Sea of Cortez & Isla Espiritu Santo

Feb 25, 2019 - National Geographic Venture

Our day on National Geographic Venture begins with a green flash at dawn, a token of good fortunes ahead! Whale spouts are spotted not long after dawn. They are low and angled, and we soon find ourselves in the company of a sperm whales interspersed with bottlenose dolphins. The next two hours are spent sharing the open ocean with these spectacular creatures.

We stretch our legs that afternoon over a hike at the beach and the Playa Bonanza desert-scape on Isla Espiritu Santo. Some walk the white sands, marveling at the assortment of shells washed up by the tides, while others explore an interior absolutely riddled with yellow-buttoned daisies.

Our more inquisitive guests deploy a plankton net on the return trip and examine its contents under the microscope in the ship lounge. Their discoveries are shared with the other guests during evening recap.

In the late afternoon, a spirited group of mobula rays are observed leaping off the bow, showing black backs and white undersides as they rotate and land with an elegant splash. A second green flash at sunset concludes what has surely been a most memorable time upon the Sea of Cortez.

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About the Author

Daniel Baldwin


An educator at heart, Dan finds great joy in opening doors for others to explore and connect with the world around them. He has taught marine sciences in the Florida Keys and on Catalina Island, and science and math in international schools in Mexico, Costa Rica, and the South Pacific. 

About the Videographer

Sarah Culler

Video Chronicler

Sarah was raised on a multi-generational family dairy farm, established circa 1815 in Lucas, Ohio. Consequently, her first paying job was milking cows! Rewarding as it was to get paid for the first time, she found her passion behind the lens of a camera. Growing up on the farm gave her not only a strong work ethic but also the love of nature and being outdoors. 

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