• Newsletter
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

Cruises to La Paz

45 Reviews
La Paz (Photo:Barna Tanko/Shutterstock)

About Cruising to La Paz

La Paz, meaning peace, is a tranquil Mexican town where the cactus-studded desert abruptly meets the sea in eye-popping fashion. Located on a large bay on the Sea of Cortez (also known as the Gulf of California), La Paz is the capital of Baja California Sur, an arid peninsula extending some 800 miles south of the U.S. border. It's famous for its pastel neocolonial homes, beautifully updated waterfront promenade, sandy beaches, fiery sunsets and abundant marine life.

Once a simple spot for sport fishing (John Wayne and Bing Crosby were frequent visitors), La Paz has evolved into something of a hot spot for ecotourism. Its proximity to the gray whale winter breeding grounds in Magdalena Bay, pristine islands of the Sea of Cortez and Sierra de la Laguna mountains attracts whale watchers, kayakers, hikers, birders and scuba divers.

Still, exploration and adventure are nothing new to La Paz. Nearly five centuries ago, Hernan Cortes arrived there, followed by Jesuit missionaries. English and Dutch pirates raided treasure-filled Spanish galleons trapped in the La Paz Bay. In the early 19th-century, La Paz became the capital of Baja after a hurricane wiped out Loreto. The city prospered as a pearl center until the 1930s, when local oyster beds were destroyed by disease.

While nearby Cabo San Lucas attracts hordes of tourists, La Paz still offers an authentic provincial experience, although in recent years beachfront condos have been springing up at the north end of town. Of all Baja's cities, La Paz draws most heavily from the traditions of mainland Mexico. Many pacenos (locals) are descended from mainlanders who came in the 19th and 20th centuries to escape political upheaval.

Today, this university town has a large cultural center that features a theater for dance and music performances, plus whale and anthropology museums. The biggest annual holiday is the pre-Lent Carnaval, a six-day party with parades, costumes, music, dancing and fireworks. In early May, Cortes' 1535 landing is reenacted during the Fiesta de la Paz. In mid-November, the Baja 1000 off-road racers roar into town at the end of their dusty, 1,000-mile race.

  • More about La Paz

  • Why Cruise to La Paz?

  • La Paz Cruise Port Facilities?

Loading...

We found you 23 cruises

Loading...
Loading...
Zaandam
Zaandam Cabins

7 Night
Baja Peninsula & Sea Of Cortez

558 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Cruise Critic Favorite
Regatta
Regatta

11 Night
Mexico Cruise

422 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Zaandam
Zaandam Cabins

11 Night
Mexican Riviera & Sea Of Cortez

558 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Koningsdam
Koningsdam docked alonside in San Diego. (Photo: Holland America Line)

10 Night
Mexican Riviera & Sea Of Cortez

864 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Sponsored

Presidents’ Day Sale

  • Up to 40% off Cruises
  • Drinks & Wi-Fi Included
  • Up to $400 Onboard Credit
  • Limited-Time Offer

MSC Cruises

10 Night
Mexican Riviera Cruise

1,600 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

11 Night
Mexican Riviera & Sea Of Cortez

864 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

8 Night
Mexican Riviera Cruise

171 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

8 Night
Mexican Riviera Cruise

171 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

7 Night
Baja Peninsula

864 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

14 Night
Solar Eclipse & Mexican Riviera

558 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

14 Night
Classic California Coast & Baja Peninsula

864 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker
Cruise Critic Favorite

10 Night
Mexican Riviera Cruise

1,872 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

28 Night
Circle Hawaii & Mexican Riviera/sea Of Cortez

558 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

14 Night
Mexican Riviera & Baja Peninsula Holiday

864 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

14 Night
Baja Peninsula & Classic California Coast

558 Reviews
Leaving:
Cruise Line:
No prices currently available for this sailing.
  • Itinerary
  • Ship
  • Reviews
  • View All Prices
  • Fare Insight
  • Price Tracker

More about La Paz

Why Cruise to La Paz?

Pros:

La Paz has become a hot spot for ecotourism; museums and a cultural center add to the diversity

Cons:

If enjoying the plethora of marine life with a dive, beware of jellyfish

Bottom Line:

This cultural hub offers a more authentic provincial experience than other Mexican ports

La Paz Cruise Port Facilities?

