An oasis, San Ignacio’s spring feeds the greenery and date palms. Founded in the 18th century by Jesuit missionaries, the town springs from the Vizcaíno Desert and is a welcome sight for any traveler. The old town is known for its tranquil atmosphere and Bruce Berger notes the easy-going lifestyle when he calls San Ignacio his favorite town on the peninsula.
It is said that cows wear sneakers so they won’t waken their owners. Ignacianos are alleged to have altered their phones so that instead of ringing, they go psst…It is said that Ignacianos grease the palm leaves to soften the rustling and that they have replaced the bronze clapper of the mission bell with a duplicate of rubber. — Bruce Berger, Almost an Island
Joseph Wood Krutch felt similarly about the town, saying the town seems “an almost idyllically peaceful little world of its own,” (Krutch 99). He notes the lush greens, the date palms, as well as a few orange trees and grapes (Krutch 98). The flora and fauna of the area are similar to those found throughout El Vizcaíno, however, the town’s vicinity to Scammon’s Lagoon or Ojo de Liebre makes it the entrance way to marine mammals and the grey whales who migrate each year to the lagoon to give birth to their calves.
San Ignacio’s stone church dominates the center of town and serves as a reminder for the Jesuit’s history on the peninsula. Today, the mission in town is a popular tourist destination for those taking a break from ecotours. The surrounding mountains reveal a more-ancient history than the church: cave paintings. Day excursions or three day excursions through the mountains on mule back are available through local guides.