How the Seven Colored Lake got its name and how to visit it

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  • Best places to eat in Bacalar
  • How to reach Lake Bacalar?

The seven-tone palette lake, Laguna Bacalar, is an unexplored place beyond Mexico’s popular tourist spots. Located on the east coast of Mexico, two hours from Tulum, Bacalar is a city located in the state of Quintana Roo and is part of the Yucatan Peninsula. This fishing village is home to this Seven Colored Lake, which is a lagoon known for its different shades of blue. Nestled in the middle of the jungle, this 60 km long lagoon offers an opportunity to relax as well as visit the attractions around Bacalar town.


About Bacalar Lake

Known as the Maldives of Mexico due to the wooden walkways at the top of the lagoon, Lake Bacalar has crystal clear water and white limestone soil. For this reason, different shades of blue, from aquamarine to turquoise to deep azure, are reflected in this lake. The main source of water for the lake is underground rivers, and the length of this has been 16 miles. After Lake Chapala, it ranks second in Mexico in size.

It is also home to ‘stromatolites’, which are the oldest fossils on earth and only a few places on earth are known to have them. They are seemingly rocky formations with tiny algae that play a crucial role in our ecosystem. According to Geology, the first life forms on earth visible in rocks were recorded in stromatolites around 3.5 billion years old. The alkalinity of the water in this lagoon is a contributing factor to the survival of these cyanobacteria, making it a rare phenomenon. Not only the lake offers many activities but also the attractions of the city. The main source

Things To Do In Bacalar

Kayaking on the lagoon

The best way to explore the lake is by kayaking, paddleboarding, and boating. Kayaks cost $12-25 and can be rented on your own or booked for a guided tour. There are several tours, such as Active Nature Bacalar, which offers kayaking trips on lakes and mangroves, The Sailing Colibri, which offers snorkeling in lagoons; the Eco Experience, which organizes the tour of the lagoon at sunrise in an aquabike, the Eco Sailing Tours which manages eco-sailing excursions of your choice. Kayaking is especially amazing at sunrise or sunset. The best parts of the lagoon include El Canal de Los Pirates, Cenote Negro and Bird Island, where sailing trips are offered. Also, the popular spot, “Canal de Los Piratas”, should not be missed as the hues of the water are said to be quite extraordinary. The boat trip to Laguna de Bacalar takes you to this place.

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Swim in the cenotes

Cenote Azul, near Playa del Carmen, is a family-friendly cenote in the Yucatan Peninsula that offers opportunities ranging from swimming and snorkeling to diving. With a site sacred to the Mayans, this cenote has turquoise water and is untouched natural beauty. Being an open cenote and similar to other cenotes in a dark cave, this place feels like a huge pool. Children can swim in the shallow areas of the cenote, while the deeper area of ​​the cenote is perfect for snorkeling. The pool in the middle of the area is also perfect for cliff jumping. There are other cenotes such as Cenote Esmeralda, Cocalitos and Cenote La Bruja that are also worth visiting.

Walk around the Fort

The main historical attraction of the city of Bacalar is the fortress of San Felipe, dating from the 17th century. This historic fort watches over the lagoon and takes us back to the days of pirates, who were an imminent threat. It was built by the Spaniards in the 16th century to defend against pirates. The museum is in Puerto Plata and opens around 9am. Also, the San Felipe Museum has a collection of artifacts.

Visit a Kohunlich Mayan site

Mexico is particularly known for its Mayan history, and one such site is the Kohunlich Ruin. This site has a series of pyramids, courtyards, plazas and palace platforms. This historic site is best known for the Temple of the Masks. One hour from the Bacalar lagoon, this place has impressive buildings dating back to 200 BC. The Mayan site is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Related: No Car Needed: Spend A Summer Vacation On This Michigan Island

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Best places to eat in Bacalar

Bakal Art Cafe

The place is known for the best breakfast in the whole city, located in front of Zocalo and a few blocks from the Bacalar lagoon. Chilaquiles, Espresso drinks or hotcakes with multiple toppings are some recommendations to try here.

El Manati Bacalar

It is a multifunctional shop above a restaurant which is a vegan restaurant. Not only is the food tempting, but it sells various forms of art, clothing, and other friendly souvenirs. Staples such as fried pork, rice, mofongo or maya beans and omelets, pancakes and vegan burgers can be tried here.

Nixtamal cocina a fuego y lena

The name is whimsical, as is the food point set in a lush garden. Vegan options are available, but the menu mainly includes grilled meat and fish. Guests are greeted with black tortillas and shots of kombucha.


Stellar chilaquiles, pancakes and coffee, this restaurant in Bacalar is famous for chilaquiles cooked in a clay pan, unlike the others. There are traditional breakfast options like tortas, eggs, and toast, as well as pancakes with Oreo toppings.

My Burrito

Chipotle lovers should head here because Mi Burrito wraps their burritos twice: once in a tortilla, then in a banana leaf.

How to reach Lake Bacalar?

The easiest route to reach Lake Bacalar is Playa del Carmen. Twelve buses leave from the bus station, ADO Tourist Terminal Playa del Carmen. It takes 3.5 to 4.5 hours to arrive by bus, and the ticket costs around 16 dollars. Meanwhile, the nearest airport to Playa del Carmen is Cozumel Airport which is at a distance of 12 miles. One can also reach Cancun International Airport and later access a bus. There are hourly buses from major cities such as Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Tulum as well as Chetumal.

The total distance between Bacalar and nearby places

Cancun to Bacalar – 4 hours 15 minutes

Playa del Carmen to Bacalar – 3 hours 15 minutes

Tulum to Bacalar – 2 hours 30 minutes.

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