The Pueblos Magicos (translated into English as Magical Villages) program initiated by Mexico’s Secretariat of Tourism in 2001 aims to promote as many distinctive and beautiful towns as possible throughout the 31 states of Mexico. In 2015 the number of Pueblos Magicos in Mexico was 83 towns with more towns applying to be considered for the program.
The Pueblos Magico’s program is not just focused on Mexico’s fabulous beaches (although there are some beautiful coastal towns, such as Bacalar, that are featured) but rather attention is given to those towns that exude natural beauty, a lively culture and rich history. While the major destination like Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos and Cancun still top the list for tourism, Mexico’s unique Pueblos Magicos also offer an alternative experience of the country.
Visit Bacalar, Cancun’s Pueblo Magico
One such magical town is Bacalar, a place where the Mayan people once inhabited a few hours from Cancun. 2006 saw its inclusion in the Pueblo Magico’s list and with its stunning beauty and Mayan influences, it rightly deserves its place. History says that it was once a highly lucrative town that was frequently subject to looting by pirates during the sixteenth century. Though its prominence as a major trading post has since come into demise, Bacalar is still one of the great Mexican towns along the Caribbean coast, well worth a visit.
Laguna de Siete Colores
Bacalar is perhaps most famous for its fabulous lagoon, known for being the lake of 7 shades of green. ideal for many water activities like scuba diving, snorkelling and boat trips. It has many water activities that comprise its natural wonders where visitors can engage in different water sports. It’s also a place to learn about the Mayan early civilization, culture and history. Its warm people and panoramic location add more charm to this small town.
San Felipe Fort
The San Felipe Fort is another highlight of Bacalar. In response to the threat of European invasions and to protect itself from pirates, the San Felipe Fort was built in 1729 and served as a fortress against those who wanted to invade this beautiful town.
Many people come to Bacalar as a base for venturing to the scenic Cenote Azul, where the ruins of the great Mayan race can be seen and appreciated.
If you are visiting Cancun, why not enjoy a short trip to Bacalar. It’s an experience you won’t forget brought by the magic and charm this small village exudes.