Our private Rio Lagartos tour is ideal for families and groups who are interested in spending a relaxing day enjoying the natural wonders of the Yucatán Peninsula.



Rio Lagartos Pink Flamingos

Rio Lagartos is a small fishing village on the northern shores of the Yucatán Peninsula known for its incredibly diverse wildlife. Its most popular attraction is the nearby Ría Lagartos nature reserve and lagoon, where visitors can go birdwatching and see its many famous pink flamingos, egrets, and ibises. The village’s name translates from Spanish as “Alligator River”, though technically the large reptiles that can be seen swimming in the nearby lagoon are classified as crocodiles.

Boat Tour at Rio Lagartos

When the day of your private Rio Lagartos tour arrives, we’ll come and pick you up from your hotel in Playa del Carmen early in the morning (approx. 5 am) and make the 3-hour journey (235 km/145 mi) to Río Lagartos. Since we provide comfortable private transportation, you’re welcome to sleep along the way. Upon our arrival at Rio Lagartos, we’ll provide a breakfast and coffee to make sure you’re wide awake and ready for the day!

Pink Laguna at Rio Lagartos

By arriving in Río Lagartos early in the day, you’ll get to enjoy the peaceful lagoon before the crowds arrive, plus you’ll be more likely to see birds and other wildlife. We’ll start the day by going on a 3-hour private boat tour of the lagoon (6 people max. per boat). As you float through the beautiful nature preserve, your guide will point out species such as flamingos, eagles, herons, geese, pelicans, frigate birds, and last but not least, crocodiles! (Seeing them all is never guaranteed.)

Eagle at Rio Lagartos

Our first stop along the tour will be Las Coloradas, an area of the lagoon which is home to Mexico’s second largest salt factory since salt is extracted from the seawater there. On a sunny day, you won’t be able to believe your eyes as you enjoy the breathtaking views of the unbelievably pink lagoon water.


The lagoon is not always pink as its color depends on the sun light and also on the salt production process from the factory, that is not predictable. Swimming at Las Coloradas is strictly forbidden and can hurt your skin.


Next, we stop for a traditional “Baño Maya”, a Mayan mud bath on the beach using the salty sand and we will reach the Ojo del agua, the cenote connected to the lagoon where you can remove the salty sand with the fresh clear water. Once you’re done, back to the city, we’ll stop for lunch at a local restaurant and enjoy some delicious fresh fishes and meals.

Crocodile at Rio Lagartos
After leaving the Rio Lagartos village, we’ll drive to Las Coloradas, that time to observe the lagoons from the salt factory side. The tour usually ends with us driving back to Playa del Carmen – Riviera Maya around 4/5 pm.