San Felipe is one of the towns that are within the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, one of the most beautiful natural sites of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Within the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve we find several towns from where to get to know this fantastic natural area. The main ones are San Felipe, River Lagartos, The Coloradas and the furthest east, El Cuyo, all coastal and fishing villages.

The first three towns are close to each other: there is a detour along highway 295 before reaching Río Lagartos, which leads to San Felipe to the left, and Las Coloradas to the right. The most tourist One of these towns is Río Lagartos, where you will find more services.

In none of these towns there are ATMs, the banks are in Tizimín.

San Felipe, Yucatan


San Felipe is located 50 minutes from Tizimín. Follow the signs to Río Lagartos, before reaching this town you will see the detour to San Felipe. The road is narrow but well paved. Tizimín is the closest large population to the towns of the Ria Lagartos reserve.

  • HOW TO GET THERE BY CAR: It is only 60 kilometers from Tizimín (50 minutes by car), 113 kilometers from Valladolid (1 hour 40 minutes) and 200 kilometers from Mérida (2 and a half hours).
  • HOW TO GET THERE BY PUBLIC TRANSPORT: From Tizimín there is a large bus to San Felipe, also buses (15 seats) and collective taxis (4-passenger cars). All are located at the central bus station Noreste
  • HOW TO GET THERE BY TAXI: you can also ask for a price to go by private taxi. Taxi drivers must have the official price list. Agree before the price.
San Felipe, on the banks of the Ría Lagartos 1 Biosphere Reserve


San Felipe lives facing the sea, its source of life and food. Most of its almost two thousand inhabitants are fishing families, so the boats, nets and fishing rods are part of the town's landscape, in addition to the rich aroma of salt.

In the town you will find cheap lodging and restaurants where you can eat delicious fish, prawns (prawns), octopus and other delights of this Gulf of Mexico.

There is a gas station at the entrance of Río Lagartos, in San Felipe there are no ATMs. Travel with cash in this area as many shops do not accept cards.

San Felipe, on the banks of the Ría Lagartos 2 Biosphere Reserve

San Felipe Tours

Various fishermen's cooperatives in San Felipe offer excursions to the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, a unique place to observe birds and other types of fauna. Most tourists choose Río Lagartos to go on an excursion, due to its proximity to the famous mud baths, but San Felipe may surprise you.

One of the excursions takes you by boat through the exquisite mangrove area, until you reach a walking tour that leads you to a waterhole (where fresh water comes to the surface) where you can enjoy these exquisite landscapes. Isla Cerritos It is another of the landscapes offered in the tours by boat, here nest several seabirds.

Price and duration: from 600 mxn by boat offer excursions of 2 hours of travel.

San Felipe, on the banks of the Ría Lagartos 3 Biosphere Reserve
Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, Yucatan.
Biosphere Reserve Ria lagartos

What else to do in San Felipe

The beach: It is very popular in San Felipe spend a day in the Playa of the place, where you must arrive by boat. On this popular beach there are shadows where you can put your hammock, it's cool to spend the day in these places for me. You take a bath, you have your fried fish, your ice cold beer… life, pure life! 

During Holy Week and vacation time, residents of Mérida and Valladolid take advantage to visit San Felipe, seeking good living on the Gulf coast.

San Felipe beach
San Felipe, on the banks of the Ría Lagartos 4 Biosphere Reserve
Flamingos in Las Coloradas
San Felipe, on the banks of the Ría Lagartos 5 Biosphere Reserve

Nearby towns: there are two other interesting towns nearby. One is River Lagartos from where they make the most popular tours through the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, and the other The Coloradas, famous for its red salt flats and the pink flamingo that inhabits them.

Undoubtedly, reaching these populations is living Yucatan as one more settler. In San Felipe you will enjoy dreamy sunsets and sunrises, do you need one more excuse to go and see the place?

Good way,

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Sandra Salvadó Training photographer, traveler by vocation and certified tourism guide by the Government of Mexico. We promote natural wonders and contemporary Mayan culture. Great fan of pre-Hispanic history. Author of the blog and co-founder of The Shortest Path Travel, agency that guides you through alternative paths in Mayan lands. Social and sustainable tourism in the Yucatan Peninsula and Chiapas.
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