Sargassum report for Mahahual in March 2016 (so far)

I see some people land on my blog following an internet search for “Mahahual” and “sargassum” and the month of “March.” So I decided to post a quick update on the situation in this great Mexican town.

Here’s the situation: non-existent to minimal the first half of the month, according to my spouse. Then, last week, I saw a few days with a slightly thicker build-up of the seaweed when I returned from a trip to New York.


My husband said there was hardly any sargassum at all, until around the time I returned. Then, there was a little bit: hardly anything to deter beach-goers with positive attitudes.

The dark clumps pictured underneath the turquoise water are run-of-the-mill seaweed growing on the sand – like a thick, underwater sea grass. Some of the grass beds have coral bits in them.


Sargassum floats as it rolls in. It looks like a brownish-red blob when it comes in passed the reef in clumps.


More often in Mahahual, it comes all smashed up in tiny bits. There is a coral reef right offshore, and once the invasive seaweed clears the reef, it’s usually broken down into small pieces. It collects at the shoreline and is manageable for locals to clean each day – so there is virtually none.

It’s worth noting, I think, that there are a few spots where larger clumps go through reef openings, those clumps do carry plastic. It’s not as bad as Tulum’s situation last year, but you will see it, if you look closely.


This is why I helped some of the locals clean the beach last week when I returned from New York. It breaks my heart to see all the plastic wash ashore from other places. It’s also why I’ll help the Mexicans clean the beach again when my husband and I return to Mahahual in April and May.

So, this will be the only sargassum report on the Costa Maya until then, because as I write this, we’re in Campeche, another fantastic place in Mexico that I’ll write about soon.

I also plan to write a lot about Mahahual itself. I have fallen in love with the place. There is so much to offer that cruise shippers don’t see.



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