I couldn’t believe my eyes when I discovered this secret Huatulco beach! When I think of beautiful Mexican beaches, the first place my mind goes to spots like Cabos or the Riviera Maya, but there are so many more amazing shores worth visiting, too!
Back in 2018, when I did my first road trip through the coast of Oaxaca, I wasn’t really expecting much of it. In all honesty, I didn’t really think anything could top the beaches I’d seen in places like Holbox or Playa Mujeres.
Little did I know that I was in for a big surprise!
My trip to Huatulco was planned during one of the worst possible times to travel to any Mexican beach. It was the peak of Semana Santa, and if you’ve been to any Latin American country, you already know this is the week when people take breaks from working and going to school to travel locally.
To my dismay, the main beaches in Huatulco were packed, and I don’t mean a “little packed”, I mean they were out of their capacity and I could barely even walk through the masses of people.
Still, though, this secret Huatulco beach I’m about to tell you all about saved not just the day, but the entire trip!
I found out about the existence of Cacaluta Beach thanks to a taxi driver. If you’ve been to Mexico and speak a little Spanish, you probably already know that taxi drivers can get super chatty and I took up the chance to ask him if he knew of any beaches that weren’t as crowded.
This is the beauty of opening yourself up and talking to locals rather than following the usual tourist guides. Locals know the place they live in like the back of their hand, and they’re definitely the best people to ask when you’re in need of recommendations!
I was a bit hesitant and wondered if maybe he was just trying to sell me an expensive tour, but when he told me he’d only charge me a few dollars to take me there, my curiosity couldn’t let me pass up on the opportunity.
And I’m so glad I did because, even to date, this secret Huatulco beach still remains my favorite one in Mexico!
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????️ Why is Cacaluta considered a secret Huatulco beach?
Even though Cacaluta Beach is actually located pretty close to the downtown (it’s only 8 kilometers away), it still remains an extremely hidden gem because getting there can be quite an adventure.
In fact, Cacaluta Beach is located inside Huatulco National Park. To get to the beach, you will need to hike through the park for about half an hour, which is a task most people can’t be bothered with.
For me, though, the hike itself was part of what made Cacaluta such a treat to visit. Along the trail, I got to see mangroves, forests, and a wetland where different species of birds seemed to enjoy hanging out.
If you like peaceful walks through nature and wildlife encounters are your thing, then right there is another reason to visit this incredible secret Huatulco beach!
After a pleasant one-and-a-half-kilometer stroll through the shaded forests of Huatulco National Park, I began getting glimpses of this secret Huatulco beach amid the trees, and boy, I was not expecting what was coming next!
When I finally inched my first steps on the sand, I was treated to what I can only describe as the epitome of a beach paradise. There was virtually nobody there, the sand was silky soft, and the blues of the water looked almost as if they were photoshopped!
I dropped my stuff under a tree and jumped into the water as fast as I could. The water was super clear, so much that spotting manta rays and colorful fish was easy to do even without straying too far from the shore.
My day at this secret Huatulco beach was spent alternating between swimming, snorkeling, and lying on the beach. I even started wondering if I could bring a tent over and see if my survival skills were enough to get me surviving here for a week or more!
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????️ How To Get To Cacaluta Beach
Getting to this secret Huatulco beach is easy as pie if you’re the adventurous type.
From Huatulco downtown, take a taxi and tell the driver you want to be dropped off at the entrance to Cacaluta. Chances are the driver will know where you want to go, but just in case they don’t, here’s the exact place you should get dropped off. The taxi should cost you no more than $100MXN.
This is what the entrance to Huatulco National Park looks like:
There is no guarded entrance or staff, so from here onwards, you’re completely on your own (don’t worry, it’s completely safe!).
Next, you’ll have to walk for about half an hour through the national park in order to reach the beach. The trail is pretty well-marked and mostly shaded by trees.
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????️ How To Get Back To Huatulco
Even though getting to my secret Huatulco beach is relatively easy, getting back to town is what I struggled a bit with.
First, you’ll need to walk back to the road the exact same way you came from. Once you reach the highway, you may get lucky and be able to hail a taxi from there, but from my experience, the road is pretty deserted. Barely any cars drove by and I also didn’t see any buses whatsoever.
In any case, you can walk for about one kilometer until you reach Playa Maguey. At this playa, you’ll find several taxis ready to take you back to Huatulco.
Make sure you put some sunblock before the walk as it’s not shaded at all!
⏰ Best Time To Visit Cacaluta Beach
While you can visit Cacaluta for sunbathing pretty much any time of the day, I recommend heading there in the morning for higher chances of getting it all to yourself (I didn’t see a single soul during my visit except for a duo of mountain bikers I encountered on the hike, and that’s considering it was Semana Santa season!).
After 1 pm, the tide starts to get stronger, so make sure you move your stuff further away from the shore to keep it safe. After 2 pm or so, the waves get pretty ruthless, so I wouldn’t recommend visiting this secret Huatulco beach in the afternoon if you want to swim.
✈️ Ready for your trip to Huatulco? If you have any questions about visiting this secret Huatulco beach, I’d be happy to update this post – just leave a comment below!
Born and raised in Mexico City, Daniela came back to her motherland after a short stint of living in Germany. She is responsible for all our Mexico City content where she shares all the insider and local tips about the capital!