On the Pacific coast of Mexico, the Sea of Cortez is one of the most stunning cruising grounds in the Americas. The combination of volcanic islands, desert landscapes and limestone cliffs set against brilliant blue waters in the Gulf of California, make for a voyage of discovery. This is where the great Olmec, Mayan and Aztec empires flourished and reminders of their astonishing archaeological legacies lie at every anchorage. It is only possible to fully explore this remote corner of the globe by boat, and being so remote, it remains unspoiled and uncrowded. Spend a few days ashore at either end of your itinerary for an alternative view of this stunning coastline, ensconced in luxury with an array of luxurious offerings from Elegant Mexico.
Sun, sea, desert, jungle, mountains, ancient cultures, friendly locals and fantastic cuisine make the Pacific coast and nearby Baja California one of the most interesting cruising grounds in the Americas. The volcanic coastline of Mexico’s Pacific coast offers stunning desert backdrops as you cruise through the brilliant Sea of Cortez, also known as the Gulf of California, up to La Paz and the islands that lie off Baja’s coast. One of the most bio-diverse seas on the planet, the waters that fill the Gulf are one of the best places in the world to see marine mammals – particularly dolphins, sea turtles, manta rays, hammerhead sharks and, of course, whales – humpbacks, California greys, killer whales and the blue whale all pass through and put on a fine display for anyone on the water. For those who explore ashore, there are reminders of the great Olmec, Mayan and Aztec empires at every anchorage.
From Cabo San Lucas to La Paz, you can whale watch from the decks of your luxury charter yacht, kayak around sheltered coves, sportfish, dive shipwrecks, caves and reefs galore, or simply sit back and take in the virtually deserted white sand beaches. Take to two wheels and cycle to some of the most stunning cultural sites or take to four wheels with an all-terrain vehicle across deserts and beaches. The Sea of Cortez is the perfect cruising ground for those looking for adventure, culture and fabulous cuisine.
Sometimes, the most relaxing and rejuvenating place to be is not on the water but right by it … in a manse by the sea that you can call home for as long as you like. You can settle into that moment, a perfect moment, through Elegant Mexico where endless views over the Sea of Cortez come with exquisite spaces to share with close friends and family.
The location is the golden East Cape of Los Cabos at the bottom of the Baja. Find your hideaway above the “Millionaire’s Corridor” of chic shopping and resorts. The villas of Elegant Mexico are in a world of their own. There, the sequestered community of Del Mar opens to a symphony of magnificent villas, each one its own statement. You can join a wedding party or milestone celebration of 16 or more guests in grand eight-bedroom spreads with private bedroom terraces and even added cottage suites. Or you can take it down a notch and lay low with your intimate pod in three- or four-bedroom retreats on the beach. What are you waiting for? To view a two-week itinerary both ashore and aboard, please scroll below.
TWO WEEKS ABOARD & ASHORE
Spend a week acclimatizing to your surroundings in your own private villa with a wealth of amenities from Elegant Mexico. Whether you choose a five-bedroom property with endless sea views from every vantage point or a stunning beachfront abode, Elegant Mexico has a property to suit every requirement. And what is more, each villa guest has access to a private chef and butler, housekeeping services and a dedicated concierge. As part of the Palmilla Estate guests can also access the restaurants, bars, spa and golf course at the adjacent One & Only Palmilla resort, which is just a short drive by golf cart.
Day 1 – Cabo San Lucas to San José del Cabo (16 nautical miles)
Located at the southern tip of Baja California, Cabo San Lucas is the homeport of many charter yachts and the best place to embark on a charter through the Sea of Cortez. As you set off on your luxury yacht charter, head up on deck and scan the fantastic landscape of desert, sea, mountains and forests. Other natural attractions include the “Corridor” – a strip of land where the desert meets the sea, stretching 18 miles between Cabo San Lucas and San José.
Day 2 – San José del Cabo
Stroll through the pretty cobblestone streets of San José del Cabo, taking in the local galleries and exhibitions. For an authentic Mexican experience join locals as they gather in the town’s square. Back on board try a spot of sportfishing – the waters are considered by many to be the marlin capital of the world, but dorado, yellowfin tuna and wahoo are also there for the catch.
Day 3 – San José del Cabo to Cabo Pulmo (53 nautical miles)
Cabo Pulmo is the place to head if you are a diving enthusiast. Home to the only hard coral reef in North America, the vast National Marine Park is where you might spot humpback whales, whale sharks and sea turtles. The area also attracts California gray whales that migrate there from Alaska to breed. From January to March they wallow in the coves and inlets.
Day 4 – Cabo Pulmo to Isla San Francisco (100 nautical miles)
Cruise overnight to Isla San Francisco and drop anchor in the horseshoe bay – the classic Baja anchorage is one of the prettiest along this stretch of coastline. Renowned for its fishing and diving opportunities, the famous El Bajo reef lies just offshore.
Day 5 – Isla San Francisco to Isla San José (5 nautical miles)
Neighboring Isla San José has a stunning interior with forests full of giant cacti. After a morning spent exploring step back on board for lunch before taking a tender through the mangroves or jumping in to snorkel around the small sandbanks. Alternatively, you can dive off the yacht at every opportunity, or the crew can launch the kayaks off the decks so you can explore the more remote coves.
Day 6 – Isla San José to Isla Partida (16 nautical miles)
Rise early to watch the sunrise over the beautiful moonscape archipelago of Isla Partida and Espiritu Santo. Jump in at high tide and swim or kayak through the channel that separates the pair of UNESCO-listed islands. Spend the afternoon exploring the stunning shorelines.
Day 7 – Isla Partida to La Paz (20 nautical miles)
After a morning spent swimming and basking on deck, cruise to La Paz – your final port-of-call. Explore the colonial waterfront city as you ease back into a 21st-century pace of life, tasting your final flavors of Mexico. Disembark at the Marina de La Paz.
For more information on yacht charters in Mexico, please contact your favorite N&J charter broker or [email protected].