Popular among backpackers, families, honeymooners and surfers, Puerto Escondido is one of Mexico’s finest Pacific coast beach towns. Soak up the sun on pretty bays, ride big waves and spot colorful sea life. In the evening, choose from bohemian bars, seafood restaurants and friendly nightclubs. Puerto Escondido is also a great jumping-off point for eco-adventures and coffee tours.
The beaches, which spread in both directions from central Playa Principal, are the town’s major attraction. Reach them on foot or take taxis and water taxis. Watch experienced surfers riding big waves at the renowned Zicatela Beach or learn to surf in the mellow waves at La Punta.
West of the town center, Puerto Angelito Bay shelters two small, family-friendly beaches. Snorkel, join dolphin-spotting excursions and relax in casual beachfront restaurants at Puerto Angelito Beach. Enjoy the tranquil ambiance and calm water of neighboring Manzanillo Beach. West of these are the secluded, cliff-enclosed Carrizalillo and Bacocho beaches, both great spots to watch magnificent sunsets.
Engage with nature on kayaking and birdwatching tours of mangrove-framed lagoons. Manialtepec Lagoon is just 11 miles (18 kilometers) from Puerto Escondido while Chacahua Lagoon National Park is about an hour’s drive west of town.
Discover ancient fishing customs and sample traditional needlefish dishes in the village of Mazunte. Visit the National Mexican Turtle Center, which is devoted to the conservation of sea turtles. Other common daytrips include tours of nearby coffee plantations such as Finca El Faro and Finca El Pacifico.
Back in town, explore the bars, clubs and restaurants of El Adoquín. Browse artisan shops and pause to watch street performers. The area around Zicatela Beach is another busy nightlife district and a favorite with the surfer crowd.
Fly to Puerto Escondido International Airport, which is less than 10 minutes’ drive from the city center. This region is warm and sunny year-round and is particularly lively during the Fiestas de Noviembre (November Festivals), a month-long celebration of music, dance, food and surfing.