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Presenter : Ian Wright

Baja California & the Copper Canyon

Intrepid traveller Ian Wright begins his journey down the peninsular of Baja California in the border town of Tijuana. This is the place where hundreds of thousands of Mexicans risk theirIan Wright shading under a giant cactus lives every year attempting to cross into the United States. Ian is challenged to run through no-man’s land and having survived the armed air and land patrol he begins hitching south on Baja’s only highway.

After miles of uninterrupted cacti, Ian has a sea-spray shower at one of the world’s best blowholes, and then ends the first part of his adventure at San Quintin – a typical Baja one-horse town. The only accommodation available in San Quintin is a faded hotel originally built for Hollywood stars.

After a short stop in the beautiful Bahia de Los Angeles, where travellers sleep in huts on the beach Ian continues south on the back of a motorbike, through more desert landscapes to the mission oasis of San Ignacio. Here the over zealous religious imperialism of the Catholic missionaries is evident: the cemetery holds the remains of the indigenous people who refused to convert.

Train through Copper Canyon One of the highlights of Ian’s journey is a whale watching trip with two local fishermen in Mulege. Not content with simply swimming around the tiny boat, the whales actually come close enough for Ian to touch them.

Ian also goes in searches of the perfect beach, experiences a true ranchero style dance – complete with a hangover the following morning, and enters into the spirit of a wild and hedonistic carnival at La Paz on Baja’s southern tip.

The last part of Ian’s journey involves a ferry ride east across the Sea of Cortez to mainland Mexico, where he ventures into the stunning Copper Canyon.

Here he meets real cowboys who give him very useful lessons on picking up senoritas. Finally, Ian climbs high into the mountains where he is privy to an ancient ceremony of the cave dwelling Tarahumara Indians – the ritualistic killing of a goat – something which has rarely been witnessed before by a white person.

Places Mentioned - Mexico

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