resort city in the municipality of Zihuatanejo de Azueta, state of Guerrero, Mexico

Ixtapa is a resort town on the Pacific Coast of Mexico in the state of Guerrero. Rolling mountains and sparkling beaches. Ixtapa was planned and built in the early 1970s on a former coconut plantation and mangrove estuary near the city of Zihuatanejo, which is 5 km away.


View of the mainland from an isolated beach

The planned city is organized in super-blocks with irregular shapes, with the high-speed streets separating these blocks, and cul-de-sacs within them.

A survey in 2014-15 showed that 54 percent of foreign tourists came from Canada, and 35 percent from the United States.

Get in


By plane


Ixtapa is served by Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo International Airport (ZIH IATA), with direct domestic flights from Mexico City (Aeromexico and Viva Aerobus) and international flights from Toronto (Air Canada) and Los Angeles (Alaska).

By bus


Several intercity buses travel to the main bus station (Terminal de Autobuses de Zihuatenejo). The bus station is on MEX 200 (Carretera Zihuatenejo-Acapulco), next to the Mega Soriana.

  • From Morelia, Parhikuni has 7 buses per day for M$700 one way (October 2022).
  • From Acapulco, Estrella de Oro has 5 buses per day for M$280 one way.
  • From Mexico City (Terminal Central del Sur), Estrella de Oro has 5 Plus or Diamante buses per day for about M$1,000 one way.

Several additional bus lines are available there, including local second-class buses offering local routes to smaller towns throughout the region.

Get around


Taxis are the easiest way to get around Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo and a couple taxi trips per day will end up being far cheaper than the cost of a rental car (plus no headaches with parking, traffic fines, getting lost, etc.) Even for relatively long day trips (like maybe to Troncones), it's usually easier and cheaper to negotiate with a taxi driver.

Lanchas are the best way to get between beaches. You can hire a water taxi at the embarcadero.

  • Playa Las Gatas The waters here are known for being calm, cool, and easy to swim. There are nice, secluded areas for snorkeling and scuba diving, and a small beach shop with fabulous bikini tops. Local vendors sell delicious ice cream, snacks, crafts and other refreshments on the beach. There are small boats that take you from the town pier to the beach, with a short commute of only 10-15 minutes.
  • Playa La Ropa One of Ixtapa’s largest and most breathtaking beaches is known as Playa La Ropa. This beach is filled with restaurants, palm trees, and gentle waves. A taxi from town is US$3.
  • Swim with DolphinsPhone from USA: 1-877-234-7469 Email: Swim with dolphins.
  • Museo de Arqueología de la Costa Grande A collection of treasures, history, and culture. The museum has a large variety of pottery and intriguing stone relics. The museum is open during the week and on weekends, Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00 to 18:00. Phone: 755-554-7552
  • Ixtapa Divers PADI certified divers and instructors. Email:
  • Just a few minutes north of the hotel zone in Ixtapa is Playa Linda. From there, boats depart for the island of Ixtapa, which is home to a great diversity of wildlife: raccoons, armadillos, deer, iguanas, deer, and innumerable species of native birds.

Ixtapa has several shopping centers of modern and colonial styles that are interconnected. They offer restaurants, cafes, bars, boutiques, clothing stores, grocery stores, pharmacies, etc.

  • Casa Morelos, +52 755-553-0578. Centro Comercial La Puerta, Locales 9, 10 y 18, Ixtapa. Some unique and highly recommended dishes include the seafood casserole, shrimp in mustard sauce, and the crayfish in Ajillo (garlic) sauce.
  • El Galeón, +52 755-553-2150. Marina Ixtapa - seafood and pastas. Dine on the terrace or on “the ship.” The restaurant reproduced a boat that sits on land, but overlooks the water.
  • Elvira’s Playa la Ropa. Casual, cheap, and cheerful. This restaurant is located on Playa La Ropa and is on the sand. The restaurant specializes in seafood.
  • Villa De La Selva, +52 755-553-0362. Paseo de la Roca Lote. This Mediterranean – contemporary restaurant offers fishes, meat, and vegetables. Spectacular location.


  • Casa Bahia (Zihuatanejo Yacht Club), Col. Almacen (on the road to Puerto Mio), +52 755 554-8666. 12:00-00:00. Views of Zihuatanejo Bay. Seafood, meats and pastas, and the only place in town you can catch a real Salisbury Steak with gravy. mid-range.
  • Senor Frog's Ixtapa Paseo de Ixtapa , Centro Comercial La Puerta (Cover charge)


Bahía de Ixtapa

The hotel zone's buildings are modern or in a colonial-coastal style with beautiful and well-kept gardens and it has several residential areas, all relatively extensive but mostly separated from the hotel zone I (Blvr. Ixtapa) and the hotel zone II (Playa Linda).

Most of the hotels are five and four stars. Most of them are affiliated with major international and national hotel chains, including NH Hoteles and InterContinental Hotels Group. The hotel area on the beach known as Hotel Zone I has an approximate extension of 4.5 km and the name of its beach is El Palmar.

Go next

  • Playa Troncones 25 minutes north of the twin resorts of Zihuatanejo & Ixtapa and the Zihuatanejo-Ixtapa International Airport. The beach looks like Ixtapa but without the crowds or development. Troncones offers many miles of beautiful, unspoiled, golden sand beaches. Stroll, the virgin clean beach's and go barefoot in the surf where flocks of pelicans skim the crests of the waves and endangered sea turtles lay their eggs in the warm sand. Troncones is "the real Mexico"
  • Zihuatanejo - Ten minutes by taxi, 20 by bus, nice change from totally-tourist Ixtapa; excellent food, better value for your peso, more likely to bargain in shops, definitely more 'real world' than Ixtapa. Not as clean, not as pristine, but thoroughly enjoyable!
This city travel guide to Ixtapa is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.