This Little Light of Mine: Love From our Guests

This Little Light of Mine: Love From our Guests

WOW! We are so thrilled with the recent feedback we’ve had from guests and we’re excited to share some of it here. Read on to see what folks are saying or check out our instagram pageSpoiler Alert: Our guides, chefs and support staff are at the heart of everything we do and we couldn’t be more proud of our entire Todos Santos Eco Adventures family! Click here to read more about us.

“We have been all over the world with all kinds of companies, and this one is and always will be
one of our most favorite and cherished trips! We had the most amazing and unforgettable time
at Camp Cecil. What a fantastic operation and experience! Paulina was an exceptional guide, all
of the staff were so kind, friendly, helpful, accommodating, and fun to be around. The food was
unbelievably fantastic (we couldn’t believe how creative and delicious every single thing we ate
was and what the staff were able to come up with in a remote camp). The tents were fantastic,
the bathrooms were super nice, and of course the experiences we had were the absolute best.
Literally everything was perfect and I was so impressed with every single step of the
experience.” Maria B. Nov 2023

“Our guide Octavio was superb in every aspect! He is easily one of the top 5 guides we’ve ever
had anywhere in the world.” Erin M. March 2024

“I want to share with you that you really do have the best guides working with you at TOSEA.
Our excursions and activities were wonderful, and I really have to give an extra special thank
you to Guide Hugo and boat Captain Omar. What an incredible duo. They work so seamlessly
together. Omar is wonderfully passionate and dedicated to providing an incredible experience
on his panga and Hugo is quite possibly one of the best guides I have ever had anywhere in the
world. We just don’t quite have the words for how special they made the visit to the
island.” Kelly C., Jan 2024

“Thank you and your team again for a brilliant and enriching experience. Axel & Bernardo were
exceptional guides in their consummate professionalism, passion for the natural world and
unruffled patience.” Mia C. March 2024

“Our guide, Axel, was simply the best! So knowledgeable about everything in the sea, on land,
and in the air. And his kind, fun, and friendly demeanor made our days. Probably our favorite
part was the 3 nights at Camp Cecil on Isla Espíritu Santo. The snorkeling, kayaking, turtles,
manta rays, sea lions, bioluminescence, hikes…really everything about it was fantastic. We
were especially impressed with the delicious meals that Ricardo and team prepared on a 4-
burner stove in a tent!” Penny F. Jan 2024

“Don’t know how they do it, but every meal exceeded my expectations! They even cooked a
special meal for me since I don’t like fish, which I really appreciated!” Diana W. Feb 2024

“Our guide, Manuel, was superb. We have taken many guided trip and he ranks at the top:
knowledgeable, lively, kind, funny, flexible and able to “read” a group.” Josh O., Dec 2023.

“Martin, our chef at the Sierra Camp, was amazing and that was some of the best food we have
had anywhere.” Bev W., Feb 2024

Hugo is smart, mellow, accommodating, knowledgeable, energetic, enthusiastic, spiritual and
caring. His knowledge of the history, culture, plants, animals and other aspects of the peninsula
is tremendous. He has a perfect demeanor for handling a group.” Jack S. Jan 2024

“Axel is a fantastic guide. 10/10. Gracious, accommodating, friendly and knowledgeable. I’ll
request him again if I go on this trip again.” John J. Jan 2024

The guides were amazing. The food was amazing. I can’t really choose my favorite activity –
snorkeling with whale sharks, snorkeling with sea lions, the cooking class. It was all a lot of fun.”
Shelley J. Feb 2024

“I have traveled for many years and I think this trip connected all the activities in a unique way.
The trip was truly outstanding on every level. Sebastian was a fantastic guide, both very
knowledgeable and tuned in to our needs.” Jeff C., Feb 2024

“Our guide Sergio N. did an amazing job with our family of 8, orchestrating everyone’s interests
and activity level at all times, from the young teens up to an 80-year-old. His knowledge of the
land and sea, and his sharing of so many little secrets opened up the island to us and made it so
special. My heart wants to return back sometime soon.” Mark S. Dec 2023

“The food at Camp Cecil de la Isla was some of the best I have ever eaten-SUPER FANTASTIC!
HIGH compliments to Chef Ricardo and full respect for what he was able to do and provide in
such a tiny kitchen space! The menu was creative and fun and the presentation of the food was
FABULOUS. So many small details and I appreciated every little thought and action put toward
the food, camp, and our guides/crew. Our overall experiences will be forever in our hearts,
minds, and souls.” Tanya T. Dec 2023

Our guides, especially Andrea, were excellent and I have only the highest praise for them.
Andrea was knowledgeable, clear and patient. I also want to say that our boat captains were
the unsung heroes of our trip. We always felt safe and they certainly know how to approach
wildlife safely. Kudos to them all and five stars all around.” Bev W., Feb 2024

