Swim with Whale Sharks La Paz, Mexico, 2024

Hello to our Baja travelers! Welcome to our updated post.

Are you looking for an adventure of a lifetime? Our Whale Shark Guide is for you 🐋🌵🦈

Whale Shark tourism is a significant industry in La Paz, with dozens of tour operators offering excursions to see these magnificent creatures.

One whale shark view from above swimming in crystal clear blue waters
Whale sharks La Paz, Mexico

These gentle giants can swim near the coastline from October to March every year as they make their way up the Baja California Peninsula on their annual migration route.

So, what are you waiting for? Check out our comprehensive Whale Sharks La Paz Guide and learn all you need to know about swimming with whale sharks in La Paz!

Swim with Whale Sharks

There are few experiences in life capable of such bliss and delight as swimming in the company of these friendly giants.

For those wondering, the whale shark is the largest fish in existence and can reach lengths of over 50 feet. But don’t worry, they are gentle creatures!

Whale sharks are often called “the living dinosaurs” because they are so ancient and unchanged by evolution. Swimming next to them and admiring their majestic moves is a true privilege.

Keep reading to discover why this adventure will be worth your time!

Whale Sharks La Paz, Mexico

You can encounter these incredible creatures while scuba diving or snorkeling off the coast of La Paz in Baja California Sur, Mexico.

And luckily for us, the city of La Paz is one of the few spots in the world where you can swim with whale sharks. Other Mexican places are Holbox, Ensenada, and Playa Mujeres.

Two whale sharks swimming on the surface with six people near them, view from above
Swim with whale sharks La Paz BCS, Mexico

To summarize, the Bay of La Paz is one of Mexico’s most beautiful coastal areas, with soft white sand and crystal clear blue water. This is truly a no-brainer adventure!

How to Get to La Paz

The best time to go is during the winter months of November to March.

This is when whale sharks are often seen off the coast, as they love to swim in warm Mexican waters. To our delight, in recent years, there have been reports that whale sharks sometimes stayed all year round.

If you are in the United States, you can fly to Los Cabos International Airport and drive to La Paz, about two hours distance.

Why Swim with Whale Sharks

Needless to say, this is an unforgettable experience you should not miss, but here are eight good reasons why swimming with whale sharks in La Paz is a must-do activity:

1) La Paz is a world-renowned destination.

The city of La Paz draws visitors from all over the world for its spectacular beaches and beautiful water. After all, you can do many other pleasant activities besides swimming with whale sharks.

2) You’ll experience a unique encounter with nature.

La Paz is well-known for its relaxing atmosphere, making it ideal for swimming with whale sharks, also known as “gentle giants.”

3) Scuba dive or snorkel to see them up close.

These two activities allow you to see the whale sharks and get close to them without disturbing their natural behavior.

4) You can also get up close and personal with other marine life while you’re there. 

The Sea of Cortez is the “World’s Aquarium,” as it was once called by the famous ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau, as you’ll be able to see many other species while you swim with whale sharks.

One young lady snorkeling with behind a colorful fish shoal near the surface
Marine life in the Sea of Cortez

5) Whale sharks are abundant in La Paz. 

When you book a tour, you’re almost guaranteed to see them during your swim.

6) The water in La Paz is crystal clear, and it’s easy to see them.

There is nothing better than to take pictures or videos of these fantastic creatures. Your Instagram will be on fire!

7) You’ll learn about marine life conservation.

The Whale Shark Eco-tourism Center offers a safe and informative experience for swimming with whale sharks.

8) This activity supports the tourism industry in La Paz. 

Like the Cancun area on the east coast of Mexico, the whale shark industry is essential to keep this town on the map.

Endangered Species

As much as I would love to say that everything about these beautiful creatures is perfectly fantastic, sadly, this is not the case.

Whale sharks have been classified as a critically endangered species by the IUCN Red List since 2016.

Unfortunately, they are hunted legally and illegally for meat and fins in Asia, as well as for use in medicinal remedies. They are also frequently caught in fishing nets, which can be deadly if they collide with vessels.

underwater view of one whale shark swimming in the middle of five people snorkeling on the surface
Whale sharks are an endangered species

More recently, in October 2021, it was reported that the whale shark population slightly recovered and was assessed as “Largely Depleted.”

Even though this is better than the previous reports, the outlook is not cheerful as the population trend has been declared “Decreasing.”

What can be more inspiring than enjoying nature and swimming with these beautiful creatures as part of eco-friendly conservationist initiatives?

How Much Does it Cost?

The price for this adventure varies between USD 100 and USD 229 per person. While it’s not the cheapest trip, it’s still a relatively inexpensive way to have an unforgettable experience. Fortunately, big group tours are an economical choice if you are up to saving some pennies.

Just be careful when you choose your tour operator, as it is extremely important that they follow the regulations. In any case, we encourage eager visitors to book a high-quality tour to avoid inconveniences.

Best Tours Available

To date, these are the best-rated tours available to book a whale shark adventure:

# 1 Tuna Tuna Tours (From La Paz)

# 2 Cabo Trek (From Los Cabos)

# 3 Baja Adventure Co. (From La Paz)

What to Expect

  • You’ll be able to go snorkeling or scuba diving and encounter the largest living fish in the world.
  • These gentle giants travel in groups, so you will have many opportunities to see them.
  • The whale sharks are easy to spot because they stay near the water’s surface—also, they’re enormous!
  • You might be lucky enough to watch manta rays, dolphins, sea turtles, humpback whales, moray eels, and more! In fact, you could potentially see as many as 20 different species during a single dive!

 What to Bring

  • Towel
  • Hat
  • Biodegradable sunscreen
  • Swimming suit
  • Camera (waterproof is preferable)

Underwater view of one whale shark swimming near four divers surrounding a boat
Whale shark tour with scuba divers

Ready to Swim with Whale Sharks?

La Paz, Mexico, is a popular destination for those seeking a once-in-a-lifetime adventure travel experience. Plus, there’s nothing like swimming alongside one of these magnificent animals! Be sure to bring your underwater camera so you don’t miss one bit!

If you have any questions or suggestions about this article, please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!


  1. I cannot come until late March or early April. Are the whale sharks usually still there? Is scuba diving or snorkeling the preferred way to swim with them?

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