Playa Carrizalillo: The Most Beautiful Beach in Puerto Escondido

Today, I want to dedicate this space to Playa Carrizalillo, undoubtedly one of the best beaches in Puerto Escondido.

This small and paradisiacal corner of the coast of Oaxaca has all the charms that characterize a good beach: fine golden sand, abundant palm trees, huge rocky cliffs, and crystal clear turquoise waters.

You can’t ask for more from a beach, don’t you think?

As you may know, Oaxaca is one of the best destinations in Mexico for a great summer vacation.

The coast of Oaxaca boasts a wide stretch of coastline where different types of beaches are scattered. In general, they are characterized by their white sand and crystal-clear waters.

Water sports are very popular, especially surfing, although there are also quiet beaches where you can swim safely.

The options range from remote and virgin beaches to others with all the amenities for the traveler.

Getting to Playa Carrizalillo, Oaxaca

Playa Carrizalillo beach is located south of Puerto Escondido, between Playa Bacocho and Playa Manzanillo.

It is only 2 km from downtown, so in about 15 minutes, you will have walked to this little piece of paradise.

If you prefer to go by car, you must leave Puerto Escondido on Carlos Salinas de Gortari Avenue, take the Pinotepa Nacional highway, and follow the signs.

The route is very short, so you will soon be in the parking lot next to the entrance of Carrizalillo.

However, you must go down a long, steep stone staircase to get to the beach.

Therefore, it is unsuitable for people with reduced mobility or baby strollers.

It is also recommended to bring the essentials and appropriate footwear.

This somewhat complicated access makes many tourists choose other beaches in Puerto Escondido, so you will not always find it crowded.

What is Playa Carrizalillo like?

playa carrizalillo
Source: Scott Kraft /

Playa Carrizalillo sits in a small bay protected by the mountains, where the waves break gently.

It is characterized by fine golden sand, vegetation around it (especially palm trees), and turquoise and crystalline waters.

The rocky cliffs around it give an additional nice “touch,” which increases its scenic beauty. Reasons why Playa Carrizalillo is considered the best beach in Puerto Escondido.

Unlike other beaches in Oaxaca, Carrizalillo is distinguished by its waves’ softness, making it perfect for discovering the marine life of the Pacific.

The beach is approximately 300 meters long, but you will always find space since it is not very crowded.

The swell is at a medium point, allowing visitors to swim calmly. At the same time, it is suitable for beginner surfers, especially the part where the bay opens to the open sea, where some tube waves form.

Best things to do in Playa Carrizalillo

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Beginner surfers enjoy Playa Carrizalillo

The main attraction of Playa Carrizalillo lies in its tranquility.

If you are a traveler who needs a day of peace, away from tourism, the hustle and bustle of merchants, and loud music, you will find the perfect place here.

I could say that Carrizalillo is a “hidden” beach that offers just the right dose of peace, sun, warm waters, and movie-like sunsets.

Snorkeling is another of the best activities to enjoy at Carrizalillo beach.

At both ends of the bay, high rocky outcrops serve as a habitat for many species.

If you want to explore the beach’s underwater life, it’s best to bring your own mask, as you won’t always be able to rent one (especially out of season).

As with any beach, swimming is also a favorite activity in this beautiful bay. The same goes for taking the best photos.

The beach’s natural beauty will make you want to capture with your camera every corner of it.

If quiet activities are not your thing, you can come with your surfboard and try to master the wave tubes that form at the bay’s exit.

They are perfect for the most inexperienced surfers, so it is a good beach for you to get started in this sport.

Where to eat & stay

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Beautiful views from the Villas Carrizalillo Hotel

Some nice restaurants in Carrizalillo serve the main local specialty: Fish and seafood! Everything is fresh and delicious.

Villas Carrizalillo is not only perfect for eating but also for staying on this beautiful beach.

It has 12 villas, each designed uniquely and located in a quiet and cozy environment.

In addition to having direct access to the beach, they have all the services you need for a fabulous stay. Some villas even offer exceptional views of Carrizalillo Bay.

The Espadín restaurant is on a beautiful beach-view terrace next to the villas.

The sunsets over Carrizalillo Bay are appreciated from here, especially if accompanied by grilled red snapper or spicy shrimp tacos.

On La Rinconada (the main street on the beach), you’ll find a great selection of Puerto Escondido’s upscale restaurants where you can pamper your palate.

You may want to read: 17 Top Mexican Foods and Essential Cooking Ingredients

Other beaches near Playa Carrizalillo

Due to its excellent location, from Carrizalillo Beach, it is possible to discover other paradisiacal corners of Puerto Escondido.

If you want to continue exploring the area, take note of the following suggestions.

