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Loreto is a city in and municipal seat of Loreto Municipality, located on the Gulf of California in eastern Baja California Sur state, Mexico.The city of 14,724 people is located about 350km north of La Paz, the capital of Baja California Sur state.HistoryLoreto was the first Spanish colonial settlement of the Viceroyalty of New Spain on the Baja California Peninsula.The town was founded in 1697 by Jesuit missionaries, who found a steady spring of fresh water on this site, as the Misión Nuestra Señora de Loreto. The Jesuits were expelled in 1767, and control of the Baja California missions was given to the Franciscans. In 1769, the Franciscans were ordered to turn over the Baja missions to the Dominican order and accompany the expedition of Gaspar de Portolà to establish new missions in the unexplored northern frontier that became Alta California. The expedition departed from Loreto on March 24, 1769.The town served as the capital of the province of Las Californias from its founding until the capital was moved to Monterey on February 3, 1777. In 1768, the province had been split into Alta California (today's U.S. state of California) and Baja California. At first, the two provinces continued with a single governor. Later, the town became the headquarters for the Lieutenant Governor of California Viejo (the province of Baja California).Loreto is in Baja California Sur. Add Loreto and other destinations in Mexico to your travel plans using our Mexico trip maker .
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Top Loreto tours
Horseback ride and witness magical sunset of Loreto, BCS BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $90
Duration: 2 to 4 hours
Canipole Cave Painting Guided Hike BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $75
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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