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      Mexicali is not a tourist town. Not even close. But because travelers often go through Mexicali to get to some of the most popular destinations in Baja, we have included it in this section.


      Mexicali is a border town sitting just south of the US / Mexico border. The main border offices between downtown Calexico (on the US side) and Mexicali (on the Mexico side) is open 24 hours a day. There is also a new border crossing about 3 miles east of town that is not open 24 hours. Because most people crossing the border do not want to head 10 minutes east just to cross the border this newer border does not tend to be as crowded. But it does close early.

      Visitors entering Mexicali from the US need to make a "soft" right after they pass the Mexicali Immigration station and then come up on the first intersection. This becomes the main road south into Baja. After driving several miles bear right where the railroad tracks cross the main street and follow the signs towards San Felipe.

      Mexicali hosts an annual Agricultural Expo each year just south of town at the fair grounds (west side of the main highway), featuring agriculture equipment, services and technology. If you own a ranch in the Mexicali area you don't want to miss it.

      There are 3 higher quality hotels in Mexicali located on the main road heading south through town. US and Mexican businessmen often stay in these hotels and the service is good.

      Two of the most popular Baja destinations south of Mexicali include SAN FELIPE and BAHIA DE GONZAGA. Both towns offer great beaches, but these two destinations couldn't be more different. San Felipe is a rather large town with plenty of services, shops, restaurants and visitors. Bahia de Gonzaga is a quiet bay with one small hotel and one restaurant that is not always open. This is where you got to really get away!



      Mexicali has a relatively large number of good restaurants, including some excellent Chinese restaurants. Driving south on the main road through town there are many other types of restaurants looking for your pesos, including many of the familiar fast food outlets found north of the border (don't eat at these is too short). If you are just entered Mexico for an extended trip into Baja this is definitely your last chance to grab a Whopper with cheese or an Egg McMuffin but try a taco or torta stand instead.



      Unlike the border towns of Ensenada and Tecate to the west, Mexicali does not have a large tourist base. There are several good hotels in town, but they cater mostly to business people, not tourists. For the most part Mexicali serves at a gateway to popular tourist destinations on Baja's Sea of Cortez, several hours south.



      Most visitors heading through Mexicali are tempted to rush through town in an effort to get to their Baja destination or to get back home. Driving fast in Mexicali with a U.S. license plate on your vehicle is usually not a good idea. The local police seem to pull over a higher percentage of Gringos passing through town, so taking it slow is one way to avoid becoming a ticket statistic.



      Located directly across the border from Mexicali, Calexico International Airport is one of the two main general aviation airports used by private pilots to re-enter the United States after visiting Mexico (the other airport is Brown Field, just south of San Diego).


      Phone (760) 768-2175.
      Fax (760) 357-0739.
      801 West 2nd Street, Calexico, California, USA, 92231.
      Mission Statement: The mission of the Calexico International Airport is to ensure a safe airport environment while providing fuel and other services to private and commercially operated aircraft.
      GPS location: North at West.
      City location: Airport is located one mile east of Calexico.
      Runway: 26/08 - 4680' X 75' - paved.
      Field elevation: 0.
      Unicom: 122.8.
      S.D. FSS: 122.5 / 122.6.
      L.A. FSS: 128.6.
      Yuma: 124.7.
      Charts: LA and Phoenix Sectionals.
      Hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
      Fuel: 100LL and Jet A.
      Pattern: 800' MSL.
      Wind indicator: Lighted.
      Lights: Dusk to dawn.
      Beacon: White and green.
      Tie Downs: $4.00 per night.
      Restaurant: On field.
      Weather (760) 352-3360.
      Taxi: (760) 357-1119.
      Bus: Greyhound (760) 357-1895.
      Hotel: Holiday Inn (760) 768-6048.
      Flight time to San Felipe: Appx 1 hour.
      Drive time to San Felipe: 3 hours.
      Hot tip: Ice cream for sale at the FBO counter.




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