Facebook   Twitter   Road Scholar Network   Pinterest   YouTube  
Road Scholar educational adventures are created by Elderhostel,
the not-for-profit world leader in lifelong learning since 1975.


Call (800) 454-5768

Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET


Create an account                             Forgot your password?

or Log In via Facebook

Log in to see all you can do with your online Road Scholar account.

MEXICO

Mexico: The Great Gray Whale Migration and Baja’s Natural Wonders

Select a Date

 

SIGN UP

and receive your

FREE E-NEWSLETTER

&

E-Photo Book:



Top 10 Learning Experiences Around the World

Find A Program

Search By:

Location

Mexico

Interest

Natural History

Price Range

$0 - $2000

Start Date

End Date

More Options


AnyInternationalSt. BartsUnited StatesCanadaAfghanistanAlbaniaAlgeriaAmerican SamoaAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanAzoresBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBoliviaBonaireBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBrazilBritish Virgin IslandsBruneiBulgariaBurmaBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanary IslandsCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChileChinaColombiaComorosCongoCook IslandsCosta RicaCroatiaCubaCuracaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEaster IslandEcuadorEgyptEnglandEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland IslandsFaroe IslandsFederated States of MicronesiaFijiFinlandFranceFrance Southern TerritoriesFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench West IndiesGabonGalapagos IslandsGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuamGuatemalaGuernsey IslandGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard and Mc Donald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIranIrelandIsles of ScillyIsraelItalyIvory CoastJamaicaJapanJersey IslandJordanKazakhstanKenyaKoreaKosovoKuwaitKyrgyzstanLaosLatviaLebanonLiberiaLibyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacedoniaMadagascarMadeira IslandsMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMidway IslandMoldovaMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueNamibiaNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorthern Mariana IslandsNorthwest TerritoriesNorwayOmanPacific IslandsPakistanPalauPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPolandPortugalPuerto RicoQatarReunionRomaniaRussia (Siberia)Russian FederationRwandaSaint HelenaSamoaSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaScotlandSenegalSerbiaSeychellesShetland IslandsSierra LeoneSingaporeSlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSpainSri LankaSt Kitts and NevisSt. Eustatius (Statia)St. LuciaSt. Pierre & MiquelonSt. Vincent and the GrenadinesSurinamSurinameSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyriaTaiwanTajikistanTanzaniaTasmaniaThailandTibetTogoTongaTrinidad and TobagoTristan da CunhaTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and CaicosUS Virgin IslandsUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuelaVietnamWalesWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabwe
Road Scholar
Program #12315RJ
8 Days | 7 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Active
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Connie from Greeley, CO Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/25/15 - 03/04/15
Though not a religious person the whales allowed me a spiritual experience that cannot be described in human language.

Cynthia from Granbury, TX Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/11/15 - 02/18/15
My first Road Scholar trip was great and has made me hungry for more travel, more new friends, more education, and more experiences of a lifetime!

Helen from Watkinsville, GA Number of programs attended: 8
Date attended: 02/06/15 - 02/13/15
Well I will add an additional, brief accolade to all the others below. This trip is special. Why these 40 ton gray whales are so kind and careful with us mystifies me, especially as we almost hunted them to extinction during the last century. Seeing the whales so close and being able to stroke them is an unforgettable experience that more than makes up for hours on the bus. And the desert offers its own magic as we pass through it and learn some of its flora and fauna. Memorable.

Bill from Newark, OH Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 02/11/15 - 02/18/15
I never thought a baby whale would be eager to approach and interact with me! I never knew a whale's nose could be so smooth and soft! The eye contact was soul-searching.

Theodore from Santa Ana, CA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/11/15 - 02/18/15
comments by ted continued... maybe too much food was provided at our meals. This is my 2nd excursion to watch gray whales up close in Baja. My first trip was in 1999 at Bahia Magdelena. The gray whales were there breaching, spy hopping etc. but no baby whale and mother approached our zodiac to be petted so I didn't have that experience. This RoadScholar adventure was different. On our 3 Panga outings we were approached by baby and mother whale each time and it couldn't have been more fantastic. A once in a lifetime experience enjoyed by all on our Panga. Yes, go for it...you'll like it.

