By: Baja Insider
For thousands of years the grey whales have migrated to Baja in the winter to bear there young in the warm and placid waters surrounding the Baja Peninsula. The grey whale migration takes them south past the west coast of the United States and the Pacific coast of Baja. Scammon’s Lagoon and Bahia San Ignacio are some of the most famous places to see grey whales. San Ignacio boasts the 'friendly whales', a pod that seems to have over some time, developed an afinity with the tourists that come to whale watch in Baja.
Gray whales are 52 feet long and weigh 36 tons, yet are gentle enough to touch… and Baja California’s Pacific coast is the perfect place to experience the thrill! Every year in November, more than 10 thousand gray whales trade the freezing waters of Alaska’s Bering Sea for the warmth of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula. Traveling along the Pacific coastline at top speeds of five mph and with pregnant females in the lead, the whales take about four months to make the 10 thousand miles roundtrip.
Once the whales reach the Mexican coast, they mate, bask in soothing lagoons and give birth, making January through early April the peak time to whale watch. During these months, boat excursions are available all along Baja California, giving tourists the chance to observe these magnificent creatures in their natural environment, see the newborn calves and enjoy the blowhole water shows. Gray whales are so friendly that on many occasions they swim right up to the boats and even allow human contact. In early spring, the calves and their mothers are the last to head back up north, and without the presence of the males, mothers are less protective, often allowing their young to approach tour boats more freely.
Where to watch Although a small percentage of whales, particularly those that are not giving birth, make it as far south as Cabo San Lucas and the East Cape on the southern tip of the Baja, most whale-watching takes place in three major lagoons all the coastline of the Baja Peninsula.