Mangroves, communities of the pinkest flamingos, an enormous number of birds (migratory and native), crocodiles, and much more await you at one of the most gorgeous natural reserves in Yucatán: the Parque Natural Ría Lagartos, located on the north coast of the Peninsula.
You’ll find two unique destinations just a few kilometers apart: Río Lagartos and San Felipe. It’s a two and a half hours drive from Mérida; as soon as you arrive you’ll be glad you made the trip.
Río Lagartos is a small town, with a picturesque boardwalk that brings together fishing boats, lodging, restaurants, and tours. There are boat tours for bird watching and enjoying the mangroves. You’ll be able to enjoy nature and the magnificent sunsets that combine pink and purple tones, creating a unique panorama that will remain in your memory, and in your camera. Also, you can experience a Maya mud bath and a stop at the beach for a refreshing swim afterwards. It’s fantastic!
Río Lagartos Adventures offers a variety of specialized tours. One of them is focused on bird photography; there are more than 300 species that visit or inhabit the region. It’s necessary to go with expert guides in order to have the best experience, as they can explain the names and habits of each bird.
One of the biggest attractions is getting to know the flamingos in their natural habitat; you’ll be able to get close to entire families of these birds who always amaze everyone: of course, always with respect and taking care not to disturb or touch them. This tour can be done during the day.
Another specialized tour for the more adventurous is the night crocodile tour. You may be able to see one in the daytime if you are lucky, but at night they are more visible. This tour is for those who enjoy adrenaline, and beware! Keep your hands inside the boat. It’s your very own Indiana Jones adventure!
For delicious seafood, as well as amazing views, go to Ría Maya restaurant. They also have accommodation at Ría Maya Lodge, where the staff will make you feel at home. This is also the headquarters of Río Lagartos Adventures.
15 minutes away is the fishing town of San Felipe, with unique, colorful wooden houses that you will want to photograph, as well as a fishing pier and boat tours. There are also several restaurants where you can enjoy the catch of the day. You’ll love this peceful, harmonious town. You can stay at San Felipe de Jesús hotel.
What are you waiting for? Pack your suitcase and head for these two paradises in Yucatán!
How to get there:
Take the highway from Mérida to Tizimín and then go north to Río Lagartos.
Only 12 km from Río Lagartos.
By Violeta H. Cantarell