Santi LLobt, Flickr
The once quiet fishing port of Puerto Escondido has blossomed into one of the best tourist spots in the whole of Oaxaca. Despite the influx of visitors, it has managed to retain its charm and not succumb to over-development, making it even more attractive to people traveling to Oaxaca.
It is a great place to unwind and relax, and also offers some exhilarating water sports for those of you with a sense of adventure and a sprinkling of courage.
Kayaking Through the Mangroves
Not far from Puerto Escondido you will find the Laguna Manialtepec, a body of water that has been overcome by a mangrove forest. In amongst the dense vegetation you will see a great variety of wildlife, but it is the birds that attract the most visitors. There are many different species to watch here, from pelicans to storks, but you will need to enter the forest by boat to see them.
Kevin Hutchinson, Flickr
A company called Rutas de Aventura organizes kayak tours around the mangrove forest so that visitors can get a glimpse of these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. You can take a one-man kayak by yourself, or team up with others to take out a kayak to navigate the narrow channels between the sprawling mangrove trees.
It’s a relaxing and awe-inspiring experience, and some of the profits made from the kayaking trips are used to help keep the area clean and unpolluted. This activity is perfect for tourists that want to support sustainability and eco-tourism in the region.
Water Skiing at Playa Embarcadero
For those of you that want to move a little faster across the water, water skiing across the calm ocean water at Playa Embarcadero will probably be more appealing. This beach is sheltered from the waves that pound the shore at some of Puerto Escondido’s other beaches, so it’s perfect for water sports like water skiing, wake boarding, and sailing.
Put on your water skis and hold on tight as you’re pulled along at high speeds across the crystal blue water. There are plenty of local guys with their own boats hiring out equipment for you to use, so if you’ve never tried it give it a go.
Scuba Diving around the Coves
Puerto Escondido didn’t start out as a fishing port without a good reason. The ocean surrounding the small town is brimming with a huge variety of fish, big and small, and no doubt you’ll eat some of them while staying here.
On the other hand, you can have the opportunity to see some fantastic marine wildlife if you decide to venture out into the water equipped with some scuba gear. There are many boats that tour the numerous coves that separate the long sandy beaches around Puerto Escondido, and it is at these coves where you can see some really exotic sea life. Perhaps you’ll see a turtle, or colorful fish that live close to the rocks.
For bigger fish, head out into the open water, and be prepared to witness large tuna, snapper, and mahi mahi swimming frantically through the deep blue. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of a marlin.
Surfing at Playa Zicatela
The number one activity for all you adrenaline junkies out there, surfing a Playa Zicatela when the waves are big will certainly get your heart pumping.
The wave that breaks here is sometime referred to as the Mexican Pipeline, because it is a very powerful and fast wave. On smaller days beginners and intermediates can have their chance to surf here, but when it get serious only experienced surfers dare paddle out.
Jo Simon, Flickr
Every November an international surfing competition is held at the beach, so if getting in the water yourself is just too frightening, just sit back and watch the professionals make it look easy.
Surfing in Puerto Escondido has helped bring the small town to the attention of international travelers, and the facilities here for people that want to try are pretty good. You can rent or buy all the equipment you need here, so there is no need to bring all your own equipment on a plane with you.
Take Your Pick
If you’re looking for a fun activity to keep you occupied while staying in Puerto Escondido, you really are spoiled with choices. Water sports are perfect here, because of the great water quality, and the year round warm temperatures. All you have to do is choose which water sport is right for you!
Have you tried any of these water activities? What was your experience like?