Planning a trip to Cancun but not sure what the best places to visit in Cancun? Do not worry, we’ll compile all the best places to visit in Cancun so that you can plan your trip and stay safe during your visit to one of Mexico’s leading tourist destinations!
Referred to as the gateway to the Yucatan Peninsula, Cancun is normally regarded as the first travel experience that most people have in Mexico. Known for its white sand beaches and turquoise blue water, Cancun Mexico is the most amazing vacation and resort destination for scuba adventure, eco-parks, sunbathing, nightlife, water sports, and much more. So in general, you may have a thousand and one things to do in Cancun once you visit there.
With world-class luxury hotels all along the beautiful Caribbean Sea, and on the other side you have the Nichupte Lagoon with many romantic waterside restaurants and trendy bars, several championship golf courses, together with Cancun’s Mayan Culture with its Mayan ruins and archaeological sites, Cancun will delight even the most discerning traveler.
1 – Torre Escénica
The Torre Escénica, the 80m building, offers excellent views of the city. It’s the highest point in Cancun! If you’ve stopped at Xcaret, then acquire the advantage of cost-free entry to this specific cool monument with your ticket. Right in the middle of the Zona Hotelera, you will find a wonderful place to get in the evening and catch the sunset!
This tower, which can be kind of like a theme recreation area ride too, may be one of the best places throughout Cancun to learn about the city’s history. As you climb up the tower in the rotating capsule, you will hear lots of figures about the place, in addition to having the most important attractions in Cancun talked about to you over the speaker. Should you be searching for what to do inside Cancun in the evening and have absolutely a couple of hours spare in the morning, Torre Escénica is something you should consider.
2 – Xcaret Park
Typically the Xcaret Eco Amusement park covers a region of 200 acres of the historic location. It started as a theme park but now consists of 6 different locations nearby. It was the first one, and potentially the best. Not simply any theme recreation area, Xcaret Park combines Mayan culture in addition to history with living shows, delicious food, and cool normal attractions.
The Xcaret area comes with an exciting past. Previously known as the ancient port of Polé, it is believed that the Maya would come to this area to cleanse themselves before going to Cozumel to praise Ixchel- the goddess of fertility. Even today, you may locate ancient continues to be associated with the Maya civilization here.
It was told that when architect Miguel Quintana Pali cleared out the area in 1980, he found a series of underground rivers that made sinkholes and even caverned before they linked to the ocean. Realizing the potential of the area to be a rare place and an unique tourist spot, he wasted no time planning an Eco park in the area.
You will discover more than 40 attractions throughout this 200-acre park, so you happen to be certain to find a thing amazing and interesting for yourself and your family. If you would prefer to know more about Mayan traditions and cultures, observe the live shows that will take place inside the park. For those enthusiastic about wildlife, a person can get close to the park’s nature reserve where he/she can find jaguars, macaws, and other animals native to Central America. And of course, the eco-park is the best place to eat in Cancun, among is a tasty taco or great enchilada. In case you are feeling a little too exciting, you can swim along with nurse sharks plus sting rays in the eco-park or simply proceed snorkeling to see beautiful tropical fishes. The whole area works to protect the turtle populace. If you time travels, you can see the hatchings and learn about various turtles that are preserved at the park.
3 – Isla Mujeres
Translated literally “Women Island”, Isla Mujeres was named after several statues of the goddess Ixchel found here. What makes this island important to visit is that it is part of the history of the Maya. It is located in the same state as Quintana Roo, the city which is about 13 kilometers from Cancun.
This island is a perfect vacation destination for almost everything. With its white pristine sand and bright sand, it will please travelers who visit here. What used to be a casual fishing village is now a developing tourist destination that has become one of the central attractions of Cancun. Small shops and restaurants are available for the benefit of tourists. You can try diving scuba or snorkeling in blue waters, or you can fish which of course is a unique experience here. You can also choose from various water sports in this place. Next, you can take a boat for one hour to Isla Contoy from here if you are a nature lover. There is wildlife protection and a bird park on a neighboring island.
One of the best things about Isla Mujeres is not what to do there, but you can relax and do nothing. You can break the relationship from everything and only enjoy how calm this place is! One of the best places to do this is on the west coast of the island or beautiful Playa Norte. The white sand is replaced by turquoise, warm and perfect for swimming.
4 – Playa Delfines
Cancun Beach is famous for its limitless stretch of white sand. From Cancun Riviera to Playa Del Carmen, and Playa Mujeres, you will discover some of the best beaches in Mexico here. The beach right in front of the hotel zone is very fantastic with soft white sand that takes place for days. The chances are while you visit Cancun, you’ll be staying at an all-inclusive resort with its seaside. However, some of you may be at a hotel on the lagoon and others may additionally need to get off the hotel.
