Just as tourism spots across the state, country, and the world, the global coronavirus pandemic took its toll on Puerto Peñasco in 2020 with beach closures, restricted hours and limits on travel at the border, and limited visits to popular sites.
Nevertheless, the Puerto Peñasco Convention and Visitors Bureau, in conjunction with local and state levels of government, the Hotel & Motel Association, and many others from the tourism industry, developed serious strategies with priority placed on the health and well-being of visitors and residents alike.
This tourism center, which welcomes over 40% of visitors to Sonora and has positioned itself as the most important vacation destination in the northwestern part of the country, was closed down to tourism for over three months in a stringent measure to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
According to data of the Sonora Secretary of Health, to date there have been just over 400 officially reported cases of coronavirus in Puerto Peñasco since March 2020.
Puerto Peñasco generally attracts over 2.5 million tourists a year. The premise of closing the town last Spring was, in as much as possible, to prevent the pandemic from impacting residents and visitors to Puerto Peñasco.
Once tourism activities resumed as we headed into Summer, SAFE POINT protocols were put in place. This consisted in making sure hotels, resorts, rental homes, and restaurants followed rigorous health measures and complied with certain requirements to obtain Safe Point certification. Puerto Peñasco was the pioneer in implementing this strategy, further guaranteeing visitors a safe and healthy stay.
As the town welcomed back tourism, a second safety measure was a health filter set up at the entrance to the city to check that incoming tourists had an existing reservation at one of the Safe Point certified locations. Still, beaches remained closed for another three months until a national decree allowed for them to reopen.
In 2021, the tourism proposal for Puerto Peñasco is to keep Safe Point protocols in place, as well as reduced hours for general movement about town of residents and visitors. Yet, above all, focus remains on emphasizing care, prevention, and responsibility among everyone as to the use of masks, constant hand-washing, taking of temperatures, and social distancing.
With this in mind, the 2021 “Feeling Rocky Point” campaign of the Puerto Peñasco Convention and Visitors Bureau focuses mainly on promoting the safety offered in this tourism spot, along with all health protocols. Focus is primarily on promoting outdoor activities and being in touch with nature, which provides reduced risk of infection and is something the entire family can enjoy!
Plus, the Safety Corridor from Lukeville, AZ to Puerto Peñasco remains in place. This consists of safety measures for travelers, as well as emergency assistance numbers.
Optimistically, Puerto Peñasco anticipates 15% growth in both international and national tourism over 2020. The city welcomes visitors with the guarantee of offering safe spots where all can enjoy a healthy and pleasant stay.