The Great Gray Whales of Baja
Make Giant Friendships at Sea on Mexico's Baja Peninsula
The Pacific gray whale migration from Alaska’s Bering Sea to the warm waters of Baja’s lagoons is the longest mammal migration on earth. Nearly hunted to extinction in the past, these gentle leviathans have made a dramatic comeback and today show little fear of humans. Every spring, hundreds of them return to traditional birthing and breeding grounds in sheltered San Ignacio Lagoon on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula. Friendly and engaging, they are often intrigued with humans, swimming right up to our boats, and our small groups can frequently approach at close range. You won't find a more remarkable Mexico whale-watching encounter than this rare adventure!
- Witness the grand finale of the gray whales’ migration of nearly 6,000 miles from Alaska to Baja, with the expert interpretation of Nat Hab's Expedition Leader
- Come within arm’s reach of friendly mothers with calves on multiple skiff journeys into the protected waters of San Ignacio Lagoon
- Explore the cactus-studded desert wilderness from our exclusive “whale cabanas,” isolated accommodations right on the beach
You Could Spot Whales with Binoculars from the Deck of a Big Boat...
Or You Could Come Eye-to-Eye on Our Small Skiffs!
Most whale-watching tours occur on large boats, with you standing on the deck, straining to see over the heads of the people in front of you. If you do spot a whale, it’s likely you’ll glimpse only a tail or a spout of spray on the horizon. Our Baja whale experience couldn’t be more different! We foray into the whales’ world at close range, with frequent, intimate encounters the norm. Learn more about what makes this trip a bigger “whale of an adventure” than the rest:
- We Make SIX Separate Whale-Watching Excursions
Typically, we’ll spend two hours on each whale-watching excursion (times are strictly regulated by marine reserve regulations) and make two excursions per day, for a total of six close-up whale encounters during our six-day tour.
- Our Small Groups Get You Much Closer to Whales
When you’re whale watching from the deck of a larger boat, you may be 20 feet above the surface of the sea, jockeying for space at the rail with other passengers. Our small boats, however, hold just six to eight guests and sit low on the water, putting you practically at eye level with the whales. If a whale approaches us, there’s no need to jostle for position—everyone gets a great look. Small groups also mean more personalized interactions with our guides, with plenty of opportunities for conversation about the whales’ behavior and their habitat.
- Our Small Skiffs are More Maneuverable, for Better Viewing
There’s simply nothing as exhilarating as close proximity to a huge gray whale. Imagine the photographic opportunities as you come within arm’s length of these charismatic cetaceans! Your skiff driver is an expert at positioning the boat to maximize your encounters with the whales without disturbing them. Young whales tend to be especially curious, and mothers sometimes like to “show off” their calves by bringing them alongside our boats.
- Stay in Unique and Secluded Accommodations in Nature
Our private “whale camp” lies within the protected confines of El Vizcaíno UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. With lodgings located on a quiet stretch of shoreline right on the lagoon’s edge, we get you as close as possible to these gentle giants without being in the water yourself! We stay in rustic but inviting thatched cabanas, backed by cactus-studded desert, where a sense of nature’s peace is palpable. The Vizcaíno ecosystem contains thousands of endemic species of plants and animals found nowhere else in the world. The dark, starry nights alone are worth the stay.
- Our Whale Camp is Ours Alone
Not only do we enjoy exceptional proximity to San Ignacio Lagoon, but genuine privacy, too. No one else besides our small group will be staying in our camp’s enclave of just 10 shoreside cabanas and dining room. We’ll have this natural space all to ourselves to bird-watch, hike, beachcomb and explore the rare mangrove estuaries and starkly beautiful salt flats and desert dunes.
- Travel with an Experienced Expedition Leader—Plus the Best Local Guides!
The NHA Expedition Leaders who guide this trip have more than 20 years’ experience leading nature adventures in Mexico. In addition, they receive special training and resources from WWF scientists. As an added benefit, top local guides also join us, ensuring the perfect balance of insider insights and attentive personal service. See Expedition Leader bios with traveler comments regarding the quality of our leaders.
- Our Quality Guarantee Ensures Your Outstanding Whale Watching Adventure
With Natural Habitat Adventures, you receive our exclusive guarantee that clearly states that we will meet the high expectations we set forth in our promotional materials. To our knowledge, this is the most ambitious guarantee made by any adventure travel company. Read our important promise.
- Feel Good About the Way You Travel
We all care about the planet, and you can travel with us knowing that the emissions from your trip are 100-percent carbon-offset. Natural Habitat Adventures is the world’s first carbon-neutral travel company and a global industry leader in sustainable practices.
- Natural Habitat Adventures Is World Wildlife Fund’s Travel Partner
Because of our commitment to environmentally friendly travel, as well as the exceptional quality of our small-group nature adventures, World Wildlife Fund, the world’s leading environmental conservation organization, has named Natural Habitat its worldwide travel partner — a designation that makes us exceedingly proud!
Longitude Books has created a custom comprehensive listing of Great Gray Whales of Baja travel books for this trip.