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Located on a large bay on the Sea of Cortez, La Paz is 137 miles by road north of the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula.

Palmira Marina, La Paz, MexicoLa Paz was originally founded by Hernan Cortes on May 3, 1535 but the hostility of the environment forced him to retreat a year later. Other efforts to colonise the area brought Sebastian Vizcaino in 1596, Isidro de Atondo in 1863, the Jesuits Juan de Ugarte and Jaime Bravo in 1720 and finally in 1811, Jose Espinoza who established the first permanent settlement that turned La Paz into the capital of Baja California Sur in 1830.

The town is sprawling and ever expanding but for the visitor it is the small historic centre, the 'Port of Illusion' and the 5 km stretch of the seafront (the Malecon) that are of main interest. A large number of bars, restaurants and shops have opened along the length of the malecon and there is a sidewalk down the whole stretch making a lovely walk by the sea, especially at sunset. The La Paz area possesses boundless natural resources and is focused mainly on outdoors activities.

There are some beautiful beaches just a short drive away. Try your luck and experience legendary sport-fishing for marlin, tuna, dorado and more. Snorkel with playful sea lions or even whale-sharks during December to the end of February, or scuba dive with hammerhead sharks and giant mantas. Kayak spotting dolphins or beach-comb in the tranquil bays of Espíritu Santo Island.

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Audley Travel Specialist Tessa

Start planning your tailor-made trip to La Paz by contacting one of our Mexico specialists

Suggested itinerary featuring La Paz

This sample itinerary will give you an idea of what is possible when you travel in La Paz, and showcases routes we know work particularly well. Treat this as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of La Paz

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near La Paz

    Our expert guides to exploring La Paz

    Written by our specialists from their own experiences of visiting La Paz, these guides will help you make the most of your time there. We share both our practical recommendations and the best ways to appreciate La Paz at its best.

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      What to do in Mexico: our highlights guide

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    Accommodation choices for La Paz

    We've selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit La Paz. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    Ideas for experiencing La Paz

    Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting La Paz, and which use the best local guides.

    • Private Whale watching Excursion to Magdalena Bay
      Humpback whale breaching, Baja California

      Private Whale watching Excursion to Magdalena Bay

      Private Whale watching Excursion to Magdalena Bay

      Baja is well known as a great place to whale watch. The grey whale spends summers in the waters off Alaska, and then heads 6,000 miles (almost 10,000 km) south to the warmer lagoons of Baja in January, February and March.

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    • La Paz City Tour
      Cathedral in La Paz, Bolivia

      La Paz City Tour

      La Paz City Tour

      Your guide will take you on a stroll along the bustling bay of La Paz and the Malecon where he will talk you through the history of the city.

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    • Isla Espíritu Santo Tour
      Isla Espiritu Santo, situated off La Paz, Baja California

      Isla Espíritu Santo Tour

      Isla Espíritu Santo Tour

      The island of Espíritu Santo is the closest island to the bay of La Paz and possesses the most stunning views of all the islands in the Sea of Cortez.

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    • Safari Endeavour
      Safari Endeavour, Baja California

      Safari Endeavour

      Safari Endeavour

      This 86-guest yacht-style boat with 43 cabins offers clients casual elegance with a good selection of upscale amenities.

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    • Whale shark excursion
      Whale-shark, Baja

      Whale shark excursion

      Whale shark excursion

      You now have the privilege of marvelling at and swimming with the world's largest fish in its natural habitat.

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