Bacalar Mexico Guide: Embrace a 3-4 Night Escape to a Lush Lagoon Paradise

Advisor - Karen Hart
Curated By

Karen Hart

Icon Share


  • Mexico

  • Bacalar

  • Boutique Travel

  • Off-the-Beaten-Path Travel

  • Tropical Vacations

  • Wellness Travel

  • Jungle

  • Lagoon

  • Watersports

Bacalar lagoon with a dock.
Curator’s statement

Bacalar is a dreamy destination in Mexico that you truly can't grasp until you experience it with your own eyes and your body submerges in the lagoon. They call Bacalar, the lagoon of seven colors. Throughout the day, as the sun moves across the lagoon, you can honestly see more than seven shades of blue. And most of the day, the the lagoon sparkles. You are also surrounded by the Mayan jungle and it's beautifully lush. Located close to Belize and around a 4-hour drive from Cancun airport, Bacalar is still not overpopulated so it does feel a bit off-the-beaten-path. However, over the last few years over my 3 visits, I have watched it grow in hotel development around the lagoon. We all must treat our visits to Bacalar with respect to the land to continue to keep it as special as it is. For now I can say it is my most favorite zen escape in Mexico that aesthetically transforms me into a very happy existence.

The Fora Difference

Book with Karen to access exclusive perks and experiences on your trip.

[object Object]
Killer perks

Free upgrades, spa credits and more—we got you

[object Object]
Personalized recs

Customized travel planning for your style

[object Object]
Insider knowledge

Expert advice from people who’ve actually been there

Where to stay Bacalar, Mexico

Previous slide

Habitas Bacalar

Environmentally-friendly A-framed lodges in Bacalar surrounded by flora and fauna and beautiful lagoon with yoga classes, spa treatments and outdoor experiences.

Fora Perks
  • $100 food / beverage credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Hotel Casa Hormiga Bacalar

Fora Perks
  • $25 hotel credit.

  • $25 spa credit.

  • Upgrade & guaranteed 1pm check-out.

Boca de Agua

An exclusive, stunning, eco-conscious property with a state-of-the-art Mind + Body Learning Lab and treehouses crafted from FSC-certified wood.

Next slide
Advisor - Karen Hart

Unlock perks by contacting Karen to book your trip.

Things do in Bacalar, Mexico

Bacalar Mexico Guide: Embrace a 3-4 Night Escape to a Lush Lagoon Paradise - Things do in

I highly recommend a stay at Habitas Bacalar because you will be provided a number of opportunities to really embrace the lagoon, relax with daily wellness and communal activities. I personally love partaking in their daily mediation or yoga, their glass water bottom kayaking and in the evening hangouts for guests of the property on the porch where they offer movie screenings and live performances.

General water activities on the lake (I like to recommend non motorized activities to help with sustainability) but there is no shortage of options. Paddle boarding. Kayaking.

For my fellow water babies; booking a day out on the water in a sail boat with my friend and local guide Roberto is super special (his boat is called Utopia). He will take you to experience the cenotes of the lagoon which are so extremely unique compared to the cenotes of Tulum. Specifically special is the black cenote. You will see a sunken pirate ship! And touch parts of the lagoon where you can swim with not another person or boat in site.

There is a small downtown of Bacalar that mostly consists of small souvenir shops and food stands and markets, but it is really cute to walk around the cobblestone roads and explore off into the neighborhoods. Because this downtown boarders the lake there is always a glimpse of a blue shining from the lagoon that will catch your eye and pull you in.

Truly you go to Bacalar to embrace the lagoon and let the water heal you - even if you don't think you need heeling; you will see how Bacalar recharges your mind and soul once you dive in (and yes it's warm)!

A note from Karen

Due to the small community of Bacalar and the friendliness of the locals; I have made a lot of personal connections. If you are interested in planning a trip to Bacalar I am happy to introduce you to the locals for boat tours or temple tours OR just to have a local friend!

Bacalar holds a special place in my heart and although I fear what will happen to the lake when it becomes over built with hotels and visitors; I would love to help you plan your trip to Bacalar Mexico.

Places to eat & drink in Bacalar, Mexico

Sandwich on a plate in front of a blue sea.


Siete & Tree Bar at Habitas Bacalar: Enjoy lunch at the restaurant overlooking the lagoon or on the porch by the water. Hands down the best grilled cheese ever! And, they make a mean Pina Colada or Spicy Margherita if that matches your palette.

(No name side-of-the-road chicken stand): Along the main road highway of Bacalar, there are a number of chicken stands and if you can get past the fact there are chickens hanging you can buy for only $2.00 USD a pile of shredded grill fired chicken and delicious flour tortillas that need little to no sauce but add a salsa or hot sauce and it will melt in your mouth.


Damajuana Bacalar: Yes, this is a Japanese inspired restaurant in Mexico with Mezcal tasting and excellent cocktails. The owner is incredible and will personally greet you if he is in town and blow your mind with stories of Bacalar. And as a sushi aficionado, I can confirm that there are some really special sushi rolls that will meet your approval.

Macario Bacalar: A pork belly that you will never forget. An ambience that actually feels very vibey like Tulum but also very communal, so don't be surprised if your table neighbors come over for a cheers or to say hello. It's a beautiful restaurant and a sensational meal where all is shareable and each bite is memorable. The menu changes daily based on local ingredients!

Day trips from Bacalar, Mexico

Palm tree-lined beach with rocks, Mahahual Beach in Mexico, on a clear day.

About an hour'ish by car you can leave the town of Bacalar and go visit the beach town of Mahahual and spend a day at a fun beach club called Hayhu on the Caribbean ocean.

Advisor - Karen Hart

Travel Advisor

Karen Hart

Get in touch with Karen

Did you like this guide? Reach out to customize and book your own experience. Or, just to chat about travel in general.

You can normally expect a response from Karen within a business day or so. You’ll also be subscribed to our travel newsletter (you can unsubscribe at any time).