Linda from Austin, TX Number of programs attended: 22
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/15/15
Long bus ride was not uncomfortable. Guides did a great job of distracting us with frequent rest stops and Mexican treats. Would have all been worth it for the boojum trees and cacti but the privilege of seeing and touching the whales was unforgettable and completely amazing. Take layers of clothes.

Catherine from Mississauga, ON Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/15/15
Ditto what my roommate Miss Arlene (below comments) has so beautifully written. This connection between the gray whales (with their young in tow) was a true gift to us. The trust of these gentle giants was/is beyond me. Galápagos adventure was with nature up close but THIS experience was closer, petting the head of this 40-ton wonder took my breath away. Experience the discomfort of the LONG bus rides, go for it!

arlene from Wilmington, NC Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/15/15
Big take-aways for me. The remoteness, the starkness, the survival tone for the desert was a learning curve in a great way. The desert was beautiful, a garden indeed. The information gleaned at the San Diego aquarium was very helpful and the learning provided as we traveled was quite good. I especially enjoyed listening to the boat's captain and watching him work the boat so we could get full enjoyment from the whales. It is still unreal that we could actually touch them, SEE their breathing holes, and watch them protect and encourage their calves. Hearing many times of their migration route, knowing Orcas are on the "prowl" for them, and experiencing how social these huge animals are is beyond anything you can experience via reading. Their gentle rolls under the boat, their coming back for attention over and over is beyond what you can imagine. Unlike most, I am not a huge fan of spicey beans, but the delicious fish that was offered was never tiring for me. I would have liked lots more vegetables served especially since they are grown there. A couple slices of tomato and bit of carrot was insufficient for me. But all was tasty. The lagoons are remote, and the bus travel although so necessary, was difficult. There were a couple stops (20 minutes or so) to get trinkets for folks back home were also not long enough. It was Mardi Gras when we were in Ensenada, and I was gravely disappointed we could not get to see the town. Being from the southeast coast, I would have loved that experience. The hotel there made up for it-excellent food, and fabulous sunset over the Pacific. I am still processing the experience. Another once in a lifetime RS trip.

Sarah Ann from Charlotte, NC Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/11/15 - 02/18/15
Got back today and the trip was fabulous!The number of boats in each bay is regulated, so you only see 3-5 other boats in the bay. It's like you're the only ones there. Hotels are modest, but have running water and provide safe drinking water. There are usually 3-4 choices for each meal, and there's typically a non-Mexican option (ie oatmeal in the morning), but be bold and try the local stuff. Seafood on the trip is typically local, so it's fresh. I'm not crazy about spicy food and was fine. One of the guys on the trip loves spicy food and he enjoyes the spicy stuff. One whale watch recommends water shoes. I wore my knock-off Teva's and was fine. Definately need a waterproof windbreaker for the boat rides. My trip was Feb 11-18 and weather.com told me daytime temps would be 70's-80's. I wore mostly short sleeved shirts and had a fleece hoodie and my windbreaker and was conmfortable. Seeing the whales next to the boat was amazing. They are huge, but gentle. I went on the trip just for the whales, but enjoyed the desert and geology, too. 3 trips to see the whales does not seem like a lot, but I think 3 or 4 is perfect. There's a fair amount of bus driving (3-5 hours/day) when in Mexico, but they break it up with meals, restroom stops (there is one on the bus, too), and short walks to learn and take photos. Can't say enough about how wonderful and graceful the whales are. I am very glad I went on this trip and I recommend it.

Clark from San Bernardino, CA Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/15/15
The whales are amazing but the bus ride is long and painful.

