Hunting For Sea Glass on Bucerias Beach, Mexico



While vacationing in Bucerias, Mexico, which is located on Banderas Bay on the Pacific Ocean, just a few miles north of Puerto Vallarta, you might be interested in walking the beach.

The beach seems to go on forever. Sea glass or beach glass, as many call it, is a popular item that people collect at the water’s edge.

The best time to search for the many small colourful pieces of glass would be at high tide. The waves seem to bring a fresh batch of stones, clay tiles, shells, and glass every time they roll in.

Others might prefer a low tide walk and hunt, when the sea is still.  Most of the glass will be already snatched up by others if you wait too long.

Sue looks for sea glass on Bucerias Beach Mexico

What’s The Difference Between Beach Glass and Sea Glass?

There is a difference between beach glass and sea glass. Sea glass comes from salt water like the Pacific Ocean and beach glass washes ashore from fresh water such as Lake Huron in Ontario Canada, which is one of the Great Lakes.

You might want to look for glass at the beach just for fun, or maybe you want to make jewelry or some other decorative item.

It takes the glass many years of sloshing back and forth in the salt water to acquire its texture, shape, and colour.  You will probably be disappointed if the edges aren’t smooth.

Glass comes in all colours and sizes, but keep your edges sharp for blues, reds, greens, and if you’re lucky – orange, because they are the most difficult to find.

Where can you find sea glass?

Sea glass can be found all over the world. Beaches along the eastern seaboard in the USA and in Nova Scotia Canada, are popular spots. You might have more luck if you travel to Scotland, California, England, Australia and Mexico.

Some people are so into this activity, they study the tides and only bother to collect glass after a perigean or proxigean tide.

These are tides that because of the position of the moon in relationship to our planet, cause larger than normal tides.  More action in the water results in more glass coming to the shore.

Different colours of Sea Glass

sea glass rarities coloured glass

The colours of the sea glass is determined by the source. Why is there glass in the ocean anyway?

Well, humans love to litter! They seem to throw everything into the ocean, if they have an ocean near by.

Bottles, jars, glasses, windows, dishes, are just a few items that are made from glass.

Once the glass is in the ocean, the waves and rocks do the rest of the work to smash the glass to pieces and then move it around and polish it along the way.

The most common colour are green, brown, and white. These colours are cheaper to produce and so more every day things are made from these colours. White is probably the most common colour of glass you will see in the sea.

Jade and amber colours are less common because they would come from medicine containers.

Bottles And Tides

From the early to mid-1900s, Coca-Cola, Dr. Pepper, and RC Cola bottles and a wide variety of beer bottles were manufactured using browns and greens, while soft green colors came from bottles that were used for ink, fruit, and baking soda. Still not too popular and difficult to find.

Purple, lemon, milk glass, and cornflower blue, are all very rare. They would be the result of broken medicine, artwork, and poison bottles.

The rarest colours of all to find are teal, black, grey, dark olive and turquoise. These colours might come from antique dishes, car parts, or evenwine bottles.

They could also just be very very old and have been in the sea for a very long time. Don’t even consider a red or orange piece, because they have all been scooped up by now.

Beach combing

Bucerias Beach Mexico

Beach combing is a hobby held by many.  People have been known to get into arguments over a small piece of glass found on the beach.

Just as there are rock collectors and shell collectors, believe it or not, there are glass collectors, and they mean business.  They even have their own magazine …

Sea Glass Value

Glass is just glass, just as diamonds and emeralds are just rocks. Some people will pay top dollar for an ordinary rock or maybe an ordinary piece of broken glass from the sea.

While others, prefer a certain shape, type, colour, or size. Maybe they want to have sea glass from all the places in the world that they visit. Everyone is different.

Here are 5 characteristics that some people use to place a value on sea glass …

  1.  Color … the harder it is to find a certain colour, the higher the dollar value of the glass.  You might want to keep your eyes wide open for lavender, seafood green, and various blues and reds.
  2.  Frost … You want old glass and frost is a good indicator that the frost glass in your hand has been around a long time.
  3.   Thickness … If the piece of glass is thick and round, you could be holding a “nugget”.  Some sea glass collectors have advanced to collecting only nuggets.  They will give away all their thin pieces, no matter what the colour.
  4.   Shape …  What does the glass remind you of?  This could be the determining factor at the auction.  The piece of glass looks like a fish therefore it’s popular.
  5.   Patterns … Bubbles, buttons, necks, bottoms, and rounds could set your glass piece apart from all the others.  Everyone wants to have the only one!


Make a mobile and hang it in the window to catch the light of day.

sea glass chandelier

Fill a fancy container and hide Christmas lights inside to light your way in the dark.

sea glass candle

Make stepping stones for your garden to guide you through your eden.

sea glass stepping stone

Make a necklace to hang around someone you love.

About the author: Robert is a former teacher and travel buff, and has spent the last 30 years travelling to different parts of the world including all over North America, South America, Africa, and Europe.  He loves trying new cultural cuisine, zip-lining through the Amazon jungle, and his cat, Twyla-Mae.