On the Buses: Las Vegas to Mulegé (via Tijuana)

It was during my first ever international trip to Thailand & Laos (and the first trip Sarah and I enjoyed together), traveling between cities on a bus, we saw (in Thai) some small sections of the first movie in the Twilight saga.

Fast forward 6 years.

Here we are on a bus from Las Vegas to Tijuana and what movie should come on? Twilight, this time in Spanish!

It was the first of several movies they managed to sneak in on that overnight voyage, although due to our efforts to try and claim as much sleep as we could on the journey, we saw very little of them, and understood little of what we actually saw!

As dawn was breaking, we crossed the US border into Mexico, and our bus was pulled over so that bags could be screened, Visas purchased. In short order our passports were stamped, and we had crossed into 17th country as a couple.

About half an hour later, and we’d been deposited at the Turafesa Tijuana bus terminal, which we quickly discovered was not at all near the autobus terminal we actually required, to continue our travels south down the Baja Peninsula.

Thus cue the first taxi of our trip, as realistically we had no idea where we were going, nor did we wish to wander aimlessly with our heavy packs.

We were quickly able to sort our onwards bus tickets to the small town of Mulegé, another overnight bus trip for which we had an 8 hour wait.

For a fee we put our luggage in storage, then after another wander, realised we couldn’t walk to Tijuana Centro (Downtown), so instead caught the local bus.

The problem was we were tired… and we didn’t know when exactly we’d be at Centro! At about the time the bus pulled up at Playa Tijuana (Tijuana Beach, and also the end of the line), we realised we’d missed it, so stayed aboard for the return leg.

I believe we play this down as ‘sightseeing’…

So finally establishing where we needed to take our leave of the bus, and promptly doing so, it was down to important matters, breakfast!

What else could we have, but our first Mexican Tacos!

Our first Mexican breakfast. Picante pork Tacos!

Our first Mexican breakfast. Picante pork Tacos!

We wandered for a bit, but being a Sunday morning, much of the town was shut down, many were at church, but there were enough selling wares at a small street market for me to purchase a brimmed hat to finally protect my head!

Trying to take advantage of the odd tourist (of which, being the 4th of July weekend, there were scarcely any), we did spot a few locals trying to lure us into photo opportunities with their Zebra like Mules (I was sneaky enough to snap my pics from afar).

A Zebra? A Donkey? A Zonkey?!

A Zebra? A Donkey? A Zonkey?!

In case we forgot where we were, there was this huge flag…

In case we forgot where we were, there was this huge flag…

Deciding we’d had enough, we began seeking buses headed back to the Autobus Camionera, checked with what appeared to be the right bus, paid the driver and hopped on board.

Quickly, in fact seemingly all too quickly we were pulled over again and the driver and a couple of other passengers were waving us off. Whilst unsure, Chris had minutes earlier made the mistake of saying that the area looked familiar (Please Note: In Tijuana, all dusty streets, houses, fences and gates look remarkably similar), so off we hopped.

Hmmm, this all looks different, let’s follow one of the fellow passengers who waved us off, then got off himself.

A minute or two later we came to a queue of people… an incredibly long queue of people.

They’d dropped us off back at the border!!

We found another location where people were catching buses, where one driver took pity, and although he didn’t go there himself, dropped us closer to a location where we would ultimately get a bus back to our bags and the terminal (thankfully, the next bus did get us there).

Our fun for the morning, those cool Mexican buses

Our fun for the morning, those cool Mexican buses

So we collected our luggage (as it was stored by the hour), found a nice bit of floor which had some breeze, and settled down for 4 hours (as that’s how long we still had to wait) for our bus to Mulegé to depart.

Thinking forward, whilst back in Tijuana Centro, we had purchased some water, crisps, biscuits and fruit for the long 16 hour journey ahead.

Killing time on the bus terminal floor…

Killing time on the bus terminal floor…

Unfortunately, when we did finally get on board our coach, this particular number did not have Wi-Fi, so there went my plans to do any additional blogging, or upload any pictures to good old Facebook.

There was an interesting moment when one woman attempted to stow a gas cylinder in the luggage hold of the coach, only for our departure to be delayed when staff became aware of what she was trying to do. I’m still not sure she understood that it was considered dangerous to be rolling around in there…

No Wi-Fi wasn’t so bad though, as until the skies darkened, we did have some pretty spectacular coastline to take in on the road south.

Cruising down the Baja coastline

Cruising down the Baja coast

For the record, we did also happened to catch bits of another Twilight movie (well, technically it was 2 movies, 1 story in 2 parts). Again in Spanish, so I’m none the wiser, but I’m guessing it was about Vampires and Werewolves and Love…

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