Geographically, the states of Baja California and Baja California Sur comprise the Baja California region. It is one of Mexico’s most arid zones, surrounded by coasts that support remarkable natural diversity. Its length is scored with mountains that delineate three large natural regions: the desert, with its Mediterranean climate; pine and wetland valleys; and a narrow, arid strip.
The desert provides fruits like pitahaya, ciruela de monte, cholla prickly pear, mesquite seeds, pink piñón and bellota. The sea is replete with edible species: totoaba, cabrilla, sea bream, peje puerco, horse mackerel, tuna, mackerel, mullet, bream, pompano, marlin, bonito tuna, snapper, spotfin croaker, shark, manta ray, etc.; sea turtles; shellfish such as abalone, scallops, pata de mula, oysters, mussels, catarina and chocolate clams, and various sea snail varieties; as well as crustaceans such as shrimp, red lobster and blue crab.
Today, Baja California’s principal economic activities include manufacturing, tourism and agriculture. The Mexicali Valley raises produce such as asparagus, onions and cotton; cereals such as wheat, barley and corn; and citrus fruits. Grapevines are cultivated in Valle de Guadalupe and are the base of the region’s fine wines.
Baja California Sur’s principal economic activities are tourism, agriculture and Guerrero Negro salt exportation.