Saldaña is in charge of the binational affairs at Tijuana’s Tourism and Conventions Committee. He lives in Imperial Beach and Tijuana.
Surely the word brings many images to mind, and, in the end, that has to do with the information you have.
Allow me to provide some information on Tijuana that can be useful to the potential tourist or visitor. First thing that comes to mind is food. Tijuana is a city of migrants, and this reflects on different aspects of its reality, such as culinary offerings.
In Tijuana, you will find culinary styles from all over Mexico and the world. It was two Italians, Caesar Cardini and Livio Santini, who created the Caesar salad and, along with the likes of Wallis Simpson, Prince Edward VIII of Wales, Julia Child and others, made the Caesar salad known around the world. The salad is currently served tableside at Caesar’s, the restaurant that bears its name. Tijuana also holds the Guinness world record for the largest Caesar salad, set in 2007 by Canirac, the city’s Chamber of Restaurants and Food Industry.
Tijuana is also one of Mexico’s top craft beer producers and the birthplace of the Baja Med Style Cuisine. There are different reason why Tijuana is a foodie destination, visited regularly by Anthony Bourdain before his passing and by Rick Bayless, among others. Tijuana has well-established and recognized chefs as well as new blood coming out of its culinary schools. It also has access to seafood from the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortes, poultry, meats and a variety of vegetables from nearby ranches.
If you are more of a sports enthusiast, Tijuana is the only border city in Mexico with three professional sports teams.
In baseball, Tijuana has its Toros which are looking for a repeat championship title. The team plays out of Chevron Stadium, and the regular season ends on Aug. 7.
Xoloitzcuintles de Tijuana is the city’s soccer team, with a heavy following. Its season runs from July to May.
The Tijuana Zonkeys represent the city in basketball, and that team is looking for a fourth championship in a season that will end this month.
Art and culture are also elements of the Tijuana tourism scene, represented in the Centro Cultural Tijuana, the largest venue of its kind outside of Mexico City. There’s also the Tijuana Institute of Culture that houses the city’s museum, the Baja California Institute of Culture, as well as private galleries and art venues.
Medical tourism in Tijuana dates back to the 1960s — when nobody had an idea of how far it would go. Today Tijuana is among the world’s leaders in medical service, with impressive new infrastructure and professional board-certified specialists. Although diverse specialties are available, the most popular ones are plastic aesthetic surgery, lap band and bariatric surgery, oral care and eye care.
Tijuana is accessible by car and by foot at the border ports of San Ysidro and Otay Mesa. If you are flying to the interior of Mexico, you can use the unique Cross Border Xpress bridge that connects Tijuana’s airport to CBX’s terminal in Otay Mesa.
If you want to go beyond a one-day visit and have more time to take in the sights and flavors of Tijuana, the city offers excellent lodging facilities for all tastes and budgets. For those who travel to Tijuana for medical purposes, some hotels offer rooms set up to help you with the post procedure recuperation process
Finally, there is a new trend in Tijuana, and it has to do with Americans deciding to move to the city to live and to commute to work in San Diego. The city is undergoing a change as you see new condominium and housing projects being developed, and the cost of living is definitely more affordable south of the border.
We invite you to visit and get to know Tijuana.