9 day yacht charter to discover the Sea of Cortez

Cabo San Lucas
The dramatic coastline of Cabo known as "Land's end"
© iStock
The Gulf of California has long been known as a stretch of some of the prettiest coastline on the planet. More often to referred to as the Sea of Cortez – a tribute to the explorer who first ventured here five centuries ago – the region is a marine life-lovers paradise. Marvel at large whales, super-sized Marlin and an underwater world even the most well-seasoned diver would be in awe of.

Day 1

Travel to San Diego, where your journey begins. Board your yacht and steam overnight to the carnival town of Ensenada.It is a delightful way to begin your cruise and a great introduction to what lies ahead.

Charter a yacht in Baja
Kate Hubert
Words By
Kate Hubert
Sea birds on San Benitos
© Istock

Day 2: Ensenada to Todos Santos Island

Todos Santos Island has great colonies of Harbour Seals and Northern Elephant seals, as well as clouds of seabirds. Once you’ve cruised the shallows, your yacht will continue south towards the San Benitos Islands. En route you can enjoy whale and dolphin watching in the blue Pacific waters.

Sea Lions
Inquisitive sealions
© Istock

Day 3: San Benitos Islands

These stunning desert islands have a wide range of cacti and other succulents – but no trees, making it easier to spot some of the local bird life, such as the fish-eating bird of prey, the osprey nesting on the ground. Take the tender to explore the Californian Sea Lion rookeries.
These inquisitive mammals show little fear as they swim over to meet you – little wonder this area is often referred to as the Mexican Galapagos.

Gray whales
Pacific Grey Whales around San Ignacio Lagoon
© Shutterstock

Day 4: San Ignacio Lagoon

This lagoon is world-famous for its friendly Pacific Grey Whales. They return here every winter to mate, then again the following year to give birth. A trip in the tender is a must, as the curious whales will often come right up to take a look at you. Adult whales leave the area in around March, the mothers and calves stay until April. As well as whales, nearby muddy shores and mangroves support a wealth of bird life. On shore the desert provides a backdrop of shifting dunes, salt flats and scattered scrub. This is a great place for beachcombing – almost inaccessible by boat, you’ll often have the strand to yourself.

Blue whales
Blue Whales grace the coast of Magdalena Bay
© Shutterstock

Day 5: Magdalena Bay

The rich seas here attract huge flocks of birds as well as numerous cetaceans. This might be your first opportunity to catch sight of the largest animal that has ever lived – the blue whale. Pods of Long-beaked common dolphins can sometimes number into the thousands. The clear waters reveal a whole variety of colourful sea life.

Cabo marina
The lively resort town of Cabo
© Luca Bazzi / Shutterstock

Day 6: Cabo San Lucas

In complete contrast, head to the resorts of ‘Cabo’ and spend a day shopping, eating and drinking, or perhaps taking in a spa before dancing the night away. Much later you can return to your yacht for more peaceful pursuits.

A leisurely kayak along the coastline of Baja
© Istock/photo_credit]

Day 7: Isla Los Islotes and Espiritu Santos

These stunning islands lie at the entrance to the Bahia de La Paz. The dramatically eroded faces are in stark contrast to the clear gentle sea. Here you can snorkel among the curious sealions who will happily play with you,their effortless underwater acrobatics is humbling. This is also a great spot to explore by kayak and enjoy a beach barbecue come sundown.

The cacti here can grow to over 40ft tall
© Shutterstock/photo_credit]

Day 8: Isla Santa Catalina

This is yet another beautiful desert island with massive cacti over 40ft tall. Keen birdwatchers can enjoy a hike on land, and everyone will enjoy watching undersea life in the crystal clear waters – there are vast shoals of colourful fish, and blue whales are often found ‘chilling out’ at the surface.

Sea of Cortez
The lively Sea of Cortez is a treasure chest of discoveries
© Istock

Day 9: Return to Cabo

En route back to ‘Cabo’ stop off at the largest living coral reef (the Cabo Pulmo) on the Western side of North America for some snorkelling or diving. (Experienced divers can also find some fantastic deep dives such as the Gordo Banks, and the El Bajo Seamount is great for large pelagics.) And of course the fishing is incredible throughout the trip.

Back in Cabo San Lucas you can pick up International flights as you (reluctantly) head home.

More On  , , ,

More on the Americas

Charter a superyacht in Baja and the Sea of Cortez
Baja yacht charter

The Baja peninsula boasts world-class resorts and five-star cuisine but also uninhabited islands, rugged scenery and spectacular sunsets

10 of the worlds best dives to visit via charter yacht
10 of the worlds best dives to visit via charter yacht

Mark Evans, editor of Sport Diver magazine, picks his top 10 dive locations around the world

Discover St Lucia via superyacht
Discover St Lucia via superyacht

Exploring the Caribbean island of St Lucia means discovering lush jungle and rain forests to fine dining restaurants and ultra-cool nightspots. It is the perfect superyacht stop.

More on Charterfleet

6 movie locations to visit on a luxury yacht charter

Have you seen a scene in a film and wished you could be there? Well now you can with our guide to six of the best movies sets to visit on a luxury charter

Superyacht captain’s tips for a Solomon Islands charter

Winston Joyce-Clarke, captain of the 45m Y.CO charter yacht Big Fish gives his take on the undiscovered beauty that the Solomon Islands have to offer

The information you provide in this request form will be sent directly to the charter broker. We will not share your information with any other person. View full Privacy Policy for further information.

Your Name (Required)

Your Email Address (Required)

Your Message

Make an Enquiry