Expedition Details


Discover the natural wonders of the Sea of Cortez on an expedition aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird. In the company of marine biologists, experience up-close encounters with gray whale mothers and their calves after they have migrated to the inlets of Bahía Magdalena. Hop into a motorized landing craft to encounter wildlife up close, from whales to bottlenose dolphins. Follow naturalists on hikes amid barrel cacti, and snorkel among playful sea lions.

Trip Highlights

    • Get an up-close view of gigantic gray whales and their calves in the breeding grounds of Bahía Magdalena.
    • Go snorkeling amid sea lions, brilliant blue damselfish, and schools of king angelfish.
    • Kayak clear, blue waters on the lookout for a variety of bird species such as magnificent frigate birds.
    • Explore diverse landscapes, including sand dunes, a cactus forest, and deserted islands.

Itinerary - 8 Days

Day 1 — U.S./La Paz, Mexico

Arrive in La Paz and drive along the beautiful Malecón to meet our ship.
National Geographic Sea Bird (D)

Day 2 — Exploring the Sea of Cortez

Search for whales among the islands of the southern Sea of Cortez, an area that has proven to be one of the best for finding blue whales and bottlenose dolphins. Explore the many uninhabited islands such as Isla San José or Isla Santa Catalina to walk among huge cacti and observe the diverse bird life. Swim or snorkel with king angelfish, butterfly fish, damselfish, and the beautiful parrotfish.

Day 3 — Los Islotes and Isla Espiritu Santo

At Los Islotes, don flippers, a mask, and snorkel (which we’ll gladly provide) and swim with curious sea lions. We’ll have a leisurely afternoon to swim, kayak, or hike at Isla Espíritu Santo. Brown pelicans, gulls, and boobies are all part of the landscape. Finish the day with a relaxing beach barbecue complete with a campfire and a star-filled sky.

Day 4 — Gorda Banks and Los Cabos

This morning cruise past Friars Rocks at Land’s End and visit the historic town center of San José del Cabo. The afternoon is spent at the Gorda Banks seamount or La Fortuna—gathering places for humpback whales, dolphins, and other sea life.

Days 5, 6, & 7 — Bahía Magdalena

Navigate through an immense system of protected coves and channels, surrounded by a fringe of mangrove channels at one edge of a vast, windswept plain. Each winter, during their long migration, gray whales travel south from their Arctic feeding grounds to breed and raise their calves in these sheltered waters. Observe migrating whales from the ship and up close from our expedition landing craft. Watch for magnificent frigate birds, pelicans, cormorants, terns, great blue herons, ibis, and willets.
(B,L,D daily)

Day 8 — San Carlos/La Paz/Los Angeles

After breakfast, disembark in San Carlos and drive across the peninsula to La Paz for your return flights home.


Related Trips

Lindblad/National Geographic Logo

This trip is offered in association with Lindblad Expeditions.


  • Jan 16 - 23, 2016
  • Jan 30 - Feb 06, 2016
  • Feb 06 - 13, 2016 REV
  • Feb 13 - 20, 2016
  • Feb 20 - 27, 2016 REV
  • Feb 27 - Mar 05, 2016
  • Mar 05 - 12, 2016 REV
  • Mar 12 - 19, 2016

REV Indicates trip operates in reverse.

Expedition Cost

Category 1 $6,390
Category 2 $7,390
Category 3 $8,390

Prices are per person, double occupancy. For a single cabin in 2015, add $3,000 in Category 1 and $3,450 in Category 2. For a single cabin in 2016, add $3,050 in Category 1 and $3,700 in Category 2.

International airfare between Los Angeles and La Paz is not included in the expedition cost.

View Ship/Deck Plan

Featured Expedition Moment