Saturday August 13 2022

Posted by BajaInsider on August 09, 2015
  • Dolphins bow riding an AdventureSmith smll ship adventure
    Dolphins bow riding an AdventureSmith smll ship adventure
  • Following a pod of dolphins on the Sea of Cortez
    Following a pod of dolphins on the Sea of Cortez
  • AdventureSmith kayaking on the Sea of Cortez
    AdventureSmith kayaking on the Sea of Cortez
  • An inflatable ride to shore on an AdventureSmith excursion
    An inflatable ride to shore on an AdventureSmith excursion
  • Following a pod of dolphins on the Sea of Cortez on an AdventureSmith tour
    Following a pod of dolphins on the Sea of Cortez on an AdventureSmith tour
  • AdventureSmith Small ship cruises on the Sea of Cortez
    AdventureSmith Small ship cruises on the Sea of Cortez


AdventureSmith Explorations small ship tours in Baja California provide a style of excursion the larger cruise ships can't. A small ship expedition in Baja provides a more intimate interaction with the wilderness, in the Sea of Cortez, Pacific Baja or around the world.

A Baja adventure has long been known as a paradise for experienced sailors and those lucky enough to have their own yacht. But what about the rest of us? A growing fleet of small ship cruises offer the same private cruise experience without the hassle of owning and sailing your own boat. An expert captain and crew take care of all the details so you can actively enjoy Baja on your own terms.

“Only an hour outside of La Paz we noticed a few common dolphins had begun riding the bow. A call whet out over the ships speaker system and by the time other guests had arrived on deck we were surrounded by hundreds, maybe thousands, of dolphins that seemed to stretch as far as the eye could see.”

Wildlife encounters, spectacular sunsets, and adventures await travelers looking for the ultimate Baja travel experience. Small ships and yachts carrying 8-64 guests are able to explore close to shore, away from tourist crowds revealing wild Baja as few ever see it.

When considering a Baja cruise ask yourself what experience are you looking for? Is whale watching your primary objective? Do you prefer hiking and snorkeling? Are you looking for an authentic Mexican cultural experience? Perhaps you are a birder looking to identify new species? Or maybe you are seeking a combination of all these things? AdventureSmith has a Baja small ship cruise for you.

There are more Baja small ship cruises than ever before with choices for every style and budget. Historic yachts offer intimate explorations, adventure ships offer exciting activity and intellectual expeditions that will enlighten even the most educated traveler. Depending on the itinerary cruises embark in Cabo, La Paz or Loreto.

“I signed up for the challenging hike, while my wife decided on the beach walk. Our guide wound her way up from the beach through a maze like arroyo pointing out birds and plants along the way. She warned us to keep an eye out for the endemic rattle-less rattlesnakes, which thankfully we never saw. We gained elevation over red sandstone passing a harsh landscape of cactus and shrubs. Suddenly we emerged from the canyon to incredible views over the entire island.

Our ship looked like a toy boat in the distance. We carefully edged up to a cliff that dropped several hundred feet, straight into the ocean. We had traversed the entire width of the island. Back on the beach later my wife shared a number of shells she had collected on her walk and we relaxed in the shade completely satisfied by our day’s adventure."

A typical day aboard a small ship will begin with an early breakfast. During the night the ship has repositioned itself to another sheltered anchorage for the day’s activities. After breakfast guides lead off vessel activities. Some guests will go for a beach walk or longer hike. Others may choose kayaking, paddle boarding or snorkeling. After a morning of exploration head back to the ship for lunch and siesta while the captain cruises to another beautiful island. Along the way keep an eye out for whales, dolphins, sea lions or bird life. The afternoon offers another chance for off vessel explorations or just relax on the beach while the crew sets up an evening barbeque. After dinner the naturalists will give a talk about whales, or birds, or geology that enhances your understanding of wild Baja.

“During the night the wind came up and by morning it was blowing nearly 30 knots. We were afraid the day was ruined when the captain turned the corner and a picture postcard perfect white sand beach appeared. The wind quickly died on the leeward side of the island and we enjoyed a full day of hiking, kayaking, snorkeling, cave explorations and relaxing on a deserted beach.”

The Baja adventure cruising season begins in November and continues through June, with several sub seasons within. November to mid January is winter when weather is coolest making hiking pleasant. Mid January to mid March constitutes whale watching season. Spring comes in April and is great for bird watching. During May to June the temperatures are hot with lots of opportunities for snorkeling.

Whale watching is an important part of any Baja cruise. Whales found in Baja include gray whales, humpback whales, blue whales, fin whales, sperm whales, pilot whales and more. In addition to whales a number of porpoise, dolphins and sea lions can also be found. Cruises during gray whale season will include a visit to one of the gray whale sanctuaries on Baja’s Pacific Isthmus.

“After the drive across the peninsula local boat drivers called pangueros took us into the heart of Magdalena Bay. Before long, gray whale mothers and calves appeared in the distance. Soon we were surrounded by several pairs when all of a sudden a mother and calf appeared right next to our panga. We were startled, even scared at first but it soon became clear that the whales were as curious about us as we were about them. It was an encounter I will never forget.”

Food aboard small ships features local favorites and international recipes influenced by Mexican cuisine. Chefs are proud to feature local fish and ingredients. Meals are a casual affair with open seating and meals served family style. Most travelers, especially those who have cruised aboard big mega ships, are surprised by the quality and variety of the meals aboard the small ships. Each boat also has a full bar stocked with local beers, wine and cocktails. You don’t have to sacrifice fantastic food and you will appreciate the chance to work of those meals each day while exploring ashore.

The Baja Peninsula and Sea of Cortez are perfectly suited for exploration by small ship. If you have always dreamed of exploring remote Baja, but want to avoid the big ship crowds, consider a Baja small ship cruise. You will join a handful of intrepid travelers who have truly experienced wild Baja.

AdventureSmith Explorations


3090 North Lake Blvd. Suite #1
Tahoe City , California
United States
Phone: 530-583-1775
Fax: 530-748-0177.
California US


Toll Free in the USA: 1-877-620-2875

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