Cruise to La Paz

Top 5 things to do in La Paz

  1. Snorkel with whale sharks—the BFGs of the sea
  2. Paddle board at the picturesque Playa Balandra
  3. Discover the hidden gems of nearby Espiritu Santo Island
  4. Stroll the Malecon with its many local merchants
  5. Visit Hotel California in artsy Todos Santos
Known for: SeafoodWhale SharksWater SportsProtected SeasSnorkeling and Diving

The tranquil capital of Baja California Sur is the perfect place for snorkeling with sea creatures, strolling the Malecon (similar to a board walk in the United States), sipping margaritas by the sea, and various other quintessential Mexican beach village activities. Friendly and casual, La Paz, meaning peace in English, has a rich history and authentic culture that sets it apart from Mexico’s planned resort cities. You won’t find mega-hotels or shopping malls here, but you will be welcomed at artists’ collectives and picturesque outdoor cafes.

Cruise ships dock 10 miles north of the center of town in Pichilingue. Cruisers can take complimentary air-conditioned shuttle buses to town, or grab a taxi if they want to go straight to a specific place, or just don’t want to travel with dozens of other cruisers.

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La Paz Highlights


  • The mushroom-shaped rock formation Hongo de Balandra
  • Sculpture art along the Malecon
  • Cathedral of our Lady of Peace in the main square


  • Watch the artisans at work in Ibarra’s Pottery
  • Check out locally made jewelry at Casa del Artisano
  • Buy a bottle of damiana from the tiny supermarket Aramburo


  • Indulge in the famous specialty ice cream at La Fuente
  • Have a damiana margarita and fresh fish of the day at Nim
  • Fish tacos for breakfast at El Estadio

Shore Excursions

  • Snorkel with sea lions at Espiritu Santo
  • Swim, snorkel or dive with whale sharks—the giants of the sea
  • Escape to the hippie artist/surfer village of Todos Santos—site of the real Hotel California


  • Ogle crocodiles and giant lizards at El Serpentario Reptile Center
  • Relax at El Coromuel beach while the kids go down the waterslides
  • Take a boat to Espiritu Santo Island


  • Balandra Beach – often voted among most beautiful beaches in Mexico
  • El Tecolote is more than a mile of white sand, and clear water
  • Playa Pichilingue is the closest to the cruise port

Solo Exploration

  • Standup paddle boarding lessons in front of Malecon
  • Take a kite-surfing or windsurfing lesson
  • Snorkel with the whale sharks


  • Toast over damiana margaritas at Sorstis or Las Tres Virgenes
  • Get a couples massage and relax in the pool at CostaBaja Resort & Spa
  • Walk around Balandra Bay


  • Anthropology and History Museum for cultural exhibits and art performances
  • Whale Museum – learn about the region’s beloved grey whales
  • Catedral de Nuestra Senora, a monument to La Paz’s history as a Jesuit settlement