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Mexico public beaches

Hello everyone!
While I am torn between some inland places in Mexico and beach towns, since I love sun and love to swim in warm ocean waters, I wanted to ask this question.
My only exposure to Mexico was going to Zihuatanejo this past June. Zihuatanejo had few beaches around but the main downtown beach was not so great. Overall I have seen the following issues. Restaurants will put their lounge chairs all the way to the water and you have to buy something or pay a fee to lay there. I prefer to put my towel down right on the sand and was having hard time finding a spot so I was forced to buy a drink or a meal. It is OK while I am on vacation but I would like to move to Mexico permanently and live a very, very frugal life to stretch my savings. I also went to 2 beaches outside of town, Barra de Potosi and Trancones, both of them were non-swimmable, the wind and the waves are terrible. I could walk there and play with the waves, but not swim. So, I am asking if anyone knows of a place in Mexico where there are public, not crowded and swimmable beaches year around. May be I am asking too much. I am trying to look through Airbnb and booking and it seems like all the nice, clean and SWIMMABLE beaches are taking up by some luxury resorts. I would like to live somewhere where I can have free access to a beach year around with calm and clear waters. Please help me out, my head is spinning. I was thinking about some inland places with a nice weather first, but I grew up on the Black Sea and love, love, love ocean and swimming. I cannot swim in cold waters so Baja is out of question. Water needs to be not lower than 80F.
Thank you,
Inna

Look on the map of Mexico coast and look for the smaller towns just outside the big resort spots. Acapulco in the busy season is very crowded. be careful of the seasonal weather changes on the coastal areas gulf of mexico and around Cancun area. Tropical storms.

I am looking. I have been going around the map so many times. I guess Caribbean would not be good for a permanent base. That leaves me with the Pacific side. I am looking into Huatulco that has so many beautiful beaches and warm sea water but seems like all the good swimmable beaches are private? Am I right? I might go there and see for myself but wanted to check here first.

Itobys :

Hello everyone!
While I am torn between some inland places in Mexico and beach towns, since I love sun and love to swim in warm ocean waters, I wanted to ask this question.
My only exposure to Mexico was going to Zihuatanejo this past June. Zihuatanejo had few beaches around but the main downtown beach was not so great. Overall I have seen the following issues. Restaurants will put their lounge chairs all the way to the water and you have to buy something or pay a fee to lay there. I prefer to put my towel down right on the sand and was having hard time finding a spot so I was forced to buy a drink or a meal. It is OK while I am on vacation but I would like to move to Mexico permanently and live a very, very frugal life to stretch my savings. I also went to 2 beaches outside of town, Barra de Potosi and Trancones, both of them were non-swimmable, the wind and the waves are terrible. I could walk there and play with the waves, but not swim. So, I am asking if anyone knows of a place in Mexico where there are public, not crowded and swimmable beaches year around. May be I am asking too much. I am trying to look through Airbnb and booking and it seems like all the nice, clean and SWIMMABLE beaches are taking up by some luxury resorts. I would like to live somewhere where I can have free access to a beach year around with calm and clear waters. Please help me out, my head is spinning. I was thinking about some inland places with a nice weather first, but I grew up on the Black Sea and love, love, love ocean and swimming. I cannot swim in cold waters so Baja is out of question. Water needs to be not lower than 80F.
Thank you,
Inna

By law all beaches are public, BUT some hotels limit parking areas or as you pointed out extend their dining area far enough out to seriously inhibit non customers.
Tulum is said by Condi Nest to have one of the best beaches. I didn't feel that way because in order to access the beach I had to pay for parking, once on the beach I had a waiter waiting to take my order. What beach ? I  go to Cancun instead. There they prevent you from entering their property, but I saw no one preventing people from going on the beach. There are a number of pretty nice beaches on the east coast, you just have to look. Campeche has a nice little beach just north of the city, near the fishing area. You sort of have to know it is there.

Thank you. I was actually looking into Campeche, there is a small fishing village. But first I am afraid of the hurricanes and second, it looks like it was still an open ocean area with the waves and the wind. I am looking for a very calm bay with clean see through water where I could relax, meditate, swim and not be scared, stressed out or overwhelmed by people. I feel I just dreamed up something that is not feasible with the money I have.

I don't recommend Acapulco. It is a favored cartel area still and could be risky. I also don't know if I would swim on the west coast with Japan still spilling radiation.  On a beach area I stopped at south of Mazatlan there was no beach life at all, not even seaweed. Cabo got hit once again with a heavy tropical storm, last year it was a hurricane. A map isn't really going to tell the story.

Hotels, people, etc can own beach front property but only to the high water mark and those marks are posted with tall sticks. Of course they can restrict you crossing their land to access the beach. Most hotels allow you to pay a small fee to use their beach and buy food and drink.

Huatulco Oaxaca has many bays and inlets,I have a place there,never have had any problems.You may like to check it out.

