San Carlos , Sonora, Mexico

Click on the car. Don't drive in Mexico without Mexican Insurance
Current Weather
Return to Home Page
Currency Conversion
Driving to San Carlos from Flagstaff takes 10 to 12 hours one way. On a four day weekend we drive to Nogales, Arizona on Friday after work. Spend the night and cross the border at 6am when it opens. Then about 5 hours to San Carlos. You can check into your room and make your first shore dive at 12:30. Night dive off the shore Saturday night. Do a three tank boat dive on Sunday. Out for a nice dinner with the group on Sunday night. Drive back home on Monday after breakfast. I love diving in San Carlos good visibility and lots to see. It is worth the drive. Water does get cold in the winter.
Click on the car. Don't drive in Mexico without Mexican Insurance

Driving Directions to San Carlos

Destination: San Carlos Cresent Motel

From Tucson: Take Interstate 10 to Interstate 19.

Take I-19 south. You will pass Green Valley, Tubac, and Rio Rico.

Take Exit #4 "Border Truck Route 89 South" (approx 60-minute trip). Turn right onto Mariposa Road. Fuel, food, and bathrooms at Phillips 66 Station/Mariposa Market next to Carl's Jr. Fuel is much cheaper in the US, so top off your tank. Reset odometer to zero. Note that a supply of dollar bills, quarters, and/or Mexican pesos will speed you through the toll booths.

Turn right on Mariposa Road and continue to the border.
2.5 miles

Cross without stopping unless requested and proceed uphill on new toll road. Pay toll of 35 pesos (approx $3.20).
Distance From Border = 8.0 miles

Drive through first checkpoint without stopping unless requested.

Red light and buzzer means pull into parking area for random check.

If you get a red light, don't panic. The Mexican Customs Official will inspect your vehicle and cargo. Smile and be cooperative, they are nice people.
Proceed on toll road to "21K Checkpoint".

Go to the Immigration booth and complete the tourist card (visa) form. You will need a passport.

Take the left line, where you will encounter another red light/green light.

If you get a red light, you will have to stop your car and have it inspected.

If you get a green light, or after the inspection, you may proceed to your destination.

Stay on main road marked "Cuota" (toll road). Pay 18 pesos (approx $1.65) toll outside the town of Magdalena. There are bathrooms and food here. This is Mexico Highway 15 to Santa Ana.
Distance From Border = 43.0 miles

Continue south on Highway 15 to next toll station. Pay 55 pesos toll (approx $5.00).
Distance From Border = 160.5 miles

Proceed south to Hermosillo. At the first Hermosillo stoplight turn LEFT. (There is a Pemex station on one corner and the old Sonora Motors Chevrolet dealership (now out of business) on the other.) Follow the road signs to Guaymas.
Distance From Border = 160.9 miles

Follow surface streets through town. You will reach a second stoplight. Continue straight through the light. Pass a park, a dam, and prison. Shortly after the prison the road will fork. Stay right and proceed to stoplight.
Distance From Border = 175.9 miles

Turn left at stoplight. (There is a Pemex station on the right corner, and San Sabastian Hotel the left corner.)You're back on Highway 15. Proceed south to San Carlos.

Pass a large Pemex station in the center of divided highway.
Distance From Border = 225.7 miles

Stay to the right. Take the San Carlos turn-off to the right.
Distance From Border = 249.3 miles

Red brick road into town is lined with palm trees. The speed limit is enforced for the last 15-20 miles even if the bricks don't slow you down.
Distance From Border = 252.6 miles

Look for Gary's Dive Shop on the right side of the road. The Cresent Motel is across the street.
Distance From Border = 255.5 miles

Welcome to San Carlos

Street Map of San Carlos
Dive Sites in San Carlos
Thanks to Desert Divers Tucson Az