Find the Hidden Beach

Xca-Cel beach on the Riviera Maya
From sun-worshipers to snorkeling junkies, the powdery stretches of the Riviera Maya’s coastline entice visitors from around the world to come and play in the soft sand. As you pass south of Cancun, the beaches change in their dynamics, resulting in calmer waters with fewer waves. While this is ideal for swimming and sealife spotting, those seeking the thrill of body surfing and riding the waves are left with unfulfilled cravings.

There is one spot - a cherished secret among us locals - that Sac-Be is going to share with our readers, Xca-Cel (sh-ka-cell). Found at the end of a bumpy sand road easily missed by the untrained eye, this beach is one of the few sites where – on a day when the sea is rough – there are large enough waves to provide hours of body surfing madness. Even when the sea is calm, this is a beach worthy of a day trip. Soft sand, gorgeous palms, easy entrance into the water, as well as a cenote found down a path on the southern end of the bay are just a few of the attractions. With no structures abutting the beach, aside from an old restaurant used as the present day headquarters for an extensive Sea Turtle nesting program, Xca-Cel is one of the few beaches left that remains deliciously undeveloped!

Xca-Cel beach on the Riviera Maya
This leads me to yet another reason for including this awesome beach into your vacation plans. As this is one of the few beaches left natural for the nesting of the endangered sea turtles, there is a camp of biologists and volunteers during the summer months (roughly May to October) to assist the nesting process. If you are on Xcacel during these months, you stand a chance of seeing a nest of baby turtles hatch. Expect the volunteers and on-site biologists to offer advice as to how best enjoy a day of sun and fun while respecting the potential baby turtles making their way to the sea. This is a “once in a lifetime” opportunity that should not be missed!

To find this exquisite treasure, check out the Riviera Maya map in the Maps & Travel Tips page. Just south of the town, Chemuyil, the beach Xca-Cel can be found. For those driving from the north, if you reach Xel Ha Ecopark, you have gone too far; and if you are approaching from the south, you’ve gone too far if you reach the turnoff to Chemuyil. Be sure to pack your cooler, for there is not a concessions stand to be had (ask your hotel, condo, or villa if they have a cooler for guest use). Be prepared to fully enjoy a local’s secret, play long and hard in the sand and surf, as well as chance the sighting of hundreds of baby turtles pouring out of their nest to begin their trek to the ocean - all on the beach of Xca-Cel!


ev_2_beach_xcacel_t.jpg
Akumal Villas

Casa Carolina Xcalak