LAGUNA BACALAR, QUINTANA ROO MEXICO
The town of Bacalar is the center of all that the Costa Maya has to offer. In bright sunlight it’s hard to believe the vivid blues that your eyes are seeing, that fresh water could look like the Caribbean, but seeing it you will understand why it’s called the Lagoon of 7 Colors.
You can explore the lagoon by boat or kayak and discover the history of the Fuerte San Felipe and the Canal de los Piratas, or explore the Mayan selva (subtropical forest) and discover toucans and parrots. Nearby you can swim in deeper water in Cenote Azul or faster water in Los Rapidos, or wander in silence in half a dozen rarely visited Mayan ruins.
Bacalar is a small town with several good restaurants, a slow-paced atmosphere, and no banks. Some restaurants accept credit cards; many do not. ATMs are available and well used. Local markets and shops offer all that is necessary for those who just want to relax in our villas.
From Laguna Bacalar
Visit Mayan ruins, beaches, and Quintana Roo’s capital.
- Chacchoben Ruins : The nearest Mayan ruins, north of Bacalar, with three restored pyramids.
- Kohunlich and Dzibanche Ruins : Easy day-trip distance, southwest of Bacalar, with acres of quiet, jungle-nestled ruins to wander through–almost always nearly alone.
- The Rio Bec–Calakmul, Becan, Balamku : a cluster of ruins in and near the Calakmul Bioreserve, about 2 hours west of Bacalar, that make for a long day trip but offer some unusual sights, including one of the best-preserved Mayan friezes anywhere.
- Mahahual Village : Our nearest Caribbean beach, fronted by a reef for snorkeling and diving. Protected swimming inside the reef along the tidy beach with several nice restaurants. Best visited on a day when no more than one cruise ship is in town (schedules available online). Or head north along the coastline for deserted beaches en route to the southern edge of the Sian Ka’an Bioreserve.
- Xcalak Village : A sleepy beach “town” with good fishing, snorkeling, and diving. The southeastern-most place in Mexico.
- Chinchorro Banks : Dive & Snorkel the Coral Atoll Banco Chinchorro. Chinchorro is 18 miles offshore from Xcalak and is still a must on most Divers to-do list.
- Chetumal : The state capital contains the highly regarded Museo de la Cultura Maya, worth a stop on the way to the ruins at Oxtankah, north of the city, where its rare round temple is.
Map of the Region of Bacalar