After having sailed all night long, National Geographic Venture reached the northernmost destination of this remarkable journey, a beautiful, protected bay called Puerto Refugio. Located at the northern end of Mexico’s longest island, Ángel de la Guarda, it is home to a large number of California sea lions that we watched from our Zodiacs at sunrise, together with brown boobies, Brandt’s cormorants and ospreys. We also explored Ángel de la Guarda by foot, and hikers admired the striking beauty of its colorful rocks and desert vegetation.

Later we sailed south along the island’s western side on the famous Canal de Ballenas, admiring once again the remarkable yellows, reds, and ochres that make Ángel de la Guarda a painter’s and a photographer’s paradise. And then, without warning, three killer whales showed up and added a touch of excitement to an already amazing day.