I went into Rosarito blindly. I knew nothing about this beach city in Baja California, Mexico…and I kind of loved that about it. I had no opinions or thoughts on it, just a clean slate. I left feeling great about the area and that I’d definitely recommend a visit if you are in southern California (it’s just a short drive across the border) or on the northern part of the Baja Peninsula. Since my brain is often wedding-location focused (as a wedding photographer at Mikkel Paige Photography) I kept wanting to put a bride and groom in some of the photo-worthy spots below. They’re all walkable and part of a small radius in what I viewed as the most vibrant part of the city.
1. Rosarito Beach Hotel
We stayed at this oceanfront property overnight when we visited. The hotel was built in the mid 1920’s and has a lot of wonderful features. From its picturesque infinity pool, to walkways lined by banana leaves, to its original mansion I found photo inspiration at every turn.
2. Festival Plaza
I loved this abandoned, colorful plaza. Most of it is gated but there’s no need to try to trespass because its exterior was the highlight. With an upside down jester and red and white diamond-esque paint job I was one happy photographer.
3. Assorted Murals Around the Area
Street art is a funny thing so I hesitate to recommend any one piece, in particular, but it was abundantly apparent that street art in Rosarito won’t be going away any time soon – there’s plenty of it! If you walk north from Rosarito Beach Hotel (past Festival Plaza) and go towards the water (west, or turn left) you’ll see a good amount of attractive art as you meander through the neighborhood.
4. Exterior of El Nido and Susanna’s
I walked past this restaurant thinking I was in the wild west. What was this place, sided with zig-zagging wooden boards and wagon wheels? I quickly learned it was El Nido, a popular restaurant in the area. Susanna’s is just around the corner and is also photo-worthy!
5. Rosarito Beach
It’d be criminal to go to a beach town and not walk on its sand and hear the waves crashing into the shore. I walked along a very small piece of the area and found at least three great things to capture: 1) the beach, in general; 2) the horses leashed in a couple spots, which are available to rent if you want to go riding; 3) the dock! This cool rusting dock is in need of repairs so it’s actually quite nonfunctional as far as docking boats goes, but it sure is pretty for photos.
Would you prefer to photograph the beach or street art?