Clamming in San Felipe

If you are looking for something free, fun and educational to do while you are in San Felipe, head out to the beach and go clamming!

For those who don’t live within walking distance to a beautiful beach, (we feel bad for you!)  You many not have any idea what clamming actually entails. Once you read this, you’ll be excited to head out to the beach and become an expert clammer. 

Clamming is the art of tracking and finding clams that live under the sand, right where the ocean meets the sand. Clamming can be done for fun, for food, or for business. Serious clammers have specialized tools like clam rakes or shovels. If you don’t plan on moving to San Felipe to become a professional clammer, you do not need to invest in expensive equipment to enjoy this local pastime.

What is a clam?

The first thing you need to know is exactly what you are looking for. Clams are mollusks that live in hard shells. Their shells are medium light to dark in color and have dark circular rings across the outside of their shell. Although there are reports of clams weighing close to 450 pounds, the clams you will be looking for are very small, and two or three can fit in the palm of your hands. Sometimes they attach themselves to rocks, but more often they dig themselves under the sand in the shallow waters of the ocean.

How To Find Clams

The easiest and most popular way to find clams is to simply walk along the coast, about ankle deep in water, and feel around in the sand for the hard shell of the clam. They only bury themselves a few inches under the sand, so a quick dig with your toes or a rake can easily uncover a hidden clam. Because this is such a popular pastime, finding clams right at the waters edge can be tricky, especially towards the end of the day when many other determined clammers have been searching for them all day. If you go out a little deeper, about waist high, you can use a scatchrake. People staying at El Dorado Ranch Resort can simply ask for clamming tools before they head out for their adventure and will be supplied with everything they need. If for some reason the resort does not have the necessary equipment, the required tools can be purchased in town for less than $10. Another useful tool to have on hand when clamming is a floating bucket so you can collect all of your clams in one spot and have two free hands for continued searching.  If you are out in deeper waters, you can use clam tongs. These work like scissors and scrape the bottom of the ocean floor, collecting the clams between the two metal scoopers. Most people use this method when on a boat since the tool is long and can be quite awkward and cumbersome if not used in water that is deep enough. Note: After a wave comes onto the shore and retreats, look in the sand for tiny bubbles coming from under the surface of the sand. Use these bubbles as a starting point, and if you dig closely, you will probably find a clam right under the surface. 

Popular Uses for Clams

Once you eat at a few San Felipe restaurants, you’ll notice that clam dishes are popular on almost every menu. There are hundreds of ways to prepare clams, and it is a staple in the Mexican diet.  For the pasta lovers, try linguini with white clam sauce or ziti with garlic clam sauce. You can’t do clams without trying clam chowder, and of course you must try them steamed, fried and as clam cakes! Below we have posted a video on some of the most delicious ways to cook and prepare clams.

A local San Felipe restaurant, La Vaquita, has a large steamed clam platter that people rave about. You can get 20 large clams for less than $5! This is a great place to start if you’ve never tried clams before, as they are seasoned perfectly so that you get a taste of the clam but also seasonings and sauces to enhance the flavor. Moriscos La Morena is also a great spot for fresh clams, as they are served with small pieces of lime and bowl of melted butter for dipping.  Because clams are so popular in San Felipe, it is a great inexpensive dish to order when you are out on the town. No matter where you go, the portion sizes are large and the prices are low.  If you’re not quite ready to try clams in their (close to) rare form, consider ordering them in pasta or in a soup, as the sauces and spices that make up the dish dilute the distinct “fishy” taste.

San Felipe Clam Fest

If any group of people can take a simple sea mollusk and use it as a reason to party, it is the people of San Felipe. Every year in June, San Felipe holds Clam Fest, a weekend devoted to everything “clams.” The event itself is held on the Malecon, or boardwalk, but local restaurants find creative ways to participate as well. Some restaurants may host a wine tasting event, featuring the best wines to go with specific clam dishes. Stands and booths on the beach, specifically in front of the Hotel Costa Azul offer samples of famous clam dishes, craft beers and wine pairings. Last year, some of the specialty dishes included savory clam chowder, and butter-drenched steamed clams, and plenty of other delicious dishes!

Try Clamming

There really is no good reason why you shouldn’t go out and get your feet wet and experience clamming while you’re in San Felipe. It’s easy, inexpensive, and fun! The clams are easy to find, easy to transport and delicious to eat. It is a great activity to do with the kids, or something they can do while their parents sit on the beach and relax. Give it a try; it’ll make you happy as a clam.




  1. Dig up the clams from the sea shores after the sea tide goes out.
  2. Put them in buckets, cover them in salt water and let them purge for a day
  3. Wash the clam to get them nice and clean. Grab a handful and rob them under running water and place in pot.
  4. Steam the clams and notice the clams start to open up. Check regularly
  5. Once clams are completely steamed, they'll al be opened up. Take pot to sink and drain the water. Leave a little water as the water can be used for clam linguini or boil noodles in them.
  6. Open up the clams and knock the meat out.
  7. Use the clam meat to prepare with linguini and clam sauce


Two bedroom Two bath getaway in San Felipe Baja Mexico

House ID: Condo 53-1

2 Bedroom 2 Bath Getaway Should you need to do laundry during an extended San Felipe vacation, there is a washer and dryer conveniently located in the laundry room, right by the the entrance. Throughout, the home is furnished in subdued tropical colors, all adding to the modern style feel. The total effect is one of being open yet welcoming. This unit sleep 6 guests; a king size bed in master bedroom, two twin beds in the guest room, plus 2 cots make for comfortable sleeping. Sit on the ba ....more->

Location: San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico

Bedrooms: 2 | Bathrooms: 2 | Sleeps: 6

  • Regular Rates: $110/nt
  • ~ Weekend Rate: $160/nt

Ultimate San Felipe Baja rental home - Sleeps 8 Guests

House ID: Condo 35-3

Ultimate Rental Home - Sleeps 8 Guests Upstairs, you will find a fully stocked chef's kitchen; this opens up to a huge patio overlooking Las Caras de Mexico Golf Course. The BBQ on the patio makes entertaining fun. Also upstairs you will find a big master bedroom with walk-in closet, and bathroom made for luxury living. There is a living room upstairs with flat screen TV and fireplace. Two more bedrooms are on the lower level. One bedroom has a queen bed, and the second bedroom has ....more->

Location: San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico

Bedrooms: 3 | Bathrooms: 2.5 | Sleeps: 8

  • Regular Rates: $150/nt
  • ~ Weekend Rate: $180/nt

Nicely decorated San Felipe holiday rental condo with 2 car garage

House ID: Condo 54-3

This beachfront house features 3 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, and it is a very spacious place, which is highly recommended for visiting families. Once you enter the home, you’ll find a very Spanish-esque ambience surrounding you, with beautiful woodwork furniture, and a warm colored living room. It also features a full satellite flat screen, to enjoy your favorite shows while you rest in this welcoming environment.  Also, the first story features two of the bedrooms. Fully furnished ....more->

Location: San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico

Bedrooms: 3 | Bathrooms: 2.5 | Sleeps: 8

  • Regular Rates: $140/nt
  • ~ Weekend Rate: $180/nt
  • Weekly Rate: $1100/wk