A few hundred meters past the modern Soriana shopping complex in Cabo San Lucas , the urban sprawl abruptly ends, cows reclaim the road, and the Pacific Ocean eventually pops into view. A lone trailer or two has set up camp along the shore, but you can’t quite tell which dirt road they drove to get there. If it’s late fall or early winter, wildflowers may still dot the landscape with a splash of color.
Don’t get too lost in the scenery, however, or the Aguila bus driver tailgating you might very well decide to pass on a blind turn just as an 18-wheeler approaches from the opposite direction. Welcome to the West Cape, the least developed stretch of coastline on the lower part of the Baja Peninsula.
Although paved, two-lane Mexico 19 (soon to be four lanes from start to finish) connects Cabo San Lucas to Todos Santos  and meets Mexico 1 just south of La Paz . Housing developments are still few and far between. Several large real estate projects are in the early stages near the farming community of El Pescadero  and close to Cabo San Lucas, leaving the middle stretch to the pelicans, rancheros, fishermen, and the occasional ATV tour.
Once considered a stopover on the drive from La Paz to Cabo San Lucas, bohemian Todos Santos has become a destination in its own right. Surfers, artists, retirees, exotic bird rescuers, and yoga students all cross paths here, and at least several hundred of them are permanent expat residents.
Over the last few years, Todos Santos  has basked in the attention of its designation as a Pueblo Mágico—one of only 23 small towns in Mexico given government funding to make their culture and history more accessible to tourists and travelers. Foreign and Mexican locals alike remain optimistic that the town will be able to preserve its artsy character even as the number of visitors increases.
The busloads of visitors no longer come from Los Cabos, but a few development efforts have persevered through the global economic recession, notably at Playa Los Cerritos, in El Pescadero, and along the beaches north of Todos Santos. Longtime residents lament the addition of new hotels and homes, while business owners welcome potential new customers.
By Car: Though not essential, most travelers will want to have a car while staying in the West Cape and Todos Santos, as the beaches and sights are spread out from the two small towns. If you don’t rent a car at the airport or drive your own from the United States, you can rent one in Todos Santos. Mexican-owned Fox Rent a Car (formerly a Budget affiliate, Márquez de León 4, tel. 612/145-0615, toll-free U.S. tel. 866/496-2880, www.foxrentacar.com , 8 A.M.–6 P.M. Mon.–Sat.) offers a small fleet of cars from economy to SUV.
Mexico 19 connects Todos Santos to Cabo San Lucas to the south and La Paz to the north. From the Los Cabos airport, follow the Transpeninsular Highway (Mexico 1) toward Cabo San Lucas and take the turnoff for Todos Santos/Mexico 19. From La Paz, follow Mexico 1 south to the turnoff for Mexico 19, which is now four lanes the entire way to Todos Santos.
There are numerous Pemex stations in La Paz, Todos Santos, Pescadero, and Cabo San Lucas. If you need a mechanic during your visit, there are a couple of options in Todos Santos, but you may have to head south to Cabo San Lucas for complicated transmission work.
By Taxi: A small fleet of blue vans parked next to the park in Todos Santos can provide taxi service around town for US$5 a trip. Taxi service to Pescadero is about US$20. A van all the way to Los Cabos International Airport will cost around US$200; vans can hold 8–15 people with luggage. Call 612/145-0063 for more information.
By Bus: Nine Aguila buses a day connect Todos Santos to La Paz and Cabo San Lucas. The La Paz and Cabo San Lucas bus trips take about two hours and cost about US$8 per person; a bus all the way around to San José del Cabo costs US$12 and to Tijuana, US$130.
Tickets are sold on the buses, which arrive at and depart from Colegio Militar and Zaragoza (for San José del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas) or in front of Karla’s Lonchería (for La Paz). In Pescadero, buses stop across the street from the Pemex.