Holbox Island is one of the most beautiful destinations that we can find in the Mexican Caribbean and despite not being part of the Riviera Maya, and being on the opposite side of it, it has become the earthly paradise of hundreds of travelers!
The island has become completely popular because it is one of the few places that still keeps its charm of a beach town, dirt roads, humble accommodations, calm shallow beaches, and a very varied flora and fauna.
To top it off, Holbox is the only place in the Mexican Caribbean where you can enjoy the bioluminescence effect of the beaches.
So if you have decided that Holbox is the place where you are going to enjoy your vacations or even spend an express visit, then keep reading because here we will tell you how to get to Holbox from Cancun.
Where is Holbox located?
Holbox Island is an island located at the northern end of the state of Quintana Roo and belongs to the municipality of Lazaro Cardenas. As such it is not part of the Riviera Maya, but it is part of the Yucatan Peninsula and the Mexican Caribbean.
What is the Port of Chiquila?
As we mentioned above: Holbox is an island and therefore has to be reached by sea.
However, there is no maritime route from Cancun or the Riviera Maya to Holbox Island, nor are cruise ships or large boats allowed. In addition, the island does not have an airport.
Therefore, to get to Holbox Island you must first get to the town of Chiquila. This town, which belongs to the municipality of Lazaro Cardenas, has a maritime terminal, better known as «The Port of Chiquila».
This maritime terminal is very busy for all the thousands of visitors and locals that every day cross Holbox Island or decide to return from Holbox.
Therefore: To get to Holbox, you have to make a sea trip (Ferry trip) from the port of Chiquila.
Are there any flights to Holbox?
No, as such there are no flights from Cancun airport to Holbox or from any other place, except the town of Chiquila. From Chiquila you can hire an air transportation service by helicopter or small plane.
Holbox has a small heliport, with capacity to receive small planes or helicopters, but these can only be hired from Chiquila and its air route is Chiquila – Holbox and vice versa.
What is the distance from Cancun to Holbox?
The distance between Cancun and Holbox Island is 140 km traveling by road, plus 12 km of sea travel. The approximate transfer time is 1 hour and 30 minutes traveling by road, plus the 30 minute ferry ride to the island.
What is the distance from Cancun airport to Holbox?
The distance from Cancun airport to Holbox is 69 km away. It should be noted that it is considered the fastest route (Federal Highway) and the approximate transfer time is 1 hour. However, we cannot forget about the 30 minutes of additional time that the ferry takes from the port of Chiquila to Holbox.
What is the distance from Cancun to Chiquila?
The distance between the city of Cancun and the town of Chiquila is 140 km and the approximate time to get there is 1 hour and 30 minutes.
What is the distance from Playa del Carmen to Holbox?
The distance between the city of Playa del Carmen to Holbox Island is 104 km and the approximate travel time is 2 hours plus the additional 30 minutes of the Ferry.
What is the distance from Tulum to Holbox?
The distance from the city of Tulum to Holbox is 147 km and the approximate transfer time is 2 hours and 30 minutes plus the additional 30 minutes of the Ferry.
What is the cost of the Ferry to Holbox?
The cost of the Ferry to Holbox is 220.00 MXN per adult and 130.00 MXN per child. It should be noted that this is the cost of the single trip, therefore: The cost of the round trip for adult is 440.00 MXN and 260.00 MXN for child.
What is the schedule of the ferry to Holbox?
At the Chiquila maritime terminal, there are two ferry companies to Holbox, which are: Holbox Express and Nueve Hermanos. Each one of them has different schedules and they are:
|Holbox – Chiquilá||Chiquilá – Holbox|
|05:00||9 Hmnos.||06:00||9 Hmnos|
|06:00||9 Hmnos||07:00||9 Hmnos|
|07:00||9 Hmnos.||08:00||9 Hmnos|
|08:00||9 Hmnos||09:00||9 Hmnos|
|09:00||9 Hmnos.||10:00||9 Hmnos|
|10:00||9 Hmnos.||11:00||9 Hmnos|
|11:00||9 Hmnos.||12:00||9 Hmnos.|
|12:00||9 Hmnos.||13:00||9 Hmnos.|
|13:00||9 Hmnos.||14:00||9 Hmnos.|
|14:00||9 Hmnos.||15:00||9 Hmnos.|
|15:00||9 Hmnos.||16:00||9 Hmnos.|
|17:00||9 Hmnos.||18:00||9 Hmnos.|
|18:00||9 Hmnos.||19:00||9 Hmnos.|
|19:00||9 Hmnos.||20:00||9 Hmnos.|
Can Holbox be visited in one day?
