Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido is a trip commonly made by backpackers, especially those with surfing in their blood.
On a map this trip looks easy, almost a straight line direct between the two and all within the same state of Oaxaca. However, the road between the two is mountainous and winds left and right for most of the trip. This means that what looks to be a short drive will extend to around 7 – 10 hours depending upon which method you choose to take (unless you fly of course).
Here are the best (and cheapest) methods of getting from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido, so you too can take in this amazing ocean destination:
1. The Bus
This is an obvious choice for those used to travel in Mexico, where the bus system is well developed. ADO takes this route from Oaxaca, however, because of the winding roads the trip on the auto-bus does not take the most direct route. This means that a trip on the bus between the two towns will take approximately 10 hours.
Despite this, the ADO bus is the cheapest way to get to Puerto Escondido, so if you are okay with a longer journey this would be your choice.
2. Take a Mini-Van
There are many companies that use mini-vans (combi’s) between Oaxaca and Puerto Escondido. These fit approximately 16 people, and with the vehicle being smaller it also means that your journey to Puerto Escondido will be more direct, and faster.
Indeed the journey will take 7 hours (rather than 10), with the pricing coming in at approximately 200-220 peso depending on who you go with.
Despite it being called the ‘vomit bus’, this is the route that we took. We heard stories of maniac drivers making everyone ill, but we had no problems at all and if anything the journey was quite calming going through the jungle.
The company we used was called Servicio Express based at Arista 116 (street) who charged 210 peso for the journey. We would highly recommend this company, though a great tip for these mini-vans: either sit in the front or second-to-back rows which have a greater amount of leg room compared to the others.
In any case you will make the journey through the jungle, which is fascinating to see.
The simple but most expensive method of transportation, flying from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido is definitely a possibility. There are 2 companies that fly direct between the two locations, including the more expensive Aerotucan, or the cheaper Aerovega (contact information HERE). The price for flying comes in at around 1400-1700 peso depending on who you choose, with the journey taking approximately 30-40 minutes, much less than the journey by road.
Overall, as backpackers we would recommend taking one of the bus methods to save yourself some peso either for food when you arrive, or a drink on the beach at sunset!
If going by road, a good tip is to buy some Dramamine (Dimenhidrinato) from any Mexican pharmacy to aid in stopping any motion sickness on the winding roads. A packet of 24 should cost around 80 peso, a small price to pay.
Have you made the journey from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido? Share your travel tips below!