This beautiful laid-back hidden gem is a must if you are travelling the Quintana Roo and Yucatan regions of Mexico! Although it’s getting more popular as the years go by, the island is still very under-developed with no concrete roads, high-rise buildings or cars! It’s pretty cool, everyone just drives golf buggies around. Holbox would definitely be one of my most favourite destinations and these are the reasons why:
- How relaxed the island is
As I said above, the island is very under-developed which is a huge shock when coming from places like Cancun or Playa del Carmen. Everyday I’d walk barefoot, wearing only bikinis and dress down the dusty dirt roads to grab an iced-coffee on my way to a long day at the beach.. This was definitely the reason why I never wanted to leave.
- The Flamingoes
There is a spot on the island where you can go and see the flamingos up close. I had never seen flamingos before so this was super exciting for me!
- The Animal Shelter
The island has an animal shelter which is home to stray dogs, cats and raccoons! Anyone can go there and give the animals some love or even take the dogs for a walk along the beach if you wish. I’m a huge animal lover and to see the animals’ faces light up when you walked in truly was an amazing feeling.
- The Hammocks
I’m sure you’ve seen photos of people lying in coloured hammocks in the middle of a calm blue ocean at some point on the internet. I know I had and only discovered that this was actually on Holbox a few days prior to arriving. Not only can you get a real cool insta photo but it’s also super relaxing.
- The Food
I love food, especially Mexican food! Holbox has some amazing restaurants and cafes that I fell in love with. My favourites:
Taco Queto – cheap Mexican restaurant (does an amazing burrito!)
El Cafecito – good coffee
Le Jardin – amazing little French café with delicious food!
Miriam – little family-owned restaurant
Tip: make sure you try ceviche on the island!
- The People
The people on Holbox were amazing! This goes for Mexicans in general. Unfortunately the perspective the media gives on Mexico is pretty terrible when it really is filled with beautiful locations and lovely people. I found Mexicans to be very hard-working, generous and extremely friendly people.
- The Beaches
Holbox is located at the top of the Quintana Roo region which is actually the Gulf of Mexico so you won’t be getting crystal clear waters like Cancun or Tulum. In saying this, I was very amazed at how nice the water actually was. The ocean was super calm and very shallow which made it perfect for people with young children.
- Tribu Hostel
By far the best hostel I have ever been to! The amazing owners go far and beyond to make this hostel stand out and they really did do a marvelous job of it. Each night has different activities ranging from Jam-seshs in the bar to an international dinner. The hostel is located only one block back from the beach and is within walking distance to the main town.
- The Whale Sharks
From mid-May to mid-September, Isla Holbox is a very popular tourist destination for swimming with whale sharks. It’s pretty pricey but definitely worth the experience. It was incredible to get up and close with these beautiful creatures.
Also in the summer months on a new moon, you can go swimming and see the fluorescent plankton. I did’t think it would be as cool as it actually was. As you walk out into the ocean, the water just glows all around you. (I heard if you pee in the water, it glows more. I can’t say I’ve tried this one myself but feel free to give it a go.)
- The Sunsets
I have been to see the well-known extraordinary sunset of Santorini and Holbox definitely gave it a run for it’s money. The sunsets got better everyday I was there and the colours were just beautiful. Doing sunset yoga every afternoon made it even more amazing.