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Mahahual (also Majahual) is a serene and picturesque beach destination in southern Yucatan, between the lush greenery of the jungle and the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean Sea, a short distance from Belize.

The origin of the word “mahahual” could come from “agua de la majagua” or “place of mahahua” in Yucatec Maya. The mahahua is a medium-sized tree planted in grass near water and native to tropical America.

Mahahual has a tranquil atmosphere with stunning natural beauty and turquoise waters. With its laid-back vibes, Mahahual promises an unforgettable getaway for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle.

Mahahual is situated along the Costa Maya, its idyllic location makes it a haven for nature lovers, offering opportunities for snorkeling, diving, and eco-tours through the nearby mangroves and protected areas.

Mahahual has soft sand beaches, grass thatched palapas. Mahahual is surrounded by a virgin jungle with spectacular biodiversity, making it a place of interest for ecotourists and divers from all around the world.

Mahahual is, to date, a reconstructed place and enabled to offer services for visitors interested in knowing this small town. A new development called New Mahahual is being created directly inland from the port.

The best time to visit Mahahual

The climate here is characterized by warm temperatures and relatively high humidity throughout the year. There are 2 seasons – the dry season (from November to April) and the wet season (from May to October).

  • November to April: sunny days and minimal rainfall.
  • May to October: frequent rain, but pleasantly warm temperatures.

The dry season is an ideal time for beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. The sea is calmer during these months, but the dry season is also the peak tourist season, so it may be more crowded and expensive.

During May to June or September to October, the weather is still pleasant, and prices may be lower. Just be aware that there might be some rainfall during these months due to the transition between seasons.

Things to do in Mahahual

Mahahual until the end of the 20th century has been a fishing village little known. Today it is a popular tourist destination. Mahahual is a quaint tourist resort. Many nice restaurants and shops line the Malecon.

Mahahual is generally a quieter destination compared to bustling tourist hotspots like Cancun or Playa del Carmen. Enjoy a relaxed evening on the beach soaking in the tranquil ambiance of this coastal paradise.

Diving, snorkeling, and sport fishing are the main economic activities here. Tourists, attracted by the calm and tranquility, its spectacular beaches, and the coral reef, will be satisfied with the beauty of the place.

Chinchorro Bank

One of the main attractions of Mahahual is its proximity to the Chinchorro Bank, a coral atoll declared a nature reserve, and the second-largest barrier reef in the world (after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia).

This reef is located in the Caribbean Sea off the coast of Quintana Roo and has a huge biodiversity that is extremely attractive for diving in. This underwater paradise promises an unforgettable diving experience.

Cruise ship docking

A large cruise ship docking jetty dubbed “Puerto Costa Maya” has been constructed just up the beach. Cruise ships dock and the occupants are disgorged onto the town to drink, shop, swim, and ride jet skis and quad bikes.

When ships are in port, the village is busy with cruise passengers.

In August 2007, Hurricane Dean landed just north of Mahahual. It heavily damaged the cruise ship dock and destroyed much of the small village. The village was rebuilt, cruise ships returned, and many nice hotels opened.

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