Holbox Island is an island in the Caribbean Sea, off Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. It is a small but popular tourist destination for travelers who want to experience all that this little island has to offer. There are incredible things to see and do on Holbox Island that are worth the trip.
Isla Holbox is home to many natural wonders and offers plenty of activities for tourists to enjoy. Including diving with whale sharks or manta rays, snorkeling in some of the most diverse reefs on Earth, and even kayaking.
Other than the best things to do in Holbox Island, this is your full guide so you know exactly what to pack and when you should go.
Best Months to Visit Holbox Island
Holbox Island is an incredible travel destination all year long. That being said, the best time to visit is in the winter months between December and March.
While the hottest month of the year is May, averaging a daily maximum of 36°C degrees, or about 97°F.
In contrast, during cooler times like November or January, there will be a more moderate climate. You can experience both hot days as well as cool temperatures that offer cool mornings (with an average of 21°C)
Is it Worth Going to Holbox?
The sand is white and the water blue. The people are some of the friendliest you’ll find in Mexico, but they’re not pushy about it either. Holbox makes for a nice change from more tourist-filled destinations like Cancun or Playa Del Carmen and it’s also cheaper!
If you’re on the hunt for someplace new and exciting, then Isla Holbox should definitely be your next stop and it’s certainly worth a visit.
How to Reach Isla Holbox
You can get to Isla Holbox from about anywhere in Mexico. But, you should reach Quintana Roo or Yucatan first.
First of all, the most common way to get to Holbox Island is by going to a small village called Chiquila. It is located a 2 to 3-hour drive from Cancun and you can get a ferry to Holbox from there.
The second and last method to get to Holbox is by getting a private plane from Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Cozumel, or even Merida. Bear in mind that this option will cost you around $500 but it’s overall the most convenient way to reach the island.
You should also consider the fact that Quintana Roo requires all visitors to pay a $38 tourism tax. You can prepay it or get it done upon arrival. However, doing it using a service like Visitax will make your life easier.
9 Unique Things to Do in Holbox Island
Holbox Island is the perfect place to escape from your everyday life or bustling cities such as Cancun. It has beautiful beaches, amazing food, and a laid-back vibe.
The island has also a history of hosting pirates and fugitives, each leaving their mark. With such an interesting background, it’s no wonder that Holbox Island offers travelers so much to see and do!
Whether you want to get your feet wet by going for a swim or dive into some of the rich history offered here, these are the best things to do and see on Holbox Island.
Discover Isla Holbox on a Rental Bike
Isla Holbox is a fantastic place to be explored by bike and there’s simply no better way to enjoy the things to do around. You’ll find it extremely easy to find a place that will rent you a bike.
Shops on the island rent bikes by the hour or for 24+ hours at around 20 to 30MXN an hour or 150-200 pesos for a day’s rental.
It’s easy enough getting around Holbox Island; Cycling really has got to be some of the best things about coming here: with its spectacular views and great exercise opportunity.
On top of that, if you want to experience a more exclusive trip, you can rent a golf cart to explore Holbox Island. The golf cart will cost you anything from 150 MXN/$7.50 per hour depending on the company.
Join a Three-island Tour in Holbox
Joining the three-island of Isla Holbox is a must-do. Jump aboard and explore Yalahua lagoon, Isla Pajaros, and Passion Island.
You can swim in cenotes, discover the bird island off the coast, and see pink flamingos. If you’re lucky, you can even see dolphins while on the tour.
You’ll see many agencies selling the three-island tour and the average price is 500 MXN per person, which is about $25. If you are looking to explore the surroundings, we highly recommend the three-island tour, one of the best things to do in Holbox Island.
Take in the Beautiful Sunsets
Holbox Island is one of the most peaceful and laid-back islands in Mexico. Its crystal-clear waters and white sand beaches make it a perfect place to relax on your next vacation. But don’t forget about its magnificent sunsets!
The nicest spot to see the sunset in Holbox Island is the pier, Mandarina roof on the main beach, and El Chiringuito beach bar.
On the other hand, getting yourself a top-floor room with a view will guarantee a beautiful sunrise or sunset.
