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Why Travelers Are Canceling Their Trips To This Popular Island Near Cancun

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Thousands of travelers are canceling trips to the popular island of Holbox this month amid viral images of flooded streets following intense rain in the otherwise picturesque location.

The high season is just around the corner and Holbox is typically one of the most popular island destinations during the winter months as travelers flock to enjoy the island’s heavenly beaches.

A white sand beach in holbox with palm trees

But with mass cancellations affecting the livelihood of the island’s boutique hotels and small restaurants, concern is growing over the upcoming winter season in Holbox.

With that in mind, here’s the latest on why travelers are canceling their Holbox getaways.

a white sand beach and chairs in holbox

Viral Images And Videos Of Flooded Streets Prompt Mass Hotel Cancellations In Holbox

Heavy rainfall over the past several weeks has resulted in intense flooding in the tiny tropical island of Holbox, an extremely popular destination for day trips from Cancun. 

The idyllic island is home to just several hundred residents, but in the high season, Holbox fills up with thousands of travelers. Due to its remote location and poor infrastructure, the paradisiacal island is prone to the effects of severe natural phenomena, including heavy rainfall and tropical storms.

@lucieonmars Lets go to the beach: Isla Holbox Edition ☀️ #holbox #travel ♬ Good Vibes (Instrumental) – Ellen Once Again

During the past several weeks, intense precipitation has overwhelmed Holbox’s rudimentary sewage system, causing flooding in many parts of the small island.

Both travelers and residents have taken to social media to share pictures of streets covered in over a foot of water and mud, with some calling for more action from regional authorities to alleviate the situation.

As a result, thousands of travelers have canceled trips to the sunny island in spite of the improved meteorological conditions of the past several days. 

@homebystuart UNTILL IT RAINS!!! #holboxisland #holboxmexico #islaholbox ♬ september on crack ft. a recorder (Earth, Wind & Fire – September) – frickin weeb

According to local media reports, occupancy rates in Holbox are hovering at around 40%, a far cry from the over 80% being reported in other parts of the Mexican Caribbean. 

Despite the shocking news, local tour operators say that Holbox beaches are in tip-top shape and that excursions are still being carried out as normal. A popular hotspot for nature lovers, Holbox is an ideal destination for wildlife observation, snorkeling, and scuba diving. 

@tomhartrey And this was all from ONE (1) rainstorm on the day I arrived. 🇲🇽 The beach and restaurants on Isla Holbox were incredible, and the sun was out for most of my visit. ☀️ But DARN that water just wasn’t going anywhere. • #instavsreality #honestreview #mexico #islaholbox #flood #rainyseason #minivlog ♬ Push Up (Original Mix) – Creeds

Even so, travelers might have a hard time reaching their hotels, many of which are located in the heart of downtown Holbox. Most streets in the island destination lack paved roads and advanced sewage systems, meaning that flooding may persist for some time.

That said, Holbox is still expected to be one of the most popular island destinations in the Mexican Caribbean this winter. The paradise-like island is regularly voted the top island destination in North America.

@splashfineart Holbox Island after tropical rain with @stellacoupe and @chefphilippecoupe #rainonme #wet #holbox #mexico #memories #flood #flooding #tropicalrain #storm #lifeisgood ♬ GOOD TIME – Niko Moon

Boasting some of the most impressive untouched beaches in the region, Holbox is a popular choice for backpackers and those seeking to connect with nature. But the idyllic island is also a hotspot for luxury travel thanks to its growing number of lavish boutique properties.

Travelers can currently reach Holbox from Cancun by taking a bus to Chiquita, from where they can catch a ferry to the stunning island. Alternatively, travelers can book day trips to Holbox from Cancun through a number of tour operators.

@tequilatofu #holbox #travelingwithkids ♬ original sound – tequilatofu

This 12-hour $127 per person tour includes a stop at some of the most impressive sites in Holbox and is an excellent addition to any Cancun trip. But unlike on other Mexican Caribbean islands, travelers won’t find towering all-inclusives in Holbox, which offers a distinct laid-back ambiance with smaller accommodations.

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