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La Bufadora

La Bufadora, Baja California, Mexico

HOW TO GET THERE

Located at 17 miles south of Ensenada by taking the Transpeninsular highway to Maneadero. From there follow the clearly marked road that goes west and takes you all tha way to La Bufadora, which is located at the end of the Punta Banda Peninsula. The scenic paved road offers you a beautiful panoramic view of the Ensenada Bay, its beaches and Todos Santos Island.

ORIGIN

A deep underwater canyon leads to the cave in the cliff, gouged out over aeons of time by trillions of tons of pounding surf. The surge of heavy ocean swells is channeled through the canyon and forced beneath the surface into the narrow, tunnel-like entrance of the cave. This phenomenon of nature has been a strong influence in the tourist development of Punta Banda peninsula.

DESCRIPTION

This spectacular marine geyser explodes upwards sometimes as high as 80 ft. above sea level, producing a tremendous sound. This is the reazon for its name, "The Blowhole". The invading ocean wave collides with the air that is drawn down in a pumping action caused by the force of receding waters after the previous spout. For an instant, trapped air and water choke the cave, then the compressed air and water explode through the only exit. This marine geyser is considered as the second highest of the world, after Hawai. Other "Blowholes" exist in Australia, Tahiti and one in Japan, but Japan's is artificial. "La Bufadora" is the most spectacular of all of them, because it's situated on a rocky inlet near the tip of the ruggedly beautiful Punta Banda peninsula. Its tremendous roar seems to come from a huge angry animal at bay. Against this background of sound and fury, exploding water and flying spray, a legend has come down through the years: "The Legend of the Whale Jail". A century ago, within easy sight of The Blowhole, there was a whaling station below the bluff close to the water's edge. The whalers spun a yarn of a mother whale returning to the Arctic with her new-born calf from the breeding grounds at Scammon Lagoon in Guerrero Negro, four hundred miles south. One night the baby whale skipped away to explore a mysterious under water cave in the cliffs of Punta Banda. A whale calf grows very fast - fifty pounds a day, or more than two pounds an hour - and this "little" fellow stayed in the cave all night. By morning he was too big to squeeze through the narrow, crevice-like entrance of the cave. The following day the whalers in the camp saw a small spout rising mysteriously from the cave and heard the frightened sobs of the trapped baby whale. As years passed the spouts grew larger, his lamentations louder. And legend says that the spout, accompanied by a tumultuous crash emerging from the Blowhole today, is the spout and fulmination of a still-trapped but now full-grown leviathan.

ACTIVITIES

There is a commercial area where you can find all kind of arts and crafts of the region; the restaurants offers you an excellent selection of seafood plates. Don't forget to try the famous "churros", a flour stick deep-fried and rolled in sugar. Near La Bufadora is a little cove where professional diving is recommended. The little Sierra along the peninsula of Punta Banda invites you to practice hiking, camping, mountain bike riding and the observation of flora and fauna.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Climbing is not recommended due to the dangerous rocky area. Do take your camera though and wear comfortable clothing. In winter use warm clothing.

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