Adventures Above and Below the Sea of Cortez
Focusing on the natural surroundings and wildlife encounters are favorite pastimes in La Paz. Breathtaking shorelines, the clear waters of the Sea of Cortez, the pristine Isla Espiritu Santo ... the potential for marine adventure comes naturally to this seaside area. Kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving, kite surfing, fishing and whale watching are favorites. More recently, adventurers of the water have taken to standup paddle surfing, which can provide both a peaceful morning cruise on a flat-surf day or an exciting heart-pumping ride on more active swells.
One of the best ways to connect and explore is by kayak. It’s relaxing and you’re up close and personal with the sea life beneath you. When it comes to scuba diving, the experience is incomparable. The sea temperatures from La Paz south are 21 to 29°C/70-84°F all year round. The visibility is best from July to October, around 100 feet/30 metres, but you can count on having 50-80 feet/15-25 metres in most diving places. November to March has the coldest water. Whale sharks are present during algal blooms in Spring and Autumn. Manta rays and schooling hammerheads arrive during late summer and early autumn.
Enormous whale sharks, porpoise and giant Pacific mantas are just the beginning of the underwater sea life you might encounter on any given day in the nutrient rich waters of the Sea of Cortez.
Hundreds of playful sea lions and thousands of fish are ideal for the novice or seasoned scuba diver. For the experienced scuba diver, La Paz is also known as one of only three places on Earth where schools of hammerhead sharks congregate in deep water and can be the dive adventure of a lifetime as dozens or more hammerheads circle around.
A must see event in the winter is the end of the Gray Whale migration from the Arctic circle. During the whale-watching season, from the end of December to the beginning of March, operators in La Paz organize excursions to Magdalena Bay where the whales can be observed.
Local dive instructors and masters are knowledgeable and experienced, and upon the opening of the marina at Azul de Cortez, explorations will begin minutes from your doorstep.
Adventures By Land : Experience Baja
Conquistadors and pirates, daring and adventure. La Paz has seen its share of dramatic history, and any adrenaline junkie can see why the area is a magnet for adventure. Hike along mountain trails, experience rock climbing on natural walls and formations, explore authentic cave paintings, ride horseback through desert landscapes or secluded shorelines… the dramatic topography of La Paz is the perfect backdrop for fun.
In addition to the myriad of trails for local mountain biking, avid bicyclists enjoy the 230 mile Cape Loop, which winds through La Paz, Todos Santos, Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, Buena Vista/Los Barriles, San Bartolo, El Triunfo and San Pedro. Close to La Paz, many riders opt for the parallel dirt road. The longest distance between points of interest is 70 miles. Organized bicycle tour companies originate in Baja, the US and Canada.
La Paz is well-known for some of Baja’s best beaches, and they are seldom crowded. The best beaches for exploring and swimming are outside the city to the east and north on the Pichilingue Peninsula. Balandra and Tecolote beaches are both secluded, beautiful and very unique. La Paz to Tecolote makes a wonderful bike ride, 18 miles each way. Casual dining, kayak rentals and other activities make for a fun afternoon.
La Paz is fast becoming a sportman’s retreat with a trio of championship golf courses. The Greg Norman Signature course at Azul de Cortez will join the Gary Player course at Costa Baja and the Arthur Hills course at Paraiso del Mar offering considerable variety for those who love the game.