I found it – a beach without one single little bit of sargassum.
At least, there was none there when I was there, and I saw no evidence of any old pileups in the sand.
Sargassum invaded the Caribbean and the smelly seaweed made many beaches less than pristine. While it’s not harmful to swim with, tourists generally go to the Caribbean for perfect white sand expanses with crystal clear blue waters.
People from all over the world regularly read this blog for condition updates from Tulum, where I lived for five months last year. Conditions were not always pristine, but the magic of that beach was never really lost for me.
Since then, I’ve traveled around a bit, Campeche and Mahahual in Mexico, and Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker in Belize.
Right now I’m in Campeche, but it doesn’t have a beach. So my spouse and I took a two hour bus ride south to where a decent white sand beach sits on the Bay of Campeche in the Gulf of Mexico.
It’s called Sabancuy Playa, and inland from the beach is Sabancuy Centro, which is connected to the beach by bridge over a lagoon. Tok toks run as taxis here.
It was a beautiful, hot day spent in clear water on clean sand. The water is shallow for a good distance offshore, and it’s perfect for swimming laps.
It’s like salted bathwater. Actually, I can’t believe the salinity – it’s so salty it burned my eyes like crazy and the little hairs all over my body were all coated with fine, obviously visible salt when I got out of the water. It made it so easy to float. I could back float and have my belly stick out of the water without any effort at all.
We were there during Holy Week – Samana Santa – so there were many Mexican families enjoy the day as well. People told us when the holiday is over, the beach is basically deserted because everyone goes back to work.
We also spent a little time walking around the town. I had a couple of conversations in Spanish, and the people I encountered were pleasant, friendly and helpful.
We also met a businessman who speaks English, and, who knew a lot about the Cleveland Browns! Leave it to my spouse to find a Cleveland connection anywhere in the world.
Sabancuy is a fishing town. Fishermen go out in the pre-dawn hours with nets.
Fresh fish from the sea – not to be missed. We shared a whole fish that weighed a kilo, I had a liter of water and a diet coke, and the spouse had five beers. All of that cost $18 USD before the tip. Oh – and it was right on the water’s edge.
Our day trip to Sabancuy from Campeche was awesome – especially since it’s been around 35 – 37 degrees Celsius many days. (That’s approaching 100 degrees Farenheit.) The beach break was refreshing from the sweltering concrete in the city.
We took the ATS bus, which is run by ADO from the main ADO station off of Avenida Central, a few kilometers south of the old walled section of Campeche. The round-trip fare was $15 USD each. I’m sure there are cheaper buses, but I prefer comfy cushions for any bus ride over an hour, if possible, along with air conditioning in this heat. I am happy to pay a few extra bucks for these luxuries.
After we leave Campeche in a couple of days, we decided we want to stay in Sabancuy for a few days before returning to southeastern part of Quintana Roo. We plan to be in Mahahual for a month or two, at least.
For now, I’m enjoying this wonderful colonial city, and I know it will be a fantastic few days in Sabancuy when we get there. I’ll let you know if I see any sargassum.