Whale Watching in Cabo San Lucas

One of the most spectacular sights in Cabo San Lucas are the enormous grey whales frolicking around with their calves. Every winter, the grey, blue, and humpback whales migrate 6000 miles from Alaska to the warm and shallow waters of Baja California in order to mate and birth their young. Spotting the magnificent creatures, that can grow up to 100 feet in length and reach 120 tons in weight, is an awe-inspiring gift from mother nature. If you visit Los Cabos between December and March, you are likely to have numerous encounters with 50 foot grey and blue whales that will get up close to the boats and show off their tricks. 

Cabo San Lucas Whale Watching

From coming up for a breath and spouting to signify their presence to a full body breach where the whale rockets out of the water, a close encounter with these animals is something everyone needs to experience. Baja California is their vacation destination even more than it is yours but you both can enjoy the ocean together. Baja is home to two world heritage sites that protect the whales and the surrounding environment. This makes it a perfect breeding ground for the beautiful mammals and an even better whale watching destination for vacationers. 

What to expect

There are numerous tour companies who offer whale watching tours and they are not all the same. You can opt for a basic tour on a panga out in the Cabo San Lucas bay or experience the ultimate whale watching by taking a short flight up to Magdelena Bay where the mating happens. There is something for everyone when it comes to whale watching in Cabo San Lucas and it all depends on your available time and budget. You can get a glimpse into the life of the giant sea creatures for as little as $45 or as much as a few hundred bucks. As long as you head out on a tour from late December through March, you are almost guaranteed to see some amazing whales enjoying the Sea of Cortez and Pacific Ocean.

Although grey whales are often the main attraction because of their 6,000 miles migration to birth their calves, you might spot several other amazing species during a whale watching tour. Humpback whales, blue whales, sperm whales, finback whales, minke whales, orcas, and bottlenose dolphins also love to swim in these waters. When the water is clear, you can also spot giant manta rays and sting rays below the surface.

When to go

Whales watching can be great for up to five months a year, from December through April. Every year can be slightly different, and whales can show up as early as late November or as late as early January. To guarantee you witness the magnificent creatures, plan your vacation somewhere between January-March. These months see the most whale activity, especially in the Sea of Cortez and Cabo San Lucas Bay. December is almost always a good month for whale watching, but many of the grey whales are still birthing their calves farther up the coast and haven’t made it to Los Cabos yet. 

Where to go

There are several top destinations for whale watching in Baja California Sur. Some are nearby Cabo San Lucas and others far enough away that you would need to take a short plane ride or a long all day excursion. Here are several locations where you can have a great whale watching experience:

What do I need to bring?

Although you don’t need any special equipment to watch grey whales frolicking around in the warm waters of Baja California, there are a few suggested items to make your trip enjoyable. If you plan on getting up close and personal with whales, a waterproof camera is a good idea just to play it safe. You don’t want to lose all your Cabo pictures just because a whale nudged your boat or breached nearby. You also want to bring plenty of sunscreen and sunglasses. Cabo San Lucas almost always sunny and the light reflecting off the water will burn your skin quickly and be hard to stare at without glasses. If your trip is leaving early in the morning, the temperatures will be a bit cool so you should bring shoes (that you don’t mind getting wet), pants, and a jacket. Last but not least, do not forget to take sea sickness pills 30 minutes to one hour prior to your trip so you don’t ruin it for everyone.

