Isla Holbox Mexican Seaside Escape

Isla Holbox is Mexico’s best kept secret. Located just across the water from the port of Chiquilá on the Yucatán Peninsula, the island is only reachable by ferry. While the once backpacker’s paradise continues to modernize, Isla Holbox still remains an authentic seaside escape with zero cars or high-rises. Instead, visitors are greeted with white-sand beaches, turquoise water and abundant wildlife.


Arguably one of the most luxurious properties on the island, St. Somewhere by Karisma Punta Coco is worth the stay. The latest addition to the Margaritaville collection, the boutique hotel offers 3,000-square-feet of beach access, 39 impressive suites and on-site restaurants with exceptional culinary experiences. Guests have the option to start their day from a swim-up suite where a floating platter of mimosas and fresh fruit awaits outside. Can a vacation truly get any better than that?

The yacht-inspired architecture, boho-chic style and open-air design are unmatched. Plus, the staff are there to please; the intimate setting allows personalized care to be devoted to each guest. 24/7 room service and pristine, air-conditioned rooms are the standard.

St. Somewhere’s craft cocktail and culinary scene is unexpected but completely elevates the destination as a bucket list item. The Sand Bar is home to panoramic sea views and lives in harmony with its natural surroundings. After a sun-drenched day, the sharing-style menu has everything you need: fresh ceviche, signature drinks and more. A few steps away, the Harbor House taps into ancestral creations with seasonal ingredients. Perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner, you’ll want to enjoy meal after meal here. As an added bonus, chef-led cooking classes are available to learn how to prepare local dishes like a pro.

The hotel offers kayak and stand-up paddle board rentals where you can explore miles of coastline off Coco Beach. After, it’s only ritual to order a handcrafted margarita.


The tropical oasis is 26 miles long and one mile wide, boasting a small-town feel. The sandy — and sometimes very muddy — streets lined with oversized golf carts only add to the island-time vibe (similar to mountain time, minus the I-70 traffic). Isla Holbox has been likened to what Tulum used to be before its development boom.

Make sure to book a boat tour to visit Isla Pasion, Isla Pajaros and Yalahau Lagoon. The trio offers the chance to see resident flamingos, 35 species of nesting birds and a freshwater sinkhole perfect for soaking. The Bioluminescent Tour takes you to swim in water glistening with the stars — a result of micro-organisms emitting light through a chemical reaction in their bodies.

Venture into town for a community yoga class or an Instagram-worthy smoothie bowl from Painapol, a must-visit brunch spot. Exploring the various food stalls and shopping nooks is advised to enhance your days on this quaint but colorful island.


Fly into Cancun International Airport, and take a two-hour shuttle to the port of Chiquilá, where a ferry takes passengers 20 minutes across the water to Holbox every hour. Pack bug spray and shoes you don’t mind getting muddy if you’re visiting during rainy season. Because of the longer travel time, you’ll want to enjoy, at minimum, an extended weekend in Isla Holbox.

Photos courtesy of St. Somewhere.