Playa Delfines is the only public beach that is void of hotels and restaurants. It offers you a calmer and quieter day out in the sun. There is a free beach umbrella for use and a coast guard on duty. Its call says all of it, Playa Delphines interprets to Dolphin beach and you will have a great chance of seeing dolphins here.
In case you need to try surfing, the powerful waves right here offer simply the opportunity to do it. Perhaps Playa Delfines is quieter as it’s no longer as smooth to swim here. Even though we don’t recommend that you go out too far, this is a good place for paddling. And if you face any hassle, there is continually a lifeguard at hand. But if you want to spend your time at the beach, here in Playa Delfines is one of the best places in Cancun you should never miss.
5 – MUSA – Museo Subacuático del Arte
Since 2009, Museo Subacuático del Arte has become one of the most popular attractions in Cancun. The initial idea behind the museum was to reduce damage to the Cancun reef, and shallow waters were packed with beautiful statues designed by British artists. Remarkably, in only 400 square meters of water, you will find more than 500 statues, which attract tropical fish. This is one of the most exciting places to visit in Cancun and is sure to wear your travel plan!
If you want to visit Cancun’s Museo Subacuático del Arte, then you have several choices. For those who want to stay dry, you can travel the boat with a glass floor. However, if you want to approach the statue itself, then try scuba diving or snorkeling. Don’t worry if you are new to this activity, this is the right place to try it for the first time, because of the shallow waters and the fact that so many people are around! You will be safe and can explore the museum in the best way!
Exhibiting the exhibition is a must in this cool museum. In addition to the artifacts and information that you will take on the way, you will explore the ruins of the center of Cancun City! The pyramid is undoubtedly the spotlight, and all this is put into the museum. Hopefully, this museum will arouse your taste for Maya ruins nearby like the one in Coba Village or Chichén Itzá!
6 – Merida
Merida is the capital of the state of Yucatan and the largest city on the Yucatán Peninsula.
This lively city has a rich virtual and colonial heritage. This city center with beautiful historical buildings. The houses are mostly one or two floors, often vibrant colored.
Merida has a range of hotels arranged in beautiful colonial time buildings and features an inner yard. You should try staying in such a building to experience the real colonial time in Cancun!
In the event that you are going to Merida, do not miss the UNESCO-listed Uxmal archaeological site. Uxmal was an ancient Maya city, nevertheless, it is one of the most crucial archaeological sites of Mayan culture. Uxmal’s pyramids and buildings are regarded for their impressive size and elegance.
7 – Xplor Park
Activities like swimming and rafting in the river while you see stalagmites and stalactites in the cave, Xplor’s garden is an underground adventure park designed to shoot your adrenaline levels to the highest level! This park has a forest area that is part of the zip line before you walk through the cave.
There are also amphibious cars that you can go around to explore the area. The cave is truly the center attraction of Xplor Park and to see geological formations up close when you walk around, is a very lifetime experience. This place also offers to paddle and includes Mexican buffet food after a long day of adventure sports.
8 – La Isla Shopping Village
Stop by La Isla shopping village and have everything you need for entertainment and eat at your fingertips. This village accommodates everything ranging from ice cream and cinema homes to multilevel clothing stores, and its comfortable location in the heart of the hotel zone makes it easy to access.
Whatever you want to buy, you will find it here, ranging from Mexican chain stores, and souvenir shops to some famous global retailers. But that is not all…you will be happy to know that you can find many good restaurants here. If you are not sure about Mexican food, try some restaurants that are more familiar in Cancun. Global chains such as Mcdonald’s and Starbucks, rounded with Haagen Dazs ice cream will be the perfect reminder of what you miss from home!
Spend the day exploring the village, or stop by a tour that focuses on the hottest shopping experience. This mall is also home to other attractions such as interactive aquariums and Cancun candle museums, making it an ideal place for the whole family.
9 – Zona Hotelera
Hotel Zone, (Zone Hotelera) is one of the most popular places to stay in Cancun for many good reasons. This is a stretch of endless sand filled with hotels that line the beach. This is the best thing to do near Cancun to enjoy the day where you don’t need to take a tour bus or order a trip from your hotel. From water sports to natural amusement parks, and Maya ruins to the underwater river, you will definetely fall in love with Cancun.
Simply walking through the hotel zone of Cancun is an adventure itself. This area has 22 km (14 miles long) and is full of restaurants, bars, shopping centers, and many all-inclusive mega-resorts.
