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“Best place in the world (in my opinion)”

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Baja AirVentures Las Animas Wilderness Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Best place in the world (in my opinion)”
Reviewed May 22, 2011

Had the best ever holiday here. Took a two week , two area holiday. Spent 2nd week in San Diego. Las Animas retreat is so beautiful, so remote, so quiet. The yurts are cosy and comfortable. The beach is like the Seychelles. I found sand dollars (which were amazing ) Weston-super-mare in the UK certainly doesn't offer anything like this! We had no problem at all with the security situation.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
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2 Thank fishwithchips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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111 reviews from our community

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English first
Jackson, Wyoming
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed February 1, 2011

You'll see that Las Animas has none of the amenities listed on tripadvisor - which is what makes it so special!!! You are lodged in a roomy, comfortable yurt - there is no running water or electricity, but you don't miss them - it really is a retreat from the complexities of everyday life. You can only reach it via Baja Airventures, and the trip involves a small plane followed by boat ride - there are no roads. The only other people you'll see are the limited number of other guests and staff, and you can be as active or inactive as you want. I've been there in the spring and the fall, and the seasons and the activities available are different but equally rewarding. The trip this past fall was awesome - swimming with whale sharks and sea lions, going fishing and having your catch prepared for dinner, snorkeling, visiting local sights/sites, enjoying the company of the other guests and guides, walking the beach, eating and drinking well, watching the sunset and later the stars, and relaxing. It is casual, laid back, and worth every effort to get there.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
4 Thank happycamper1060
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lemont, Illinois
Level 6 Contributor
77 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed December 8, 2010

Not sure who originally said that, but for me the title pretty much sums it up. I've been to Las Animas 3 times in three years and it just keeps getting better. I'm told "Las Animas" means "the Spirit" and for sure you can't help but feel "the Spirit" as you enjoy the beauty and solitude of the desert. Then to have the beauty and solitude of the desert merge with the rich diversity of the Sea of Cotez is truly memorable. Seeing the whale sharks and swimming with them is a rush. Be respectful of sharks and listen to the guides when they say no more than 3 people per shark. There's no need to "rush" at these wonderful creatures. You will have plenty of opportunity to enjoy their company over the course of the week. Be patient!!!

The remoteness and relatively small size of the camp is what makes it so unique. There are eight yurts and they are quite spacious and quite comfortable. The fact that there is no running water or electricity (other than the main yurt at night) is never an issue; as the solar bag showers and composting toilet are quite adequate and easily adaptable. Although the temperatures can get quite warm during the day, the night time temperatures cool down to good sleeping conditions. You won't miss your A.C.! A quick dip in the bay, or time spent paddle boarding right off the main yurt are easy ways to cool down, but do learn the sting ray shuffle as there are sting rays in the area.

The food is incredible and the margaritas and cervezas are always refreshing, unlimited, and free (non-alcoholic beverages are also available). The staff at Las Animas are truly wonderful people. Olga is the main cook and is always singing. Everything she prepares is outstanding from her various soups to her main courses, to her awesome desserts. Coffee awaits you at sunrise (don't miss the sunrises, they are amazing). You have breakfast either in the main yurt or on the pangas (21' motor boats) while whale sharking. Lunch is back at the main yurt and the afternoons are pretty much open to whatever folks want to do. Federico and Ricardo (the boat captains) were always available to take folks out fishiing. Other options are snorkeling with the sea lions as well as hiking in the desert. Photo opportunities are everywhere so bring a camera for sure.

The pilot/nature guides (Christina and Fred) are two very amazing people. In addition to being excellent pilots, they have comprehensive knowledge of the natural history of the area, both marine and terrestrial. Together they make a great team and both have fantastic personalities. If your lucky, Christina will introduce you to rousing game of "hot dice"!

With the layout of the camp being the way it is, you have the option of being on your own to simply soak up all that positive energy and enjoying the views of the bay, or simply hang out at the main yurt and enjoy sharing stories with the other visitors.

