Isla Holbox is a beautiful little island off the coast of Mexico near Cancun. In Isla Holbox (pronounced hol-bosh) you’ll find a dreamy island surrounded by stunning white sand beaches, incredible sunsets, and hammocks everywhere you turn. If you’re wanting to relax, escape the tourists crowds, and see a different side of Mexico then Isla Holbox is the place for you. Here is your Isla Holbox Ultimate Travel Guide.
Isla Holbox is not necessarily the easiest place to get to. The only options to get there are either to drive or catch a bus. It’s a 3 hour drive from Cancun to Chiquila where you catch a ferry over to the island. The ferries leave every half an hour during the day and take about 15 minutes to get from Chiquila to Holbox. There’s no need to worry about making a reservation for the ferries as you are unable to buy tickets in advance. If you are planning on driving there’s a few things to keep in mind – There’s a toll road on the way there which costs approximately $10 USD. Also, you are required to pay a daily rate for parking in Chiquila. So if Holbox is your only stop from Cancun the bus is definitely a more cost effective option. But if you want to stop and see some places on the way back to Cancun I feel like driving is a good option. I stopped at Chitchen Itza on the way back to Cancun which was just a bit of a detour to get there.
WHERE TO STAY
There’s a number of accommodation options anywhere from budget to high end. I suggest looking on Booking.com for the best hotel prices. I stayed at Hotel Para Ti which was absolutely beautiful. It was like a mini oasis walking in from the dirt streets into an absolute paradise complete with pools, rooftop sunbeds and lots of hammocks. I loved my stay there and I highly recommend it. While it looks like it would be a very expensive hotel, its actually a wonderful budget-friendly option.
WHAT TO DO
There’s lots to see and do around Isla Holbox, most of which involve relaxing – my favourite activity. (lol.. kidding, not kidding)
VISIT ALL THE INCREDIBLE BEACHES
The island is surrounded by beautiful beaches. You’ll find most people at Playa Holbox which is the main beach just a short walk from the town centre. My favourite beach is located at the west end of the island called Punta Cocos. Here you’ll find shallow water where you can walk so far out with the water only coming up to your knees. It’s also beautifully secluded and you may even spot some flamingos. Another beach worth seeing is Punta Mosquito towards the east of the town centre.
RENT A BIKE
Isla Holbox is a car free island therefore the best way to get around is to grab a bike and explore. Some of the most beautiful beaches are at either end of the island which I suggest going to check out. If biking isn’t your thing you can just jump on one of the many golf cart taxis driving around.
RELAX IN HAMMOCKS
You cant go to Isla Holbox without relaxing in one of there infamous hammocks. What a beautiful place to relax and appreciate the beauty surrounding you. You’ll find the hammocks on most beaches. If you want to see the hammocks along the main beach I suggest getting up early to grab one of these. But there plenty of hammocks on most other beaches which you’ll vacant most of the day.
TAKE IN AN INCREDIBLE SUNSET
I honestly have never witnessed more incredible sunsets that what I saw on Isla Holbox (with the exception an equally beautiful sunset on Siquijor Island, Phillipines). Every night the blue sky slowly transformed into magical orange and red sunset. The photos can never do it enough justice so I suggest grabbing your friends, a few drinks and taking it all in.
GO ON A TOUR
There are lots of tour options offered from various places in the town. Some available tours include swimming with whale sharks, scuba diving, wildlife tours, and tours around the island.
WHERE TO EAT
You can’t go to Mexico without stopping past some street food carts. In my opinion this is where you’ll find the best & most authentic food that Mexico has to offer. My favourites to try are tacos, quesadillas, and of course the desserts like churros! If food carts aren’t your thing, there’s plenty of restaurants around Isla Holbox that will suit your taste buds. I suggest wandering around and finding whatever peaks your interest.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Most places on the island including a lot of hotels don’t take credit card. Be prepared and bring enough cash with you. There’s a few atm’s on the island if you need it.
BRING BUG SPRAY
During the day you won’t find many mosquitoes but every night after sunset there were a lot of mosquitoes that came out. I wish I had brought some with me to save the pain of the annoying bug bites.
Visiting Isla Holbox is a must do during your time in Mexico. Make sure you take the time to relax and take in all the natural beauty surrounding you. This is trip unlike any other, enjoy your travels!