Isla Contoy – bird and beach eco-paradise Contoy Island Mexico
During my first 2 visits to Mexico I did not even hear of Isla Contoy until I started planning my third and fourth visit – 4 weeks in Yucatan peninsula. I spent a lot of time just between Cancun and Playa del Carmen, two places I truly heart.
However, I also took some day trips to the surrounding islands. One of them was a boat trip to Isla Contoy together with my two blogger friends – Paige and Robin.
We were staying at El Taj Oceanfront hotel in Playa del Carmen when a taxi picked us up early to drive us to the Scuba Marina in Cancun. I was exhausted and tried to take a nap in the cab, and then also on the big boat. I even meditated on the boat.
Part of the trip was also brief snorkeling at Ixlache reef because the second biggest barrier reef in the world starts close to Contoy Island.
It’s incredible how hidden the beauty of Isla Contoy is and how few people know about it and/or visited it.
My breath was taken away as soon as we started approaching the island which is less than 9 km long. No wonder it was claimed a National Park in 1998. White sand beach, crystal clear sea, loads of palm trees and even more birds. Birds, birds and birds everywhere. Herons, pelicans, frigates, cormorants, etc. … 152 species of birds to be exact.
Contoy Island is the most important nesting place of sea birds in all of the Mexican Caribbean.
Also many lizards, iguanas and little crabs crossing your path in each direction call this island their home.
At least 98 plant species grow on the island, out of which 4 types of mangroves cover around 70% of the island landscape.
There’s a few things to do on Contoy Island Mexico. For example, you can check out a small museum, and thus learn more about the animals living here, climb the tower, relax on the beach of the West coast or walk to the viewpoint Sikimay to get the view of both sides of the island. We did all of these and also enjoyed lunch prepared by our guides in between, and finished our visit by beach bumming.
I was incredibly happy to be one of the privileged people to enter Contoy Island as there’s just a certain number of people allowed on the island every day. It’s a real eco-paradise and I could not quit taking photos everywhere I looked. Mexico is simply the best!