Thank you. I am thinking about going there checking it out.

I lived for about 7 years on the Caribbean coast, and I like it better than the west coast. There are some places on that coast that are truly special. Bacalar, for example, is a town not on the coast, but on a 27 mile long fresh water lake. It's beautiful, and said to have 7 colors of water, Also Chetumal, the capital of Quintana Roo, is interesting. There is Xcalak, down at the south end of the state, almost in Belize--it's a great remote place. If you don't want to be that far from everything, try Mahahual. It's a long, long coastline, most of it interesting. Mayan ruins as well.

Thank you, Babs. I am ok being away from everything actually, just need really good internet connection since I am going to be working online, do not have any passive income yet, just some savings, so need to work. Thank you again for your suggestions. I was actually looking into Bacalar lake. It does look really really beautiful.

What about hurricanes, Babs? Did you have to deal with them while living on the east side?

Yes, I went through 2 or 3 hurricanes while on the Caribbean coast. Only one was of any consequence, and did no damage to us personally. Hurricanes and storms are inevitable on either coast, but usually only during about 4 months a year. Preparation is necessary, but relatively easy.

Thank you, Babs. I was thinking since I am not planning to buy right away and will be renting for a while, I think I should be fine. I was looking into lake Bacalar and it does look amazing, on my list of places to visit now and potentially stay there for a while.

Itobys :

Thank you, Babs. I was thinking since I am not planning to buy right away and will be renting for a while, I think I should be fine. I was looking into lake Bacalar and it does look amazing, on my list of places to visit now and potentially stay there for a while.

Well, if you are looking at swimming areas, I would suggest that you look at Playa Punta Perula, Chamela area, that is the only beach my wife would go swimming, mid afternoon in winter dolphins. No big waves.

Many locals rentals, great place to relax and enjoy life in Mexico, in winter lots of foreigners with RVS.

But downside, when we were there last time  (2012), no banks, no ATM, some groceries and fruits. Few restaurants, more corner local stands  (pozole, pollo, tacos), no nightlife if you need that.

Major city is 73km away (Melaque, Barra de Navidad).

Adios y buena suerte para su proyecto, GyC.

Try the yucatan coast outside of Merida.

I like Rincon de Guayabitos which is about an hour north of Puerto Vallarta. It has really long and wide crescent beach with lush jungle covered mountains as a backdrop. It’s an affordable mostly Mexican tourist town with some gringos too and you can walk on the firm sand beach for a mile or two. It’s great for swimming and you can put your towel down just about anywhere and claim a spot. The bungalows and restaurants are good and affordable too. The neighbouring towns are Ayala and La Penita. Ayala has an awesome beach too and La Penita has more stores and the best public market around. Good Luck!

Huatulco would be our first choice. An easy flight from Mexico City; numerous beaches; not over run with tourists; beautiful large town with modern facilities. Plus the water for swimming is very clean vs many places like Zihua and Sayulita.

The only minus for some as is the case with many beach areas is the heat and humidity in the summer.

Just read your post and can assure you there are kilometers and kilometers of uncrowned beautiful beaches in Mexico. You just have to search for them. I've spent the last 30 yrs on Maui but with overpopulation and toooo many tourists we decided to move to Mexico. My wife and I moved to Costalegra last year  in search of just what your looking for. Nestled between Puerto Vallarta and manzanillo is Costalegra. I've got seven islands I Paddleboard out to regularly. As well as diving fishing surfing man this place has it all! We live in a small town of 600. I'm the only full time gringo but that's alright I'm diggin it. We are building a home with a B and B downstairs and hope to have it running by first quarter of 2018. Casita Aloha in San Mateo Costalegra! Check us out. Buenas Suerta y nos vemos pronto!!!

mexicogc :
Itobys :

Thank you, Babs. I was thinking since I am not planning to buy right away and will be renting for a while, I think I should be fine. I was looking into lake Bacalar and it does look amazing, on my list of places to visit now and potentially stay there for a while.

Well, if you are looking at swimming areas, I would suggest that you look at Playa Punta Perula, Chamela area, that is the only beach my wife would go swimming, mid afternoon in winter dolphins. No big waves.

Many locals rentals, great place to relax and enjoy life in Mexico, in winter lots of foreigners with RVS.

But downside, when we were there last time  (2012), no banks, no ATM, some groceries and fruits. Few restaurants, more corner local stands  (pozole, pollo, tacos), no nightlife if you need that.

Major city is 73km away (Melaque, Barra de Navidad).

Adios y buena suerte para su proyecto, GyC.

Yes the tiny towns can be an issue even if they have great beaches. My last trip down near Sisal amazed me because they had only one tiny taco restaurant and pretty much no vegetables or fruit. Great little B& B but little in the eating department unless you were looking for coke, and tacos.

Bacalar look amazing, i'll put that on my tour list for sure, thanks

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