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Perched on the edge of civilisation, at the heart of the Viscaino Biosphere Reserve, on the west coast of Baja California, Cabanas San Ignacio is a purpose-built camp offering modern amenities in a comfortable, eco-friendly environment.

These cabanas sit on the shores of San Ignacio lagoon, with panoramic views to the Santa Clara mountains. They offer rustic yet comfortable wilderness accommodation in an outstanding location - it is the ideal base for whale watching in the area. 

From the viewing platform in camp you can stand and watch the antics of grey whales in the lagoon. Various species of migrating birds also take refuge in the nearby mangroves – which ensures excellent bird watching – and the shoreline might reveal the occasional whale bone or fossil.

Situated just a ten minute drive from the tiny San Ignacio airstrip, the accommodation consists of 12 simple wooden cabins, a comfortable and spacious communal dining, reading and presentation room and a covered outdoor area for relaxing.

Each wooden cabin is raised from the ground, has a small double bed or twin beds, a washbasin, small wardrobe and a veranda overlooking the lagoon. Solar panels are used to power lighting and provide electricity. Each cabin has a charging point for small electronic devices such as video cameras, notebook computers and digital cameras. All cabins have an interior light, windows for ventilation and extra blankets.

Outside facilities are shared and completely eco friendly, with four solar-heated showers and six toilets are located a short walk from the cabins. 

Two excursions are made each day on to the lagoon, accompanied by local naturalist guides. The mangroves can also be visited on these excursions, providing good opportunities for bird-viewing.

The heart of camp is the central palapa which is the focal point for all activities and meals. The food is freshly cooked each day by the resident Mexican family; delicious, plentiful and varied! Coffee and hot water for tea are always available, as are snacks, fresh fruit, soft drinks and beer. The palapa also has an excellent library of books on a range of wildlife and environmental subjects. A small bar serves most drinks and the dining room is surrounded by comfortable sofas and well stocked bookshelves, with good literature about the area.

An internet telephone is available for use (at a small charge), and there are two computers that are intermittently linked to the internet. Importantly, good battery re-charging facilities are available.

From the camp, you can enjoy a spectacular sunset down the lagoon. The naturalist guide is also available for more in-depth conversation on the grey whale migration phenomenon and biodiversity of the region. Birding in the surrounding area is also fantastic with a chance to see peregrine falcon, pelican and osprey.

You stay at Cabanas San Ignacio in the company of Eastern Pacific grey whales in the sanctuary where they come to mate and give birth. In camp you’ll enjoy the hospitality, friendliness and exceptional local knowledge of the staff. 

Join our small group whale watching trip based at the Cabanas San Ignacio.

View suggested itineraries

Key info

  • Available*: Jan-Apr * The dates shown are when the accommodation is generally available. Please enquire for specific availability.

Wildlife trips

This accommodation is featured in the following itineraries:

Grey Whales of San Ignacio Lagoon

Join our small group tour to the Baja Peninsula, spending six nights in the grey whale mecca of San Ignacio Lagoon. Enjoying twice daily whale watching excursions accompanied by knowledgeable guides, this tour provides a unique opportunity to witness the splendour of these majestic giants in a unique location.

  • When to go: Feb-Mar
  • Duration inc. flights: 9 days
  • Price inc. flights: From £3,895 pp
  • Trip type: Group tour

Monarch Butterflies & Grey Whale Migration

Combine two extraordinary wildlife events: witness hundreds of grey whales arriving at their breeding grounds in the warm waters of Baja and enjoy their inquisitive and playful antics; then observe millions of monarch butterflies filling the sky as they arrive in Mexico for their winter hibernation.

  • When to go: Feb-Mar
  • Duration inc. flights: 10 days
  • Price inc. flights: From £5,175 pp
  • Trip type: Group tour
This accommodation is located in:

San Ignacio Lagoon

San Ignacio Lagoon is located in the Mexican province of Baja California and is one of the winter sanctuaries of the eastern Pacific grey whale. Here, males and females congregate looking for mates and newborn calves prepare themselves for the long journey north to their summer feeding grounds in the Arctic.

  • Where: West coast
  • Ideal for viewing: grey whale, Cape pygmy owl, Harris hawk, leatherback turtle, olive ridley turtle
  • Excellent for: Wildlife festivals, Whale watching