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Where is Isla Holbox and how to get there?
Isla Holbox is located on the most northern tip of México’s Yucatán Peninsula. It belongs to the Yum Balam Nature Reserve and is one of Mexico’s most natural island location.
The best way to reach the island is to fly to the nearest airport of Cancún (CUN) and then take a car or shuttle. As there are no cars allowed on the island you will have to take a ferry from the town of Chiquila. There are cheap parking options for you to leave the car.
Alternatively, and if you have the budget, you can also take private flights directly to Isla Holbox in small Cessna airplanes from Playa de Carmen, Cozumel or Cancún.
Isla Holbox Activities
Life on Holbox is quite chilled, to say the least. Due to its rather remote location the development of mass tourism has not be able to take hold here (yet). Its not that the island is deserted and empty of tourists but you do feel that the pace of life here is somewhat (even) more relaxed than other remote beach locations in Mexico. Despite the island being quite small it still offers its visitors a range of activities to do.
Chill in a Hammock
Some say that there are more hammocks on this island than people. And strolling around Holbox town and beaches you will find this to be very true. Especially inviting are the hammocks which are right at the beach, just hanging above the water and simply the best way to enjoy the chilled island vibes. Grab a cold beer and relax, cause that’s what beach life is all about.
Visit Isla Pajaros
If chilling in a hammock all day is just not your thing or you do feel like some activity we highly suggest the local tours. Once of them takes you to Isla Pajaros or the ‘Bird Island’. This small boat tour takes you to Isla Pajaros & Passion island and after to the Cenote of Yalahau.
On these islands you can view local bird life and learn about the flora and fauna. You can find Frigates, Pelicans & Flamingos here and also see many lizards.
Swim in a Cenote (Yalahau)
One of the most fascinating experiences throughout the entire Yucatan Peninsula is to swim in one of the many natural water holes called Cenotes. We already mentioned these water holes in our previous posts about exploring beautiful Yucatán so we decided to go visit another one of them just about 30 minutes by boat from Holbox.
The Yalahau Cenote used to be a fresh water supply for the entire island of Holbox and now is a great destination for tourists who want to explore the surroundings of Holbox. The place is great for a relaxing swim and you can also enjoy some nice views from a small platform which they built next to it. Definitely worth a visit and the perfect place to swim in fresh water.
Explore the Island on a Bike
Probably the best way to explore the island (apart from taking a boat around) is to rent a bicycle. Since there are only very few cars and roads are still not fully paved the bicycle offers you the best way to explore even the smallest and most hidden spots. There are many bike rental shops around the hotel zone where you can get a bike for the day. The best direction is to head west until you hit the end of the island to a tip called Punta Cocos – a great place to relax and unwind.
Go on a Private Fishing Tour
There are several tour companies which offer boat rides up to Punta Mosquito and beyond. During the Whale Shark season between May and September you can even snorkel and swim with them – surely a memorable experience. We were in Holbox during February and did not have the chance to see them swim by. Yet, we still decided to take a boat ride out an had a memorable experience as well. 2 hours of high-wave-bump-ride was what we got as the wind unexpectedly turned against our favor. Although there were not any spectacular animals to see we ended up fishing our own fish. After landing on a deserted stretch of beach (beautiful!) the boat driver prepared the best and freshest Ceviche I have ever tasted. This was truly one of the highlights of our Holbox trip.
Eat Amazing Seafood
Apart from our amazing Ceviche which we had on the boat trip there are numerous restaurants around Holbox which offer amazing seafood dishes. We really tried many of them and found Raices and Viva Zapata the best places for us to eat.