The Unique Island that is Holbox + a 1000 yr old Tree

Holbox (pronounced Ol-bosh) is quite a well kept secret in these parts. Your main mode of transport are golf buggies with not a single paved road & no high rises to be seen. It really is one of a kind.

On the Ferry from Chiquila to Holbox

Finally on the Ferry!

If you’re driving from Playa del Carmen you take the 307 towards Puerto Morelos. Take a left to the road called La Ruta de los Cenotes towards Merida. Whatever you do DO NOT take the Cuota towards Merida. You MUST take the Libre. (we learned that the hard way)
From there just follow the signs all the way to Chiquila. You can park your car for 50 pesos (aud $4) a day & that is also where you catch the Ferry. Its 100 pesos (aud $8) for adults, age 6-12 is 60 pesos & kids 5 & under are free. It leaves every quarter past the hour. The return is every hour on the hour.

The Taxis in Holbox

The Taxis in Holbox

Its only a 20 min ride & you have the choice of sitting inside or on top. The kids loved it! They also offer to load your bags. We chose not to & were able to skip the line waiting to retrieve luggage. Once you walk up the dock you’ll see a load of Taxis waiting. The price is 20 pesos (aud $1.65)

Beach Holbox

All the roads are sand

We didn’t know anything about the Island. It was a very last min plan & I hadn’t done any research. All I knew was that all the roads were sand & we had to get around on foot or in a golf buggy. Waaay to hot on foot & we wanted to explore so golf buggy it was. And I am so glad we got one! It was the highlight of our trip. PS: don’t expect to find a golf course, there isn’t one.

Best part is you can drive it anywhere you like!

Best part is you can drive it anywhere you like!

You can rent them from 9am-8pm for 700 pesos (aud $57). When I asked about insurance the guy just shrugged & said “nothing will happen”. All the roads are two way but don’t expect signs or directions the island is only 41 kilometres long after all.

One of the main roads in town

One of the main roads in town

There is a really big area in the centre of town that caters to ball games, a park & a small fair with jumping castles & rides. Surrounding that on every side are restaurants with prices ranging between 15 pesos to 350. Almost every time we went out to eat they had no drinks available & just pointed us up the st to the local corner store where we could buy beer, wine & soda to drink at the restaurant.

The local shopping centre

The local shopping centre

One thing about the place is that I felt really safe & completely at ease. Everyone was so chilled & it seemed that crime wasn’t even an issue. I am by nature quite worried about my kids safety. But for 2 whole days I was completely at peace. It was lovely!

Sunset Holbox

Our first Sunset & we saw Dolphins!

The water is clean & warm but don’t expect pristine beaches.  Its not litter its the washed up seaweed & it lines almost every beach. Some hotels/hostels brush out the front & make little piles but for the most part no one is paid to clean them so it’s left as is.

Turquoise Water

You can swim quite far out & the water is only waist deep

Another lovely thing about Holbox is the wildlife. Fish, birds, dolphins & if you’re lucky enough to visit between June-Sept you can swim with the Whale Sharks.

I dont have a zoom.. this is me right up close

I don’t have a zoom.. this is me right up close

We had an absolute ball exploring every inch of the island & that was the freedom the golf buggy allowed us. We found horseshoe crabs, fish, stingrays, star fish & iguanas.

Miss P very curious & unafraid

Miss P is very curious

For the most part this island is for those who like to chill. Step back in time in a sense & just enjoy the simplicity. Which can be very hard nowadays. But don’t worry you can still get full cell coverage & wifi is everywhere.



One thing that was quite hard to find was shade but you can rent hammocks & chairs in front of most hotels/hostels for 100 pesos a day. And that can be talked down for less if you’re not spending a whole day.

Horseshoe Crabs at the very tip of Isla Holbox!

We made it to one end of the island & found these!

After nearly 2 days in the heat we really needed somewhere for the kids to keep playing.. just not outside. Lucky for us we heard about Le Jardin – a French Cafeteria. Which has an entire section dedicated to a kids play room. Perfect!

Out the heat & fully amused

Out of the heat & plenty to do

After resting up we went for a stroll & watched some fisherman chatting & drinking fresh coconuts so Little D went over & asked for some. He cut a few open then surprised me with one spiked with Gin & fresh lime. Awesome!

Fisherman having a rest in the arvo

Fisherman having a rest in the arvo. That’s the life

We normally buy coconut water so every time we get the chance to have a fresh one we take it!

Nothing beats a fresh coconut on the beach.

Miss P had her first one at 3 months old in Fiji

Heading to a lovely pier we sat down to watch the sun set. It seemed half the island came out to watch & we all enjoyed the moment together.

Enjoying the moment

Holbox 2014

The evening is a lovely time to take a stroll. The place comes alive, the restaurants are buzzing & all the children are running around happy. While waiting for the food to arrive we headed across the street where they had set up some fun things for the kids to do.

Everyone wins a prize

Everyone wins a prize

I suggest carrying a bit of cash in case of ATM problems. And book a place to stay in advance as they fill up quite quickly. If you’re on a budget you can camp on the beach with Casa Maya. Don’t forget your tent or rent a hammock.

Some cool signs on the Beach

Some cool signs on the Beach

Something else we really enjoyed was the artwork through out town. It raised a lot of questions with Little D so we discussed his ideas/thoughts & did some research.

I wish we could have stayed longer. But our time was up so we headed home. As we drove through Solferino we stopped to check out a 1000 yr old tree.

The last one. The rest have been cut down for furniture :(

Millennium Tree

There is also a Ceiba tree which Mayans consider to be the Tree of Life. Its 700 yrs old. Little D had a ball swinging from the strong vines. Especially cause we just watched Tarzan.

A sacred Mayan Tree.

Check out the roots on that thing!

Travel really is a great form of education. The kids learn so many new things each & every time. And that makes it all worth it to me.

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Amber Luna

I'm a long term traveller, dedicated mum of 2 & passionate about living life full of adventure. I love living my dreams & helping others live theirs as well. I hope you enjoy our informative journey!

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  1. Love it! The water looks amazing.

  2. Anaik Alcasas says:

    Looked delightful. S and J impressed with the size of those trees, J said that D standing by the 1000 year old tree “looks like a hobbit standing by an Ent” … we just saw some of LOTR. 🙂

  3. Holbox is a great place. We haven’t be there yet! Can you believe it??

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