The Best Mazatlan Travel Guide – Mazatlán is a well-established tourist destination that still maintains its Mexican traditions and atmosphere. The vibe is laid back and tranquil, but there’s no lack of fun thanks to the host of water sports and wildlife watching activities available. Mazatlán represents the expansive golden beaches, affordable accommodations, and beckoning bars and restaurants that appeals to travelers.
The world-class golf scene, luxury-yacht harbor, and myriad water sports activities are largely accessible to even those with a tight budget. Take a short boat ride to Deer Island, where you can spend the day swimming, snorkeling, and kayaking. Check out the cliff divers near the old lighthouse, and watch the sunset over the long golden beaches. Grab a surfboard and paddle out to the small, consistent waves. Deep-sea fishing for marlin and sailfish is among the best in Mexico. Hiking, bird-watching, and quiet beach walks here will lift your soul. To learn more about all the beautiful beaches of the Mexican Riviera, visit here, or visit us on Pinterest. Now view our Mazatlan Travel Guide to help plan your next Mexican Riviera vacation!
Matzatlan Weather – When to Visit
The high season for Mazatlan, is from November through April, with the busiest week being Easter week, or Semana Santa. This is not the time to go to Mazatlan if you want a quiet trip and don’t like crowds. During July Mazatlan fills up with lots of families. From May through October Mazatlan is very hot (well in the 90s). December, January, and February can be cool at night. The best months to visit Mazatlan are November and March with the temperatures being perfect (low to mid 80s) and you’ll miss a lot of the crowds.
Best Mazatlan Beaches
Playa las Gaviotas
This is the most popular and one of the best beaches in Mazatlan. Playa las Gaviotas is in the “Golden Zone” famous for its waterfront hotels. The waters here are calm, making it perfect for swimming. At low tide, you can walk out into the water for quite a distance. Sunsets are amazing here and it does get lively at this beach.
Playa Sabalo is great for parasailing, windsurfing and swimming. There is also the famous Valentino’s disco close by. This beach is in the Golden Zone or Zona Dorada. Swimming along this beach is one of the safest as it is protected from the nearby islands. There are plenty of vendors here selling a variety of souvenirs.
Playa Bruja is the best beach in Mazatlan for surfing, and is not as busy of a beach since it is a surfers beach and a little ways out of town. Some vendors are available to rent boards from, but be prepared for serious surfing. Waves at Playa Bruja can reach heights of 8 – 10 feet. Swimming is not recommended at this beach, but is great for relaxing and getting away from the crowds. There are open air restaurants that offer great seafood.
Playa Los Cerritos
This beach is for individuals looking to relax. With a good stretch of beach, you will be able to enjoy a nice romantic stroll and enjoy the sunset. Not recommended for swimming as you may find strong waves and undertows. If you are not into surfing you can enjoy watching those who do.
Playa Norte is a long white, sandy beach. It is the longest stretch of beach in Mazatlan. This beach has a beautiful seaside promenade called The Malecon which overlooks the beach. There are smaller swells for beginning and intermediate surfers. If you would like to fish you can also do it here by casting off the rocks. The waves here can be forceful, but there is not much of a drop off so it is fairly safe. Swimming at this beach is best in the southern part.
Best Mazatlan Restaurants
El Presidio $31 – 60
This is a sophisticated upscale Mexican and international restaurant. The chef brings a worldly fusion complexity to all of the dishes including the mole and duck burrito, Mexican fried noodles topped with grilled zarandeado shrimp, roast chicken with chipotle and vanilla glaze, or black angus ribeye steam with habanero and lime butter. Simply a great place to relax under the stars. Telephone: 669-149-5054 Web: El Presidio.
Pancho’s $11 – 30
Pancho’s offers an extensive menu of Mexican food and a substantial wine list made up of mostly Mexican, Chilean and Spanish wines. There are many seafood specialties including Camarones Pancho — a delicious tast treat where fresh jumbo shrimp are wrapped in bacon and fried, topped with cheddar cheese, and drizzled with a mouth watering shrimp sauce. Pancho’s is famous for their Pescado Zarandeado — red snapper combined with tomatoes, green peppers, and onions. Telephone: 669-914-0911 Web: Pancho’s.
Topolo Mexican Restaurant & Wine Bar $11 – 30
This is one of the most elegant restaurants in Mazatlán with excellent food and wine. Topolo restaurant and bar is about the beauty of a garden setting and the delicious flavors of old and contemporary Mexico. This is one of the more highly recommended restaurants in Mazatlán. Telephone: 669-136-0660 Web: Topolo Mexican Restaurant & Wine Bar.
Angelo’s $31 – 60
Angelo’s serves fine Northern Italian and international cuisine in a graceful setting. Angelo’s is one of Mazatlán’s best Italian restaurants featuring homemade pastas, shrimp dishes including superb scampi, and a large selection of imported wines. The atmosphere is romantic, with candlelight, flowers, and live piano music. Telephone: 669-989-8900 Web: Angelo’s.
Casa Loma $31 – 60
Enjoy a sophisticated meal like roast duck a l’Orange or the Mazatlán favorite of poached fish blanca rosa in the lovely Casa Loma dining room or outdoors by the bubbling patio fountain. They offer an atmosphere of relaxed elegance with European style dining. Telephone: 669-913-5398 Web: Casa Loma.
Best Mazatlan Nightlife
Sky Room Bar
This is a top rated ocean view bar. It is located on the rooftop of the historic Posada Freeman Best Western. It offers breathtaking 360 panoramic views of Mazatlán. For some reason, it is rarely crowded. A truly serene bar to have a drink and watch the sunset. Telephone: 669-985-6060 Web: Sky Room Bar.
Edgar’s Bar mostly attracks business people and some tourists. Mid-afternoon they serve a Botana (appetizer) free. Some days it is a meat stew with rice and refried beans and tacos. Some days it is marlin stew, a Mexican version of meatball soup, a shrimp soup, or maybe a Mexican salad with seafood. It is one of the more traditional Mazatlán Bar/Cantinas. Telephone: 669-982-7218 Web: Edgar’s Bar.
The Last Drop
This is a popular sports bar in Mazatlán. They have lots of televisions, pool tables, and serve a nice range of delicious bar food including excellent pizza, Mexican BBQ, ribs and seafood. Constantly rated among the best sports bars in Mazatlán. Telephone: 669-121-0410 Web: The Last Drop
Habanero’s Wine Bar
Habanero’s will take you on a sensual journey with an evening of intimate romantic lighting. They offer a top rated selection of wine from Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Italy, Spain, France, and the U.S. They carry Casa Madero, which comes from the oldest winery in Mexico. They also have a large selection of premium Mexican tequilas, popular and exotic Mexican Cervezas, and a good selection of find spirits. Telephone: 669-136-0660 Web: Habanero’s Wine Bar.
This popular bar is located right on the Malecon at Olas Altas Beach. Enjoy the ocean view while sitting in the outdoor seating. This is one of the most recommended bars among resident gringos who gather for the sunset and happy hour. They offer a delicious bargain menu of daily specials. Telephone: 669-982-8226 Web: Puerto Viejo.
Top 10 Mazatlán Hotels