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Puerto Escondido – the best beach destination in Mexico

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Are you wondering what your next beach destination will be? Which country is top of mind to explore pristine new beaches? Where do you want to lay down on the warm sand by night under a beautiful starry sky? There are so many countries and so many opportunities to follow up on your beach dream. We recommend Mexico! To be more pacific: the great beach side village Puerto Escondido on the Mexican Pacific coast. And there is one specific place where you should go. Read our blog to find out.

In this blog we share our experiences staying and traveling to Puerto Escondido. For me Puerto Escondido is the best beach destination in Mexico and I am happy to share this with you.

How we found out about the existence of this charming beach gem

At first I even didn’t know Puerto Escondido existed. Do you know? We stayed in Oaxaca for almost two weeks with a super friendly family. We spent Christmas, a birthday and New Year with them. Via Airbnb we had booked a room at their place. In Mexico we discovered Airbnb still functions like how it started once upon a time. Spending time with local people that like having you in their home and learn about their culture. They spoke little English and our Spanish is quite poor but this handicap didn’t interfere with developing a friendship.

We had a splendid time in Oaxaca. We worked hard and we relaxed hard too. Sometimes that’s necessary when you travel for a long time. Stay at a place a little bit longer to ground yourself again. Calm down, have a better focus, feeling at home after rushing from place to place.

Puerto Escondido
Santo Domingo Church in Oaxaca

After staying in Oaxaca for a while we became interested in the beach again. It was a while ago we had been at a beach. Worse still, we hadn’t seen a proper beach in more than 6 months! Although we were on a world trip. Blame the beautiful mountains in Nepal best seen from the Annapurna Circuit and interesting cities like Chicago en Mumbai. So we planned to go to the beach.

Our Airbnb host was a big fan of the Oaxaca coast and why wouldn’t we follow local advice? Our Couchsurfing host in Mexico city recommended these beaches on the Pacific coast as well. That can’t be coincidence. That’s how I discovered the place Puerto Escondido. It is a small village on the Pacific Coast south of Oaxaca.. Always follow the signs. Puerto Escondido is where our beach is!

Puerto Escondido can be found in cultural hotspot Oaxaca

The Oaxacan coast is situated in – you can guess – Oaxaca state. Oaxaca is one of the culturally richest states of Mexico. The Oaxacan locals have their own magnificent food like mole. A big variety of indigenous people live in Oaxaca and give the state her colour.

Oaxaca is a good starting point for a visit to Puerto Escondido. We suggest you first spend 3 or 4 days in Oaxaca. Listen to local music at the local Zocalo square, shop some colorful artifacts and visit some art museums. Don’t forget to treat yourself with a brilliant dish of mole. After your cultural bath you are ready for take off. Finally arrive at your beach paradise Puerto Escondido on the Oaxacan coast.

Puerto Escondido
This can be your first sunset in Puerto Escondido

How to get to Puerto Escondido on the Oaxacan coast

From Oaxaca you can easily hop on a mini van to Puerto Escondido for 220 pesos (around 10 USD – 2017 price). After 7 hours of nauseating bends you will be broken. But the good news is you can finally relax because you have reached Puerto Escondido. The trip by big bus takes 12 hours and isn’t less nauseating so we suggest you stay with the van option. Several travelers told us it is worth splitting the journey in two halves and spend a night or two in quiet San Pedro on the way. Btw, in case you don’t get sick (the most of us) you will love the journey because the mountain views are outstanding!

It is not necessary to reserve weeks ahead. There are two rides per hour to Puerto Escondido daily. If you want a good seat because you are sensitive to car sickness, for Marleen that means to get the front seat, I recommend to buy your ticket a day in advance. I promise you it is a heavy ride. Your influence stops at selecting the seat and taking a pill in the morning. I promise you as well you will forget about the ride once you have seen your destination in real life.

It is also possible to fly in. Huatulco airport is your nearest and most convenient option. Air Canada has several flights as do Aeromexico and Interjet. Your other option is Oaxaca airport but beware for the hell of a ride as described.

This is why I like Puerto Escondido and the Oaxaca coast

Imagine yourself strolling on a long stretch of white sand. You see pelicans hunting for fish in the Pacific. Surfers are waiting for their best catch of the day. Music meets your ears and makes you want to sit down and drink a Corona while you wander into oblivion.

The sun drops in the ocean and hand made fires will lighten up the beach. You lay down and stare into a magnificent dark sky filled with glittering dots. You gaze at the stars and you know this is a place where you can stay forever. This is a place to get lost and wake up one day to extend your visa ;). Are you excited already? Pack your stuff and head to Puerto Escondido.

Puerto Escondido
The beach guards watch you while you play in the big waves at the end of the day

Please promise me you stay at this little corner of Puerto Escondido

If you are in Puerto Escondido you have to stay at La Punta in Brisas de Zicatela. La Punta in Brisas de Zicatela is like a village in a village. It is a tiny village with it’s community and vibe on it’s own. This place is the real deal. It is quiet. Streets are covered with sand. Local supermarkets have super fresh fruits and vegetables for little money. Roosters wake you up every morning. The beach is within walking distance. The waves are spectacular and the accommodation is still affordable and gives you a ‘fair’ deal for your dollar.

Try to go to Casa Lani or Casa Kei. They belong to the same owner. We stayed for two weeks in casa Kei. You share a outside kitchen with other guests. Which is perfect. The rooms are nice, spacious enough and clean. The garden of casa Lani is outstanding.

Puerto Escondido
The garden with garden kitchen in Case Kei in La Punta

For me La Punta in Brisas de Zicatela in Puerto Escondido is the best beach in Mexico to spend some time.

Other beautiful beaches on the Mexican Pacific coastline that are worth your visit

The Oaxacan coastline is dotted with numerous gorgeous beaches. At the far end there is Puerto Escondido waiting for you. And you can travel east from beach to beach via Mazunte, Zipolite, San Agustinillo all the way to the pristine beaches of Huatulco. All beaches have their own vibe and their own beauty. The ocean is cold in a good way so you can easily refresh during the day. Which is awesome because it can get really hot.

Mazunte and Zipolite are among our favourites too. Zipolite is known as a nudist beach destination. Don’t let that bother you if you are not nudist yourself, only around 10% of the people is naked on the beach. Mazunte more has a hippie feeling (the favorite of Marleen). If you go to Mazunte definitely don’t miss Punta Cometa. It is gorgeous look out over the Pacific ocean. If you are lucky you might spot a whale at the horizon.

Puerto Escondido
La Cometa is as beautiful as you rarely see. Do I see a whale there in the distance?

The best time to travel to Puerto Escondido

What the best time is to pay Puerto Escondido a visit depends on different factors. Most of the time we aim for a stay somewhere during the shoulder season period. Prices are better, destinations are less crowded and the weather is still good enough to enjoy the region.

The dry seasons runs from October until April. The high season for Puerto Escondido and the Mexican Pacific coastline will be between December and March. So the shoulder season would be October and April. We were there in January and were perfectly fine, not too busy but chances to meet nice people. If you can try to avoid the crowds around Christmas. If you are into surfing and you are pretty good try to aim for May. The waves are insane at that time of the year.

We wish you a great time in Puerto Escondido and the Pacific coast. We envy you. It is a dream destination. Don’t hesitate, just go and wander. (And don’t believe what people are telling you about safety in Mexico. You will be perfectly fine in this region, and there are many regions that are fine too)

Are you lucky to head to Mexico soon? Or somewhere else?

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Read here how to prepare a (long) trip in 22 easy steps

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