Riviera Yucatán

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From the mangroves to the sunset

A hidden treasure between the Caribbean Sea and the Mexican Gulf

Talking about the Yucatán Riviera is talking about the richness and variety it has. It has an extension of approximately 378 km from the beaches of Celestún all the way to El Cuyo. Along the Riviera you will be able to appreciate the great variety of ecosystems such as tropical forests, cenotes and underwater caves that come together to make this an unforgettable experience.

This region includes the 11 municipalities of: Celestún, Dzemul, Dzidzantún, Dzilan de Bravo, Hunucmá, Ixil, Progreso, Sinanché, Telchac Puerto, Ucú and Yobaín, of which only Celestún, Hunucmá and Progreso are the most important seaports.

It has a unique gastronomy with ancestral recipes which is blended with the particular flavor of the seafood of the area to create a range of options to delight yourself.

https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Progreso-Playa-360x487.jpgProgreso Pier

Main destinations

Progreso
https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Puerto-Progreso-Alta-scaled-450x300.jpgProgreso port

It is located 30 km from Merida. It is the first deep-sea port and the most important of the Yucatán coast. It has all the natural elements for practicing different activities and has been adapted as a tourist center.

Its beaches have white sand, are rather shallow and the waves are calm with no currents. This makes it an ideal place to practice various water sports such as windsurfing, kayaking, sailing, swimming, paddle boarding and many others.

The waterfront has restaurants with Yucatecan and seafood specialties, typical handicraft stores, live music and a panoramic view of the beautiful beach. In addition, its waters are rich in marine species, so fishing is also an option.

Celestún

Natural eco-touristic paradise with an exceptional landscape and extensive beaches full of coconut trees and mangroves that are part of the world heritage of the Celestún Biosphere Reserve. Approximately 400 species of migratory birds have been identified in the area, and it is one of the two sites where the pink flamingo nests, feeds and reproduces. It has an area of 59,139 hectares and a length of 21km, officially declared a wildlife refuge since 1979.

Celestún has freshwater wellsprings hidden in the natural tunnels formed by the branches of the mangrove, where you can swim. The Baldiosera spring is the largest concentration of freshwater inside the mangrove and has small docks for visitors to access the site.

https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/rio-de-los-flamingos-celestun-yucatan-360x487.jpgCelestún

It also has the extraordinary petrified forest named Tampetén and Punta Ninúm, where clams and miniature shrimp abound. Here you can also observe 234 different species of mammals that live in the estuary, amongst the main ones are the ocelot, jaguar, margay and spider monkey, which are considered endangered species along with three species of sea turtles and two species of crocodiles.

Hunucmá
https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/rivereños-el-tigre6-450x300.jpgRivereños el Tigre, Hunucmá

Hunucmá is located just 40 minutes from Mérida. It is a place worth visiting if you are looking to get to know the current Mayan culture. A picturesque city that welcomes you with architectural and natural surprises that will give you a quiet and memorable traveling experience.

It has access to Sisal that is one of the most beautiful ports on the coast of Yucatán where you can practice ecotourism and archaeo-astronomy.

Sisal

Sisal has been a fishing port by tradition which is the main activity of its population. It is located in the municipality of Hunucmá. The freshness of its seafood gives an excellent flavor to all the dishes that are prepared in its restaurants and that tourists delight in. During the colony it was the port of arrival of merchandise for the rest of the state, for that reason the fort and the lighthouse were built, which are nowadays some of its main attractions.

The guided tours by kayak through the natural reserves are the best option for lovers of nature and ecotourism. Birdwatching and walking through the mangroves are activities you will enjoy to the fullest. In Sisal you will find a peaceful and quiet place to bond with nature and reconnect with your family.

Muelle de SisalSisal Pier

Must-sees

Boat trips
https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/IMG_7664-scaled-450x300.jpgBoat tours

For those who prefer to observe nature, in the waterfronts and docks of the main ports, you can hire a boat tour to experience the adventure through the mangrove area, admire the beauty of the birds, vegetation and fauna.

A unique experience in which the tour guides lecture about the great variety of birds and animals that you can see during the journey.

Kayak

The practice of kayaking, as a recreation, provides an exciting sense of adventure since it allows you to admire beautiful sites, which would not be accessible in any other way. It is an excellent option to visit estuaries, lagoons, mangrove tunnels and enjoy the tranquility of the sea.

Go for it! Enjoy this adventure in the company of friends or family. And, don’t forget that you can hire the transportation from Mérida with the cost of the tour included.

Kitesurf

Kitesurfing is an extreme sport that consists of sliding on the water in which the wind propels a traction kite attached to your body through a harness, so you can ride a surfboard over the waves or perform maneuvers in the air.

https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/KITE-SURF-en-progreso-450x300.jpgKite Surf

Chuburná and the Yucalpetén beach, famous for having shallow waters and strong winds, are ideal to learn this extreme sport that will awake your adventurous spirit.

