Escárcega (full name Francisco Escárcega) is a small city of 31,000 people (2020) in the state of Campeche, at an important junction between Mexico's Federal Routes 261 and 186.
Federal Route 261 provides a secondary, inland alternative to the main route from Villahermosa to Mérida. Route 186 traverses the sparsely populated southern half of the Yucatán, between Escárcega and Chetumal.
The location of Escárcega at highway intersections has made it a stop for truckers and long distance buses. Widely considered the least charming town in the Yucatan Peninsula, there is no reason for travelers to make a special trip here, nor to linger longer than needed while in transit to elsewhere. Basic food, lodging, and supplies can be obtained here if needed, but don't expect anything beyond that.
Escárcega is a nondescript city with very little of interest to traveler except as a place to wait to change buses.
- A small, clean budget hotel is located near the bus terminal.
- Hotel Maria Isabel, ☏ , email@example.com. Av. Justo Sierra 127, Nice, clean rooms with TV and free WiFi, with and without ac. Single rooms starting from M$250. 35 rooms in total. Located in the main street, some blocks west the 2nd class bus terminal. Thus, somewhat noisy from the street.
- To the west along Federal Highway 186 are several less visited Maya ruins, Siviltuk, Chicana, Becan, and Xpujil; beyond that the highway continues into the state of Quintana Roo and its capital Chetumal.
- To the north, Highway 261 leads to the city of Champoton and beyond that the state capital of Campeche
- To the north-east, via 186, 258, and 180, is Ciudad del Carmen.
- To the south-east, 186 continues towards the state of Tabasco, including the city of Villahermosa. The famous Maya ruins of Palenque are a bit south of the highway before Villahermosa.