Did you know that the winter is a great time to visit Mexico? Especially Banderas Bay which is located on the Pacific Coast of Mexico with tourist hot spots of Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit. There, each year the annual migration of the humpback whales occurs. The majestic whales make the long journey from Canada down the Pacific Coast to mate and birth their young in the warm waters of Banderas Bay. In addition to the humpback whale migration, sea turtles return to the location where they were born to spawn their young. If you’re ready to take a vacation to PV, make sure to book a whale watching tour and participate in baby sea turtle release. They are both magical experiences that everyone in the family will be talking about for years to come. Keep reading more below about sea turtles and the whale watching season in Mexico.
Humpback Whale Migration in Banderas Bay
Each year, hundreds of humpback whales migrate from the north and spend several months in Banderas Bay. Thanks to its protected location, Banderas Bay is an ideal spot for humpback whales. There, they mate and birth their young in the bay’s warm waters each year from December through April. There’s something magical about seeing humpback whales breaching, flapping their fins, and playing with dolphins. Make sure to book a tour on a boat so you can see these incredible gentle giants up close. If you’re lucky, you might also spot dolphins, turtles, manta rays, colorful fish, and more while on the water. Banderas Bay is the largest bay in Mexico, and the 7th largest bay in the world. The biodiverse bay is also ideal for water sports such as kitesurfing, swimming, paddleboarding, kayaking, surfing, snorkeling, scuba diving and more.
Sea Turtles in Banderas Bay
Each year, thousands of sea turtles travel through the ocean until they reach the location where they were born. For adult female sea turtles born in Banderas Bay, they return to the same spot they were born to lay their own eggs. Six of seven different species of sea turtles lay their eggs in various locations in Mexico including Puerto Vallarta. In general, an average of about 100 eggs are collected from each nest. From each next, around 85 percent of those eggs will hatch. In 2022, more than 3,000 turtle nests are expected in the area. Sea turtle eggs need to incubate for around 50 days before they are ready to hatch. In order to increase the chances of baby turtles surviving, local conservationists regularly collect eggs from nests and keep them safe until they are ready to hatch. When the time comes, the baby sea turtles emerge from underground nests after breaking their shells.
Baby Sea Turtle Release
Volunteers and conservationists regularly collect sea turtle eggs to improve the chances of the baby sea turtles surviving. If you find yourself in PV soon, you can participate in a sea turtle release. During sunset, that day’s freshly hatched baby turtles will be released to the sea. Contact local organizers to sign up to attend and participate in a sea turtle hatching. In Puerto Vallarta, baby sea turtle releases are regularly held on the north end of Boca de Tomates beach which is just 10 minutes from the Puerto Vallarta International Airport. Everyone in the family will enjoy experiencing this unique moment to help wildlife prosper.
Winter is here and that means that humpback whales and sea turtles are in Banderas Bay. Why not plan a vacation to Puerto Vallarta so you can get to know these amazing creatures up close and personal during a whale watching tour? Also, it is also the sea turtle hatching season in Mexico! In Banderas Bay, thousands of sea turtles return to the same spot they were born to lay their own eggs. Local conservation groups collect buried eggs and safely guard them until the baby sea turtles hatch and can be released to sea. Visitors are encouraged to participate in organized events by local conservation groups to help release the turtles back to the sea at sunset. Winter is a great time to visit PV in Banderas Bay. Why not plan a last minute vacation to Puerto Vallarta so you can enjoy the beauty of nature at its best?