Three hours south of the Riviera Maya is the iconic Bacalar Lagoon, 55km of pure fresh water that has seven different shades of blue all over it; yes, seven shades of blue all over the lagoon, can you imagine? Well, we had to make this trip just to see for ourselves.
The road trip is not that long, but along the way, it creates that feeling because the road lacks curves and is totally flat so we do not recommend driving at night, however, on the way you will cross some very picturesque villages that will invite you to take a break and refresh yourself with some fresh coconut or a snack from the market.
The lagoon of the seven colors or Bacalar Lagoon is the tourist site that we will find in the town that bears the same name, Bacalar, this considered a magical town, which means that this site receives financial support from the Mexican government to continue growing and tourism knows all its archaeological and natural wealth.
But surely you are wondering why it has seven shades of blue, well, this is due to two important factors, the first is that there are different depths throughout the lagoon and second, within it there are three different cenotes, whose waters overflowed and formed a single narrow and long lagoon, leaving a body of water 55 km long and only 2.5 km at its widest point.
To see all these shades of blue you can take a water tour very early in the morning because as the sun rises, it will help each color to shine more. The boat guide will take you to each important point and will tell you stories about the place, as well as the depths of the cenotes on the shore of the lagoon, such as Cenote La Bruja, which has a free fall of more than 100 meters, or Cenote Esmeralda, with a depth of 70 meters. Another point that is also important in the tour, is the Sanctuary of the Stromatolites, these are prehistoric life formations that can be seen in very few places in the world. When looking at them from above the water, they look like moss-covered rocks, but they are extremely fragile, so care must be taken not to touch or step on them. According to scientists, these living stones were crucial in the development of life on our planet, since millions of years ago stromatolite reefs covered part of the sea, massively producing oxygen, which caused a drastic change in the earth’s atmosphere. At these points, you will not be able to go down to the water for your own safety, but don’t despair, later on in the tour you can refresh yourself at the famous entrance of the Pirates River, which the natives say is not so easy to navigate inside it since there are several veins that will not take you anywhere, but if you take the right path, you can get out to the Caribbean Sea.
Another attraction you can visit when you come to Bacalar Lagoon is the old Fort of San Felipe, it shows weapons and objects of the founders of this town and the fight between them and the Mayan groups, as well as the pirate attack that the city suffered if you walk around, it from the outside, you will enjoy an incredible view of the lagoon. You can also visit the Cenote Azul, located four kilometers south of the city. It is famous for the transparency of its waters, which allow you to observe perfectly from the surface to a depth of more than 30 meters. And finally, the capital of the state of Quintana Roo, Chetumal, a beautiful city with its boardwalk, enjoy the typical marquesitas while strolling around.
To come to Bacalar Lagoon, we totally recommend staying at least a night or two, the sunrise is a must and it is totally worth waking up to appreciate it, besides, there are several accommodations on the shore of the lagoon that has a dock and make that moment feel more magical than it already is. There are tastes and costs for all budgets, do your research well so you can enjoy to the fullest and disconnect from the real world. We recommend the Catalonia hotel in the Riviera Maya.
Finally, we bring you the usual recommendations:
- Protect yourself from the sun with a rash shirt, cap or hat, or, failing that, sunblock, but always make sure it is totally biodegradable.
- Collect your waste if you consume some food and/or beverages.
- Always respect the guide’s indications during the tour and at the final destination, it is an act of honor and it depends on it that the spaces are preserved as authentic as possible and tourism continues to grow.
- Take as many pictures as you can, you will never know if it is the only time you will visit that place.
We hope you enjoy it as much as we did.