Discover the best activities, restaurants and parties in Puerto Escondido, Mexico. Read the guide!
Puerto Escondido is fast becoming a mandatory destination for tourists arriving in Mexico.
The so-called surfing capital of the Oaxaca’s state attracts thousands of beach and water sports lovers every year.
The warm climate, the breathtaking sunsets and the massive waves of the Pacific Ocean are certainly among the main factors that make Puerto a special place.
I stayed in Puerto Escondido for more than a month, “trapped” by this sea life and local atmosphere that is perhaps a little lacking in the Riviera Maya.
Here, I tried different restaurants, discovered fantastic beaches and travelled around nearby villages.
Therefore, in this article, we will see:
- The best beaches.
- Main activities and tours to be carried out.
- Recommended restaurants.
- Best Cafes and Coworking spaces.
- Beach Clubs and nightlife.
- Nearby Villages
Let’s start then!
Regarding the beaches, I visited 8.
- Playa Zicatela
- Punta Zicatela
- Punta Colorada
- Playa Bacocho
- Playa Coral
- Playa Canizarillo
- Playa Manzanillo
- Puerto Angelito
I would start from Playa Zicatela, the main beach in Puerto Escondido. Famous for the nightlife on the Avenida del Morro; this beach is characterized by its wide extension and the Beach Clubs that offer restaurant services and sun lounger rentals.
The sea here is particularly rough, if you are not good swimmers it is strongly recommended not to venture out to sea.
Zicatela extends from the Mirador Romance de Verano up to Punta Zicatela. The latter is the second beach on the list, which is actually always part of the first but due to the large distance, they are considered separately.
Punta, so called by the locals, is 30 minutes walking along the seafront or 10 minutes by taxi from Zicatela. It is the main destination for surfers. This is where instructors normally take you to practice. The waves are perfect for both beginners (towards the shore, in the center) and for experienced surfers (further out towards the cliff).
Punta becomes famous in recent years thanks to Surfing, and international tourism, mainly American and European. In the street that connects the main road to the beach you can find many restaurants and bars offering all kinds of food and drinks. The vibe is great and it reminds a bit of Bali to many people. You can’t just miss a sunset at La Punta.
As for the downtown area, there are other beaches here that deserve to be seen at least once.
Punta Colorada is located near the airport and is perfect if what you are looking for is an almost virgin beach with little crowding and a paradisiacal scenery.
Next to Punta Colorada is Playa Bacocho, famous for its turtle release tour. Bacocho is one of the longest beaches on the Oaxacan coast. Here you can spend peaceful afternoons in complete relaxation. It must also be said that the beach is quite bare, lacking in services such as restaurants, bars, etc. We have counted only one hotel and one restaurant that offer services within it. The real attraction here is the turtle release tour offered by “Tortughero” Vive Mar, an association that deals with the release of small turtles in the sea.
Checkout info about the Turtle release tour: HERE
Then running the coast towards Zicatela, we meet Playa Coral. Coral Beach is beautiful, with turquoise water. It has a calm tide that is perfect for swimming and its setting is paradisiacal. In addition, during the weekdays and outside public holidays it is almost empty.
Canizarillo Beach It is a cove set between two cliffs. It is one of the most popular beaches here in Puerto. You will hardly be alone. But apart from that it certainly deserves to be seen. The steps leading to the beach access will leave you with a breathtaking view.
Manzanillo beach is one of my favorites here in Puerto. It differs from the others for the calm tide. Perfect for snorkeling. Here you can find various services such as Banana Boat, Restaurants and Bars. On the side of the Manzanillo beach there is Puerto Angelito, the two are perfectly connected and only 5 minutes away by walking.
This was my personal list of beaches here in Puerto. Now let’s move on to the activities and tours offered in the area.
Here are the main activities and tours here in Puerto Escondido:
- Whale and Dolphin watching tour.
- Turtle release.
- Bioluminescence tour.
Whale and Dolphins watching tour. The Mexican Pacific coast is famous for the passage of whales and dolphins. A show not to be missed. You can consult the tour at this link.
Skydive. One of the experiences that is worth a lifetime. Pulling out of an aeroplane, falling into the void in less than a minute and opening the parachute to appreciate an unparalleled view is something incredible. Recommended, of course, only to the strong of heart. Price is around 3000 pesos, check out all details here.
Surf. As previously mentioned, if you are already an expert in Surfing, the advice is to rent a board in Punta Zicatela and enjoy the waves. If you are at the first experience it is better to start with a couple of lessons. I have entrusted myself to a surf school in Zicatela. Prices are around 700 for private lessons (about 2 hours).
