HOLBOX: Whale Sharks, Street Art, and Lobster Pizza

While Tulum has become a bit overrun with people who want to be “seen” on the right white-sand beach, Isla Holbox (that’s Hol-BOSH, by the way) has retained the sleepy vibes of the fisherman’s port it’s always been.

While Isla Holbox isn’t exactly remote—it’s only a 15-minute boat road from Chiquila, which is a two-hour drive from Cancun—it feels like you’re stepping off the grid. Only three or so miles are inhabited; a nature preserve, pristine beaches, and a colorful town make up the rest. Wi-Fi here is spotty at best, cars are few and far between, and there’s only one ATM on the island.

If you’re thinking there’s not a ton to do, you’re right—and that’s a good thing. If there was ever a place to succumb to island time, this is it. Follow this Thursday night through Sunday night itineraryOpens a New Window., and you’ll see why Isla Holbox is the chillest spot on the Mexican coast. Here’s our ultimate four-day weekend guide.

How to Get There

Morning: Hop on an early flight to Cancun; from the east coast, nonstop routes take less than six hours. Once you land, take a bus or rent a car to make the two-hour drive up to the port of Chiquila. From there, it’s just a 20-minute ride over to Isla Holbox. (If you have enough people to make the price worth it, book a private air taxiOpens a New Window. for the 20-minute direct flight.)

Where to Stay

While much of Isla Holbox is bright and bohemian, Punta CalizaOpens a New Window.—the island’s newest hotel—has a distinctly minimalist look. Made from concrete and red cedar, the eco-friendly property has 12 rooms, starting at $240 per night. The vibe is earthy and clean, with white accents, natural wood decor, and thatched roofs. Each one is connected via private plunge pool to a spacious, triangular, sea-green pool hidden at the center. Run by a Mexican architect and his family, the boutique hotel leans more toward glamping (with an emphasis on glam) than high-end resort, but given its location within the Yum Balam Nature Reserve, that’s a major selling point.

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