Celestun Wildlife Refuge Tours

37 reviews
Celestun Wildlife Refuge
A relaxed fishing village located along the Yucatan coast, Celestun lies within the Celestun Biosphere Reserve. Comprised of over 146,000 acres (hectares) of mangroves, the reserve makes ideal habitat for animals, especially birds, and more than 300 bird species, including the popular flamingo, live here.

The Basics
The Celestun Biosphere Reserve is an easy day trip from the city of Mérida. If you get an early start, it’s possible to visit the reserve in a day from Cancun or other parts of the Mexican Riviera. Just be prepared to spend a large portion of your day on the road, since it’s almost a 5-hour drive. Once there, you’ll be able to cruise down the estuary and drift through the mangroves, where you can observe flocks of flamingos feeding on crustaceans. Also be on the lookout for spider monkeys.

Things to Know Before You Go

  • A must-see for bird lovers, the reserve’s “Bird Island” is where cormorants, frigate birds, and great egrets nest.
  • Restaurants and beach shacks in Celestun serve freshly caught seafood.
  • Don’t apply sunscreen before swimming in the reserve’s freshwater spring as it can contaminate the water.

How to Get There

The best way to get to the Celestun Biosphere Reserve is via boat. You can hire a guide in town or book a day trip from Mérida, which includes round-trip transportation. If driving from Mérida, which is about 57 miles (92 kilometers) away, take Highway 281; there is parking near the beach and at the entrance to the preserve. Or you can catch a bus in Mérida at the station that’s located at the corner of Calle 50 and Calle 67.

When to Get There
Between November and March is the best season to visit Celestun Biosphere Reserve to see the flamingos, with January and February being prime time. During Semana Santa, which takes place around the Easter holiday in Mexico, nearby villagers visit Celestun, so it may be more crowded than usual during this time.

Ría Lagartos

Slightly closer to Cancun, Ría Lagartos is also well known for its flocks of flamingos and sandy beaches that are attract groups of tourists. In addition to the pretty pink birds, Parque Natural Ría Lagartos is home to more than 380 bird species, including egrets, herons, pelicans, and falcons, plus crocodiles.
Address: Reserva de la Biosfera Ría Celestún, Celestun, The Yucatan, Mexico
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NEW TO VIATOR

Access Ticket Celestún

The boat tour is very fun and refreshing, the Ría Celestún Biosphere Reserve is beautiful and has beautiful natural landscapes.The ideal is to go in flamenco season, but if it is not the case, you can also see some of them.During the tour you will see small islands with different types of birds.What impressed me the most about the boat tour was going through the "tunnel" of the mangroves, a unique and incredible experience. You can enter the boat at full speed and you "immerse" in the ecosystem of the mangroves and feel the "darkness". Everything that surrounds you (on the sides and even on top of you) are these trees called mangroves and you are there in the middle, on the boat ... amazing! Imagine being by boat and being surrounded by this vegetation.You will go down from the boat and you will be able to walk through wooden corridors to see the water hole, the scenery is spectacular!
  • Duration: 90 to 120 minutes
  • Duration: 90 to 120 minutes
From  
US$115.00
From  
US$115.00
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Day Trip to Celestun: Flamingos, Mangrove Boat Ride and Beach Break

Marvel at thousands of vibrant pink flamingos during an idyllic boat ride on a full-day tour of the spectacular Celestun Wildlife Refuge from Merida. During your excursion, observe some of the 225 mammal species that inhabit the beautiful Biosphere reserve, gazing at pelicans, flamingos and fish as a knowledgeable guide directs your attention. Cruise through atmospheric mangroves before reclining on the soft sands of a local beach.
  • Duration: 9 hours
  • Duration: 9 hours
From  
US$79.00
From  
US$79.00
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Celestun Nature Reserve

Visit the Celestun Biospehere Reserve on a full-day tour in a comfortable air-conditioned minivan with a bilingual guide. After convenient hotel pickup, witness the many species of birds that call the park home. Enrich your experience of this fascinating region by learning about the Yucatán’s rich environment and abundant wildlife on a boat ride. Experience the Petenes mangroves and enjoy a seafood lunch included in the tour price.    
  • Duration: 8 to 9 hours
  • Duration: 8 to 9 hours
From  
US$92.00
From  
US$92.00
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NEW TO VIATOR

Mexico Cancun-Merida-Campeche-Chicanna-Cancun Tour 10 days-9 nights

Visits to unusual places, animal fauna in Celestun and Mexican Mayan archaeological sites
  • Duration: 10 days
  • Duration: 10 days
From  
US$2,898.46
From  
US$2,898.46
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(888) 651-9785
(888) 651-9785