Tuesday, February 14, 2023

The National Geographic Venture

The National Geographic Venture was our home for one week in Baja California last week
on a Lindblad Expedition. We traveled down the east coast and up the west coast of Baja.

At sunrise, many passengers enjoy the light show from the bow of the ship.

At sunset in a beautiful anchorage one day, a local musical group performed on the sun deck.
One of the naturalist staff enjoys accompanying them.

In the ship’s dining room once, we had dinner with two naturalists, Carlos and Adrian,
who are both very knowledgeable about the wildlife and the history of Mexico.

The back of the ship, seen from the dock. The orange boat is a life boat.
The second balcony from the back belonged to our cabin.

Enjoying the sun on our balcony.

The view from the ship

Looking towards Cabo San Lucas at the tip of the Baja California peninsula.

The full moon was setting on our first morning onboard.

Late one afternoon, a very acrobatic whale was breaching off the end of the ship.
We spent quite a lot of time whale watching from the bow of the ship.

Zodiac excursions from the ship

After putting on a life vest and checking off our names on the On/Off Board, we and the other passengers
would walk down the stairway to the Zodiac boats to go to beaches or to cruise around and see wildlife.

On a Zodiac cruise.

A Zodiac tethered just below our balcony.

On one Zodiac cruise, we could see the Venture through a natural arch.
From the Zodiacs, we viewed a sea lion colony. Much of the coast of Baja is a protected nature reserve.
Thus, the Zodiac stays a safe distance to avoid disturbing the animals.

“Wet Landings” mean you wade to or from the Zodiac. Better roll up your pant legs!

Cruising on special whale-watching boats called “pangas”

In the two lagoons where breeding grey whales spend the winter months, the Mexican government allows
only a small number of boats to take passengers to see these extraordinarily friendly animals.

There is a theory that the whales are especially attracted to the sound of certain brands of outboard motor.

On the dock

One of our two days watching the breeding grounds of the whales was a two hour bus ride from the ship.
This is the dock where we took these small boats — the pangas.

Blog post © 2023 by mae sander


Lori said...

Absolutely stunning photos!!

eileeninmd said...

Looks like a great cruise, I would enjoy the sea lions, whale sightings and all the birds. Pelicans are one of my many favorites. Pretty scenic views, I like the natural arch and the pretty sunrise captures. Happy Valentine's Day, have a great day!

Tina said...

That looks like a fun trip. One day.....

anno said...

What an amazing experience, like discovering a whole new world. These are beautiful pictures, too. Thanks for posting them.

My name is Erika. said...

This is about as big a cruise boat as I'd go on, and it looks like you had some fun sailing and boating adventures. hugs-Erika

Tandy | Lavender and Lime (http://tandysinclair.com) said...

I am surprised you got so close to the whales. That must have been quite some experience. The sun rises were stunning, but the moon setting to me is wonderful :)

Sherry's Pickings said...

This looks like a brilliant trip Mae. So many wonderful sights - the whales, the sunrise and sunset and all the rest. Marvellous!

thecuecard said...

Wonderful pictures! The peninsula seems quite mountainous, is that right?

Helen's Book Blog said...

What a fantastic vacation and I love seeing all the photos of the ship, the whales, the activities, and more. I somehow missed that you were there on a National Geographic trip, that's fantastic.

kwarkito said...

Ces photos de baleines sont absolument impresionnantes. vous étiez vraiment près.

Marg said...

Gorgeous photos! Thanks for sharing them.