This does not happen very often — but we discovered another little hidden gem worthy of being one of Qroo Paul’s picks: the Nacional Beach Club and Bungalows hotel and restaurant located in the small coastal fishing village of Mahahual.
Mahahual is about three hours south of our home in Akumal. People who know me well, know that I hate long drives. Sometimes I debate whether or not it is even worth it to drive 25 minutes to Playa del Carmen. In spite of my aversion to driving, we have driven to Mahahual twice this year and we are planning on returning in about a month. The reason why is quite simple — we go there for lobster.
The lobster season begins on July 1st and runs until the end of February. We don’t like to catch them ourselves, but we sure like to eat them.
Where to Stay
The first time that we went to Mahahual, we went with a couple of friends. They stayed at the Nacional Beach Club and Bungalows and we stayed at another hotel located further down the Malecón. Our hotel was very nice, but it lacked the charm and laid back feel of the Nacional Beach Club. We found ourselves spending all of our time there with our friends and at the end of the night, we would take the long walk back to our boring hotel.
The National Beach Club has a rustic, hip, and comfortable vibe to it. The owners and staff are amazingly friendly and they go out of their way to make sure you have the best experience possible.
When we returned to Mahahual last week, we decided to learn from our previous mistake and we booked a bungalow (Akua) located right on the malecón for two nights. The cost was $1,650 pesos a night, or about $89.18 USD.
Our bungalow (shown below) was awesome and we were the envy of every tourist that walked by. At night, we sat on the front porch and watched the full moon rise above the Caribbean.
These accommodations are rústico meaning that they do not have televisions and not all of the rooms have air conditioning. Our bungalow did have air conditioning.
You can get more information about their rooms and rates by going to their website: Nacionalbeachclub.com
Where to Eat
The Nacional Beach Club has great restaurant and bar. Breakfast is included with the room and there are a variety of dishes to choose from. The portions are large, so be sure sure and bring your appetite.
Once you have digested breakfast, I would highly recommend having lunch here as well. Everything we have tried was excellent, so I don’t think you can go wrong.
If you are visiting during lobster season, the chef cooks an amazing grilled lobster. We had the lobster with the chef’s fresh cut, crispy fries. Don’t judge us for eating lobster with french fries — it was phenomenal.
You can eat your meal in their well decorated dining room, out on the deck by the private pool, or down on the beach. We opted for the deck.
Beach Chairs and Bikes
When we arrived, the hotel set up some lounge chairs and an umbrella on the beach for us. They also supplied the beach towels.
For those of you who would like to explore the malecón on a bike, they are available at no extra charge.
Before leaving town, you may want to buy some raw lobster tails to take with you. The best place to go is the Pescadería Sauri located right across the street from the hotel. This is where the restaurants buy their lobster. The price per gram varies, but it runs around 550 pesos per kilo (2.2 lbs).
You can buy a styrofoam cooler at the convenience store on the malecón for $120 pesos and a bag of ice for $20 pesos.
Let’s Wrap This Up
You wont find this hotel on Expedia. If you would like to stay here, you should contact the hotel directly through their web page.
Even if you don’t like lobster, Mahahual is a great place to go for snorkeling, fishing, and relaxation. If it is lobster season, you may even run into us hanging out the Nacional Beach Club.