What a day for my travels, finally I cross into Baja, California, on my way to El Bajio, Mexico! I could not sleep the night before, as I was pretty excited and a little nervous at the same time. New country, new experiences and my first border crossing.
I left my apartment in Long Beach at first light and made my way south along Route 5 towards Tijuana. I was a little surprised at the amount of early morning traffic along the way. However, the further south I got, the less traffic there was to see.
As I neared the border crossing at El Chaparral, I had a reminder on my tank bag to stop at first point as I entered the border crossing. It was here I had to get a tourist card and my passport stamped. As I approached the border guards, they just waved me on, but I stopped anyway – and luckily I did, as although it seemed there had to be more, this was the last point before entering Mexico.
I entered the office on the left, got my tourist card and then went to immigration, and they just looked at my passport and told me no need for a stamp. Weird, but ok!
My first entry point was Tijuana, Mexico, and let me tell you, immediately it is a culture shock, horses, carts, traffic, rubbish, everything just hits you immediately. Tijuana is a God awful city, I am sure some tourist spots are nice, but I could not wait to get out of there.
I immediately headed south towards Ensenada, and I got my first taste of military checkpoints. It was pretty easy. I did my research prior, take the helmet off if they stop you, give them a greeting. Worked fine, they just ask your name, where are you coming from and going (be specific) and you are on your way. I had stopped a total of 5 times on my first day, but each was a breeze. previously
This riding all up took around 7 hours, so it was quite a long day, and the temperature was warm to hot the whole time, I got to stop along the way and have a swim in the ocean, and then got my gear on again and kept tracking to El Bajio, Baja California, Mexico.
It was a great first day, and the hotel was sensational!
The trip took me from Long Beach, California, Costa Mesa, San Clemente, Dana Point, Oceanside, Carlsbad, San Diego, Chula Vista, Tijuana, Mexico, Rosarito, Puerto Nuevo, La Mision, El Sauzal, Ensenada, and onto my final destination in El Bajio, Baja California
Today’s ride was only 205 miles (331 kilometers) but still took me around 7 hours.
- El Chaparral Border Crossing
- I have a USA Registered Motorcycle
- 100% Owned by Myself (No Loan)
- 1 Copy Passport (+Original)
- 1 Copy Insurance (+Original)
- 1 Copy Title (+Original – If you do not own, get letter from owner)
- 1 Copy Registration (+Original)
- 1 Copy Drivers Licence (+Original)
- $400 USD For Vehicle Import (Get Money Back as you exit Mexico and you get Sticker, which you don’t really need to attach to bike)
Once you have all of this your first stop is to get FMM Tourist Card
- Get FMM Tourist Card (Valid 180 Days- Most Important)
- Then Get Passport Stamped (They didn’t stamp mine)
- Then Get Import Permit (Sticker) $400 USD
All Buildings are next to each other. Plus they have a photocopying place next door