Mexico: Marine Biology in the Caribbean & Baja Peninsula

Sustainability and the Environment

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

Sustainability

Language

Water Activity

Outdoor Activity

Homestay

Campground

DEPARTURE

July 2, 2019

APPLY NOW

Program Description

Get to know your group in Mexico City before beginning your journey to La Paz, where you will meet with scientists and marine biologists. Snorkel among colorful schools of fish and observe marine animals in their natural habitat on the beautiful island of Espíritu Santo, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

Travel south to the Yucatán Peninsula to experience a totally new natural environment. On the island of Cozumel, you will patrol turtle nesting sites at night where giant sea turtles can often be spotted laying their eggs. Learn about pearl farming and participate in ecosystem restoration efforts by installing artificial reefs. During your time Cozumel, you will also experience daily life with a local Mexican family during your homestay. You can practice Spanish as you share authentic Mexican meals and explore the region’s incredible natural wonders with your host family.

Back on land, you will discover the region’s strong Mayan cultural influence through visits to the ancient archaeological ruins at Coba or Tulum.

Finally, return to Mexico City, home to 20 million people, where you will deepen your knowledge of Mexico’s culture, history, and cuisine. Explore the city, enjoy 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 2, 2019 - July 25, 2019

Program Fee:

$5,320.00

(does not include airfare)
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 4-16

    Homestay

    • Become fully immersed in the daily life of a Mexican family and community
    • Do activities with your host family
    • Tour a marine research institute and learn about pearl farming and observe turtle nest monitoring.
    • Visit traditional fishing communities
    • Explore Mayan ruins and rural villages around the city of Cobá and visit the famous cenotes.
    • Snorkel with giant sea turtles, dolphins, and other sea life in their natural habitats.
    • Work with Mexican ecologists at the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve Explore the mangroves, beaches, and ecosystems of the Caribbean

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

  •  
    Days 15-19

    Thematic Focus in La Paz

    • Participate in a series of ecological activities that explore marine biology, local culture, and the Sea of Cortez.
    • Go kayaking in the mangroves along La Paz bay and visit Balandra Beach.
    • Travel to Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park
    • Go snorkeling in the waters off the island of Espiritu Santo.
    • Vist a sustainable shrimp farm, and work with local marine biologists to learn about the huge biodiversity of the Sea of Cortez.

    During this period, you and your group will stay in a centrally located hotel.

  •  
    Day 20

    Program Reflection and Wrap-up in Mexico City

    • Reflect with your group on your experiences during the program
    • You and your group will enjoy a farewell meal

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

  •  
    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.

Itinerary is subject to change.

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!

Student Voices

  • My group leaders and fellow group members were some of the best people I’ve ever met–honest, to the point, and fun. It was such a diverse group, and we got along so well. Cave diving, hiking, swimming with sea turtles where National Geographic photographers work, snorkeling (on program or with my host family), shopping in Cancun, eating in authentic restaurants, riding in boats to see sea lions and kayaking to see dolphins in La Paz… The Experiment revealed to me that I would love to travel abroad in college, and especially stay with host families, because the immersion is where your language skills and cultural understanding really come together.

    --Emma
  • No one can say that this experience didn’t change their life for the better. I spent three weeks with some of the most interesting and cool individuals from around the world. I learned as much from my peers as I did from the tour guides! From the rainy excursions in Mexico City to cave snorkeling in Cozumel, this trip was filled with insights from actual Mayan natives, lessons on pre-hispanic culture, and plates of tasty Mexican delicacies.

    --Isamar
  • Going to Mexico with all these amazing people from around the world has been life changing. Not only have I learned so much about Mexico and marine biology but I have made life long friendships with not only my group but with my host family, our marine biologist guide, and many other people

    --Salma

Pre-departure Documents

Summer 2019

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 2019, our summer international information will be published in a secure page, found in the Parent Portal.

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

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 2018, 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.