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Manialtepec lagoon


Located just 18 kilometers northwest of Puerto Escondido, is the Manialtepec Lagoon. One of the most important natural reserves in the area. It is also part of the State of Oaxaca. The lagoon owes its name to the original language of the area: Nahuatl, where “manial” means place from where water flows and “tepec” hill, “water that is born from the hill”.


The water that flows from the hill and flows down towards the lagoon comes from hot springs and fresh water that, when it flows into the lagoon, mixes with the salt water that enters from the sea along the coast. This produces a very particular combination of different waters.


In addition, the Lagoon is surrounded by native flora very important for the conservation of ecosystems. Approximately occupies 15 kilometers surrounded by jungle and mangroves. The mangroves are typical trees of this area that have a particular shape since their roots are born from the tops and descend towards the water. They are very important in mitigating climate change and that is why, in many areas of Mexico, different actions are carried out to preserve this species. The most prevalent type of mangrove is the red mangrove. For this reason, the color of the water in the lagoon tends to be reddish, due to the influence of the mangroves.


The Manialtepec lagoon has become, due to its beauty and charm, a great tourist attraction.


There are many dining options to choose from restaurants with a lagoon view like no other. It is recommended to enjoy a sunset watching the colored sky mirror itself in the lagoon, with a cold beer.


You can also do many recreational activities such as: stand up paddle, kayaking, bird watching, and the most popular and chosen among visitors to the lagoon: the tour to see the bioluminescence. The trip consists of a small boat tour, at night (preferably on new moon nights) to enter the darkness of the lagoon and appreciate the phenomenon of bioluminescence.


Bioluminescence is caused by the presence of luminous plankton in the water. When it gets dark and the light in the area decreases, it is possible to enjoy this very particular phenomenon. It’s like swimming among shooting stars. A unique and magical experience.


The people in charge of providing these tours are responsible and will take care of anyone who wishes to take this tour so that nothing bad happens. It is true that there may be crocodiles, especially during the rainy season, but they do not come close to areas where there are tourists. It is important, in any case, to remember that you should never carry out activities alone in areas where there may be some type of danger. It is always better to inquire with the local people.



If you want to spend the night, there are several options from cabins, rooms in shared houses and camping.


Manialtepec Lagoon: an option to vary a little from the beach landscape from Puerto Escondido, without going so far, with a range of tourist activities to do and views that are worth knowing.


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