"Progreso -- Life at the Beach" Top 5 Page for this destination Progreso by Redlats

Progreso Travel Guide: 50 reviews and 95 photos

Progreso, Mexico is a beach town - 1/2 hour north of Mérida. Most of the time it is a sleepy Mexican town (pop. 46,000). This changes during summer holidays (July and August) and over the Easter school break when Meridanos (the inhabitants of Mérida) flock to the sea shore for a break. Of course the best vacation homes are on the beach, so there are hundreds and hundreds of beach homes for many kilometres on both sides of Progreso facing the Gulf of Mexico.

These homes are available for rent during the less-prized months of the year, so many Canadians and some Americans land up renting them during the months from November to March or April.

It is quite a community where you meet the same people over and over again -- walking the beach, at bridge club, at fish and chip night, etc.

The other big happening is that a Carnival cruise ship stops at Progreso once or twice a week (with between 2000 and 3000 passengers). In response to the cruise, and on cruise ship days only, a market is set up to provide the passengers with local products -- local made embroidery, silver jewelry, local-made hammocks, and the normal junk that gets sold (T-shirts, hats, etc.).

I often see questions in VT on what cruisers can do on their day at Progreso. Besides the obvious of wandering around town and drinking the drinks at Eladio's, you would have time to try a few other activities.

One Mayan ruin is relatively close by -- Dzibilchaltùn. This ruin is approximately 30 minutes drive from Progreso. If you have not arranged the tour with the cruise ship, there is no easy public transportation to the site; you would need to hire a local taxi (which can be arranged in Progreso).

Mérida is close as well. If the cruise-line does not arrange transportation, we used the local bus. The bus depot is three or four blocks from the beach, the cost is 21 pesos (~$2.20 US) round trip; it takes about 40 minutes one way to reach Mérida. Mérida is a busy city with numerous cultural things to do.

By the way, cruises sometimes also offer Uxmal or Chichen Itza ruin daytrips. I would not go on either from Progreso. It is over 2 hours one-way from Progreso to either one, so your 7 hour tour is mostly spent on the bus.

Pros and Cons
  • In a nutshell:A sleepy fishing town learning to be a tourist town
  • Last visit to Progreso: Feb 2006
  • Intro Updated Mar 4, 2007
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Reviews (14)

Comments (12)

  • LoriPori's Profile Photo
    Sep 21, 2008 at 4:57 PM

    Must admit. Looks tempting. Beach looks pretty nice and the condos do too. Great meeting you today. Hans and I had a fun visit with all of you. Lori

  • Aug 9, 2007 at 1:18 AM

    Natasha is the "go to girl" in Progreso. I've never found a question yet that she couldn't find an answer for.

  • ATXtraveler's Profile Photo
    May 28, 2007 at 1:56 PM

    Were you sad to see Burger King gone? I am sure it only appealed to those "cruise-types"

  • Sininen's Profile Photo
    May 5, 2007 at 8:26 PM

    A good page on Progreso. Happy birthday from Finland!

  • smirnofforiginal's Profile Photo
    Apr 28, 2007 at 2:27 AM

    tee hee. I have fond memories of when we were there - but I dont think I would recognise the place now.

  • karenincalifornia's Profile Photo
    Sep 7, 2006 at 10:05 PM

    ok I will come out of the closet and leave a comment. Great beach Yucatan beach town pages! I will watch out for those seagulls -- happened to me once in LA in the IMAX theatre line- Yuck!

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Dec 21, 2005 at 4:52 PM

    Nice tips

  • michanth's Profile Photo
    Nov 8, 2005 at 9:09 PM

    Great tips Red, thanks for sharing.

  • gilabrand's Profile Photo
    Sep 7, 2005 at 10:13 PM

    What? No pooper scoopers? No progreso...

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Apr 14, 2005 at 7:15 PM

    This is a very interesting page on Progreso. Our cruise ship stopped here, so I really enjoyed reading about the real Progreso that you experience. Superior work.


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