Playa del Carmen and Tulum, Mexico’s two Caribbean hotspots

How to get to Playa del Carmen easily

Can use the PUBLIC BUSES that operate the route from Cancun to Playa del Carmen on a regular basis. If you are traveling short distances, public buses can be found in most towns and charge around $30 or $40 pesos. This is the cheapest option for this trip. However, the buses make different stops along the route, which can lengthen the travel time.

For me the best option was to book a shuttle from Cancun airport to Playa del Carmen, it made my trip quite comfortable and I arrived very fast to my destination.

Going back to the airport for departure? With the company I mentioned, you can indicate that it is a round trip, so they will pick you up wherever you are. You can also buy a ticket at both ADO stations in Playa del Carmen, in case you are traveling by ADO.

What to do in playa del carmen: fifth avenue street

Playa del Carmen’s main avenue is La Quinta, a vibrant pedestrian street that runs more than a kilometer parallel to the beach. La Quinta is lined with hundreds of stores and vendors offering everything. Sure, it’s touristy, but a visit to La Quinta should be on every Playa del Carmen bucket list.

Fundadores park

Playa del Carmen doesn’t have many traditional points of interest (the city is largely built around tourism), but one of the most interesting Playa del Carmen sights you can find is in Parque Fundadores.

This is the block-sized park right at the foot of Avenida Juarez and the beach, also next to the Cozumel Ferry Dock. This park keeps adding attractions for guests visiting Playa del Carmen and can be a fun place to be.

Getting there

There are no direct flights to Tulum, as there is no airport there. You can fly to Cancun and from there take a transportation from Cancun to Tulum, which takes about 2 hours.and you have many options. I do not recommend renting a car at the airport, as it is much more expensive than using a transfer. I even recommend you to book all your services online.

Things to do around tulum: tulum mayan ruins

This is a must! The Mayan ruins of Tulum are located 3 km from town and can be reached by car or bike. The fascinating fact is that the Tulum ruins are the only Mayan ruins located directly on the coast. So the view is quite majestic. Plus, you can swim in the beach afterwards. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen, sunglasses, water, a towel and your swimsuit.

Ruins of Coba

The Mayan ruins of Coba are less visited than those of Tulum and Chichen Itza and are located in a more natural setting. The ruins site is extensive and the partially excavated structures are located along the jungle, which can be reached by walking or biking along the well-maintained ancient trails known as “sacbes”. Bicycles can be rented at the entrance to the ruins, which I would recommend doing as it is the quickest and easiest way to get around within the site. Most of the ancient stone structures can be explored and climbed, except for a few. The main attraction at Coba is climbing to the top of the very tall, steep and partially excavated Nohoch Mul pyramid, where you will be rewarded with incredible panoramic views of the surrounding jungle treetops.

Gran cenote

Cenotes are a highlight of the Yucatan Peninsula. These are natural sinkholes that expose groundwater. Imagine crystal clear water in submerged pools that are partially below the surface. The Gran Cenote is wonderful, it is very close to the town of Tulum and offers a large natural pool on both sides. Some say it is expensive compared to other cenotes (entrance fee is 180 pesos per person), but I think it is worth it. They have excellent restroom facilities, showers to get ready before entering the cenote (only biodegradable sunscreen or none at all is acceptable), and they have lockers and snorkel gear for rent. Swimming in the Gran Cenote is a wonderful experience. The water is so clean and fresh. You swim next to little fish and turtles. Count 1.5 hours or max. 2 hours to stay and enjoy it.

Casa cenote

Casa Cenote is a beautiful open water cenote located just 20 minutes north of Tulum. Casa Cenote is unique from many others in the Yucatan in that it is not located underground and instead the beautiful, vibrant turquoise water is exposed to the sky. The cenote resembles a small lake and is surrounded on all sides by thick mangroves and lush vegetation. A narrow channel leads from the larger body of water to the ocean.

Paul Petersen

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