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Magdalena Bay Whale Watching and Espiritu Santo Sea Kayaking
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Magdalena Bay Whale Watching and Espiritu Santo Sea Kayaking

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Key Information:
Tour Duration: 9 day(s)
Group Size: 8 - 16 people
Destination(s): Mexico  
Specialty Categories: Whale Watching   Canoeing/Kayaking/Rafting  
Season: February - March
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: No
Minimum Per Person Price: 1595 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 1595 US Dollar (USD)

During the first half of your nine day-long trip, twice-daily excursions from motorized skiffs will bring you close to magnificent gray whales and their calves in the warm and protected waters of Magdalena Bay's Pacific nursery. The surreal landscape provides a dramatic background as these noble creatures allow us to watch them breach, roll and tend to their young.

Whale watching combined with paddling excursions through the mangroves and other permitted areas are the featured activities in this part of the program. You'll also find time to walk on sand dunes along miles of unspoiled beaches or admire elegant migratory birds in the estuaries.

On days five through eight, you'll explore Espiritu Santo Island by kayak, with time for hiking and snorkeling. Because we use a base camp, the schedule can be as active or as relaxing as you choose. You’ll learn easy-to-master kayaking skills from our expert guides, and will soon be paddling up to four hours per day along the shoreline—exploring caves, rock gardens, and deserted beaches.

Our support skiff is always conveniently nearby. Besides kayaking, we’ll hike in spectacular, ochre-colored canyons, and bird watchers will delight in the antics of pelicans and frigate birds who fish the waters.

Our friendly crew and added comforts—such as cabin-style tents, cots, sleeping pads and solar-heated showers—make your days and nights in both camps relaxing and care-free. You’ll dine on delicious Mexican food and enjoy happy hour each evening as sunny days turn into luminous, starry nights.

Tour Itinerary:

Day 1: Arrive in La Paz from home city.

Arrive in La Paz and spend some time exploring the colorful city of La Paz, with its charming promenade and dine in one of the many fine restaurants and shops. (No meals).

Day 2: La Paz to Magdalena Bay.

Early this morning, we will transfer to our La Paz office for a light breakfast. A four-hour van or bus ride transports you to Magdalena Bay, with lunch en route or at camp. Once we arrive at the Bay, a short boat ride delivers us to our base camp, where you'll have an orientation to camp procedures, assignment of tents and a safety briefing. Tonight you’ll enjoy a beautiful sunset over the Bay while the staff prepares a delicious welcome dinner. There will also be an evening presentation. (Meals: B/L/D)

Days 3-4: Magdalena Bay.

The surreal landscape of the ever changing sand dunes provides a dramatic backdrop for exciting excursions to see the gray whales! There are two excursions each day using motorized skiffs, each lasting up to three hours. Our experienced naturalist guides will point out many behaviors of the whales, including spy hopping, mating, breaching, and nurturing their young. In between whale watching excursions, you'll have time for walks along the beach or hikes in the dunes. You can also go kayaking on guide-led forays into the mangroves or other permitted paddling areas using our fleet of kayaks. You may opt to go bird watching, or just enjoy some "down time" as you relax with a book from our camp's library.

Happy hour brings an opportunity to compare notes with fellow travelers and you sample tantalizing appetizers, while watching the sun disappear beneath the horizon. Dinner is buffet-style, and often includes fresh fish and home-made tortillas, and there are always options for vegetarians.

After dinner each evening, one of our experienced guides will present a natural history talk to help you learn more about the Baja Peninsula, its local people and the marine wildlife protected in Magdalena Bay. Be sure to take advantage of the opportunity to star-gaze while you are here, too. (Meals: B/L/D)

Day 5: Magdalena Bay to Espiritu Santo Island Base Camp.

After breakfast, we pack and say our last good-byes to the magical "Mag Bay." We'll transfer by van or bus back to the dock at La Paz. Then, a two- to three-hour boat ride takes us to Espiritu Santo Island, designated a global conservation priority by The Nature Conservancy because of its unique biological diversity. Once we arrive at camp, you'll have an orientation to camp procedures, assignment of tents and a safety briefing. Tonight you’ll enjoy a beautiful sunset over the Sea of Cortez while the staff prepares a delicious welcome dinner. (Meals: B/L/D)

Days 6-7: Espiritu Santo Island Base Camp

After instruction in sea kayaking basics—and a dunk test— you’ll begin to paddle, exploring nearby turquoise lagoons and deserted beaches. From camp, you'll kayak along the shoreline to explore hidden coves, snorkel among dazzling fish, head to Los Islotes to swim and snorkel with the sea lions (an experience you'll never forget!), visit a fresh water well for a rinse, and hike through gorgeous canyons up to high ridges for inspiring views. With luck, you may spot pods of sleek dolphins, or in springtime, experience a chance glimpse of whales wintering in the Sea of Cortez. At evening "happy hours" you'll sip drinks and enjoy appetizers while watching a spectacular Baja sunset before feasting on a delicious dinner made with fresh local ingredients. (Meals: B/L/D)

Day 8: Espiritu Santo Island Base Camp to La Paz

The morning finds you kayaking, swimming, hiking or snorkeling to savor the last moments of this incredible getaway. We return to La Paz by boat at mid-day after lunch and check into the Hotel Los Arcos. (Meals: B/L)

Day 9: La Paz to your home city.

Depart to your home city. (No meals).

This is a general itinerary and subject to change. Hotels on nights 1 and 8 and an airport transfer on Day 1 are included in the trip fee.

Notes:
Airfare is not included in the tour price.

Price Includes:
- Hotel on nights 1 and 8
- Comfortable, catered camping on nights 2-7
- B/L/D on Days 2-7 and B/L on Day 8
- Walk-in tent and cot
- Sleep kit (Therm-a-rest mattress, sleeping bag, liner and pillow), snorkel gear and single or double kayaks in camp
- Taxi vouchers to hotel from La Paz airport on Day 1
- Services of knowledgeable guides and caring crew members
- Detailed pre-departure information to help you plan your trip.

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