National Geographic Sea Lion remained at anchor near the middle of Isla Margarita. From this location we explored Bahia Almejas, one of three major coastal lagoons used by California grey whales as mating and birthing grounds.

We were ferried through these waters on pangas. These fiberglass boats are a mainstay found all through the waters of Mexico. The pangas were driven by pangueros who came from a small community called Puerto Chale and are the holders of the necessary permits required for whale watching in Mexico.

National Geographic Sea Lion was divided into two groups: coyotes and pelicans! Once the announcement was made, each group headed out on a panga and began the hopeful journey to the southern end of Bahia Almejas. Without going far, everyone saw the blows in the distance and our panga drivers approached slowly…in hopes of that dream of a close encounter with cetaceans!

Everywhere we turned whales were breaching, spy-hopping, surfacing, and some moving closer, but many animals just watching us watching them. It was a whale of a day!