The Best Restaurants in Campeche, Mexico

Campeche is a colorful culinary paradise
Campeche is a colorful culinary paradise | © Jesse Kraft / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Leon Beckenham
30 September 2021

Guacamole, grilled octopus and even grasshoppers are on the menu in this Gulf of Mexico city, where dining spots line lively Calle 59 and the malecón esplanade.

Often overshadowed by the resort towns of the neighboring Yucatán peninsula, the port city of Campeche is one of Mexico’s less-visited stops. However, a storied and prosperous history has left it with a wonderfully preserved, pastel-toned center, impressive ancient defenses and big-city buzz, making it worth the trip. Its mix of Mexican gastronomy and Mayan roots – plus boatloads of fresh seafood – pave the way for excellent dining spots.

Marganzo

Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
Map View
Papadzules, egg stuffed tortillas, a Yucatan favorite at Marganzo, Campeche, Mexico
© dbimages / Alamy Stock Photo
A firm favorite among visitors keen to sample local flavors, russet-red Marganzo offers some of the best regional cuisine in the city. They specialize in seafood – the ceviche is a real standout – with plenty of fish pooled fresh from the Gulf of Mexico and served from the ice-stocked bar. It’s a great spot for a hearty desayuno (breakfast), too.

La Recova Cincuenta y Nueve

Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
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With its kaleidoscopic floor tiles, light-box artworks and distinctively Mexican vibe, La Recova is a feast for the eyes. Your stomach won’t be far behind, with a moreish menu of sizzling fajitas, flame-grilled steaks and market-fresh seafood – the grilled octopus and juicy lobster taco are two strong favorites. You can also enjoy your meal al fresco, either on the pretty terrace or at a table right on pedestrianized Calle 59.

La Pigua

Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
Map View
Octopus. Restaurante La Pigua. Campeche. Mexico.
DE44EA Octopus. Restaurante La Pigua. Campeche. Mexico. | © agefotostock / Alamy Stock Photo
Just outside the city center, La Pigua is instantly recognizable for its orange facade and colorful stained glass. Inside, the main dining room is a long, timber-roofed hall, where you can sample an impressive seafood-focused menu. Coconut also features, both in mains and the signature cake. Look out for the Francis Drake dishes, among the very best.

La María Cocina Peninsular

Restaurant, Mexican
Map View
Mexican pastels, chunky wood furniture and Yucatán art set the tone for this unpretentious and atmospheric eatery. Flavors are intensely regional, with delicious dishes presented in heavy earthenware – and in the case of the still-steaming, hand-made tortillas, in carved gourds. The coconut-crusted shrimp is a winner, best accompanied with a tamarind mezcal margarita, and to finish, the home-made seasonal sorbet is the perfect palate-cleanser.

Casa Don Gustavo

Restaurant, Mexican
Map View
Casa Don Gustavo
Courtesy of Casa Don Gustavo / Expedia
Set inside a boutique hotel, the eponymous Casa Don Gustavo restaurant offers refined interpretations of classic regional cooking. Inside, antique furniture and embroidered tablecloths create an old-world ambience, while you can also pick a table on the al fresco terrace or buzzy Calle 59 itself. Their sopa de lima (lime soup) is one of the city’s finest, especially when enjoyed with their sikil p’ak – an ancient Mayan pumpkin-seed dip.

Luz de Luna

Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
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This restaurant-cum-gallery is a riot of colorful folkloric art, vintage photography and decorative hanging lights. The food is mostly classic Mexican, with steaming tamales, a great choice of tacos and reputedly some of the best mole in town. There’s pasta, burgers and salads, too, if you fancy something international, and if it’s breakfast you’re after, they do an excellent huevos a la Mexicana, complete with edible cactus.

Aduana Vasconcelos

Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
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Right at the top of Calle 59, this colorful restaurant offers an extensive menu of Mexican cuisine from early breakfast to late-night tacos. Their traditional cochinita pibil (slow-cooked suckling pig) is an outstanding example of the popular dish, while fresh guacamole comes with the bonus of dried chapulines (grasshoppers). For dessert, most diners agree the apple cheesecake is the top pick.

Los Delfines

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
Map View

Positioned on Campeche’s waterfront malecón, this thatched-roof restaurant offers an impressive seafood menu with fab views over the Gulf of Mexico. They do shrimp every which way you can imagine – including shrimp cocktail – plus top-notch grilled octopus and fried whole fish. There are land-based options, too, but vegetarians should probably look elsewhere.

These recommendations were updated on September 30, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh. This article is an updated version of a story created by Leon Beckenham

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