In the International Rowing and Canoeing Trail in Progreso, experts can test their skills in deep and fast rapids; beginners can also have the opportunity to take free lessons to live the experience.

 

If it is your first time practicing this sport, dare to take your first individual and personalized class. So you can sail over the waves, feel the wind and the adrenaline flowing all over your body.

Don't forget to hire a certified guide who can lend you the equipment and give you the proper guidance, since handling a board in any of these sports takes several hours of training.

Seafront

Walking along the seafront (referred as “malecón”), allows you to enjoy the sea breeze and to savor the delicious regional food in any of the restaurants that surround it. At the end of the tour we suggest you take your souvenir photo at "La casa del pastel", located right at the end of it. This is an eclectic building that shows Art Deco ornamental elements.

There is a great variety of restaurants suitable for all budgets and tastes, from places where you can try eccentric seafood dishes to the simplest ones like stalls that sell traditional fried fish.

You can also find all kinds of shops and retail stores right on the main street of the seafront, where you can buy some drinks and nibbles during your stay.

Carrusel del Malecón Internacional de ProgresoCarousel of the international boardwalk of progress
Alacranes Reef
https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/MY1_1251-450x300.jpgArrecife Alacranes

The Alacranes Reef National Park is a Natural Protected Area of great importance in our country. Mainly because it covers the largest coral structure in the Gulf of Mexico, and also for being the only reef complex in the State of Yucatán. It is formed by five islets: Isla Pérez, Isla Blanca o Chica, Isla Muertos o Desertora, Isla Pájaros, and Isla Desterrada. The reef is surrounded by shallow tropical waters. The vegetation of the islands is made up of dune and mangrove species.

The main starting point to access the Park is Puerto Progreso. The entrance to this area must be done by watercraft (boat, dinghy, etc).

Some of the activities that can practiced are recreational diving, flora and fauna observation, boat trips, recreational fishing and boat rides.

Mangroves

Elevated wooden trails, a majestic canoe trip (through channels and mangrove tunnels) or by bicycle, camping and cabins to lodge in are some of the attractions that this place offers. Its facilities use environmentally friendly technologies, such as solar energy.

In order to make this trip, it is necessary to arrive at the tourist inn located next to a soccer field on the Sinanché-Xitibcanul road. The tour through the mangrove is in a small boat with a maximum capacity of 4 people plus the guide who pushes the boat with a rustic oar.

There is no need to worry if you don't know how to swim, the depth of the section where the small boat goes through is about 30 to 40 cm deep. During the half-hour trip to the wellspring you will be able to see a great variety of wild species such as birds, snakes, turtles and even lizards.

https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/49-_F4A9257-scaled-360x487.jpgMangroves
Xtampú Salt Lakes
https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Salineras-scaled-450x300.jpgXtampú Salt Lakes

Located between Telchac and Dzemul, a group of fishermen decided to rescue the salt work and revive the beautiful lakes of Xtampú, thus creating the Meyah Ta'ab cooperative.

Unlike "Las Coloradas", these salt flats are much closer to Mérida and getting here is very simple, as you only have to take the road to Progreso, pass Telchac beach and head to Dzemul.

The peculiar pink color is due to the high concentration of salt and the crustacean "Artemia salina" which also serves as food for the flamingos that surround the area.

The Corchito

El Corchito is ideal for those keen of nature and prefer quiet places. It is considered one of the most important ecological reserves of the Yucatán coast. It is located in the swamp; therefore, it is possible to observe a wide variety of plants and birds. You can also swim in the wellspring in the lower parts of the estuary.

It is located in an area of watery cenotes perfect for the observation of flora and fauna, surrounded by varied vegetation, which serves as a refuge and source of food for various species such as birds, crustaceans, mollusks and reptiles among others. In this paradisiacal place there are cenotes and wellsprings that you really should visit.

https://yucatan.travel/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Corchito-360x487.jpgThe Corchito

As you enter, you will find the first cenote very close to two wellsprings. Afterwards, you will come to the "Cenote Venado" which is on the left side. This one is wide, clean and a bit deeper, to reach it you have to pass by the bridge that gives you a magnificent view of the place.

The cooperative of the place offers some facilities such as palapas for resting, a camping area, and a bridge to cross the channel and the dock. It also has tourist services that include tours of the springs every day of the week, starting at the dock.

El Palmar is also a protected area where migratory water birds live, such as the Canadian duck, which hibernate and reproduce in the area. It is considered one of the most important ecological reserves in the state because of its abundant flora and varied fauna, ideal for ecotourism lovers. It is located 80 km from Mérida.