Student enjoying full sails and clear skies while sailing.
Camera BJ Klophaus

Spring Semester in Baja


78 days


17+ yrs


$16,950 to $17,350

See Dates

Grow and lead on the Sea of Cortez

Open the door to lifelong outdoor adventure, leadership, and international travel on the Semester in Baja. Explore winding canyons in the Sonoran Desert. Sail quiet coves on clear blue water in the Sea of Cortez. Watch the sunset from the beach after a day of paddling your kayak. Learn from remote ranching and fishing communities. On this semester, you’ll learn the outdoor and leadership skills you need to explore these wild and beautiful places.

This semester combines a variety of outdoor activities interspersed with cultural learning opportunities. You’ll work on each activity for several weeks, gaining the skills to be self-sufficient in sea kayaking, backpacking, and coastal sailing. As you travel, you’ll have the opportunity to meet members of local fishing and ranching communities, practicing Spanish language skills and gaining a deeper understanding of the history and culture of Baja California.

Throughout your semester as you learn about traveling in the wilderness, you’ll grow and deepen your leadership skills. Leadership is learned by experience on a NOLS course: Working with your group to navigate challenging terrain is your chance to practice communication and decision making. Gaining independence as you sail is an opportunity to learn about teamwork and risk management. Meeting local educators, fishing communities, and ranchers will connect you to this place and help you learn from cultures different than your own. Unlike most tourists, you’ll spend your time far from city centers, exploring the landscape and communities of Baja California. The memories you make and friendships you form will stay with you for the rest of your life. Push yourself to meet new challenges and find your leadership style—you’re ready. 

Course Dates

2 courses

Jan 7 - Mar 25, 2025

Backpacking, Sailing, Sea Kayaking


Jan 6 - Mar 24, 2026

Backpacking, Sailing, Sea Kayaking


See Photos and Videos from Students and Instructors

What Our Grads Say

“I’m no longer the same person I was at the beginning of my trip. I have more confidence, and more love for the world.”