You do not have to stay in an inclusive resort to have a fun moment but with only a budget hotel in the center of Cancun, you can have a lot of fun exploring the area, enjoying nightlife, and having a more immersive experience.
10 – Parque de las Palapas
Playa del Carmen, known locally as Playa, is a large resort city located alongside the Caribbean Sea in the state of Quintana Roo. It is a well-known tourist destination in Mexico’s Riviera Maya region, famous for its white sand beach, blue turquoise waters, coral reefs, surrounding rain forests, and Balneario. The city center area revolves around Quinta Avenida, a busy pedestrian-filled with many shops, clubs, and restaurants. The weather is hot throughout the year, with summer and winter holidays being the peak season.
The airport for the Playa is the Cancún International Airport, which is around 70 km away, ranking tenth in terms of international passengers worldwide, and the second busiest in Mexico after Mexico City.
11 – Chichén Itzá
Chichén Itzá is two hours’ drive from Cancun. However, it consists of the most important and the best ruins of the virtual empire, so you must have found space for it in your Cancun travel plan. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most famous pre-historical ruins in all of Latin America (up there with Machu Picchu Peru).
Most chose to visit Chichén Itzá on a day’s trip from Cancun. If you can stand up to be part of a large crowd, the turning point of spring and autumn is the right time to visit! Sunlight will resemble a snake that crept on the side of the main pyramid, a scene that of course, you will not forget. A day trip to Chichén Itzá often combines with other nearby attractions, such as visiting the city of Valladolid and IK Kil Cenote. This is another best place to visit in Cancun, especially if you want to swim!
12 – El Rey Ruins
The El Rey ruins are a group of beautiful old Mayan buildings in the place that used to be a fishing village in Cancun. These beautiful relics from this extraordinary era, of course, are something that we do not want to miss if visiting Cancun. The city was abandoned but was the center of activity until the 1500s. Today this place looks amazing with the natural beauty and architecture mixed.
This small place is surrounded by beautiful palms and natural habitats. This visits to El Rey’s ruins very different from most other Mayan archeological sites. There is a sense of wildness here which is an extraordinary thing to see.
White calciferous rocks look very amazing and Iguanas who live in this habitat will be a real treat to be seen here. Village life around this area is also very interesting. Be sure to observe the houses of the small straw that surrounds them.
13 – The Cancun Sign
There is no doubt that one of the most popular things to do in any destination today is to get a selfie in front of a sign of the destination. Well, you will find a colorful sign of colors like anywhere on the planet waiting for you. This has quickly become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Cancun and is a must when visiting Cancun. The famous Cancun sign is located in Playa Delfines.
14 – Temazcal Ceremony
The Temazcal ritual is a Mayan traditional purification ceremony that occurs in a small hut. You take off your underwear (or swimsuit), then enter the sweat hut which is heated with hot stones & water, turning it into a steamy sauna.
The ceremony is led by a local shaman, who performs rituals and cares for participants. The Temazcal ceremony takes place in total darkness, when a shaman pours water on a hot stone, chanting and using a different seasoning to call the Spirit.
Temazcal was carried out since ancient times, seen as a purification ceremony that cleans the body, mind, and soul. When your body sweats in a small hut, you enter a deep meditation state, enhanced by shamanism.
15 – Tulum
Tulum, which is roughly an hour and a half drive south of Cancun, offers a distinctive escape from the city with a mix of bohemian flair, glistening cenotes, Mayan ruins, and lovely beaches. Start the day with yoga on the beach at Sanará, then have a healthy vegan breakfast at Raw Love nearby or a delicious Mexican breakfast at Taqueria Honorio downtown. Next, go visit the Tulum Ruins before it becomes too hot and the sun is too high. The primary entrance to the ruins is off the highway, next to the Artisan Mall.
After exploring the ruins, make time to explore at least one of Tulum’s cenotes. Gran Cenote is the largest and busiest cenote in the area, made up of multiple little cenotes and stocked with fish and turtles. Dos Ojos consists of two linked cenotes, one dazzling clear blue, and one deep, dark cavern. Finally, Yal Ku is more of a lagoon, with a combination of fresh and saltwater and an abundance of colorful tropical fish.
So, that’s all from our list of best places to visit in Cancun. Hopefully, you will see that there are more cities than just partying and lying on the beach. Even though it’s clearly not a bad way to spend your vacation!
Whether you want to add knowledge, explore Maya Cancun ruins, or just relax on the white sand beach, the capital city of Yucatan has everything you want from a holiday destination.
We hope that our list of best places to visit in Cancun does not only show the best of what the city offers but has also given you an idea of how residents live. You will be able to match your vacation, especially if you know a little Spanish! We hope you have a fantastic time when traveling to Cancun.