Peggy from Spring, TX Number of programs attended: 16
Date attended: 01/28/15 - 02/04/15
Oh my goodness, after this gray whale experience I am thoroughly ruined from regular old whale watching trips. At each of the three locations we saw many gray whales BUT on the third day, two mamas with their babies "played" around our boat for quite a while.....even got to touch a whale. The experience was overwhelming! Awesome! Once in a lifetime! We really learned a lot about the Baja Peninsula, also but, sorry, for me, it was all about the whales!!!!! NOTE: you will be spending A LOT of time on the bus but our guides made sure there were plenty of stops along the way and they used the bus-time to educate us. It IS an active program yet there were several in our group with disabilities. They did nothing to slow the group down; in fact, their wonderful attitudes were an inspiration to me!

Mary from Greer, SC Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 03/23/14 - 03/30/14
The opportunity to interact with these 40 ton gentle giants is unparalleled. It was exciting and moving to "pat" baby whales and to watch the mothers and calves swim, dive and spy-hop. Few things are more moving than the mutual trust that we will do not harm to the whales and in turn they will not harm us. Mankind could learn something here.

Joan from Wausau, WI Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 03/23/14 - 03/30/14
This experience at-large exceeded all expectations. Engaging with the magnificent gray whale cows and calves so directly and personally was surreal, spiritual, incredible. We will forever be in awe of them and our interactions with them. Our experiences have triggered further reading and learning, and concern for their well-being. The desert hikes and exposure to magnificent and diverse cacti was thrilling as well. We hadn't anticipated that to be such a rich bonus!Road Scholar's collaboration with Andiamo for this adventure is brilliant. Our leaders Tim and Juan were excellent. Our group of 24 was diverse, adventuresome and a joy to travel with. The whole experience ... not to be missed!

Alan from Bethesda, MD Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/18/14 - 03/25/14
Getting up and personal with the Gray Whales was a truly unbelievable, rewarding and exciting experience in a single word - WOW!

Vicki from Spearfish, SD Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 03/09/14 - 03/16/14
Running my hand along a whale's back and scratching a baby whale's "chin" was an indescribable experience--mystical, awe-inspiring, magical... Read all of the reviews and you will see how much everyone agrees.

Diane from Grand Rapids, MI Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/02/14 - 03/09/14
I was surprised how much I enjoyed the two days of the trip going through the desert to get to the whales. It was very interesting and more beautiful than I'd expected. Road Scholar has this trip down to a science. The encounters with the whales were beyond my imagining as well. I feel privileged to have seen and touched and enjoyed these marvelous creatures!

Liz from Mansfield, TX Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/02/14 - 03/09/14
This was a fantastic program and I would return in a heart beat. Never thought I would be that up close and personal with a whale much less more than one. Also did not know the desert could be so beautiful--just think of it as hot! Tim and Juan did a great job.

Norma Jean from Mountain View, CA Number of programs attended: 11
Date attended: 02/27/14 - 03/06/14
Words cannot convey the wonder of having these gentle giants approach humans in small boats, with evident curiosity, interest, trust, and playfulness, astonishing after our having nearly hunted them to extinction. This is a never-to-be-forgotten experience that reduces one to a state of total childlike wonder and delight. If you sign up, do not fail to allow time to read Eye of the Whale (from the recommended reading list) before you go, as it will greatly enhance the experience. Expect to get wet & bring Goretex pants as well as jacket, & be prepared to protect your camera from salt water splashes. The packing list suggests possibly bringing something slightly dressy; this is not necessary. Road Scholar offers the option of vegetarian meals, but no provision is made for such. Our guide & assistant scrambled to try to find something to eat for the 4/24 in my group who had opted for vegetarian meals.

Madelyn from Friday Harbor, WA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/02/14 - 03/09/14
This was our first experience with Road Scholars and it did not disappoint! Its still hard to believe we experienced the whales so intimately. It was awe inspiring. Sunsets on the beach and in the desert were an added bonus. Our wonderful guide, Tim, made the hours on the bus interesting, accommodations were very comfortable, food excellent, and all those "welcome Margaritas" added to the celebratory dimenson of this trip.

