Cruise N Learn in La Paz, Mexico

Take the next step in your sailing adventures with one of our Cruise N Learn (ASA 103 + ASA 104) sailing lessons in La Paz, Mexico! Located on the Gulf of California with the Baja Peninsula to the west, the Sea of Cortez offers magnificent winds and warm waters.  Fly into Cabo to begin your trip and head north to Marina Palmira where you’ll meet your instructor, classmates, and board the beautiful, comfortable, sea worthy sailboat Vantage, a Catalina 42′.

Sign-up here!

Note: We are currently scheduling 2023 classes April 3-7, April 10-14, April 17-21 and April 24-28. November and December classes are available as well!





Live Aboard Vantage!

The lesson takes place on the Catalina 42 sailing yacht Vantage, a 1992 42 foot sloop rigged sailboat. Vantage is a capable and versatile cruiser with a comfortable interior and a nice sailing hull shape.

  • 3 cabins
  • Roomy, bright saloon
  • Bimini
  • Dodger
  • Well-stocked galley
  • 2 heads

About the Course

Become a Skipper!

The Cruise N Learn is 5-day liveaboard lesson covering ASA’s Basic Coastal Cruising and Bareboat Charter (103 + 104) certifications. Students will learn to safely skipper keelboats up to 45 feet in coastal waters in an immersive and breathtaking environment. Students will take part in planning their adventure as well as provision the boat with food and beverages. 

  • Navigation
  • Planning a Day & Overnight Trip
  • Sail Selection
  • Weather and safety
  • Reefing
  • Heaving-to
  • Docking Upwind/Downwind boats 30′ and larger
  • Anchoring boats 30′ and larger
  • Boat Handling under sail and power
  • Sail Trim on boats 30′ and larger
  • Inboard Engines
  • Boat Systems: Engine, Galley, Head, Electrical, and Heaters
  • Navigation Topics: Plotting Courses, Tides, and Currents
  • 18+ years old
  • ASA 101: Basic Keelboat Certification


Minimum to run a lesson: 2 students/lesson

Maximum in each lesson: 3 students/lesson 


Monday 9:00am to Friday 5:00pm

Students are invited to stay aboard Vantage Sunday night before the course begins as well as the last night of the course, Friday.

Cancellation Policy
  • Cancellations made 60+ days before the first day of the lesson can be rescheduled.
  • Cancellations made within 60-days of the first day of the lesson are non-refundable.
  • Rescheduling within 60-days of the lesson will result in a fee equal to 50% of the cost of the course.
Lesson Refund Policy:
  • Lessons are refundable up to 6 months after purchase.
  • Shipping costs are non-refundable.
  • Course materials picked up or shipped are non-refundable

Getting there!

Documentation & National Park Passes

  • Visas (Forma Migratoria Multiple “FMM”) are required but getting them can depend on arrival locations. By air thru SJD, passports are simply stamped with an exit date corresponding to how long you tell customs agents you are visiting. The $40 cost of an FMM is included in the Alaska airline tickets thru SJD last fall. Air travel via LAP may require getting a paper FMM. For travel by land (a 3-4 day, 900 mile trip from San Diego), FMMs must be obtained at the border offices. 
  • National Park passes are required for boat trips to the beautiful islands of Espiritu Santo and Partida north of La Paz, as well as nearby Ballandra Bay (day anchorage only). While available online, hard copies must be on hand as either daily bracelets or longer term passes. 
  • Fishing licenses are required for anyone wanting to fish and can be obtained online or from Darsena or other nearby offices. Vantage has rod holders, gaff and cleaning table but students must bring their own fishing gear.


  • Los Cabos Airport (SJD) is the most economical way to fly into Mexico. It is a 2.5 hour drive or 3 hour bus ride to La Paz. Alaska Airlines has daily nonstop flights from Seattle to SJD. American airlines also serves SJD.
  • La Paz International Airport (LAP) is 16 km from Marina Palmira, but serves only a few Mexican airlines like Aeromexico and Volaris. One way to make LAP work is to fly Seattle to San Diego, collect baggage then take a shuttle to the Custom Border Xing (CBX – app available) pedestrian bridge that connects directly with the Tijuana International Airport (TIJ), then fly Volaris from TIJ to LAP. While this option is potentially less costly than via SJD it probably requires an overnight in San Diego. 

Transportation from Los Cabos Airport (SJD)

  • From SJD, Baja EcoTours has several shuttles daily to the La Paz bus station. These comfortable 12 passenger shuttles have AC and seat belts and cost $32 per person each way. The western route is smooth road and scenic along the coast thru El Pescadero/Cerritos and Todos Santos. The eastern route goes thru scenic but mountainous terrain, and may depend on whether the shuttle is servicing passengers along that route (Los Bariles). Other shuttles/buses may be available. 

Transportation from La Paz International Airport (LAP)

  • Short taxi ride from the La Paz bus station to Marina Palmira costs 70 pesos. About a 10 minute taxi ride from the LAP airport.
  • DIDI is a ride share option in La Paz, but Uber isn’t dependable yet.
  • Rental cars are available from SJD. Mexican auto insurance is required and paid for with the rental cost but – be warned – it is not always included in the quoted rental price. Paid parking is available at Marina Palmira.

While there

  • The taxi stand is just outside the guarded marina entrance.
  • Three restaurant/bars are located in the marina. 
  • Nearby accommodations include “Rosa’s” AirBnb in the Atalanta condos (2 BR, 2 bath, full kitchen, AC) and the City Express Hotel.
  • The beautiful “Malecon” boardwalk along the shore makes for a nice stroll. The nearest restaurant is “Molintos” about 1km walk back towards town.
  • Cell service is very good and the marina has free wireless on the docks and in the “cruiser’s lounge”, which also has a book exchange.
  • Washers/dryers available in marina using tokens purchased at the marina tienda.