Witness the greatest whale comeback on the planet.
Each year, thousands of California gray whales make the 10,000-mile or more (16,000-kilometer) round trek from their Arctic feeding grounds to the warm Pacific breeding waters of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula. From mid-December to March, the grays mate and calve in the west coast shallows of Scammon’s Lagoon, San Ignacio Lagoon and Magdalena Bay.
Almost hunted to extinction, the grays where known as “devil fish” for the ferocity with which they defended their young against 19th-century whalers. Today the grays again number in the thousands and are far more engaging, often allowing awe-struck humans to stroke them.
Off the peninsula’s east coast, the Sea of Cortez is a haven for some 20 whale and dolphin species. Bahia de Los Angeles is popular with naturalists and a great place to experience breeding humpbacks and blues, as well as whale sharks. At Baja’s southern tip, Los Cabos is the perfect spot to book whale-watching boat trips and flights, or to simply watch passing whales from your hammock.