QUOTE(John WD Smith @ Dec 5 2013, 10:25 AM)
Dave, many thanks for your prompt reply. I will check out the website. It's comforting to know that you are okay with only going 80 miles south, we have heard that you had to go further away from the border. Any other tips would be welcome.
We have wintered much further south, but Puerto Peñasco gives us much of what we want in a Mexico destination: warm weather, a beach, cheap food and RV sites, real Mexican food, nice Mexican people, fresh tortillas, fresh inexpensive seafood, excellent grocery shopping, and a different culture. Folks that say that you don't experience the "real Mexico" in Puerto Peñasco probably think that you don't experience the "real US" in Orange County.
It is close enough to the US that folks go there on weekends from Phoenix. That means that there are lots of other gringos in town, and during the holidays they are really obnoxious (loud drunks, fireworks, etc.). Before Xmas and after New Years, though, things are pretty quiet, even on weekends.
A big advantage of traveling to Puerto Peñasco it that NO Mexican paperwork is required. No visa, no Temporary Import Permit for your vehicles. Of course, you need Mexican liability insurance for your truck anywhere in Mexico. Buy it online before you go. It is less expensive to buy a six month policy online than it is to buy a week's insurance at one of the little insurance agencies you will see as you approach the border.
You also need proof of rabies vaccination for your dog before you cross into Mexico. We have been asked to show it only once, but that was on the way down last December, so it might be routine now.
If you want to experience Mexican architecture, ruins, jungle, cathedrals, etc., though, you do need to go further south. My favorite winter was in Celestino Gasca, a little village with two or three RV parks on the beach about 50 miles north of Mazatlan. That's about 800 miles south of the border.
Puerto Peñasco, though, is an easy way to get comfortable with RVing in Mexico.