Driving to Puerto Penasco
From Phoenix: take I-10 west to the interchange for US 85.
Take US 85 to Gila Bend. In Gila Bend, watch for the sign
directing you to Mexico. US 85 goes all the way to the border.
Please PRINT this page and bring it with you!!
From Tucson: take I-10 north to I-8 and I-8 west to Gila Bend.
Follow the signs to exit I-8 to connect to US 85 SOUTH.
US 85 goes all the way to the border. Map below.
Stops along the way:
Love's has gas, good restrooms, a Taco Bell & a McDonald's next door. Try Sophia's
for delicious Mexican food and friendly service. Gila Bend also has a Burger King,
a Baskin-Robins, and a sit down restaurant at the Space Age Lodge. Gas gets more expensive beyond Gila Bend.
Several good restaurants & maybe the "Eat My Buns Bakery" will be open. We especially like Marcela's Cafe,
on the right. There is also a Dairy Queen, a Pizza Hut, & a Chinese restaurant. Hours vary.
DO YOURSELF A FAVOR: watch the speedlimits closely. There is almost always a speed trap
before, after, or in Ajo.
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument - great visitor center and restrooms.
border at Lukeville
is about a 3 hour drive from either Phoenix or Tucson. The Mexican side is Sonoyta, Sonora, Mexico.
The U.S. side of the border is Lukeville, AZ. There is a gas station and cafe.
The drive to Puerto Penasco from the border will take about another hour.
Because there are no streetlights on the Playa Encanto beach, it is best to arrive before dark.
If you are arriving after dark, bring a flash light!
After you cross the border:
First you go through Sonoyta. Leaving the border, go straight until you
come to a
where you will turn left. At the next big turn,
bear right .
You are now on Highway 8 that goes to Puerto Penasco.
There are no services until you reach Puerto Penasco. The road is good but watch for animals & slow moving vehicles. You will know you are nearing Puerto Penasco when you pass the huge sand dunes on the right.
Highway signs along the way
Speed limits are posted in KPH not MPH
EJ = Ejito or communal lands
Principia Zona de Vados = Flash flood zone
No rebase = No passing
No rebase con raya continua = No passing with solid line
Area de descanso = Rest area (no services)
Gracias No Tirar Basura = Thanks for not littering
No Molestar la Fauna = Do not harm the animals
Poblado Proximo = Nearing populated area
Reserva del la Biosfera el Pinacate Gran Desierto Altar = The Pinacate Biosphere Reserve
Directions to Vida Dulce, Playa Encanto, Pureto Penasco:
8 kilometers before
you get to Puerto Penasco, look for the bypass for Caborca. The ramp takes off to the right side and curls around to cross the highway (
in essence a left turn
You will know you are approaching the end of the bypass when you cross the
At the intersection, turn right towards Puerto Penasco. It is
only a couple hundred meters to the large white
sign for The Village
, and lots of smaller signs, marking the
left turn to Playa Encanto. From this point, the road is not
paved but it is maintained. At a little over 5 kilometers after you turn off the highway,
the road bears right about 30 degees; half a kilometer after that, turn right at the T. Watch
for the sign marking the 'bear left' turn up the hill to Playa Encanto.
At the main gate for Playa Encanto, go straight and follow the main road to Playa La Jolla,
where you will meet up with Luis Palomo, the property manager. From the Playa La Jolla gate,
go straight about 200 yards, then turn left to the Bella Vita office. Luis' office is on the
west side of the building, not far from the restrooms.
Based on what people have told us, it would be a good idea to have a copy of this page saved
on your cell phone or tablet. Better yet, PRINT OUT THIS PAGE and bring it to the beach with you.
To get to
Before you can get settled, you'll need to meet with Luis Palomo to pick up the keys and
give him the security deposit. He will provide you with directions for where to meet him.
Turn toward the beach at the sign for Calle de Las Anguilas. In recent months
a local 'character' has occasionally moved some street signs, here is the
turn onto west Calle de Las Anguilas
Puerto Penasco, Sonora, Mexico
When you are ready to go "into town", take the unpaved road back out to the
pavement and turn left. Maintenance of the road into town is inconsistent, so watch for potholes. To go into the Old Port, stay on Blvd Freemont
( you will pass the Red Cross & the Black Dog ) until you come to the stoplight at the 'T'. Turn left, follow the road as it bears right until you get to the Malecon (sea wall walk), where you have to turn left. Park & walk, it is not a big neighborhood.