Cruise and Beach Destinations
in the Caribbean, Mexico & Beyond
Mexican Riviera

Best Beaches in Manzanillo Mexico

Manzanillo beach
Manzanillo beach.

The best Manzanillo beaches for cruise and other visitors depend on whether people want to swim, snorkel, surf or sail.

Manzanillo is a popular port of call for Mexican Riviera cruises.

From the sky, its coastline looks like a giant number three tilted to the left and running from the northwest at the top to the southeast at the bottom.

It is shaped that way because of two bays and one peninsula between them.

Santiago Peninsula sticks out into the middle part of the big number three. Santiago Bay occupies the gap in the north while Manzanillo Bay occupies the south.

The coastline of both bays is more than five miles long and filled with gold-sand beaches.

Santiago Bay Beaches

Most of the luxury resorts along Manzanillo’s long stretch of beaches are located in the northwestern Santiago Bay area. They attract the overnight visitors and sometimes cruise visitors.

The most well-known beaches along Santiago Bay include Miramar, Olas Atlas, Santiago and Audiencia beaches, according to the Mexican Tourism Board.

Audiencia is popular because it has calm water, which makes it attractive for swimming, snorkeling and waterskiing. It was the location of the movie “10” starring Dudley Moore and Bo Derek.

Miramar has more wind and a strong surf, so it is popular with kiteboarders and windsurfers.

Manzanillo Bay Beaches

Popular beaches along Manzanillo Bay include Azul, Las Brisas and San Pedrito.

San Pedrito is a shallow beach and often crowded because it is so close to downtown. It has a park, restrooms, souvenir stands and a few restaurants, Cruise visitors with a brief amount of time may want to visit it for the sake of getting to a beach, but they will find less-crowded ones elsewhere.

Azul and Las Brisas are known for their thatched-roof restaurants that serve local dishes. The beaches are less crowded than San Pedrito but also have more hotels.

Las Brisas is considered by locals to be one of the best in the area because it is clean and often empty of crowds. It is known for calm waters, snorkeling and scuba diving.

Cuyutlan Beaches

Visitors with more time on their hands or access to an excursion tour bus may want to make the one hour drive southeast from the Manzanillo cruise port to Cuyutlan.

This picturesque village is located at the southeastern end of Cuyutlan Lagoon. It is known for its beaches of black sand from eroding volcanic rock as well as numerous coconut and banana palm trees.

Cuyutlan is one of the best places to surf in Mexico, according to the country’s tourism board, especially at Los Pascuales Beach. Waves can reach more than 15 feet.

Beach goers who stay late in the day may have a chance to see The Green Wave, which happens near sunset when the sun shines through the water and glows more because of phosphorescent algae and plankton in the water.

Besides the beach, Cuyutlan has an oceanfront promenade with cafes, shops and restaurants.

Cuyutlan has a history going back to the Spanish colonial area as a major producer of sea salt. One of the nearby attractions is the Salt Museum, which is located in a century-old salt storage barn.