Where to see tiny marine animals illuminate the waters with neon lights?

The Mexican coasts and their turquoise waters are not the only attraction that has put the country in the sights of millions of tourists. Marine bioluminescence has also become a favorite experience among travelers seeking the extraordinary phenomena.

What is bioluminescence?

Tiny marine animals illuminate the Mexican waters with neon lights
Tiny marine animals illuminate the Mexican waters with neon lights

Bioluminescence is the emission of light by a living organism. It consists of emission of silver, blue or green light by marine microorganisms, fireflies, fungi and bacteria. There are also fish, squid, jellyfish and shrimp with this quality, as well as worms and sea cucumbers that add to the delight. The magic occurs when these beings reach the seashore, where they collide with each other and against the sand. The frictions cause flashes of large magnitudes that simulate a chain of small bulbs that turn on and off constantly.

Enjoying bioluminescence in Mexico is only possible in certain destinations such as the island of Holbox in Quintana Roo, the beaches of Chacahua and Manialtepec in Oaxaca, Bucerías in Nayarit, or Xpicob in Campeche.

Holbox, Quintana Roo

This is the best known place to contemplate marine bioluminescence in the Mexican Caribbean. The island is very small and in the central square you will find kiosks where the service is offered; You can even get a boatman to offer it to you if he sees you in a restaurant. The season runs from July to January and the duration of the tours is up to an hour. Real ecotourism surrounded by the Mexican jungle.

Chacahua and Manialtepec, Oaxaca

Two destinations where beaches become bioluminescent carpets. You will be dazzled by the lights of millions of dinoflagellates microorganisms. You can combine this lights show with sports activities such as kayaking.

Bucerías, Nayarit

On this beach you will be struck by the bright blue color that illuminates the water. You will have the sensation of mimicking one of the microorganisms by the effect that the sand will cause on your skin. However, this natural contact must be made from responsible tourism so that these beings develop without alterations.

Xpicob, Campeche

It is the ideal place to appreciate the bioluminescent phenomenon and to attend the tortugueros camps. From June to January, the tide does not reach the knees, so the way of living the experience with microorganisms will be fantastic.

Other places to see bioluminescence

At the international level, the phenomenon can be experienced in Puerto Rico, specifically on the beaches of Bahía Mosquito, on the island of Vieques and on the Laguna Grande de Fajardo. In Asia there is the Maldives, where the show is known as the "sea of stars".

If we advance a few thousand kilometers more, we will find the bay of Toyama, in Japan, where firefly squids are the favorites not only for the light they radiate but also because they reach up to 8 centimeters in length, which makes them natural lamps.