More than a decade of adventures in Baja California, Mexico
Who we are and our philosophy
Diving, exploring and filming in the Baja peninsula for over a decade eventually led Johnny Friday to San Ignacio Lagoon in 1989. There he met local fisherman and whale watching guide, Maldo Fischer. Because both men shared a deep affection and respect for the marine world and its numerous inhabitants they eventually founded Baja Ecotours, an eco-conscious travel outfitter providing off-the-beaten path expeditions into the Baja wilderness and specifically to their Gray Whale watching base camp and research center “Campo Cortez” at San Ignacio Lagoon. Now Maldo and his entire family are in charge of the day to day operations at the whale watching base camp and are an exceptional example of how eco-tourism can work as an alternative to commercial fishing.
Our staff, naturalists and boat captains
Our friendly and experienced staff is committed to providing you with an exceptional wildlife experience and greater understanding of the local environment. Our camp staff and boat captains are not only professionals in their field, but local residents of Baja and San Ignacio Lagoon that have earned a lifetime of knowledge living in Baja and amongst the marine wildlife they have the privilege to introduce you to. They educate while ensuring safe viewing of the marine mammals and wildlife you’ll encounter. Our guides also possess vast knowledge of the local flora and fauna of this region and are always ready to share that knowledge with you.
Hire and train locals, harness alternative energy from the climate, utilize local building materials, keep our impact to a minimum, demonstrate eco-tourism as an alternative lifestyle to commercial fishing -- These are our key philosophies that have driven us from the beginning. We realize that our most precious resources are the local people that live in the remote areas in which we operate. Without them there can be no protection of the very animals we have come to visit. It is up to us as ambassadors of eco-tourism to educate and give the necessary tools to these men and women that live in the remote areas we love so much. We to learn from them as we find out daily what it takes to live off the beaten path in complete remoteness amongst mother nature and exposed to the elements.
All of our trips offer a fun learning atmosphere. You’ll not only experience unique up-close marine wildlife encounters, but you'll also learn about these many amazing animals and their ecosystem. We offer a variety of learning encounters, everything from tide pool exploration, whale census recording, plankton netting to recording weather data daily. You’ll depart Baja with a greater understanding and appreciation of its incredible marine diversity and the people that live here. Of course the emphasis of our trips is to be in the company of the whales.
About our location and wildlife
Situated between the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez, the warm nutrient rich waters of the these two distinct, contrasting bodies of water are home to many of the largest sea-going mammals in the world as well as a variety of sought after marine pelagics and tropical fish. Because of its isolation and the Mexican governments' renewed commitment to preserving its vast marine wildlife resources, few places in the world can compare to the Baja peninsula. With such an oasis of marine wildlife diversity, visitors are privileged to be able to interact with and view some of the most illusive marine animals in the world such as Gray Whales, humpback whales, blue whales, giant mantas and whale sharks to name but a few.
What makes us different
Aside from being geographically located at the heart of Baja in the city of La Paz and San Ignacio Lagoon, what sets us apart from other outfitters is our staff and their knowledge. Our staff are mostly locals that have grown up and spent their entire lives here as commercial fishermen and have now found a renewed way of life in eco-tourism. We think you will find that our staff is the key to our success. As a guest with us, you’ll enjoy the benefits of personalized attention from our friendly and knowledgeable staff in an unhurried and un-crowded atmosphere in our boats, on the water or on land. Finally and most importantly, our small group sizes allow us far more photographic opportunities with marine wildlife and have far less impact on the wildlife and environment being observed.
Thanks for your support
By participating in our eco-adventures and whale watching trips you are helping to support and develop the local, eco-tourism based economies of the families at San Ignacio Lagoon and the other areas in which we operate. We are extremely determined to help support our community at San Ignacio Lagoon with educational funds to send less fortunate children to school in nearby towns and deliver much needed clothing and other items to families of lesser means. We truly thank you again for considering travel with us in the Baja and we hope to welcome you as our guest on one of our eco-adventures.
We hope to have you as our guest in Baja,