Grocery Shopping in Los Cabos Mexico
Shopping for groceries in Los Cabos Mexico is quite different than in other Mexican towns. The presence of all the luxury resorts and restaurants means there is a very sophisticated supply network. But there is also a local market for those who enjoy buying fresh foods straight from the farm or ocean.
The first thing a new traveller to the area needs to understand is that the name “Los Cabos” is used to describe the general area encompassing the two towns of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Cabo San Lucas has a busy marina with both local and foreign boats always on the go. The streets are filled with vendors and shops selling everything but groceries. Still, if you want local roasted coffee and tequila factory stores then “Cabo” is your best bet. Also, because of the busy marina and the many shops and restaurants, Walmart has found a home here, complete with a Sam’s Club. This seems to be the place that many of the local businesses and residents are now buying everything. It may seem weird to the seasoned traveller to find themselves strolling past a friendly Walmart greeter to get supplies for the week ahead; but the times are changing. Many of the residents in Cabo have been in other countries and have come to enjoy a more American shopping experience. CCC market ( Centro Comercial Californiano ) also offers a good selection of groceries and clothing with free grilling of meats and free delivery to your yaught or business.
San Jose is a slower paced town with residences mixed in with the resorts. It is about a twenty minute drive from Cabot San Lucas and also boasts a supermarket. It is called the Mega and has a mix of food, clothing, hardware and a drugstore. The Mega has all the family favourite Mexican foods available. A superb bakery with fresh made tortillas is extremely popular. You can buy fresh fish, presented on banks of ice. And there is a full service butchery. The food is all laid out in supermarket style, with good sanitation and presentation. If you want bulk items for your vacation then head to the Costco and stock up for the week. Items such as bottled drinks, liquor, and meats seem to be a favourite purchase for visitors.
If you prefer to try a more traditional market, head into the local residential area and go to the Mercado Publico. This is a small market with a couple of vendors for each type of food. The vegetables are farm fresh, without the polished gloss of supermarket processing. The meat is cut and seasoned in traditional styles. The fish is fresh with glistening eyes and pink glossy gills, and cut to order. The price and quality of the food when we shopped there was excellent.
We didn’t bother haggling and after comparing the prices with the supermarket, found that we were not taken advantage of. Actually, people appreciated us making the little effort needed to get to the market. It was easy to get to the public market, but somewhat harder to get back. Local buses come down the street in front of the market on their way to the main restaurant district, and if you walk one block up, there is a one way street heading back to the main highway which has both taxis and buses available. It took us a while, with a lot of sign language, to figure that out.
Making the effort to buy groceries while staying in Los Cabos will keep your vacation budget under control. The restaurants offer great quality food, but entrees for average meals are usually $18-27 US. A couple trips to the market will make the vacation more enjoyable, and help the restaurant meals be the special fun times that make a vacation memorable.