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San Felipe

San Felipe is a town on the bay of San Felipe in the Gulf of California (Sea of Cortez) in the Mexican state of Baja California, 190 km south of the United States border and within the municipality of Mexicali. It also serves as a borough seat of its surrounding area.The Bay of San Felipe is 3 meters above sea level. At low tide, the water can recede as much as 2 km. San Felipe experiences one of the largest tidal bores in the world due in part to the Colorado River delta to the north. The seven-meter tides expose a kilometer of ocean floor.The port of San Felipe is a small town historically dependent on fishing and now on tourism, catering mostly to U.S. travelers and containing an international airport.The population of San Felipe was 16,702 at the 2010 census, and can increase by up to 5,000 due to the presence of Canadian and U.S. part-time residents (retirees and vacation homeowners), who travel to the town from the United States during the American holidays spring break and Memorial Day.HistoryThe first European to arrive in the Baja California Peninsula was Hernán Cortés on May 3, 1535. The history of San Felipe began later with the expeditions of Francisco de Ulloa, one of Cortés's captains who navigated the bay in September 1535. In 1536, Hernando de Alarcón and Domingo Castillo explored the region and made the first detailed map of the peninsula, giving San Felipe its original name, Santa Catalina.
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