Small, quiet, and still undiscovered by all but locals, Bacalar is a Mexican Caribbean gem that's nothing short of magic. The Lagoon of Seven Colors, for example, is a turquoise lagoon where different shades of aquamarine sparkle and ripple in the warm sunshine. Couples will be enticed to laze on the sand and soak up its dazzling beauty, or paddle across its gentle waters.
These are the kinds of enchanting Caribbean honeymoon adventures Bacalar is known for. And when you're done exploring the beauty of the Lagoon of Seven Colors, you can whisk yourselves to the Uchben Kah Ecotourism Park. Here, the beauty of Bacalar is preserved while you get to get up-close and personal with nature. Kayak over streams that spill into mangrove-lined lagoons, hike or bike interpretive nature trails in the jungle, or just wander and relax. You can enjoy nature to its fullest here.
For history buffs, Fort San Felipe Bacalar is a treat. Built around 1729, the the fort's grounds have been transformed into a museum where you can learn more about the area's history and enjoy absolutely gorgeous views of the lagoons below. For even more natural wonders and beautiful places to swim, check out Cenote Cocalitos, a magical corner of Bacalar's famous lagoon with some of the world's most beautiful swimming and kayaking.
All that gorgeous scenery makes for perfect honeymoons and idlyllic weddings. Read on more to find out what else Bacalar has to offer!
Our Top Recommendations
The Best Parts of Bacalar
Tips & Advice
Tips & Advice+
- DISTANCE FROM THE AIRPORT: The closest airport to Bacalar is Chetumal International Airport, which is located 35 minutes away.
- GETTING IN: Arrive in Bacalar by car or bus. ADO buses are convenient and have amenities like A/C, televisions, and sometimes even wireless internet. Couples looking for something more luxurious can arrange a car service, but it will cost much more! Driving a rental car in this region is also an option, as it's one of the safest for driving in Mexico.
- GETTING AROUND: Because it's so small and quaint, Bacalar is delightful when explored by foot or on bike. Taxis are also an option for when you want to rest your tired feet or just feel some A/C blasting in your face for a few minutes!
- DISTANCE FROM THE AIRPORT: Bacalar is a couple hundred miles from the Cancun airport, and most couples get there by car or with a first-class bus ticket, which is cheaper.
- WHEN TO GO: January through March are busiest, and prices are higher. April and May have fewer crowds. September is quieter, but since mid-August through October is peak hurricane season, you want to keep this in mind if you plan a visit during the fall.
- EMERGENCY NUMBERS: During emergencies, call 911!
- GET THE SCOOP: Use the Mexican Caribbean's newly-relaunched website to get the scoop on weather, activities, hotel ideas, and more!
HELPFUL HONEYMOON HINTS
- ABSORB THE MAGIC: Bacalar is known as one of Mexico's official "Pueblos Magicos," or magical towns. It's easy to see most attractions in a couple of days, but just relax and spend some extra time absorbing the heavenly Caribbean vibes and warm, laid-back hospitality. You'll be glad you did!
- WINE & DINE AT LA PLAYITA: La Playita is one of the best restaurants in Bacalar. Relax under the canopies of tropical trees overlooking the stunning Lake of Seven Colors, enjoying cold drinks and some of the best seafood in town. The views are absolutely unbelievable and the food is great to match. Best of all, you can reserve your own table in a private area and enjoy La Playita for the perfect honeymoon date.
- ENJOY THE SEVEN-COLOR LAGOON: The famous "Lake of Seven Colors" is perfect for scenic, tranquil kayaking and paddleboarding. You can also see what enchanting creatures live beneath by going out with some snorkels. Of course, you can always just enjoy the view from the beach and soak up that perfect sun!
- EXPLORE FORT SAN FELIPE: This fort was used in the past to protect Bacalar from swashbuckling pirates. Nowadays, it is a museum, where they display a collection of pirate guns, canons, utensils, etc., and you can learn more about the history of this beautiful place. It's also got the most enchanting views around, with some nice restaurants nearby for you to finish off your date.
- SEE THE STROMATOLITES: The stromatolites are a type of "living rock" -- formed by layers of living bacteria, they were some of the planet's earliest life forms. They have now died off but remained as solid rocks. To preserve these treasures, only use sunscreen that is free of benzones such as oxybenzone, as these can damage coral and other sea life.
- Bride, Groom & Witnesses should arrive early by 3-4 business days to fulfill all the wedding requirements
- Valid passports: Make sure passports are current and accurate. Brides who have been divorced need to use a passport with their maiden name, rather than any married names they held.
- Record the names, addresses, nationalities, ages, occupation, relationship, copy of a tourist card and a valid identification of all four witnesses. Your wedding planner or resort wedding coordinator can fill out the legal form. Your witnesses can be anyone who has a valid passport.
- Blood test: A blood test is required. It costs $300 USD plus taxes (per couple), and it must be taken in Mexico. Take the test within 10 to a maximum of 12 days prior to your ceremony, or it may not be considered valid. The purpose is to test for HIV, STD’s (sexually transmitted diseases) and blood type, . The results will be ready in 24 hours, along with a certificate of completion. Talk to your wedding planner or resort wedding coordinator to arrange the blood test for you as soon as possible after your arrival in Mexico.
- It costs around $500 USD + taxes for the city hall court fees and application process.
- Ensure that your four witnesses all have a valid passport & tourist card along with their names, addresses, nationalities, ages, occupation, and your relationship to them. Your wedding planner can give you all required forms.
- Your Marriage Certificate is only valid in Mexico. To ensure it will be recognized internationally, you need to send a copy to Mexico's Validation Processing office. The fee is $165 USD + taxes, and processing can take anywhere from 1-3 months. Once the document is apostilled, the resort will send all documentation to your home address. Documents will be in Spanish, and many resorts offer translation services for an additional fee.