Las Animas - enjoy "the Spirit"

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled solo
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Helpful?
5 Thank heron48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed October 2, 2010

We stayed @ Las Animas in October 2009.
We were there for the Whale sharks (which were amazing), and we managed to swim with them, and no words can describe the feeling you get when you get up close to these majestic fish............
We travelled from the UK to spend 5 Nights @ Las Animas. The flight from San Diego Brownfield airfield was aprox 1hr & 45 mins with a stop @ San Filipe for immigration.
Fred was our pilot and one of our guides, the other pilot and guide was Caroline.
There were 11 people in our group, so there were two planes.
On arrival @ Bahia de Los Angeles you get picked up and taken to the jetty to pick up your boat. The boat takes approx 1 hour to get to Las Animas.
Once you arrive @ Las Animas you get an introductory talk from the Pilots/ Guides then you get to pick out your Yurt.
The Yurts vary in size, you have family ones which are larger than the couple ones, we stayed in a family yurt which had a double bed and a single bed plus a double bed in a sort of loft area, (which in fact sits on top of the bathroom area) it was very spacious.
The toilet is an eco toilet, which you throw wood chips down once you have finished, also the shower is a bag of water which has solar panels on it which you leave in the sun all day to heat up, when you're ready to shower you need to hoist the water bag by means of pullies and ropes into a position to shower. You can get two showers out of each bag, but you need to be very quick. There is also a terrace / decking area that is covered just outside your front door.
The sea is only feet away from your Yurt, watch out for the Stingrays, they are everywhere.... and some are very small.
Meals are served in the communal Yurt. The food is good, but there is a very limited choice, but the Margaritas are very good and you are encouraged to try and mix them for yourself (which I got the hang of).
Beware if you are a smoker California smoking rules apply in this part of Mexico. As we are both smokers on the evening of the day we arrived we smoked on the communal Yurt's terrace, pre and post dinner. We got up the following morning and got our coffee and toast and retired to the communal Yurt's terrace and lit up a ciggy, there was no one else around, but then Fred came bounding over to inform us that we could not smoke on the communal terrace, even though we had been the evening before, this is when Fred informed us that Californian smoking rules applied in this part of Mexico. So we decided that we would take our coffee to our own terrace, and smoke there as much as we wanted. Please bear in mind what Fred had said to us about the smoking on the communal terrace, that night we saw Fred lighting up a ciggy on the communal terrace, also the other staff there smoked around the side of the communal Yurt.................
We managed to go out to search for Whale Sharks every day and managed to swim with them most days. We also went to see the sea lions and snorkel with them which was great. We also got to see a huge pod of Dolphins, the likes of which we had never seen, the whole of the area was alive with jumping dolphins, porpoising it was really magic.
Our over all expirence @ Las Animas was fabulous, and we would do it again once we have saved up some money. Caroline & Fred the pilots / guides were really knowledgable and very helpful and they made the trip interesting.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Markpeter1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TX
Level 6 Contributor
93 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed June 8, 2010

I flew down to Bahia de Los Angeles from Brown Field, San Diego in a Piper Lance. It was a bundled trip put together by the owner of El Alarcon, the area where Las Animas Wilderness Retreat is located. After landing in Bahia, you take a panga (boat) apx. one hour down the coast to El Alarco, Las Animas. If you love the outdoors, hiking, adventure, wet landings, star-filled nights, fishing, snorkeling, this is for you. Although you're out in the "boonies," there is so much to see and do. Kevin Warren, owner, and his pilot/naturalist Fred Schmidt, were terrific.

  • Stayed May 2010
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Helpful?
1 Thank UpNOut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Baja AirVentures Las Animas Wilderness Lodge

Property: Baja AirVentures Las Animas Wilderness Lodge
Address: 100 Highway # 1 | Boat Accessible Only :-), Bahia de Los Angeles 22980, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Norte > Ensenada Municipality > Bahia de Los Angeles
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Bahia de Los Angeles
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Since 1989 Baja Airventure's Las Animas Eco-Lodge & soft adventure Tours is the only remote boat-in lodge in the Sea of Cortez with 1000's of happy guests. All-inclusive lodging packages from San Diego include R/T air, delicious food, beverages and daily water, nature & sport activities. Look forward to total privacy and relaxation with group size averaging 12 - 14. We cater to all age groups. Come to Las Animas Wilderness Lodge for the soft eco-adventure of a lifetime! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Las Animas Wilderness Retreat Hotel Bahia De Los Angeles
Baja AirVentures Las Animas Wilderness Lodge Bahia De Los Angeles, Mexico

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