Mexico: Marine Biology in the Caribbean & Baja Peninsula

Sustainability and the Environment

Dive into Mexico’s lively marine environments and regional cultures as you travel from the coast to the jungle. Snorkel in some of the world’s most diverse waters, witness sea turtles and sea lions in their natural habitats, and hike through ancient Mayan ruins.

DEPARTURE

July 3, 2018

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PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

Sustainability

Language

Water Activity

Outdoor Activity

Homestay

Campground

Program Description

Get to know your group in Mexico City before beginning your journey to La Paz, where you will meet with researchers and work closely with a marine biologist. Snorkel among colorful schools of fish and observe sea lions in their natural habitats on the beautiful island of Espíritu Santo, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. During your homestay, live with a Mexican family and experience daily life. Practice your Spanish as you explore the region’s incredible natural wonders and culture with your host family.

As the program moves to the Yucatán Peninsula in southeastern Mexico, you will experience a totally new natural envi­ronment.  On the island of Cozumel, learn about pearl farming and witness ecosystem restoration efforts through the installation of artificial reefs. Do the night shift of turtle nest patrol to hopefully watch giant sea turtles laying eggs in the sand. See the starfish at El Cielo to learn why they call it “the sky.” Back on land, you will discover the region’s strong Mayan cultural influence through visits to the archaeological ruins at Coba or Tulum.

Your Experiment concludes in Mexico City, where you will deepen your knowledge of Mexico’s culture, history, and cuisine from the vantage point of the country’s expansive capital city. Taste authentic tacos, visit the famous cathedral in el Zócalo,  and stroll through the Frida Kahlo Museum.

Participants in The Experiment’s Mexico pro­gram who are minors must travel with parental consent documents. Please see our website and contact The Experiment for more information.

 

PROGRAM AT A GLANCE

Prerequisite:

One year of Spanish (recommended).

Dates:

July 3, 2018 - July 26, 2018 (3 weeks)

Program Fee:

$5,290.00

Group Airfare Cost:

TBD

Depart/Return City:

Mexico City

Orientation:

Mexico City, 3–4 days

Homestay:

Cozumel or La Paz*, 11–12 days

Other Accommodations:

Sample Itinerary

  •  
    Days 1-3

    Orientation in Mexico City

    • Learn about the history and culture of Mexico
    • Visit important sites in the city, including the Museum of Anthropology, the Zócalo, the Catedral Metropolitana de la Asunción de María, and the Frida Kahlo Museum
    • Get to know other members of your group during activities and discussions
    • Practice your Spanish language skills
    • Explore diverse neighborhoods and try Mexican cuisine in street-side cafés

    During the orientation period, you and your group will stay in a centrally located hostel.

  •  
    Days 4-14

    Homestay

    • Become fully immersed in the daily life of a Mexican family and community
    • Do activities with your host family

    Thematic Focus

    • Work with local marine biologists to learn about the huge biodiversity of the Sea of Cortez
    • Tour a marine research institute
    • Snorkel in the waters off the island Espiritu Santo
    • Visit traditional fishing communities
    • Camp at a goat ranch
    • Go kayaking among mangroves

    During this period, you will stay in the home of a family. Sample community: La Paz.

  •  
    Days 15-19

    Thematic Focus in Yucatán Peninsula

    • Explore the mangroves, beaches, and ecosystems of the Caribbean
    • Work with Mexican ecologists at the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve
    • Snorkel with giant sea turtles and observe manatees, dolphins, and other sea life in their natural habitats
    • Explore Mayan ruins and rural villages around the city of Tulum
    • Observe scientists as they monitor sea turtle nests

    During this period, you and your group will stay in a lodge.

  •  
    Day 20

    Program Reflection and Wrap-up in Mexico City

    • Reflect with your group on your experiences during the program

    During the reflection period, you and your group will stay in a centrally located hostel.

  •  
    Day 21

    Departure

    Please note: This itinerary is only a sample and is subject to change. Because of factors such as group size and availability of in-country offerings such as festivals, your experience — including sites visited and the number of days spent in each location — may differ somewhat from the one presented above.

Past Group Leaders

  • Anna Hamilton

    Born and raised in Topeka, Kansas, Anna Hamilton obtained her BA in public health and international development from Tulane University in May of 2014, with minors in Spanish and economics. In autumn 2014, she returned to Tulane to start her master’s degree in public health monitoring and evaluation. Anna has extensive experience working with young adults as a swim instructor, volunteer teacher and tutor for both English and Spanish speakers, and resident advisor.

    Anna and her family share a strong love of music. She also enjoys hiking and outdoor activities, learning new things, and meeting new people. She is a swimmer and a runner and completed her first marathon in February 2014. Anna has traveled widely in Central and South America and plans to work as a monitoring and evaluation specialist in Latin America after obtaining her master’s degree in public health.

  • Emily Josefowitz

    Originally from Austin, Texas, Emily headed to the east coast to attend the University of New Hampshire for college where she earned her BS in zoology. While studying at UNH, she completed a semester abroad in Perth, Australia, which catalyzed her love for international travel and adventures. Since completing her undergraduate degree, Emily has traveled to many different international locations for both work and pleasure. She is experienced in leading and working with students on adventure travel programs, such as in Hawaii, Costa Rica, Belize, Ecuador and the Galápagos, Turkey, Greece, Kenya, Tanzania, and the Caribbean. Emily recently completed her Master of Education from the University of Washington, where she specialized in outdoor/experiential education topics, and she currently works in special education for an elementary school in Seattle. When Emily is not traveling, you can find her enjoying all the Pacific Northwest has to offer, including skiing, hiking, paddle-boarding, and playing in the rain and sunshine!

Pre-departure Documents

Summer 2018

Congratulations on your upcoming Experiment summer on the Mexico: Marine Biology in the Caribbean & Baja Peninsula program. Visit our pre-departure page for information about our expectations, communications, and travel planning. In early 2018, our summer international information will be published in a secure page, found in the Parent Portal.

In early spring 2018, the following program-specific documents will be linked to this page:

  • Participant Handbook
  • Parent Handbook
  • Health Guidelines
  • Personal Funds Abroad
  • Accident and Sickness Insurance
  • Packing List

Many questions can be answered by reviewing these materials, but please do not hesitate to contact us if further information is required. To submit or update your domestic travel and emergency contact information, please login in to the Parent Portal.

Important Passport and Medical Information

If you do not yet have a passport, or if you have not applied for one, you should do so immediately.

If you have not had a physical with your doctor since June 2017, make an appointment as quickly as possible, as your health form must be filled out based on a current physical.

Please bookmark this web page for easy use in the future.