Ciudad del Carmen is a beautiful and tranquil tourist destination located on the Gulf of Mexico off the Yucatan peninsula. It sits in the southwest part of the state of Campeche, Mexico on the southern tip of Isla del Carmen. A region full of culturally rich history, natural beauty, and the best seafood in Mexico, it’s still relatively unknown, “off the beaten” path of other popular tourist destinations.
Those looking for an ecotourist vacation or destination will find plenty of reasons to plan a Ciudad del Carmen getaway. An area rich in biodiversity, tourists will enjoy discovering diverse plant and wildlife in the mangroves, estuaries, sanctuaries, and jungles; or a pleasurable day sunbathing or engaging in water sports on pristine white beaches.
Experience the dolphins and all the wonders that the Laguna de Términos offers through a boat tour. Or witness the stunning panoramic views on a drive across the El Zacatal Bridge, the longest in the country, which spans across clear blue waters.
The surrounding area of Campeche offers an equally fun adventure exploring Mayan archaeological sites, in which sightseers will learn about the culturally rich history of the area. And on the drive there, stop off at the much-loved lighthouses dotted along the shore. The colorful city of Carmen—”the Pearl of the Gulf”— has a European flavor, with its colonial-style buildings and dome-style churches painted in bright colors. One can sense the local history, traditions, and Mexican way of life.
Enwrapped in warm tropical breezes strolling through the old town, visitors will discover architectural icons in the oldest neighborhoods with colonial-style houses and beautiful gardens. The Municipal Market offers the very best seafood, fresh fruits and vegetables, and local arts and crafts. A number of restaurants offer fine dining and local specialty dishes.
The sight of colorful flowers juxtaposed against the various shades of green foliage and fauna permeates the luxurious island, while mangroves, forests, and tropical vegetation remind the vacationer of its ruggedness, the contrast within this tropical paradise.
For history lovers, there is much to explore. The island was a strategic port taken from pirates by the Spanish on the saint day of Virgen del Carmen on July 16, 1718, of which the area is named after; the Church of the Virgen del Carmen is a tribute to this history. Old forts and fortified walls, reminiscent of the old days, can still be seen in good condition today.
A quite fishing village until the ‘70’s, the region has grown considerably after oil was discovered and has become one of the most economically rich areas of Mexico. Because of this economic boom, there is a culturally diverse population which lives here today.
Take an Aeromexico flight to this luxurious place and experience some of the top must-see places in Ciudad del Carmen:
Laguna de Términos
The cool blue waters of the lagoon separate the island from the mainland. The nation’s largest estuary, it is fed by the Palizada, Chumpán and Candelaria rivers. It is a sanctuary for dolphins, hawksbill turtles, and manatees and is home to a variety of other wildlife like crocodiles, iguanas and jabiru stork. A birdwatcher’s delight, and a fisherman’s paradise—sea bass, oysters, crappie and dogfish abound—the lagoon is an enchantment for all.
Pristine White Beaches
Miles of coastline and a tropical climate to boot, the area offers tranquil beaches and turquoise waters.
Church of Our Lady of Carmen
Built in the 18th century, the church is visually stunning inside and out. Built basilica-style, pink Tepeaca marble covers the main altar, floors, and walls, while stain glass windows and oil paintings abound.
The City of Carmen
The jewel of the area, the city boosts of history, culture, and architectural wonders. Experience its many eateries and restaurants cooking up local favorites with freshly caught fish and seafood. Tour the municipal Palace, the Zaragoza Park, the former Victoriano Nieves hospital that houses the city Museum and the Church of Our Lady of Carmen.
El Zacatal Bridge
An engineering wonder, it’s Mexico longest bridge at 3,222 meters connecting the southern part of the island to the mainland. Driving, sightseers can see stunning panoramic views of the blue waters of Laguna de Términos and the Gulf of Mexico.
Don’t miss out from playing in this jewel of Mexico.