Strolling from the in-town Port of La Paz along the three-mile-long Malecon Alvaro Obregon is a local tradition. The tiled seaside walkway is dotted with sculptures of marine animals and offers great bay views, as well as shops, cafes and restaurants. One block away is the Centro Cultural La Paz, housed in the restored 1910 city hall. Inside are a bookshop and Baja-themed exhibits (open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily). Three blocks inland is the city's main square, Plaza Constitucion, also called Plaza Jardin Velasco, with its tile-roofed gazebo and 1865 cathedral. The adjacent Centro de Artes Populares showcases art and photography (open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday).

At the Pichilingue dock, a craft market is set up on cruise ship days. There are no other facilities.

Good to Know?

La Paz is surrounded by turquoise waters teeming with exciting marine life, so swimming, snorkeling and diving with sea lions and whale sharks rate as top attractions. Anyone planning to go in the water should be aware of the chance of encountering jellyfish or getting a warning bite from a sea lion. Always follow the lead of your dive guide, wear protective gear (a wetsuit) and check out your underwater companions carefully.

Getting Around?

On Foot: With its streets radiating from the waterfront in a classic grid, La Paz is best explored on foot.

By Bus: Cruise lines such as Azamara offer complimentary shuttle buses from the Pichilingue cruise pier to town. Public buses leave daily at set departure times from the pier to Terminal Turistica on the malecon. Some buses stopping at the pier continue to the beaches at Tecolote and Balandra. Be sure to check the return schedule because buses can show up as infrequently as one every two to three hours.

By Taxi: Cab fare from the cruise ship terminal to downtown runs about $20. To visit beaches north and south of the city, either take a cab (La Paz taxis don't have meters, so agree on the fare upfront) or rent a car.

By Car: Most major car rental chains have offices along the malecon.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The official currency is the peso. Most restaurants, shops and hotels accept credit cards and U.S. dollars. Be aware, if you pay cash, the exchange rate may not be the best, and you will probably receive your change in pesos. It pays to carry small bills.

The best place for banks, ATMs and currency-exchange houses (casas de cambio) is on Calle 16 de Septiembre near the seaside walkway known as the malecon. Banks exchange currency from 9 a.m. to noon Monday to Friday. Most exchange houses such as Tony Money Exchange (Calle 16 de Septiembre) are open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday. If you need to change dollars for pesos on Sunday, large hotels are your best bet.

Language?

Mexico's official language is Spanish. English is widely spoken.


La Paz Cruise Reviews
Nice beach town. Just strolled. around on our own. Had a nice lunch near the beach.Read More
Steve26460
we took the long bus ride to hotel california in todos los santos on ship's tour "historic todos santos". the included lunch was basic, but quite good. the bus ride is long, through mostly desert landscape. if yoRead More
flobo
Port is way out of town.Read More
Cruiserdude1963
Good guide. Lives in La Paz. had a lot of history of Baja to share. The ceramic factory is great. The malecon stop allowed some shopping or margarita samplingRead More
MikCar

Related Cruises

Cruises to Newport

261 Reviews

Cruises to Montreal

94 Reviews

Cruises to Hilo

654 Reviews

Cruises to Amsterdam

1,056 Reviews

Cruises to Puerto Limon

397 Reviews

Cruises to Rouen

121 Reviews

Cruises to Saint John (New Brunswick)

449 Reviews

Cruises to Kauai

627 Reviews

Cruises to Gdansk (Warsaw)

120 Reviews

Cruises to Marseille

933 Reviews

Cruises to Cairo (Port Said)

47 Reviews

Cruises to Maui

713 Reviews

Cruises to Rangiroa

30 Reviews

Cruises to Hakodate

26 Reviews

Cruises to Iles des Saintes

14 Reviews

Cruises to Lautoka

97 Reviews

Cruises to Picton

164 Reviews

Cruises to Puerto Quetzal (Antigua)

387 Reviews

Cruises to Speyer

48 Reviews

Cruises to Kinderdijk

8 Reviews

Get special cruise deals, expert advice, insider tips and more.By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

© 1995—2024, The Independent Traveler, Inc.