“Absolutely incredible experience! Amazing guides, excellent activities, incredibly well-
organized, and fun. From booking the trip until we said ‘hasta luego’ to our wonderful guide,
we had a ball, ate well and learned a lot about the Baja peninsula. Can I give more than 5
stars??” Dianne Z, Jan 2024

Seafood, Sustainability, and Sunsets: the Basics of Baja California Sur, Mexico

Seafood, Sustainability, and Sunsets: the Basics of Baja California Sur, Mexico


Where to stay around Baja California Sur

In Todos Santos: Los Colibris Casitas

todos santos la paz hotel

Photo: Go La Paz/ColinRuggiero

Led by a husband-and-wife team pioneering sustainability efforts in Baja California Sur, the carbon-neutral Los Colibris Casitas is a haven for nature lovers and one of the most charming places to stay in Todos Santos. The privileged hilltop location has casitas in lush gardens, with excellent views of the Pacific and a neighboring palm grove. Rates start around $135 per night.

What to do in Baja California Sur

Go whale or bird watching

baja california sur gray whale todos santos

Photo: Go La Paz

One of the most magical features of Baja California Sur in Mexico is its rich biodiversity, both on land and in the water.

Between January and March, you can watch giant gray whales in the Pacific Ocean as they migrate south along the western coast of the Baja Peninsula. Trips leave from Todos Santos (about 45 minutes from Cabo) or La Paz, in which case your tour company will drive you across the peninsula.

Year-round, you can go bird-watching to meet frigate birds, roadrunners, kingfishers, hummingbirds, and more. It’s a good way to learn what names to put to the melodic beauties likely to serenade you in the mornings and lull you to sleep each evening.

Both these adventures are available through Todos Santos Eco Adventures, which operates trips leaving from Todos Santos. It’s a carbon-neutral tour company pioneering sustainable tourism in the region.

Booking through companies that think about their environmental impact, practice Leave No Trace principles, and use guides certified by NOLS is one of the best ways to protect the natural beauty of Baja California Sur, Mexico, and preserve it for the future.

Read the full article for inspiration here!

Dipping Into Nature: Mexico’s Baja California Sur with Austin Travels

Dipping Into Nature: Mexico’s Baja California Sur with Austin Travels

December, 2023

Espiritu Santo

Above me, a beagle-sized sea lion pup pinwheels through the blue water of the Sea of Cortez. A second darts past with a seagull feather in its mouth, and two more nibble on the tips of the fins I’m wearing.

Scuba diving with a colony of sea lions at Isla Ilotes, a rocky outcropping at the north end of a string of islands near La Paz, Mexico, feels a little like joining recess at the local elementary school. Although my school days are long gone, I’m still having a blast.

My visit is part of a nature-focused, five-day trip to Baja California Sur, in Mexico. I’m traveling solo, and my itinerary includes a night in the artists’ enclave of Todos Santos, two nights of camping on Isla Espiritu Santo, and a night at the posh Baja Club in La Paz before I head home. But this moment, with dozens of sea lions swirling around me, tops the highlights reel.

My guide has warned me not to grab or chase the creatures, but to let them come to me. And they do.

As I swim slowly into an underwater cave where a dozen animals have gathered, a sleek brown pup with blue marbles for eyes nips lightly on the sleeve of my wetsuit. I spin around, and another tugs on the scarf wrapped over my head. I laugh underwater, and they swim into the stream of diamond-like bubbles I exhale.

The sea lions seem thrilled to have visitors.

A night in Todos Santos in Baja California Sur


Todos Santos

Los Colibris Casitas is perched on a hillside on the outskirts of Todos Santos, in Baja California Sur. Photo by Pam LeBlanc

To get here, I caught a direct flight from Austin to the main airport in Cabo San Lucas. Then I made the hour-and-15-minute drive to the artists’ enclave of Todos Santos, where I stayed the night at Los Colibris Casitas. From the patio in front of my room at the boutique hotel, perched high on a bluff on the outskirts of town, I can see waves crashing onto the beach far below. Birds circle a fresh water estuary, and a forest of palm trees sways in the breeze. I want to get a better sense of my surroundings, so Sergio Jauregui, the owner of Los Colibris and Todos Santos Eco Adventures, volunteers to give me a tour.


Todos Santos

Todos Santos is an artists enclave in Baja California Sur, Mexico. Pam LeBlanc photo

We drive to the town’s center, where he gives me a history lesson as we walk the streets. A mission was built here in 1723, and the last battle of the Mexican-American War was fought nearby in 1848. For the next century, farmers grew sugarcane in the area, but when the town’s main spring dried up in 1950, people moved away.

Things changed again in 1981, when that spring revived. The government paved a road into town, bringing tourists. American surfers sought it out as an alternative to California’s crowded beaches. Then artists moved in, drawn by the golden light.