After watching this sunset from inside an elevated hotel room, you will never be able to look at another sunset without feeling like something was missing.
Holbox has some of the most memorable sunsets in Mexico and witnessing them is one of the best things to do on Holbox Island.
Enjoy a Kite Surfing Experience
For watersports lovers, Isla Holbox is their paradise. With favorable winds and a kite school onshore, this island makes for an ideal destination to learn or enjoy these sports in peace.
For those interested in renting equipment or taking a class, you can find an excellent school about 15 minutes north of Las Nubes Resort.
See the Murals Around the Islands
One of the most recognizable features of Holbox is its multicolored murals. They have become a popular representation for this Mexican destination, brightening up otherwise dull white walls.
The colorful murals can be found all over town, but it’s worth setting up an itinerary just so you can spot them all.
While there are tours that will take you around Holbox Island showing you the murals, we recommend visiting the city by yourself – walking or riding a bike.
Make your way to the main square and see the first 4 ones. After that, make your way to the beach and you’ll see the most popular yet intriguing ones.
Jump on a Kayak and Be in Awe With the Bioluminescence Phenomenon
Witnessing the bioluminescence phenomenon is another great thing to do in Holbox Island. It is best to join a tour between June and September.
The blue lights can only be seen at night when there’s no moonlight or other light sources around to interfere with them.
Stay away from all possible lights to guarantee the best possible experience. The tour starts around midnight and, for 3 hours, you’ll follow your guide around the Bioluminescence waters. Last but not least, the tour will set you back on average 300MXN/$14.75 per person.
All in all, it is one of the best things to do on Holbox island and we can’t recommend it enough.
How to See the Bioluminescence in Holbox?
The area with the best bioluminescent waters on Holbox is an easy stroll outside of town. Punta Cocos, just a few minutes from downtown has plenty to offer for anyone looking at taking in this natural phenomenon.
Beautiful views and even more stunning sights below its surface – where swirling plankton lights up any who dare swim among them.
Don’t Miss the Flamingos at Punta Cocos
Punta Cocos is one of the most beautiful areas that you can reach by bike or cart at only 2 miles west of town. Other than the bioluminescence phenomenon, one of the best things to do in Holbox Island Punta Cocos is to witness the flamingos.
Be sure to bring your water and food if you want to spend an entire day here, as there are no amenities available in this free space.
Once you get on end with the beach, it’s time for some fun. You should park your bikes or cart before going down along a very steep hillside. Finally, you’ll be greeted by pristine blue waters where flamingoes often sunbathe.
All in all, Punta Cocos is the most beautiful beach around and we recommend staying longer and jumping on a kayak to see the bioluminescence waters at night.
Enjoy a Lobster Pizza
You’ll find a variety of delicious local dishes on the island. However, the most popular and iconic one is lobster pizza.
If you’re willing to taste the best lobster pizza, Roots and Edelyn restaurants are the best places to enjoy it. Not only that, but they’re also very close to the beach which makes it a great opportunity for a night stroll at the beach.
Needless to say, adding a Mexican beer or cocktail to your pizza is a must to enjoy the experience.
Swim With the Whale Sharks
Holbox is the place to be if you want to see some of the largest creatures in existence. The gentle giants that swarm your boat are harmless and, more often than not, a joyous display for everyone on board.
You can join this tour from June to September. That being said, July through August are typically peak seasons to see whale sharks.
We recommend booking an advance whale shark tour if you come during peak season though. In fact, Holbox is a popular destination and spots are limited.
There are countless options, from guided tours that range in cost anything from $150 per person with varying amenities and excursions available.
The beautiful beaches, crystal clear water, and vibrant wildlife make Holbox Island a perfect destination for those looking to escape from their everyday lives.
Isla Holbox is a coastal paradise that has something for everyone. Whether you are looking to relax and unwind on the beach or get active with some water sports, this is your place.
Whether you’re coming from Cancun, Yucatan or Quintana Roo states, or other parts of Mexico, explore this gorgeous paradise and enjoy the awesome things to do in Holbox Island!