Did you know that the lagoons of the Pacific Coast of Baja and the Sea of Cortez have the greatest concentration of whales per square mile? It’s no surprise that Cabo is one of the best spots to see whales — and from January to March, in particular, it’s the perfect time to witness interesting mating behavior from these majestic creatures.
Whales migrate to Cabo not just for the warm water, but also because of the high salt content in the Sea of Cortez, which acts like a pain reliever for mothers giving birth. I mean, imagine giving birth to 30-50 tons. That can’t be fun. The salt also increases buoyancy, giving the calves an easier time while learning how to float and swim.
I’ve been on my fair share of whale watching tours, but this tour was different than my previous experiences because of the vast amount of whales in a small area. We saw mothers with their calves, multiple breaches, and males looking to mate.
At one point, our zodiac pulled up to two male humpback whales competing for the attention of one female. Now, I’ve seen whales battle it out before (read about our experience in the Channel Islands) but these whales weren’t trying to hurt each other. Instead, they were just showing off with some tail thrashing above the surface, tail slaps, and breaches — to show the lady how strong they are.
Perhaps the most eye-opening experience for me was when the captain of our boat dropped an aquatic microphone into the water to listen to the whales communicating. He even played a recording from a previous trip that left everyone speechless. You can view a short clip from the recording in the video below.
Before booking a whale watching tour, it’s important to find a company with a respectful and knowledgeable staff. I was very impressed with the whale watching crew at Cabo Adventures and really appreciated the distance they kept from the whales.
However, I was a bit surprised to learn that this same company holds captive dolphins and offers swimming with dolphins at their main location in Los Cabos. I’m definitely not on board with this practice and I’m unsure why a company who treats marine life so well in the wild would feel comfortable holding a wild animal captive.
Where to Stay on the Beach in Cabo
Just outside of the busy streets lined with bars like Cabo Wabo and Squid Roe, lies a quiet oasis in the desert. On my flight over from San Diego, I had visions of rowdy parties and all-nighters in Cabo, but I experienced quite the opposite during my stay at Hacienda Encantada.
This secluded, ocean-front resort is often called Los Cabos’s best kept secret. Each hacienda-style suite has its own charm and is carefully decorated with colorful Mexican art. Hacienda Encantada sits on the end of a peninsula, so you have dramatic views of either the Pacific Ocean or the Sea of Cortez from the front, back, and side of the resort.
I can’t say enough about my veranda. It stretched from the living room to my bedroom and the view was astounding. As if I didn’t get enough whale time on the zodiac, I saw multiple whale spouts, breaches, and even tail thrashing as I sipped coffee each morning.
Oh, and the infinity pool with a swim-up bar, overlooking the Sea of Cortez — I was smitten.
I was on the all-inclusive package, which means unlimited eating and drinking — even the fridge was stocked with alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks included in the package. I tried all five restaurants at the resort and didn’t have a single bad meal. I wasn’t expecting sushi in Mexico, but I was extremely impressed with the roll I ordered at the pool bar. I even took advantage of the cooking class they offer once a week and learned how to make Seabass Ceviche and Shrimp Empanadas.
If you are looking for a quiet getaway in Cabo San Lucas, this is the place. However, if you want to stay right in the heart of Cabo within walking distance to all of the action, their sister property Marina Fiesta has the same charm as Hacienda Encantada with a location that caters to those who want to experience more of a party scene.
Disclosure: My time in Cabo was hosted by Hacienda Encantada, however, all opinions expressed here are my own.