Today Todos Santos supports 27 galleries, several gourmet restaurants, and a smattering of hotels. The famous song by The Eagles comes to mind when we walk past a pale orange building called Hotel California. We admire murals in the cultural center, duck into an art gallery where tiny images of dancers twirl across colorful canvases, walk across the plaza, and poke our heads into a historic mission.

Onward to Isla Espiritu Santo, part of Baja California Sur

Espiritu Santo

Todos Santos Eco Adventures leads guided camping trips to Espiritu Santo. Pam LeBlanc photo

The next day, I catch a ride to La Paz. The hour-long trip takes me past mountains and thickets of tall cactus, where birds somehow manage to perch without stabbing their toes.

It’s start day for the Baja 1000 car race, a 1,000-mile off-road scramble through the desert that draws souped-up dune buggies, tricked-out pickup trucks and beat up Volkswagen Bugs. I watch a few roll down the starting ramp and speed down the oceanfront boulevard, but I’m more interested in what lies beyond.

From La Paz, it takes about 45 minutes by boat to reach Isla Espiritu Santo, a popular destination for eco tourists. Along the way, we pass a noisy colony of blue-footed boobies. The birds, which show off their teal-colored feet to impress the opposite sex, look almost cartoonish. Frigate birds, with long forked tails and hooked bills, wheel overhead. Rust-colored hills bristle with cardon cacti, their long prickly arms extended skyward, and layer-cake cliffs jut into the sea.

The boat pulls ashore in a cove, and we hoist our duffel bags onto the beach, where a crew has already set up tents. A bucket of water and a rug the size of a picnic table are arranged in front of each one, so we can rinse our feet before stepping inside. This is glamping, after all, and instead of a sleeping bag on the ground, we’ll be snoozing on real mattresses with sheets and pillows.

Camp Cecil

La Paz

Guests dip their toes in the surf at Camp Cecil on Isla Espiritu Santo. Photo by Pam LeBlanc

Our guide, Andrea Hinojos, gives us a tour of Camp Cecil, another arm of Todos Santos Eco Adventures. At the far end of the cove stands a portable bathroom. There’s a solar shower, too, and, at the other end of the beach, a seating area complete with a cushy sofa. While the kitchen staff works on lunch, Hinojos briefs us on camp life.

We can use the kayaks or swim when we want, but hiking isn’t allowed past the dunes. But the ocean is the focus, anyway.

Espiritu Santo

The sun rises over Camp Cecil on Espiritu Santo. Pam LeBlanc photo

That first night, just three other guests shared  the camp with me ––- Joe Oliver and Christine McEnery of Carmel Valley, California, and their friend Rob Goldman of Philadelphia. We hit it off immediately, sitting on beach chairs with our toes dangling in the surf and admiring our surroundings.

McEnery tells me she was looking for a natural experience when she decided to come to the camp.

“I wanted unspoiled nature and it’s not so easy to find that,” McEnery says. She loves outdoor adventure, just like me. “It’s the visuals – looking at the desert in one direction and thinking you’re in the (American) Southwest, and in the other direction it looks like the Caribbean.”

Her husband agrees. “It’s such a departure from work-a-day life of staring at a computer screen,” Oliver says. “It’s such a treat to see great views and have them untouched by developers.”

Diving into the Sea of Cortez

Espiritu Santo

Kayakers glide along a cove on Espiritu Santo, near La Paz, Mexico. Pam LeBlanc photo

The ocean around the island is part of a marine park, and we spend a lot of time exploring it. We snorkel among pufferfish and angelfish. Sea turtles the size of car tires glide beneath us. I dive down to get a closer look at a starfish.

One evening, we push off in kayaks, and paddle past mangroves flush with chirping birds. I can’t take my eyes off a pair of pelicans sitting on a rocky island as the sun sets behind them.

“It’s very beautiful,” Hinojos says, then references ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau, who spent time in the area. “It’s secluded. There are no people living here so it’s like a virgin island in the ‘Aquarium of the World.’”

And the food is far from what I’d eat on a regular camping trip. Instead of freeze-dried meals or hotdogs, chefs bring out trays of grilled fish, nachos, ceviche, and flank steak. For breakfast we have huevos rancheros and fresh fruit, and every evening we sample a new cocktail and snacks.

A night in La Paz

I love ocean swimming so much that the guides arrange one last outing before I head back to the mainland.

I leave my snorkel in the boat and dive down deep, touching the white sand on the bottom. It’s here, with the turtles and angelfish, that I feel most at home.

But finally, my water taxi arrives. I towel off and let the wind dry my hair as we speed back to civilization. In La Paz, I check into the Baja Club, then take some time to stroll along the beachfront. That night, I climb the stairs to the rooftop bar, where I sip a margarita and stare at the islands in the distance.

I’m officially spoiled.