Palm trees sway in a gentle ocean breeze. Surfers bob up and down in the water, waiting to catch the next great wave. Pristine beaches stretch on for miles.
Sound like paradise? It is, and Puerto Escondido, Mexico is just a short flight away from the large international airport in Mexico City. And if you’re stopping in Oaxaca de Juarez (aka Oaxaca City), there are plenty of options to get there.
Skip the haul out to Cancun and visit one of the most spectacular surf spots in North America.
From domestic flights to shared transport vans, here’s how to get to from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido, Mexico.
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Looking for the best ways to get from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido? Here’s a quick summary:
- Fly with Aerotucán
- Hire a private transfer
- Rent a car in Oaxaca
- Book an overnight bus (best budget option)
- Take a shared transport van
How to Get to Puerto Escondido, Mexico
Whether you’re coming from near or far, flying to Puerto Escondido is a breeze. Puerto Escondido International Airport is just minutes away from the beach, the surf spots, and the best hotels.
If you’re coming from an international destination, usually the easiest (and cheapest) approach is to book a connecting flight through Mexico City.
From there, you’ll take 1 hour 20-minute flight directly to Puerto Escondido. This leg can be as low as $75 USD one way but normally costs around $100 USD. Don’t forget to check the websites of the domestic airlines, like Volaris, to find the best deals. Check out our post on finding cheap flights for more tips!
Coming from Oaxaca City, the flight is even quicker at 25 minutes. But since it isn’t as popular of a route, it may be slightly more expensive (around $150 USD) and it may not be available during the times you desire. Puerto Escondido also has direct flights from Guadalajara International Airport and Queretaro International Airport.
How to Travel to Puerto Escondido from Oaxaca City
Oaxaca City is incredible. But sometimes the beach calls your name.
So the question becomes: what’s the best way to travel to Puerto Escondido from Oaxaca City?
The answer to that depends on your travel budget and trip length.
Flights from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido
Flying is the easiest and fastest way to travel from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido. It’s a quick 45 minute flight from the Oaxaca airport to the Puerto Escondido airport.
Aerotucán is the only airline with direct flights from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido. The flights are around $3,500 pesos one way. There’s only one daily flight (check the schedule here) so make sure to buy your tickets ahead of time.
Driving from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido
If you’re comfortable with driving on mountain roads, book a rental car in Oaxaca and take the winding, yet scenic 8-hour drive to Puerto Escondido from Oaxaca.
Read our post on Renting a Car in Mexico for everything you need to know before booking and some essential driving tips.
Private Transfer from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido
This private one-way transfer to Puerto Escondido from Oaxaca (up to 6 people) is the best way to get there for groups. You don’t have to bother with driving and you can enjoy the beautiful scenery on the way there.
Bus from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido
One of the most popular options is to take an overnight ADO bus to Puerto Escondido, which takes 10-11 hours. If you are in Oaxaca City and want to get to Puerto Escondido on a budget, this is the option we recommend.
We’ve taken plenty of ADO buses in Mexico. They are surprisingly comfortable. Air conditioning, WiFi, televisions, and bathrooms can all be part of the deal, but check first to confirm which options are on your specific bus.
Check out our essential guide to using ADO buses in Mexico for more details.
Passenger Van from Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido
The cheapest option is to take a colectivo from Oaxaca City to Puerto Escondido for about 280 MXN. Colectivos are shared passanger vans and a common form of transportation throughout Mexico.
A word of warning: the winding roads and speeding van drivers can make the 7-hour ride absolutely brutal.
This is why we highly recommend booking an overnight first-class bus instead. You can save money on that night’s accommodations and travel comfortably.
Oaxaca to Puerto Escondido Passenger Van Review
Think we’re exaggerating and willing to risk riding the passenger van? Read our first hand account below.
Our desire to get to the Oaxaca coast quickly and cheaply led us towards deciding to take the colectivo – and I’ll be the first to admit – it was a mistake.
At least for us. Other people haven’t had as many issues. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case for us.
The reviews for the shared transport vans mentioned one downside: motion sickness. Since neither of us has a problem with twisting roads, boats in rough waters, or nausea in general, we figured it wouldn’t be an issue.
Oh boy, were we wrong.
Shortly into the ride, we found out that those words of caution were spot-on. The passenger vans truck down the steep and curvy mountain roads at breakneck speed. Tires screeching and bags flying. Jarring potholes and topes (speed bumps) around every corner. All with a driver that is hellbent on making good time.
After 4 hours of near silence in the van filled to the brim with 17 passengers, someone finally had the cork come loose.
At first, I felt a speck of liquid on my arm. Strange, I thought.
Then I turned around to see the 10-year-old boy seated directly behind us regurgitate his lunch – all over the area between our seats and us. Good times.
His mother quickly put a bag under his mouth and handed us a rag. Kristina kindly wiped it off of my back, picked it out of my hair, and wiped the crevice between our seats. Thankfully, I had no energy to spend thinking about how disgusting it was. My number one priority was the same as it had been for the last two hours: keeping my own lunch deep in my stomach.
If you’re coming from Oaxaca City and don’t want to splurge on the plane ride, book the overnight first-class ADO bus instead of the daytime passenger van. It takes a bit longer and it just slightly more expensive, but you’ll have a much better chance at everyone arriving without incident.
Best Ways to Travel to Puerto Escondido
It’s not hard to get to the wonderful beach paradise of Puerto Escondido. Coming from afar, go through Mexico City, take a short flight, and you’ll touch down minutes from the beach.
To get to Puerto Escondido from Oaxaca, you can:
- Hop on a flight with Aerotucán (the quickest and easiest way)
- Book a private transfer (best for groups)
- Drive a rental car
- Take an overnight bus (the best value)
- Ride in a shared transport van
Regardless of how you do it, check out the Mexican Pipeline: Puerto Escondido. Don’t miss out on amazing surfing for all levels, pristine beaches, plenty of hotel and restaurant options, and unforgettable day-trips.
Read more about it in our Ultimate Guide to Puerto Escondido. And don’t miss out on any of the incredible places nearby: the laid-back beaches of Playa Zipolite and Mazunte, the secluded beach paradise Puerto Suelo, and the glowing waters of Laguna Manialtepec.
Looking for more things to do on Oaxaca’s coast? Check out these posts:
- Ultimate Guide to Puerto Escondido
- How to Explore Huatulco’s Hidden Bays
- Visiting Mazunte: Mexico’s Next Beach Hotspot
- Splash in Glowing Waters at Manialtepec Lagoon
- San Agustinillo and Zipolite: Beach Towns on Oaxaca’s Coast
Are you tough enough for the van ride or would you choose the overnight bus? Leave us a comment below with your thoughts!