Even YOU Can Make Agua de Jamaica (Hibiscus Tea) in Xcalak

You’re someone who enjoys Mexican food.

And though you may not always understand the menu, you’re a brave type of traveler. Happy to point and gesture your way to a delicious local meal.

Does this sound like you?

Yeah? Then we want you to try a cup of Mexican drink called Agua de Jamaica. (NOTE: “jamaica” in this case is pronounced ha-my-ka, not like the country where you listen to Bob Marley all day.)

This luscious-red hibiscus tea is local fav. In Xcalak you can grab a cup of Agua de Jamaica at Toby’s Restaurant or Silvia’s Restaurant.

Or better yet, make your own jug of Agua de Jamaica. Here’s our video showing you how:

An icy-cold glass of Agua de Jamaica is a Mexican traditional drink. The flavour is tart (kind of like cranberries), and sweetened with sugar. Then it’s enhanced with a hint of lime and cinnamon.

It’s not the most hydrating (in my opinion), but something about the tart hibiscus tea is super-satisfying on a hot day.

If you plan to make Agua de Jamaica in Xcalak, you’ll need to buy dried Jamaica flowers BEFORE arriving.

At the major grocery stores (like the Chedraui in Tulum) you’ll find the sweet-smelling jamaica hibiscus petals in the vegetable section. The grocery store sells them already dried, in a bin. Grab a plastic bag and load up as much as you like.

Our Agua de Jamaica (Hibiscus Tea) Recipe

To make your own Agua de Jamaica while staying in Xcalak you’ll need these ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried hibiscus flowers
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ lime
  • ½ cinnamon stick
  • 8 cups water

And here’s what you do to cook this yummy drink on the stove:

  • Add 4 cups of water to a pot
  • Add in 1 cup of dried hibiscus flowers
  • Add in ½ a cinnamon stick
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes

Don’t have a stove? Here’s an alternative:

Instead of simmering for 20 minutes, boil the water in a kettle. Then pour the boiling water into a pot and soak the hibiscus flowers (and cinnamon stick) in the hot water for 60 minutes.


In a glass pitcher, add 1 cup of sugar. Squeeze in ½ a lime.

Pour the Agua de Jamaica concentrate into the glass pitcher (straining out the flowers and cinnamon stick). Then stir.

Now add 4 more cups of cold water.

Fill a drinking glass part-way with ice, and pour the Agua de Jamaica over top.

Garnish the drinking glass with a lime wedge (if you’re feeling fancy).

Then enjoy!

PS – Looking for a snack to go with that cool glass of Jamaica tea? Try these stale Mexican tortilla ideas.