Riviera Maya boasts tradition and wealth of one of the oldest, most complete and influential global cultures: the Mayan culture.
The Mayan legacy that is currently present throughout the region, archeology, gastronomy, music, astronomy, vegetation and respect for nature, also invites you to discover the vibrant culture that beats every day from the heart of Quintana Roo.
This spectacular resort area, located along the Caribbean, offers white sandy beaches from the town of Puerto Morelos to Punta Allen, comprising of 120 km of the Yucatan Peninsula, in the state of Quintana Roo.
The destination begins to fascinate visitors from first contact, through crystal clear waters and jungle vegetation surrounding the area, offering unique places to enjoy the distinct atmosphere that permeates the Riviera Maya.
Its wide range of options to have fun consists of natural beauty, including beautiful weather, but also its impressive archaeological sites, theme parks, relaxing amenities, world-class spas, exclusive golf courses, varied cuisine, bars and nightclubs, as well as great service offered in their hotel developments.
This beautiful Caribbean area was in the ancient times home to one of the most enigmatic civilizations in history. Thus, along the Riviera Maya, you will find numerous monuments and buildings you must see to know this ancient culture.
Xama há (in Maya language) or Playa del Carmen (as the locals call it colloquially) is actually a former fishing village that over time has grown to become one of the most visited places in the Riviera Maya. Beautiful beaches and a great atmosphere characterize this city. The exclusive and elegant adults-only resort Blue Diamond is nestled in one of the most amazing places in the Riviera Maya, between cenotes and water channels.
The ruins of the city of Tulum, a seaside walled city whose name has echoes of mystery, stands on one of the most beautiful spots of the Riviera Maya. Here, where the white sand reverberates under intense sun, the Maya chose to found, on a bluff that defies the waters, a city -fortress, protected on three sides by stone walls, and the fourth simply defended by the sea.
Cozumel is the third largest island of Mexico, about 50 km from Playa del Carmen. Formed by volcanic rock heels, being a less visited area, it still retains its natural charm. Legend has it that it was the home of Ixchel, the goddess of love and fertility. Therefore, you can visit many temples devoted to her, and in gratitude, she sent the Maya her favorite birds, the swallows. It is an ideal site for scuba diving and snorkeling, and has one of the largest reefs in the world, Palancar, where Jaques Cousteau discovered the black coral.
8 kilometers from Cancun lies the small and quiet Isla Mujeres, a nice island, with turquoise waters. It is devoted to Ixchel, and her followers used to deposit on its beaches mud offerings in female forms. With the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in the sixteenth century, these figures were discovered and the island was christened with the name of Isla Mujeres. It is worth visiting the Centre for Protection of Turtles, and the remains of the legacy of the famous pirate Fermín Antonio de Mundaca. Mundaca, who was a feared Spanish pirate and slave trader, plundered the Caribbean for years until he finally decided to settle here. According ton the legend, he later fell in love with a Mayan Indian who rejected him and left him heartbroken and depressed for the rest of his life.
Puerto Morelos is the perfect contrast between Cancun and Playa del Carmen. In this still small fishing village, where the people are nice and friendly, you feel truly in Mexico. It offers a variety of colorful tropical fish, dolphins, turtles and the occasional whale, besides the extraordinary beautiful coral formations of the "Parque Marino Arrecifes de Puerto Morelos" (Reef Marine Park of Puerto Morelos).
Chichen Itza in Mayan means "mouth of the well of the Itza," and the Itza Maya group are named after the region from which they came, north of what is now known as Yucatan. Chichen Itza was the most powerful city in the peninsula between 550 and 900 a.C. During that period, the site reached the proportions and urban characteristics that it retains until this day. As a center of economic, political and religious power, it was characterized by its complex organization and construction of monumental architecture.
The beaches of the Riviera Maya are known for their soft sand and the dust composed of fragments of corals and seashells, which reflects sunlight without maintaining the heat, so it is always cool and dry. The seabed sand and clear waters produce a wonderful effect of color, which varies between different shades of blue, from light blue to green and from green to turquoise blue, which characterizes the Caribbean Sea.
Among the best are the beaches El Secreto and Playa Paraíso, in Puerto Morelos, as well as Punta Maroma, ranked as one of the hidden treasures of Mexico. There are also: Punta Bete, Xcalacoco, Xpu-ha, and Paamul and la Bahía de Kantenah (Kantenah Bay), known for its long stretch of beach, washed by the shallow waters and serene. In Akumal and Xcacel, located near the Natural Reserve of Sian Ka'an, you can sometimes find turtles that come ashore to spawn. In the Bahía de Tankah (Tankah Bay), there is a cenote called Manatí, where you can practise snorkeling or scuba diving. Tulum, Boca Paila, Yalcu and Punta Allen, are just some of the other beautiful beaches worth visiting.
The climate of the Riviera Maya is a very hot one. Temperatures range between 17º and 31º in winter and exceed 32º in summer. Between December and May is usually a good time to visit, although it can rain and afternoons may be windy. In autumn, on the other hand, storms are frequent.
The wettest periods are late spring, the months of July and August and early September, just before the rainy season.
Pozole is a Mexican specialty. It is a typical soup of different types and variations: red, green, white ... The base ingredient is corn (the cacahuazintle variety). What sets this corn apart, aside from its special flavor, is that the grains are large and white and when cooked, it opens like a flower. The accompanying ingredients are also quite varied: tostadas (fried corn tortilla) with beans, mince, cheese ... with that special twist given to the flavor by the oregano, onion, radish and lettuce, all well minced. The avocado may be the last ingredient of this peculiar soup. No wonder it was one of the favorite foods of Montezuma...
Other dishes from the Yucatan Peninsula arise from the mix of Spanish and indigenous culture, and include papadzules, cochinita pibil or chocolomo.
By the beach, in a relaxed and informal atmosphere, you can taste the delicious seafood of the Caribbean Sea and a selection of the best Mexican and world's tapas.
Another typical dishes are papadzules, corn tortillas dipped in a sauce of pumpkin seeds, filled with cooked egg (like tacos) and bathed in a tomato sauce with chile habanero and onion.
The cochinita pibil is pork marinated in achiote, wrapped in banana leaves and cooked in an earth oven. It usually comes accompanied with onion tanned in sour orange, and in tortas and tacos, with pickled chile habanero.
Is a sanctuary for the amateurs of Nouvelle Fusion Cuisine, where they can enjoy the most refined atmosphere.
Nightlife in Playa del Carmen can start at Coco Bongo or Mambo Café, a classic local venue. The best shows in the style of Vegas, as well as the best live bands, salsa, hip hop and rap at the top of their game. If your roll is more alternative, the night goes on in Santanera with baroque decoration and a dimmed light lounge on the second floor. If you want a after hours, many places on the beach are still open and are very much in to welcome the next day. In all of them, you will be able to notice the eclectic diversity of nightclubs of Playa del Carmen.