Check-out this surf school 👉 SurfTravelFriends
Turtle Release. We talked about this tour. Organized in Playa Bacocho, it consists in the release of small turtles in the open sea. ViveMar has been working for the conservation of Sea Turtles and the Environment for more than 11 years from the coast of Puerto Escondido.
Bioluminescence Tour. The Manialtepec Lagoon in Puerto Escondido is one of the few places where you can enjoy the natural phenomenon of bioluminescence. The bioluminescence of the water is due to the plankton contained in the lagoon; Which creates this amazing effect.
You can do this incredible experience during a night boat tour.
Find out more HERE
What about food? 😋
Even in Puerto Escondido staying on diet is not easy. There are plenty of restaurants between Rinconada, Zicatela and Punta.
We want to mention one for each area:
In Zicatela I would recommend Cana Brava. Located in Av. del Morro is an elegant restaurant by the beach. Perfect for a romantic date facing the ocean. Here all fish dishes are delicious!
If you choose Barrio Rinconada for you dinner I definitely recommend Almoraduz Cocina de Autor. Known as one of the best restaurants in Puerto. High-level cuisine with dishes prepared to perfection and personalized by the chef.
In Punta you will find different solutions of restaurants and bars to eat typical dishes like tacos, burritos and quesadillas. If you would like to change a bit from this standard typical food, I would recommend the Italian restaurant Il Salento. Yummy Pizza and Calzones.
My Top Cafes & Coworking Spaces:
As for café and Coworking spaces, the topic becomes more complicated, especially for us Digital Nomads. The area is packed with cosy cafes but the wifi connection is mostly really poor. It’s really hard to find a place that combines, good coffee, nice surroundings and fast Wi-Fi. For this reason, if this is what you are looking for, I can only recommend one place: Casa Losodeli
This amazing place offers, private and shared rooms within their Hostel, have a beautiful café in front, and a well-organized coworking space. It’s an ideal place for both full-stack digital workers that are looking for a daily Coworking space and digital nomads who need a good connection for working 3/4 hours a day.
Apart from Casa Losodeli, located in the centre of Puerto Escondido, that is without a doubt on top of my list; In Zicatela, I can recommend Selina and Amarisa Cafe (just next to it). These two places, that share their services, are perfect to enjoy good food and coffee while working on your laptop. Selina is a well-known hostel so the place tends to get quite crowded in the late morning.
Located as well in Zicatela, the Oficina del Puerto is a recently inaugurated coworking space with stable Wi-Fi and really kind staff.
Other recommended Cafes include:
- Elephant Garden: Nice café with an indoor garden and relaxed atmosphere, perfect for a delicious Sunday brunch in Zicatela.
- Dulce Tierra: Bakery & Coffee shop located in Rinconada. Tasty croissant and cakes.
It’s time to talk about party. Puerto Escondido is quite known as a party place. People come here to have fun, dance all night and enjoy holidays by the beach. So let’s highlight the top beach clubs in Puerto.
My list of the top Beach-Clubs in Puerto:
La Piedra de la Iguana is quite famous for it’s never-ending after parties. Located in Av. Del Morro they organise techno, melodic and house music events from Thursday to Sunday. The atmosphere is pretty cool, we have spent here the New Year Eve dancing till 8am.
Hostal Tortuga. This is another good spot where they usually drop nice parties. It’s an Hostal in the centre of Puerto, events are organised on specifics dates so you should check in advance if they got something planned.
Cactus Beach Club. This beach club is just in front of La Piedra de la Iguana, also in Av. Del Morro but by the beach. Here you will be dancing with your feet in the sand. They are open on: Monday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday.
MarandWana. Also located in Zicatela Beach, just one street behind the other two. It’s a restaurant-bar that organise live events during weekends.
Hucanii. Located in Punta it’s a beach club that release serious all night long parties. Here you can also appreciated pizza and sushi dishes while enjoying an amazing sunset.
If you go to Puerto you cannot miss visiting the nearby villages. In particular Mazunte and Zipolite. I’ll do a more in-depth article on both. Here I would just like to mention that Mazunte is defined as Pueblo Magico and Zipolite is the only nudist beach in Mexico, so the hippie vibe in both of them is worth at least a visit.
I would say we have come to the end of my guide to Puerto Escondido. My experience here has been very satisfying and I had a fantastic month, I definitely feel I can recommend you to visit this place during your time in Mexico.
I hope that in this article you will find useful tips to improve your stay. As always let me know your opinion in the comments! 🙏🏻