March 5, 2017 - Arrive La Paz or Cabo San Lucas
Fly into La Paz or Cabo San Lucas (shuttle service available for an extra cost) and meet at the hotel. Overnight at Hotel Catedral, a beautiful new hotel
March 6, 2017 - Whale Shark Research
Whale sharks are the true “gentle giants” of the oceans. The largest fish on the planet, these gentle beasts return yearly to the coast just off La Paz. Join the Whale Shark México team led by scientist Deni Ramírez in their efforts to learn more about these magnificent creatures and support their protection. You'll have a chance to snorkel with these amazing animals!
March 7, 2017 - Espiritu Santo Island
Today will be another day out on the Gulf of California. We will visit the beautiul island of Espiritu Santo, looking for whales, dolphins, turtles, and other ocean wildlife along the way. Once there, we head to a sea lion community and snorkel with these incredibly graceful swimmers. We’ll have a picnic lunch on the island and be back to La Paz by dinner time
March 8, 2017 - La Paz to Magdalena Bay
Our guide will pick us up at the hotel after breakfast to head across the peninsula to the Pacific (about a 3 hour drive). On the way, stop off at a rancho for a snack and a glimpse into the ranchero lifestyle. Arrive to beautiful Magdalena Bay and head by boat to a secluded location where you will camp for the next three nights. Once settled in, a local expert will orient you to the turtle research, followed by happy hour and a delicious seafood dinner after sunset.
March 9, 2017 - Green Sea Turtle Research
Today after breakfast, you will help set nets used in efforts to study the black turtles, a sub-species of green turtles. Once considered nearly extinct, these turtles are rebounding after decades of conservation efforts. After lunch, take a kayak through the mangroves and estuaries of Magdalena Bay looking for birds, dolphins, and other animals.
The group will split up and take shifts checking the nets for turtles every 2 hours for the next 24 hours. Once a turtle is found, it is brought ashore to study, including taking the length and width, weighing, tagging, and other data collection. Once complete, the turtle is released back into the water. During down time, feel free to head out in a kayak to explore the Bay. After dinner, your guide will lead a star gazing lesson; you won’t often find a better place! The research will happen through the night, so sign up for a late night shift or hit the sack for a full night’s sleep.
March 10, 2017 - Explore Magdalena Bay
Head down to the beach to finish measuring and weighing sea turtles before releasing them back into the wild, concluding the sea turtle monitoring portion of the trip. Today we explore the magic of the greater Magdalena Bay complex, its vast, rolling sand dunes and winding mangrove canals teeming with birdlife. Back at camp, budding chefs can head to the kitchen for regional cuisine cooking class. The rest of the group can head to the beach to learn artisanal fishing techniques, or relax and get lost in a book.
Tonight we will learn about the gray whales, their incredible migration, and the importance of Magdalena Bay for breeding and calving to these magnificent creatures. Sit by the fire tonight and swap stories with your fisher guides and learn about the crucial role they play in conserving the natural resources of Magdalena Bay by combining tourism with conservation.
March 11, 2017 - Gray Whales
Head out early to search for gray whales. We will depart by van for a short ride south before climbing about pangas that will take us out into the channel. Friendly whales often approach the boats, and the mothers are known to push the young calves closer, which can make for an incredible interaction between two species. We will enjoy a picnic lunch on a secluded barrier island before heading back out to see whales. After lunch, we head back to La Paz for the final night of the tour. We will have one final celebration dinner that evening.
March 12, 2017 - Departure
Head to the airport for your flight home or to explore other parts of this incredible region.