Bacalar trip planner
Create a fully customized
day-by-day itinerary for free
Bacalar is the municipal seat and largest city in Bacalar Municipality (until 2011 a part of Othón P. Blanco Municipality) in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, about 40km north of Chetumal, at 18° 40' 37" N, 88° 23' 43" W. In the 2010 census the city had a population of 11,084 people. At that time it was still a part of Othón P. Blanco, and was its second-largest city (locality), after Chetumal.The name most likely derives from, meaning "surrounded by reeds", the name of the locality attested at the time of the 16th century arrival of the Spanish.Bacalar is also the name of the lagoon, Bacalar lagoon on the east side of the town.Bacalar was a city of the Maya civilization in Pre-Columbian times. This was the first city in the region which the Spanish Conquistadores succeeded in taking and holding in 1543. In 1545 Gaspar Pacheco established the Spanish town here with the name Salamanca de Bacalar. The region of the southern half of what is now Quintana Roo was governed from Bacalar, answerable to the Captain General of Yucatán in Mérida.After the town was sacked by pirates in the 17th century, the Fortress de San Felipe Bacalar was completed in 1729, and may still be visited today.In 1848 Bacalar had a population of about 5,000 people. In 1848 during the Caste War of Yucatán rebellious Chan Santa Cruz Maya conquered the town. It was not retaken by the Mexicans until 1902.Bacalar is in Quintana Roo. Take a look at our Mexico trip planner to refine the details of your trip to Bacalar.
Create a full itinerary — for free!
Plan your trip to Bacalar
Get a personalized planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best hotels
and activities. Up to 50% off
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
Top Bacalar tours
Costa Maya Shore Excursion: Chacchoben Day Trip BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $62
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
View all >
Side trips from Bacalar
Hidden gems in Bacalar
Nature in Bacalar
Places to visit with Bacalar
Recently planned trips to Bacalar
15 days in Southern Mexico & Bacalar BY A USER FROM MEXICO December, popular sights PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 12 days in Bacalar, Tulum & Cancun BY A USER FROM MEXICO November, popular sights PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 17 days in Yucatan Peninsula BY A USER FROM ITALY February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 14 days in Mexico BY A USER FROM FRANCE March, popular sights PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 41 days in Mexico BY A USER FROM SLOVENIA December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 30 days in Mexico BY A USER FROM GERMANY December, kids, culture, relaxing, romantic, beaches, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, kids, culture, relaxing, romantic, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium