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Bioluminescence: an unforgettable experience at Las Nubes de Holbox

By Vero Alvarez

Las Nubes de Holbox Hotel offers the possibility to experience one of nature's most incredible phenomenons: bioluminescence. 

The word Holbox in Mayan means Black Hole, but not everything is as it seems. In the dark nights in the Black Hole, a radiant turquoise blue light bathes its beaches; reflections that resemble the stars illuminate the water and leave light trails on the beach sand. This scene, besides being intriguing, is 100% safe, so it is possible to enter the water to enjoy such a peculiar phenomenon.

The millions of luminous points that shine in the sand, are nothing more than bioluminescent plankton (tiny organisms that, like fireflies, emit their own blue light).

Between the months of July and January these marine microorganisms arrive at the beaches of Holbox. The microorganisms generate flashes of light when disturbed by the waves that break on the coast or when the water is agitated for some other reason. Light flashes of light appear on the surface that is colored with silver, greenish and bluish tones, sometimes it is so bright that it is possible to see the fish swim in the dark.

Luminescence is a phenomenon that normally occurs in sea creatures that are found at great depths and also in fungi, bacteria, worms, insects and cephalopods. For some species it works as camouflage, for others to mate with organisms of the same species and also to protect themselves and confuse their predators.

In Mexico, it is possible to observe the luminescence Campeche; Manialtpec and Chacahualagoon in Oaxaca and Bucerias in Nayarit… But honestly, we guarantee there is nowhere like Holbox and more specifically, at Las Nubes.


The best dates to admire this natural phenomenon are those of low intensity of lunar light, that is, during the New Moon phase. For the rest of 2019 it would be:

September 27th - October 1st

October 26th - October 30th

November 25th - November 29th

December 24th - December 28th

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