

Veggie Pizza

Veggie Pizza

The food has always been a selling point to venture south of the border. From the lobster in Puerto Nuevo to the upscale food in Tijuana, there are plenty of places to get your grub on. Our favorite place this trip was El Taller in Tijuana. The ambiance was nice, and the food was great. Surprisingly, their beet salad was one of the best things I have had in a long time (Recommended times 10!).

Line back to the USA

Line back to the USA

Happily waiting in line

Happily waiting in line

It’s not all great south of the border though, and the worst part for us was having to wait in line to get back into the USA. The Jessetters had to stand in the sun for over 3 hours on a Sunday morning to finally get across (in no small part to all the individuals trying to cross without identification). **Tyler’s Tip: Get a passport card! The wait would have only been about an hour! You would get to wait in the Ready Line.**

While I don’t recommend this area as a destination to stay, I do think it is a fine place to day trip if you are looking for some adventure and good food…just be smart and be prepared to wait coming back across the border!

2 thoughts on “Rediscover Tijuana and its Suburbs

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