Betty from Knoxville, TN Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/27/14 - 03/06/14
Having complete trust in a 35-ton whale, who has just slipped under your small boat, is a feeling that will last a lifetime.

Beth from Eugene, OR Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/27/14 - 03/06/14
For many, many years I have gone to places on the Pacific coast hoping to catch a glimpse of a gray whale or see a "blow". To go to Baja to the lagoons at Guerrero Negro and San Ignacio and sit out in the water and be surrounded by these beautiful animals is a dream come true and an experience beyond description. Touching a gray whale was deeply emotional for me. The Baja peninsula is an amazing place and you will see and learn much about it on this trip.

Lynn from Broken Arrow, OK Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 03/02/14 - 03/09/14
I chose this trip to learn more about whales and interact with them. To actually experience them up close and be able to touch them far exceeded my expectations. Truly a once in a life time experience that will be a special memory. The group leader was fantastic and our group was interesting and friendly.

James from Eugene, OR Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/27/14 - 03/06/14
An experience I never expected I would really have. To share the bays with so many whales and to actually touch a whale was a lifetime experience.

Lawrence from Vero Beach, FL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/27/14 - 03/06/14
The experience of seeing and touching the grey whales is a profound and unforgettable experience. The desert landscape in Baja is beautiful and unique. Carlos and Miriam, our guides, were just wonderful. This was a must do on my bucket list.

Betty from Apple Valley, MN Number of programs attended: 11
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
Our week was a kaleidoscope of unforgettable experiences. Overviews of Mexican history, life and customs, informative walks in the desert, visiting Mexican people in their homes, savoring three magical encounters with those "Magnificent Grays", plus lovely accommodations and wonderful food, all combined to leave us with priceless memories! We are deeply grateful to our superb tour guide, Karla, and her wonderful assistant, Miriam.

Judith from Daly City, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
If you want to see the grey whales up close, this is the trip for you. It is close to a religious experience. The deserts of Baja California are an added plus - absolutely beautiful.

Pamela from Chatham, NJ Number of programs attended: 21
Date attended: 01/29/14 - 02/05/14
As everyone says, the whales are fabulous! But be warned: there are loooong bus rides and a fairly rigorous schedule. Also, you definitely need layers -- even gloves and hat or scarf. Hotel rooms can be chilly, too, and doing laundry when you're only in each place for one night isn't easy: it may be the desert, but laundry doesn't dry that quickly!

Nina from Palo Alto, CA Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
Hard to believe it really happened....to see, feel, touch, move with these gentle giants. There were mothers with their babies, courtship displays, diving, breeching, spy hopping, spouting all around. Some curious ones came up to the boat. Hands immediately reached out to feel smooth skin punctuated by rough barnacles. Such magic! Went out three times in two different lagoons. Each time was different. Each time was special. Fantastic experience.

Elna from San Jose, CA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
What a sheer delight, to be surprised by a great, barnacled head emerging from the water just inches away from the side of your boat and then the thrill of being able to reach out and actually touch such a magnificent creature! It doesn't get much better than this.

Judy from Delaware, OH Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
excellent trip! I would do it again in a heartbeat!

David from Hudson, OH Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 02/07/14 - 02/14/14
On this trip you will see dozens, if not hundreds, of whales. Over half of you will touch a whale. You will experience the real Baja and you will interact with real residents of the Baja. This trip includes the best of what Road Scholar has to offer. Our experience was excellent because of the efforts of our tour guide team, Karla Patterson, Miriam and Andreas, our skillful driver.

Sharon from Riverside, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 01/29/14 - 02/05/14
This was a wonderful opportunity to get close to the gray whales and to see the very unique fauna of Baja California. Our guides were wonderful and lodgings great. The only sour note was the San Diego experience where we drove past wonderful resturants in the Gas Lamp Quarter and went to Old Town after dark when we could see nothing and ate a meal worthy of the worst drive thru fast food place.