Whale Watching Tours in Los Cabos

  • Buccaneer Los Cabos - Kraken Tour: A popular pirate themed tour searching for the Kraken monster (and whales).
  • Cabo Adventures: The leading tour company in Cabo San Lucas has a whale watching photo tour for $85/adult and $59/child.
  • Cabo Deep Blue: $45/person for a short trip in the Sea of Cortez (minimum 2 people)
  • Cabo Eco Tours: By far one of the lowest cost whale watching tours in the Cabo San Lucas area. Tours start at $21 for an adult and $15 for children.
  • Cabo Expeditions: A 2.5 hour tour for $85/adult and $55/children ages 5-10.
  • Cabo Rey: A luxury yacht that takes you out into the bay for a night of hors d’oeuvres, open bar, and whale watching. $49/person and 50% off for kids under 12 years old. Gratuity and $15 peso dock fee not included.
  • Cabo Sails: Private luxury sail boat tours with snacks and open bar included during the 2.5-3 hour adventure. Price is determined by size of boat and number of people on the tour.
  • Cabo Sailing: Shared or private tours available. Shared tours cost $64/adult and $32/child and includes snacks, open bar, and snorkeling gear.
  • Cabo San Lucas Tours: Low cost whale watching tours with many different options.
  • Esperanzas Tours: Another popular whale watching tour guide that will also show you around the city and take you out on a glass bottom boat.
  • Ocean Riders: $75/adult and $55/child for a 2 hour tour around the Cabo corridor. Private charters are also available.
  • Oceanus Los Cabos: A unique tour company that also offers minisub dive tours.
  • Panchito Tours: (site down) Another company offering long day trips up to Magdalena Bay for $209/person.
  • PezGato: A low cost 2 hour whale watching tour around Land’s End. $30/adult & $15/child
  • Scurvy Dawg: A great pirate themed adventure on the seas searching for whales. $39/adult and $20/child.
  • Sunrider Adventure Tours: Only $55/person plus half off for kids on the lunch or dinner whale watching cruise.
  • Tlaloc Cabo: A 33 foot private sailboat with sunset cruises and whale watching tours.
  • TransCabo: Four tour options, from $39/person in Cabo San Lucas bay to $209 in Magdalena Bay.

 

Reviews

We recently returned from our annual trip to Cabo and this year was the best of the four years we have visited Cabo. The two bedroom suite we rented at Villa La Estancia was very spacious, open viewed, and well decorated. Villa La Estancia is probably the most quiet and laid back of the three resorts located nearby. We also liked the restaurants that was located on the property. For the first time, we purchased the 3 day mini all inclusive package and that worked out very well. One of our more exciting adventures was a deep sea fishing trip that included eight guests with plenty of room to roam around on the charter. The charter company was Sol Mar and we were the only charter that was successful catching a Tuna, a Dolphin (Dorado), and yes, a Marlin. We had the Tuna and Dorado prepared for us that evening and was most delicious. The weather was perfect and actually much cooler than Texas. We could not have asked for a better vacation.

Mark Bauer, Dallas TX

Yes, we had a great time. Villa del Arco and Cabo itself are just beautiful! No, we did not buy a timeshare or take any tours. I have to say if we did though, it would have to be like the villa we rented, we are spoiled now :) We definitely want to go back, we are thinking about booking next year too. As far as the resort, stellar. Everyone was so friendly and accommodating, the service was top notch. Never had to wait long for a drink or someone to help, it was great. The resort was clean, the room was clean, all was great. You gave us great service as well, I would definitely book through you again. You answered all of our questions in a timely matter and were very, very helpful, thank you! We felt we saved money, too. All was great! Thanks again! Angela M.

Angela, Colorado Springs

Our stay at Villa Los Arcos was excellent. The food was exceptional (and even though our package was a special offer that did not include any costs for the inclusive package, I would recommend the inclusive package to anyone planning a vacation there, as it eliminated a lot of headaches such as meal planning, taxi fares and having to watch every nickel). With 3 hungry teenagers along for the trip, this was totally the way to go. The accommodations were outstanding, in excellent repair, and the staff at Los Arcos was friendly and accommodating. Of the three resorts that are all in the same area, I found the staff at Los Arcos to be the friendliest. The staff at the sister neighboring resort (I can't recall the name) were not nearly as outgoing and friendly, possibly because of the genre those resort were more geared to (younger kids and parents). Thanks for lining us up with this package. It was an outstanding price and a great deal.

