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Live Music and Late-Night Revelry: 10 Best Nightspots in Cabo



Cabo San Lucas is a night owl's paradise, with a host of great bars, clubs, lounges, live music venues and other after dark diversions. The two best nightspots, El Squid Roe and Cabo Wabo, have been open for more than twenty years and are still going strong. Squid Roe is the best place to make new friends and do jello shots at three in the morning, while Sammy Hagar's Cabo Wabo boasts the best live rock and roll in town.

The heart of the nightlife district in Cabo San Lucas is centered around Plaza Bonita, and this high-density, high-energy strip is home to many of the city's best late night clubs, including Squid Roe, Mandala, Pink Kitty. La Vaquita, Baja Junkie and Rockstone Tavern. DJs, dancing and high-end bottle service rule at Mandala and Pink Kitty. Rockstone, meanwhile, offers nightly live music and excellent pub-style comfort food.

Beer lovers will be drawn to Baja Sur's first craft brewery, Baja Brewing Company, which now has three locations in Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo, including a rooftop aerie at Cabo Villas overlooking Médano Beach, and a scenic spot on the Marina at Puerto Paraíso. Nowhere Bar remains the most popular haunt on the Marina, however, with excellent happy hour deals and the best ladies' night in town.


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One of the newest additions to the Cabo San Lucas nightlife scene, this combination sports bar/restaurant/live music venue opened in 2013, showcasing rock n' roll themed décor, indoor and outdoor bars and a generous selection of comfort food favorites. Menu highlights include nachos, French fries, fried pickles, onion rings, poppers and popcorn shrimp, as well as more filling fare like burgers and sea bass sandwiches topped with cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion. Live music is on tap nightly - most notably from local favorites Los Rancheros Tristes - and special drink prices are offered for beers and margaritas during happy hour and NFL games.




Tanga Tanga is a favorite of locals, and a great place to hang out if you want to end up in a conversation with a grizzled expat or a member of the local drinking society. It's located at the Plaza de la Danza near Nick-San and the Tesoro Los Cabos resort, and features plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. Great live music is a semi-regular occurrence, and this is one of the more popular places in Cabo San Lucas to watch live sporting events. The bar draws big crowds for hockey, football, basketball, and soccer matches from around the world. The outdoor section features umbrella-shaded tables, and offers prime people watching along Marina Boulevard. Pub-style food is available from the onsite kitchen, and the nearby deli Tio Guido's will happily deliver to your barstool.




The Cabo San Lucas version of Mandala (their original location is in Cancún) offers a more traditionally club-like atmosphere than next door neighbor El Squid Roe, with great dance music from a rotating cast of international DJs, colorful lighting, upscale décor, and a full slate of VIP amenities. Along with Pink Kitty and El Squid Roe, this is the top nightclub in the traditional downtown nightlife district, and one of the better spots for after midnight, bottle service related revelry. The dance floor is huge, with celebrity DJs imported for special occasions. Mandala throws the region's best Halloween party, crushes New Year's Eve, and is among the top local late night hangouts for visiting celebrities.


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Owners Scott and Amanda Osborne have helped make this one of the most popular downtown bars, fusing great pub-style food and eclectic music to create a thriving late night party atmosphere in their courtyard location at Plaza Real (next door to Happy Ending). The music varies according to the time of day (or night), ranging from country to hard rock to late night dance mixes. A hard rocking band plays six nights a week, and the crowds are generally going strong well after midnight. But perhaps the best thing about Cabo Blue is that it not only draw hordes of tourists, but has also become popular with the local crowd via competitive prices and daily specials. The food is consistently good, particularly the hamburgers and french fries.




Jungle Bar has never quite been the same as it was during the heyday of Strogeno, when lead singer Monster and the boys would kick out the jams four nights a week - in two languages - and the crowds would spill far out onto the sidewalks. But this is still a popular hangout for night owls who want to avoid the disco/DJ scene: those who don't want to feel out of place in their ripped jeans and concert shirts, or need a place to wash out the road dust after stabling their Harley. Sports are shown on the high-def televisions, but the sound is turned down whenever there's a good band playing, which still happens on a regular basis. Thursday is ladies' night.




A chic and sexy downtown nightclub with boutique boudoir décor and lots of high-end bottle service, Pink Kitty has, for at least seven years now, been among the premier places to see and be seen in downtown Cabo San Lucas, and a landmark of the local late night scene. Once a popular stop for visiting celebrities, it remains one of the few places visitors can really show off their upscale tropical wardrobe. It's also a great place to dance the night away, thanks to a rotating cast of great international DJs. In addition to the terrific dance music, there are also many theme parties and special events.




Baja California Sur's first brewery has three locations - the original in San José del Cabo, a rooftop aerie on the ninth floor of Cachet Beach Club, and an air-conditioned oasis overlooking the Cabo San Lucas Marina - all of which have proved exceedingly popular with tourists and locals alike. Fine food is available for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with menu options ranging from hamburgers and gourmet pizzas to filet mignon and other high-end entrées. The beers are excellent, either in a bottle or on tap, and you can order flights of the draft beer for a sudsy overview of their offerings. If you can only visit one of their locations, check out the rooftop brew pub at Cachet, which offers gorgeous views of Playa El Médano and the spectacular granite monuments at Land's End.




Nowhere is exactly where you want to be. That's the motto of the bar, and it's often true, particularly on Tuesdays, when Nowhere Bar hosts Cabo's best ladies' night. Ladies drink for free from 8-10 p.m., and single men might also want to take note, although they'll have to pay for their drinks. The DJs are great, not only for Ladies' Night, but just about every night, and the location is fantastic - on the Marina at Plaza Bonita - with great views of the pleasure yachts and fishing boats. People watching is also a popular pastime here, as you can watch the world go by along the scenic marina boardwalk.




Cabo Wabo has come a long way in 28 years...in regards its surroundings and its business, which has spun off a tequila brand and several U.S. locations. Originally opened in 1990 by Sammy Hagar and his then Van Halen bandmates - who can forget the eponymous song, off the OU812 album? - Cabo Wabo has since become a mandatory stop for just about everyone who visits Cabo San Lucas, even those who only come ashore for a few hours. Live music and "waboritas", the house version of the margarita, are the premier attractions, but snacks are also available from the cantina (shrimp and ceviche platters) and the patio grill (burgers, wings and chicken fingers). The best time to visit is during October, when Hagar hosts his annual birthday bashes with plenty of big-name guests.


Cabo Wabo is where you go if you want to see a rock star. This is where you go if you want to party like one. The downtown nightspot supreme, El Squid Roe has been packing in the crowds for decades, and is one of the landmarks of the Cabo San Lucas nightlife scene. Whenever you see unfortunate after midnight-photos of celebrities in Cabo, odds are this is where they were taken. Everyone goes here, both locals and tourists, and the multiple levels are usually crowded by midnight. After midnight, the pace accelerates, as do the jello shots. Late night ballast is available from the Billy Kitchen.


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Meet Chris Sands

Chris Sands is co-founder of CaboVivo, co-writer of Fodor's Los Cabos travel guidebook, and a contributor to 10Best at USA Today, as well as other websites and publications. His specialty is...  More About Chris

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