La Paz Has Pop-Up Stores For Christmas

Makes for quick work to buy interesting gifts

Not many years in the past, maybe 15 or so, people living in Cabo would trek up the windy two lane highway to La Paz to do their Christmas shopping. Many women would car pool, as it was such an arduous day. Now, with the fourlane built, it’s an easy day trip, and with the new big box stores in Cabo, not even necessary.

We’re talking back in the days before Los Cabos had Costco, Walmart, City Club, or even a decent grocery store. Heck, we didn’t even have Home Depot back then. La Paz was our only hope for Christmas gifts that would satisfy.

And just because we live in a tropical desert climate doesn’t mean our communities don’t change with the seasons. At this time of year locals are no longer hiding indoors through the heat of the day, waiting until the sun goes down to take care of errands, but instead are bustling around the city throughout the day.

With temperatures in the 70s throughout the day and a slight chill in the evening, you’ll find that certain venues in La Paz have closed while others are now open again.

Our favorite respado (shaved ice) shops might have packed up for the season, but now we’ve got new stands serving up our favorite hot beverages like champurrado (the Mexican version of hot chocolate).

The summer boasted a vibrant strip along the malecon that offered plenty of vendors and entertainers, but as the seasons changed, and the malecon re-construction became more intrusive, those vendors seem to have vanished. But the vendors and entertainers haven’t dropped off the face of the Earth, they’ve just moved locations. A jam-up of booths have popped up for the entire month of December at Jardín Velasco on Revolución, between 5 de Mayo, Independencia and the adjoining streets. This makes parking a nightmare, but if you can ditch the car, holiday shopping is a breeze among all these pop up booths.

Some of you might have already noticed the sparkling decor of the Palacio, decked out with an abundance of lights and vendors set up for Christmas. Art shows and musical performances fill the Cathedrals, city theater and cultural center, commemorating the holiday season, which is taken very seriously in Mexican culture.

As the city prepares for the new year and the holidays that follow, there’s a lot to look forward to. The Day of the Holy Innocents (which is actually celebrated on December 28th) is Mexico’s version of April Fool’s Day, so be prepared for pranks. And don’t believe all the headlines in the papers, the newspapers buy into the holiday too.

And we can’t forget Carnival, the biggest party in the city. It will take place February 8th to 13th, and the malecon will be filled with live music, dancing, food, games and the like. Let’s just hope the slow and steady construction on the malecon will have come to an end by then. In case it isn’t. authorities are already scouting alternative locations for Carnival this year.