Explore a Turquoise Lagoon and the Caribbean Cafes of Bacalar, Mexico in 'Walk With T+L'
Bacalar — if this small, southeastern Mexican town isn't on your wander list already, you'll want to add it now. Located on the edge of Lake Bacalar, also known as the Lagoon of Seven Colors thanks to its gorgeous turquoise hues, Bacalar is a hotspot for sightseeing, food, natural wonders, and history. Whether you spend your days exploring the otherworldly cenotes or simply enjoying an authentic Caribbean meal, you're sure to leave this place with more than you came with.
In this episode of Walk With T+L, host and tour guide María José Noverola Rodríguez takes viewers on a deep dive of this underexplored region. Read on for what else she had to say about Bacalar and the lagoon, and then book a trip of your own.
Travel + Leisure: What do you think is the most fascinating thing about Bacalar? Is there anything that is underrated about the area?
María: Besides the beautiful Lagoon, I'd say the peace it transmits. There's something about being in Bacalar that makes you feel safe and relaxed. Just having the opportunity to sit under a tree, contemplate the sun, feel the warm breeze and read a book — it's magical.
What is the best way for travelers to explore or see the cenotes up close?
María: There are plenty of tour guides around Bacalar. You can see them offering their services right on the coast. They will take you to explore the lagoon and the cenotes in a boat [where] they will explain the history of cenotes and let you swim in the lagoon. The ride usually takes two to four hours.
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Are there any attractions in Bacalar worth visiting that you didn't get to talk about in your episode of Walk With T+L? If so, what are they?
María: Yes, for those interested in archeology, there's an archaeological zone called Chacchoben. You can walk a circular path that includes three excavated and restored pyramids, as well as many walls and staircases. It's not as big as the one in Yucatan — Chichen Itza — but I assure you, you'll enjoy the visit. To get to Chacchoben, you could rent a car or take a tour. It's about 30 minutes away from Bacalar and it takes about two hours to explore.
How is the food of Bacalar different from the food in other parts of Mexico?
María: Mexican food is delicious, no doubt, but can you imagine having fish tacos right in front of the Lagoon of Seven Colors while feeling the warm breeze right after a fresh swim? Caribbean food is the best — refreshing and delicious!