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National Geographic Sea Lion Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
17 Reviews

Unmatched Interactions with Whales

National Geographic Sea Lion Cruise Review by Jim Olsen01

1 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Feb 2018
  • Destination: the Mexican Riviera

Chosen for great opportunities to see and interact with whales, Lindblad / National Geographic Naturalists to explain what we saw and National Geographic Photographic consultants to learn more about my hobby. The whale watching was unmatched (even compared to two cruises in Alaska). We saw humpbacks, orcas and gray whales close up with new calves. The interactions between the mothers and calves was particularly interesting. Near Cabo San Lucas a humpback mother breached, then breached with the calf and the calf proceeded to breach 20 times.. Many of the gray whales (mothers and calves) came up to the DIBS (zodiac type boats) and obviously wanted contact with people. Those that did not want the contact stayed put or swam away. We were able to see the calves playing around the mother 5 or 10 feet from the boat.

The ship was small (56 passengers) and well suited to the itinerary. We could get into small secluded beaches (Puerto Gato and Bahia Bonanza) that were secluded, beautiful and well suited to the activities. Whether whale watching (with the naturalists' help and explanations), having a nature presentation or lunch on the desk the ship was very comfortable and never felt crowded.

The naturalists were the best I have come in contact with. They were very knowledgeable, communicated their information well, were genuinely enthusiastic about what we were seeing and anxious to share the experience. They were very concerned that we had a good experience while being very respectful of nature.

There were many options for activities when we were in port, kayaking, paddle boarding, nature walks, snorkeling, photography sessions and beach combing. These were the "shore excursions" I enjoyed the most. The typical shore excursions were only in San Jose del Cabo. You could do a birdwalk in an estruary area, vistit the town and glass bloweres or do both.

The food was excellent and the stewards were great about my wife's food allergies, There were no problems and the stewards seemed to enjoy helping. The cabins comfortable, clean and functional, but not luxurious. but the whales and nature in general were the things that made it an unmatched experience.

This is one cruise I would consider doing again.

Jim Olsen01's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin 03 219

Small but comfortable and functional. Kept very clean.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

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Jim Olsen01
1 Reviews Written
1 Helpful Votes
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