Yes, it is possible to visit in one day. However, it is not recommended, since Holbox Island is a place to enjoy and explore both during the day and at night.
How to get to Holbox from Cancun
In order to get to Holbox from Cancun, we can’t forget that first we have to get to the Port of Chiquila, therefore: All the transfer services from Cancun to Holbox, really only get you to the port mentioned above.
Depending on where you are from (Cancun airport or Cancun city) you have the following options to get to the island (Chiquila Port), which are: Private transfer, own car, bus, colectivos and tours.
The private transfer service is one of the best options to get to the port of Chiquila regardless of whether you and your family are getting off the plane at the Cancun airport or are staying somewhere in the city.
As such, the vehicle will pick you up at the airport or at your hotel and will take you to the port of Chiquilla. You will then be able to take the ferry to Holbox.
It is necessary to mention that the service does not «include» the ferry ticket and likewise, there are several recommended transfer agencies that you can learn about by clicking here. On the other hand, let’s not forget that most of them have a standard rate, therefore, the agencies have almost the same prices as the ferry: The agencies have almost the same transfer prices, which are:
|Private Transfer||Private Transfer||Private Transfer|
|1-3 Passengers||4-6 Passengers||7-8 Passengers|
|Single||Round trip||Single||Round trip||Single||Round trip|
|225 USD||435 USD||225 USD||435 USD||225 USD||435 USD|
Very close to the port of Chiquila there are several private parking lots that cost 100.00 MXN per day. This means: If you decide to rent a car or if you have your own car and want to visit Holbox Island. You can do it, since you will be able to leave your car parked in a private and guarded place 24 hours a day.
As such, the ADO bus line and others offer departures to Holbox Island from Cancun. However, it goes without saying that it will be necessary to find out the departure times first. It has specific schedules to go from Cancun to Holbox.
Like the ADO bus, there are colectivos (shared transfer services), which offer the transfer to Holbox from Cancun. But like the previous one, they have specific departure and return schedules.
Do you want to visit Holbox in one day? There are tours to Holbox Island departing from the city of Cancun, which offer round trip transportation (round trip) and even include the cost of the ferry.
Generally, these tours have a duration of one day, and in which they take you to the main areas of the island and also allow you a free tour in it. So, if you are traveling with little time and want to visit Holbox Island, this option is ideal for you.
How to get to Holbox from Playa del Carmen
Since most of the private transfer agencies are based in Cancun, going to Holbox from Playa del Carmen with this option is absolutely out of the question. Since the companies would charge for the transfer from Cancun to Playa and from Playa to Holbox, therefore: We cannot count on it.
So, how to get to Holbox from Playa del Carmen? To get to Holbox from Playa del Carmen, we have the options of transfer by ADO, Taxi and Holbox Collection.
The ADO ground transportation service is the best option to go to Holbox from Playa del Carmen. It is the most economical and of course, let’s not forget that it has specific departure and arrival times.
If you want to avoid the hassle with the schedules, you can buy the cab service from Playa del Carmen to Holbox Island, you just have to consider that the cost would not be cheap and if you plan to stay more than a day, maybe the return is by bus or other means of transportation.
Your own car
If you have your own car and are traveling from Playa del Carmen, you should know that Chiquila has several private parking lots. You can leave your car in the parking lot and pay a fee of 100.00 MXN per day.
Holbox Collection is a company specialized in private transfer services from Cancun and the Riviera Maya to Holbox. As such, it is an excellent option to go to Holbox from Playa del Carmen and actually from other cities like Puerto Aventuras, Tulum or even Valladolid.
So if you are looking for a private, reliable service that assures you an excellent transfer experience to Holbox from Playa, Holbox Collection is a very good travel alternative.
How to get around Holbox?
The island of Holbox does not have paved or wide streets and therefore the means of transportation are limited to golf carts and bicycles.
Golf carts serve as cabs within the island, although you can rent one yourself to tour the island privately and of course, bicycles are a very comfortable and safe means of transportation that will give you more freedom to explore this Mexican Caribbean paradise.
Visiting Holbox should be among the things you have to do on your visit to Cancun. Although, as we have explained here: It is not an area close to Cancun and does not belong to the Riviera Maya, it has become popular for its unparalleled beauty. So without a doubt, now that you know how to get there from Cancun or from the Riviera Maya, don’t hesitate to venture out and explore Holbox.