John T., Benicia, CA

We had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed Villa del Arco. We were thrilled upon check-in at 1:00pm that our room was already cleaned and ready and had a beautiful view of the full ocean. The restaurant was open until 11pm and that was a pleasant surprise in that it allowed for greater flexibility. The rooms were spacious and the 3 bathrooms were wonderful for a family of 5, especially when the 3 children are teenagers. The washer/dryer amenity was a plus as we used it several times over the five days. The service was excellent and although the dinner menu was a little fancy for the kids, they made it work. After we went deep sea fishing and caught a mahi-mahi, the restaurant prepared and cooked or fish for us which was a nice treat. It made for a special dinner. The boys loved the taco bar and the quesadillas from the restaurant and actually ate lunch twice a day a few times. We went to the market and filled the fridge with Gatorade and snacks; that was a great suggestion! The boys used the kayaks provided by the resort and "surfed" for hours in the ocean. We met a nice couple at the pool who had only a master suite and shared with us that they paid the same amount for the all-inclusive option as we did for 5 "adults" in a master suite with an adjoining 1 bdroom suite, because they booked through a traditional method. I'm not sure we will ever want to stay in a regular hotel room ever again, or book with anyone besides you guys. Thank you for your help and we look forward to booking our yearly Cabo trip(s) with you again. Thanks again, Rebecca

Rebecca H., Cypruss, tX

I really enjoyed myself and am eagerly looking forward to my next visit. My family had the best vacation of their lives, and I got to eat some really great food and drink delicious sangria. I highly recommend this place to all interested parties.

Thank you! We had a great time. No complaints at all about the resort and I didn't hear of any from any of the 30+ people who accompanied us either. I'd recommend Villa la Estancia to anyone and I actually did to my boss and to a friend who are both looking for some place to go for a special occasion. I've passed your info along to them and hopefully they'll book and head there as well.

Christopher M., Edwardsville, IL

Hello Bob, I wanted to get back with you in regards to our family trip July 15-22. We had a wonderful time. I actually called my source who I met when we were there the previous April. Our rooms were the same as before and the views were even better. As always, we had an amazing time. We only left the Villa Del Arco the night before we left to eat at La Golindrina (Spelling). That restaurant was unbelievably excellent!!! I highly recommend it. The food was amazing, the service impeccable and so kid friendly! Thank you for the wonderful rates! If you ever run any specials at any of your locations, please let us know. Sincerely, Lauren

You did it again. As you know we are frequent visitors to Los Cabos and the surrounding area. Since this was going to be a longer trip I felt I should give you a call for the best deal at our favorite Vill del Arco. Once again you did a great job! From the incredibly reliable service of transportation to and from the resort to the room itself, everything was perfect. Knowing a bit about the resort I was able to secure a top floor room near the penthouse for a small upgrade fee which due to your incredible rates made perfect sense. We also added the "All Inclusive" to our stay upon arrival and were very, very pleased with our decision, it really is all inclusive! Villa del Arco and really all the Villa properties are very well managed and the rooms are always very clean, not to mention the incredible staff. All the way from the groundskeepers to the management. We will be calling again soon because unlike other travel providers to Cabo you go above and beyond to make your clients stay, as easy and relaxing as possible. Can't thank you enough. Craig

Craig L., Farmington, NM

Hi Bob, Just got back from Cabo last night. The villa was more than we expected and the pools, grounds and restaurants were outstanding. We had a great time with our children and grandchildren. The biggest problem we had was no soap in two of the bathrooms. Of course housekeeping took care of it immediately. Life's problems should be fixed so easily. Fishing was tough but managed to bring home a 50 qt cooler of mahi mahi fillets. Thanks for arranging the transportation. Transpacifico were both punctual and courteous. Best, John

John Giuffre, Montgomery Texas

Thank you for arranging our stay at Villa Del Arco/Villa La Estancia. We have visited Cabo several times, and have always stayed at La Estancia, but this last stay was the easiest and best vacation, largely due to you. You had the ability to work out a vacation for us on the exact dates we needed, which I could not do on my own through VRBO or other sources. I will definitely call you the next time we plan to visit Cabo, which will hopefully be next year at this time. The car service we arranged through your contacts was very good and reliable. The driver was very pleasant and had a plethora of information for us about the area. My family had never stayed at Del Arco before. I can honestly say that Del Arco was equally as beautiful and comfortable as La Estancia. We will gladly stay at either resort in the future. I can also honestly say that in the future I will save my time and call you directly instead of trying to work a deal through VRBO. Your rates are competitive and your resource of the large number of units you represent makes trip details easily arrangeable. Thank you for the wonderful Christmas trip. Kurtis and Rory Lubbock, TX

Kurtis & Rory , Lubbuck, TX