How to get to Isla Holbox, Mexico: Finding Paradise

by Bex

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Ah, Isla Holbox, how I adore you! This little island is tucked off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and is a little car-free paradise of white sand, blue waters and island living.

Believe me, you’ll want to visit this haven, particularly if you want to discover the beautiful and unique bioluminescent plankton that can be found here.

But before you start fantasising about lying on the beach with a margarita in hand, let’s get down to business: how do you get there?!

Knowing how to go to Isla Holbox is like knowing the secret password to a VIP club. And, fortunately for you, I’m here to be your guide and give you all the information you need to get to Isla Holbox.

Now pack your sunscreen and ready your sense of adventure, because we’re about to embark on a trip to paradise. Time to delve into the many transportation options and determine the best route for you to go to Isla Holbox!

Getting to Isla Holbox by Bus

First up, let’s talk about taking the bus to Isla Holbox. I know what you’re thinking; “A bus? That sounds unpleasant.” So bear with me while I explain why this is a fantastic way to travel.

The ADO bus network is one of the largest in Mexico. During my 3-week trip, I travelled a lot on the ADO buses and had a great experience every time.

The buses are considered first class, so expect to be treated to reclining seats, and most importantly air con! Some of the ADO bus brands, such as ADO Platino, offer more luxury. These buses have facilities like Wi-Fi, free drinks, fewer seats and travel kits.

how to get to isla holbox

Where do the buses run from

Buses frequently run throughout the day across the Yucatan, but to get to Holbox you will need to get a bus to Chiquila before getting a ferry to the Island.

You can get a direct bus to Chiquila from Cancun Central, and It will take you around 2.5 hours and prices depend on when you book. Expect to pay somewhere from around £10, or $13 upwards

I was travelling to Holbox from Playa Del Carmen so took the bus from the bus station there. This took over 2 hours and Is around the same cost as above. This route starts in Tulum so if that’s where you are travelling from, you can pick up the bus there but expect to pay a little more.



Arriving by bus into Chiqulia

After you arrive at the bus station in Chiquila, you’ll need to make your way to the ferry terminal to grab a boat over to Isla Holbox. But don’t be concerned; it’s only a short walk from the bus stop to the ferry terminal. I will go into more detail about taking the ferry later in this post.

How to book bus tickets to get to Holbox

You can book your bus directly from the ADO website. The website is in Spanish, but you can translate the website using google translate.

For the most up-to-date information on schedules and fares, see the ADO website.

Best Accommodation in Holbox

Driving to Isla Holbox

Buckle up, because we’re about to discuss driving to Isla Holbox.

First and foremost, you will need to rent a car. There are numerous automobile rental firms in Cancun and the surrounding area, including brands such as Hertz, Avis, and Budget as well as local businesses. Costs vary based on the time of year and demand, but a basic rental should cost between $30 and $50 USD per day.

It’s time to get on the road now that you’ve got your wheels. The drive from Cancun to Chiquila takes around 2.5 to 3 hours, depending on traffic and road conditions. As you cruise along, you’ll enjoy views of But lush jungle, the beautiful Caribbean Sea, and charming towns.

When you arrive in Chiquila, there are some car parks based opposite the ferry terminal where you are able to pay for long-term parking. This can cost anywhere from 50 MXN to about 100 MXN a day (So from £2 to £4, or $2.50 to $5 a day.)

From here, you will just need to cross the road and hop on the Ferry to Holbox.

I’m not going to lie: driving in Mexico may be daunting, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the traffic and road conditions. If you’re up for an adventure and want the flexibility to explore at your own speed and tag on some extra places during your time in Mexico, driving may just be for you!


Taking the Ferry to Isla Holbox

Now here is the next step of your journey, you’ll need to get the ferry from Chiquila to Isla Holbox.

You’ll not only be able to enjoy the sun and sea breeze, but you’ll also be able to take some seriously awesome photographs along the way.

There are two ferries that operate this route. The 9 Hermanos or the Holbox Express. You can take either option. They both take around 25 minutes and cost about 220 MXN (£10, or $12.)

The ferries run every 30 minutes, starting at 6 am and finishing at 9:30 pm daily.

You can buy the tickets at one of the ticket offices once you arrive. You’ll be guided to whichever option is departing soonest. I met the cute dog below whilst waiting for the ferry to arrive.

Conclusion: How to get to Isla Holbox

So there you have it, amigos – whether you ride the bus, or drive, coming to Isla Holbox is an unforgettable experience. So gather your belongings, ready your sense of adventure, and prepare for an amazing voyage to paradise.

Travel Planning Resources

Book A Flight

Ready to fly? This is what I use to find the cheapest flights. You can also join Jacks Flight Club to get the latest flight deals sent straight to your inbox.

Treat yourself to an Airport Lounge with Priority Pass

Rent A Car

Rental Car is a great site for comparing car prices to find a deal

Book Accommodation

Compare prices and book online with

If you are on a budget, book hostels around the world here

Book Buses and Trains

Compare prices and book tickets easily with Bus Bud.

Protect Your Trip

Don’t forget travel insurance. Protect yourself from possible injury and theft abroad.

Book Bucketlist Experiences

Use Get Your Guide to find and book the best experiences!

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