Manzanillo Beach and Puerto Angelito

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Puerto Angelito Bay – Source: Brigitte /

Very close to Playa Carrizalillo is this crescent-shaped sandy Manzanillo beach close to the center of town.

It shares the same bay as Puerto Angelito, a small fishing port in Puerto Escondido.

Manzanillo and Puerto Angelito have calm waters, making them some of the best family-friendly beaches in Oaxaca.

They are also two other great options to enjoy a day in the sun in Puerto Escondido.

In both cases, you will find many restaurants and good lodging alternatives.

Playa Manzanillo is 70 meters long by 30 meters wide, with fine white sand and a little slope at the entrance to the sea, whose shades range from green to blue.

Puerto Angelito also has fine white sand and a little slope. Being in the same bay, the sea has similar characteristics to Manzanillo Beach.

In other words, it is a natural pool ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

Swimming, diving, and snorkeling are the best activities at both beaches. The warm, crystalline waters and gentle waves create the perfect conditions to enjoy the underwater life of the Pacific.

Both beaches have a high occupancy level on weekends and during the high season (Nov-March), thanks to their beauty, services, and easy access.

They have restaurants, snorkeling and diving equipment rental, sun loungers, chairs, and umbrellas, among other things.

Bacocho Beach

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The Hotel Suites Villasol in Bacocho beach

Another beautiful and popular beach near Playa Carrizalillo is Bacocho Beach.

With a somewhat rough sea and strong underwater currents, this beach is perfect for long sunset walks.

Located on the outskirts of Puerto Escondido, Bacocho Beach has curious rock formations and miles of golden sand that are especially appealing to athletes and fitness enthusiasts.

Bacocho is divided into three sections by rocks. They are accompanied by dense vegetation and palm trees, resulting in a pleasant natural environment.

The sand is fine and gray, the slope at the entrance to the sea is gentle, the temperature is mild, and the color of the water is greenish blue.

Remember that its waves range from moderate to strong, so it is not the most recommended option for swimming.

Around Bacocho Beach, hotels and restaurants offer excellent service. The Villasol Suites and Beach Club is also located there.

The complex has two swimming pools, a bar, an upscale restaurant, large gardens, and more.

Undoubtedly, an excellent option to spend the day without spending a lot of money.

Coral Beach, near Playa Carrizalillo

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Coral Beach – Source: ruth_berchtold /

Also very close to Playa Carrizalillo is this almost hidden sandy beach in Puerto Escondido.

The soft white sand and clear water of Coral Beach will make you fall in love with it.

Swimming is allowed, but be careful with the steep entrance to the sea and the underwater currents.

Coral Beach has a virgin atmosphere and does not have many services, so you must bring everything you need for the day.

A cool thing about this beach is its low occupancy level. Even in high season, you will find a quiet environment where crowds are absent.

The best way to get to Coral Beach is to hike from Bacocho. After passing two resorts, you will see a path with large rocks leading to your destination.

If the tide is low, access is much easier. In any case, getting to Coral Beach this way is not too much of a problem.

Punta Colorada Beach

Are you a fan of bodyboarding? Near Carrizalillo and Bacocho Beach is Punta Colorada, a world-renowned beach for the practice of this sport.

Thousands of tourists visit these shores yearly to enjoy the ideal conditions.

Apart from that, the beach is virgin and little exploited for tourism, so its atmosphere is quiet.

In addition, Punta Colorada beach is another of the many beaches in Mexico where turtles come to lay their eggs.

Although Punta Colorada is not the best beach for swimming, it is still a perfect option for walking along the coast, taking pictures, watching the sunset, and disconnecting from routine.

Zicatela Beach

playa carrizalillo
Source: Daniel Lobo /

A little farther away from Playa Carrizalillo (about 4 km) is Zicatela, a surfing paradise in Puerto Escondido.

It is the most famous beach in Oaxaca and where surf lovers gather.

The reason for this lies in its huge waves, considered some of the biggest in the world. So much so that between April and October, it hosts numerous international competitions.

Zicatela is a beach that faces the open sea. It has a great length and width range between 30 and 40 meters.

The sand is fine and gray, with a steep slope at the sea entrance. The water has a pleasantly warm temperature, is crystal clear, and shades range from green to blue.

Waves can sometimes reach up to 6 meters high, which is not the best for swimming.

Playa Carrizalillo, Oaxaca: Conclusion

In conclusion, Playa Carrizalillo is undoubtedly the most beautiful beach in Puerto Escondido.

Its secluded location, pristine waters, and soft golden sands make it a true gem of the Oaxacan Coast.

Whether you’re looking to catch some waves, relax under the sun, or simply soak up the stunning views, Playa Carrizalillo is the perfect destination for any traveler.

So if you’re planning a trip to Puerto Escondido, add this breathtaking beach to your must-visit list. You won’t be disappointed. Vamonos!

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