Marion from Avon Lake, OH Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 01/29/14 - 02/05/14
Phenomenal experience! Walking La Jolla coast. Scrips institute to view ocean life and lecture about whales. Seeing whales and feeling their spray. Watching mothers train their babies. Viewing the beauty of the Mexican Baja desert. Help from local school students to climb hills to see cave paintings. At a resident's home to make and eat homemade tortillas. Good food, drinks, accommodations, and great tour guides. Entertainment of breaking the piñata party. disadvantage was many hours of riding on bus driving to destination

Beverly from Pasadena, CA Number of programs attended: 16
Date attended: 03/19/13 - 03/26/13
Touch a real live whale who is wild and free Help to keep them this way

Patricia from Glenview, IL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 03/10/13 - 03/17/13
Meeting whales in their beautiful lagoons, on their terms, has been a life-long dream. Travelling with Tim Fleming and Eva Betancourt helped to make this even better than I imagined! The whales are a precious part of our world and we were fortunate to say hello to them.

Mark from Santa Fe, NM Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/28/13 - 03/07/13
The close encounters we had with the gray whale mothers and calves was a unique and thrilling experience. On all three boat trips to the lagoons we got to touch the baby whales multiple times. Also, our guide Carlos was excellent.

Martha Jo from Glendale, CA Number of programs attended: 34
Date attended: 03/10/13 - 03/17/13
anyone who thinks whale watching is from a boat off the southern california coast doesn't know what they are missing.

Ruth from Avon Lake, OH Number of programs attended: 13
Date attended: 02/06/13 - 02/13/13
This program had been on our "bucket list" for quite some time. We're glad we finally did it! It was everything we had hoped it would be.


Please enter your email:

Providers click here



Upload Your Photos and Videos
Add A Photo
Click on images to see larger view
"Wonder who was the more curious?" Uploaded By: Helen
"Wonder who was the more curious?" Uploaded By: Helen

"My friend Jeanie calling her whale over" Uploaded By: Mary

Uploaded By: Mary

"Ahhhh, baby whale!" Uploaded By: Mary

Uploaded By: Mary

Uploaded By: Alan

Uploaded By: Alan

Uploaded By: Alan

"Magical" Uploaded By: Vicki

"The feeling appears to be mutual" Uploaded By: Michael

"Popeyes cactus on path to cave paintings" Uploaded By: Marion

"Unbelievable experience!" Uploaded By: Laurie

"Guerro Negro Laguna" Uploaded By: Laurie

"Lunch Time" Uploaded By: Maria

"Exploring the desert" Uploaded By: Maria

"Boojum tree" Uploaded By: Maria

"Old man cactus" Uploaded By: Maria

"Hikes in the desert" Uploaded By: Maria

"San Ignacio's oasis" Uploaded By: Maria

"San Ignacio Mission" Uploaded By: Maria

"Folkloric dance in San Ignacio" Uploaded By: Maria

"Whale Watching" Uploaded By: Maria

"Cave Paintings in Catavina" Uploaded By: Maria

"Whale Watching" Uploaded By: Maria

"Fiesta" Uploaded By: Maria

"Catavina Desert" Uploaded By: Maria
Add A Video

"Magical whale watching (touching)" Uploaded By: Vicki
"Baja Peninsula" Uploaded By: Maria

Upload a picture


You can upload a jpg, jpeg, png, or gif file.
The maximum file size is 4 mb.





Upload a video


Select Video Host (Instruction)




Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
7 nights of accommodations
20 meals: 7 breakfasts, 1 brunch, 7 lunches, 5 dinners
4 Expert-led lectures
10 Field trips
2 Hands-on experiences
1 Performances

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

Support Lifelong Learning

Our educational adventures are made possible by donors like you

Please support lifelong learning here

Free Catalog | Refer a Friend | Gift Certificates | Press | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Careers | Contact Us

© Elderhostel, Inc. 2015
11 Avenue de Lafayette | Boston MA 02111 | Toll-Free 1-800-454-5768