Is Puerto Escondido Safe to Visit in 2023? (Safety Guide)

Puerto Escondido is located on the southern coast of the state of Oaxaca and is one of the most popular, up and coming destinations in México.

In 2021, Puerto Escondido was named one of the Top 100 Extraordinary Places to Explore and a rising design destination by Time Magazine. 

One of the more frequently asked questions that we receive: Is Puerto Escondido safe?

Despite México’s media driven reputation, Puerto Escondido is one of the safest places to visit in all of México.

Puerto Escondido Rental Cars

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Puerto Escondido Safe for Tourists?

Puerto Escondido is a very safe destination for tourists due to the fact that many locals in Puerto Escondido depend on tourism and the money visitors bring to the city each year.

Considering that Puerto Escondido is a relatively small place, most locals and residents know each other.

This is yet another reason why Puerto Escondido crime rates aren’t through the roof.

That said, due to the rapid growth of Puerto Escondido, crime rates have been slightly rising for the last three years.

Numbeo recently stated that the Puerto Escondido Mexico crime rate is 49.40%.
In comparison, other destinations such as Mexico City are rated at 69.07% and Tijuana at 71.16%.

While Puerto Escondido is safe, it is essential to use your common sense when visiting as most crime against tourists is by pickpocketing or robbery. 

We highly recommend avoiding showing off items such as mobile phones, laptops and expensive jewelry.

Be sure to keep your most valuable items close to your body or in the safe of your accommodation in order to avoid any unnecessary incidents.

Is Puerto Escondido Safe at Night?

Generally speaking, Puerto Escondido is safe at night. Like many other destinations in the world, you should always be aware of your surroundings, especially after dark.

Criminals see tourists as easy targets and tourists so in order to avoid attention, it’s recommended to avoid excessive drinking and consuming drugs in Puerto Escondido.

Most robberies in Puerto Escondido happen in poorly lit and empty streets. Always consider taking taxis rather than walking home late at night.

If you want to avoid problems with the police, be sure to stay off of the beach at night as there have been a number of reports that the police have bribed locals and tourists for being on the beach after dark.

Is Public Transport Safe in Puerto Escondido?

Public transport is very safe in Puerto Escondido and there are two main options when it comes to transportation:

Taxis: Taxis are very reasonably priced in Puerto Escondido although you should always find a personal recommendation for a taxi driver when possible.
Every legal taxi has a paper in the front of their car, providing its legal taxi number, name and a picture. Also note that it’s common to see taxis charge more during late-night hours.

Colectivos: If you speak a bit of Spanish or if you are feeling adventurous, you can choose to take a shared minivan also known as colectivo. 

There are a few colectivo routes that run from the market in the center to different parts of town in and around Zicatela. Every colectivo passes by Zicatela and the entrance of La Punta. The cost is 10 pesos and they are perfectly safe to use.

You might also be interested in: Is there Uber in Puerto Escondido? (Explained!)

Is Puerto Escondido Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Is Escondido safe for solo female travelers? Absolutely! While Puerto Escondido is known to be safe for solo female travelers, women should always take extra safety precautions, especially at night.

In order to enjoy Puerto Escondido as safely as possible, please be sure to use your common sense.

We recommend avoiding the use of unofficial taxis and transport while in Puerto. The best way to find reliable and reputable transport is to ask for personal taxi recommendations in Puerto Escondido Expat Groups such as Locals and Foreigners in Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca.

Tip: Hostels make it very easy to make new friends. If you’re staying in more private accommodations and you’re interested in meeting like-minded travelers, you can try posting in a popular local Facebook group for women called Mujeres de La Punta Zicatela.

Is Puerto Escondido Safe for Surfing?

Puerto Escondido offers a variety of beaches for surfers of all levels of experience.
If you’re interested in learning more about surfing in Puerto, don’t miss our Surf Guide to Puerto Escondido.

Some beaches are better suited for beginner surfers while others are for the more advanced. What is most important is that you’re confident in your skills and you know your limits in order to avoid injury or worse.

If you are dreaming about catching your first wave, it’s recommended to head to Playa Carrizalillo.

Carrizalillo beach is tucked away inside of a small bay and offers perfect waves for beginner surfers and those who want to learn how to surf.

The more experienced and confident surfers are found at La Punta and Playa Zicatela, both of which receive much larger waves and are home to major surf competitions each year.

Playa Carrizalillo: Beginner Surfers
La Punta: Intermediate Surfers
Playa Zicatela: Advanced/Expert Surfers

Is It Safe to Drive from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido?

The drive from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido is not recommended due to the treacherous and curvy route that winds its way through the mountains.

The drive time takes anywhere from 6.5 to 10 hours depending on your mode of transportation.

Note: There is a new highway which is currently being built between Oaxaca and Puerto Escondido which has been estimated to cut the travel time between the two destinations by more than 50%.

The new road connecting Oaxaca City and Puerto Escondido is predicted to cause significant economic growth for not only Puerto Escondido but also to the rest of the coast of Oaxaca as it will drive tourism to the area.

What is the Safest Way to Get from Puerto Escondido Airport to my accommodations?

The safest way to get from Puerto Escondido Airport to your hotel or Airbnb is to pre-book your transportation in advance of your arrival.

Is it Safe to Party in Puerto Escondido?

Yes, the nightlife scene in Puerto Escondido is safe as long as you stay alert at all times and stay out of trouble. If you’re looking for a list of the best places to party in Puerto Escondido, don’t miss our Puerto Escondido Nightlife Guide.

Is there Cartel in Puerto Escondido?

Yes, there is cartel in Puerto Escondido and just about every other major tourist destination in México. Will they bother you? No. At the end of the day, the drug cartels are a business and if what they are selling something that isn’t of interest to you, you will likely never even notice their presence.

Puerto Escondido Airport Transportation