Mexico is blessed with thousands of miles of coastline stretching along the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of California, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Anais Martinez, a food blogger and culinary tour guide from Mexico City, narrows her recommendation down to Oaxaca state.

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“There’s a different beach for every type of experience that you want,” she says. At the top of her Oaxaca beach-town list are Mazunte — one of Mexico’s designated “pueblos mágicos” (or magical towns) because of its architecture, culture and dedication to the conservation of sea turtles — and Chacahua, where you will find the 35,000-acre Lagunas de Chacahua national park.

But to disconnect entirely from the world at a resort, Martinez points to Riviera Maya on the country’s Caribbean coast and Nayarit on the west. When “you just want your room, your pool and a little bit of beach time,” Martinez says, “both of them are amazing.”

For surfers, “I’d point you towards the Pacific coast because you don’t really get surf-able waves on the Caribbean coast,” says Rabinor, a lifelong surfer. He recommends the Nayarit beach town of Sayulita as a family-friendly beginner spot and Puerto Escondido, in Oaxaca, for the expert set. For something in the middle, “between Huatulco and Salina Cruz [both Oaxaca] has some amazing intermediate waves,” he says.


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