Cancun is the little fishing village which conquered the world. The place where ancient Mayans worshiped the Sun, now tourists from all over the world continue the tradition. Is situated on the far east coast of Mexico, on the Yucatán peninsula, a little bit north of the official Mayan Riviera. With its large, spacious beaches and crystal-clear blue waters, this lovely city offers a great opportunity for relaxation and rest. For more dynamic people, there are fun water activities to try, such as scuba diving, visiting an underwater museum, snorkeling among tropical fish and coral reefs, as well as dolphin and stingray, swims. And if you are not so much of a water sports person, there is always the spotless golf course for you, where, as they say, you can practice golf in paradise. The beach here is a great vacation spot. Many tourists get an all-inclusive luxury hotel reservation with all the amenities included and laze the week away in and next to the beautiful, warm Caribbean water. If you, however, are a little bit more adventurous and interested in a few day-trips, some of the ancient Mayan ruins are easily reachable. Additionally, the most visited and most treasured archeological sites, Chitchén Itzá as well as Tulum are only a few hours away. Fly into Cancun Airport, which is Mexico’s most modern and most popular landing place. They accept USD as well as pesos if you still need anything before getting to the city. You can also find ATMs at the airport, giving you a safe and fair way of exchanging currency. Shuttles will take you to Cancun city or to your chosen resort in about 20-40 minutes, depending on where your accommodation is.
Things to see and do in Cancun
Treat yourself to a nice accommodation
A book according to your budget. Everything is Cancun is amazing. The top all-inclusive luxury resorts, based on travelers’ reviews are: Nizuc Resort and Spa, Live Aqua Cancún, Le Blanc Spa, Secrets the Vine Cancún and Sun Palace. Prices vary depending on the type of room you book as well as the season of your choice. There is, however, Casa Mexicana Cancún, a colorful and vibrant place, offering accommodation to all tastes from hostel seekers to couples looking for private suites. I highly, highly recommend it.
Try the beaches
Most of the coast in Cancún is parcelled up between the luxury hotels, but you will find many public beaches as well. The top beaches based on travelers’ choices in this city are Playa Delfines, Playa Chac-Mool, Playa Gaviota Azul, Playa Marlin and Forum Beach.
If you are with children and want to enjoy an easily accessible public beach, I would recommend Playa Tortugas. If you are a young couple or you would like to treat yourself to something more luxurious, go to Mandala Hotel. You need to pay an entrance fee, but it will buy you access to their wonderful beach and all the amenities you will need for sunbathing and swimming.
Do watersports and visit museums
Swimming, boating, and diving will not only move your muscles but will take you to places. Well, swimming just a short distance away hopefully. You can swim in the sea as well as in the Acuario Interactivo (Interactive Aquarium), where you can play with dolphins as well. After this unforgettable experience, head to Playa Tortuga, from where Isla de Mujeres (The Island of Women) is only a twenty-minute ferry ride away. You can enjoy this lovely island as well as visit the Maritime Museum (Captain Dulche’s Museum). It shelters relics of vessels as well as the stories of pirates and explorers who used to roam these seas. As for diving, enjoy the fauna around while diving to the Museo Subaquatico de Arte (Cancún Underwater Museum, shortened as MUSA) an exhibition of hundreds of life-sized eco-sculptures. Many of these represent local personalities and they change with time as sea life takes residence on their shapes.
Shop and enjoy the nightlife
Head for Market 28, which is a colorful and dynamic maze of souvenir shops. Check out the merchandise of the local people, bargain and buy beautiful pieces for the people at home. You can also find eating options here, which are budget-friendly and very popular with the tourists.
If you are in for nightlife, a party in Cancún’s famous nightclubs. Start at the cavelike Dady’O or at the biggest nightclub in the city, The City. But spend your night in one of the more fun places, like Mandala, which has an Indian-inspired decor or CoCo Bongo, where performers put on a show all night long. Remember that most of the clubs will not allow you to buy one drink at a time, but offer open bar bracelets. This means that you will pay one price to enter the club and drink all night. Be careful with that.
Visit Mayan ruins
The largest and most impressive archeological sights are a must-visit if you are in Mexico. They are easily approachable from the Mayan Riviera, so join a group of tourists heading there. Chitchén Itza is about 220 miles away, so you can get there in approximately three hours, but most companies offer a nine-hour day-trip with many interesting stops along the way, such as authentic Mayan villages and smaller sights. Do not worry about a boxed lunch, since the package often includes a buffet-dining in one of the resting places. Enjoy the local food in the company of a Mariachi band and Mexican dances.
Tulum, the only Mayan city built by the ocean is a two-hour bus drive away from the Mayan resort area, a little bit further from Cancún. You will see many interesting things, including iguanas at every step of the way.
Enjoy the jungle
You can book a place for a ride to one of the many fun places in the jungle. Selvatica, for example, is only 40 minutes away from the resort area and it offers an unforgettable jungle experience. There is a twelve-stop zip line circuit, where instructors will help you fly above and through the dense foliage of the jungle. At the end of the ride, you are welcomed with snacks and refreshments. If you instantly took to zip lining, you can continue the fun by zip line jumping into sinkholes, natural pools of water in the midsts of the forest. Be brave and you will have an unforgettable experience.