The Final Journey Information to Playa del Carmen, Mexico

With spectacular seashores, lovely nature,
top-notch meals, and a number of the craziest nightlife round, Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
is among the coolest locations on the Mayan Riviera.

I not too long ago had the chance to spend over a month residing, working, and enjoying in Playa del Carmen and made some extent to take a look at the very best that Playa has to supply.

I swam in caves, cenotes, the ocean, and
rooftop pool bars. I tasted conventional Mayan delicacies, 1,000,000 totally different
sorts of tacos, and 5-star delicacies in a cave.

Critically, it doesn’t matter what your type, you received’t run out of Playa del Carmen actions to attempt.

On this Final Information to Playa del Carmen, I’ll cowl find out how to get to Playa, what to do, the place to remain, and a few suggestions for touring to Playa.

First, matters first, let’s discuss find out how to get to Playa ….

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Find out how to Get to Playa del Carmen from Cancun

Colorful mexican hats being sold in a Playa del Carmen shop

Chances are high you’ll be touchdown within the Cancun
Airport after which touring to Playa del Carmen from there.

Fortunately, there are a couple of methods to do that:

Choice #1 – Personal Switch to Playa del Carmen

For those who’ve had an extended worldwide flight, are drained, and simply don’t need to take care of the logistics of haggling a value or navigating public transit, then hiring a public switch is the best way to go.

Personal switch tends to be essentially the most
costly choice, and also you’ll must set it up earlier than you arrive in Mexico, however
it’s undoubtedly easy.

Choice #2 – Drive from Cancun to Playa del Carmen

For those who plan on doing quite a lot of shifting round
the Yucatan Peninsula or the Mayan Riviera in your journey, then renting a automotive is
your greatest wager.

Whereas the methods of the street are a bit totally different on this space of the world than they’re within the USA or Canada (cease indicators and pace limits are extra like solutions), it’s nonetheless fairly easy to get from Level A to B by way of a automotive.

However watch out for a shady rip-off in Mexico the place rental automotive firms promote $1/day leases, however then hit you laborious with costly “necessary” insurance coverage. It is a quite common rip-off and avoiding it’s one among our high suggestions for touring to Mexico.

For essentially the most clear pricing we’ve discovered, you may lease via the Uncover Automotive Rent web site.

Choice #3 – ADO Bus from Cancun to Playa del Carmen

Do you know that the Mexican bus firm ADO runs a bus that goes straight from the Cancun Airport to downtown Playa del Carmen?

Nicely, there may be, and taking it’s tremendous straightforward.

To take action, simply buy your ticket once you get to the airport, double-check your seat quantity and departure time, after which hop on the bus.

You will have to attend a bit to get on the bus, relying on departure instances, however the comfy charters and straightforward system make it value it.

The Prime 10 Actions in Playa Del Carmen

decorative painted skulls lined up in a shop

#1 Stroll La Quinta Avenida

La Quinta
Avenida, or “5th Avenue”, is the primary vacationer drag in Playa del

Right here, you’ll discover boutique retailers, every kind of eating places, and chain shops alike. Throughout the day, you’ll discover this stretch can get moderately busy.

remember the fact that as a result of 5th avenue is so geared to vacationers,
you’ll must be on guard for scammers.

 It appeared each time I went down to fiveth
I’d have somebody yelling that I dropped my pockets (I didn’t), telling me
they had been the supervisor of my lodge (I didn’t keep in a lodge), or providing me
medication (I declined).

Nonetheless, it’s a must-see on any journey to Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Sculpure in the Playa del Carmen main square

#2 Go to the Frida Kahlo Museum

are you received’t be spending quite a lot of time in museums whereas in Playa del Carmen.

if you happen to’re within the temper for a change of tempo and a dose of nationwide historical past, then
remember to go to the Frida Kahlo Museum.

Much less a gallery of her artwork and extra the story of her life, the Frida Museum will take you thru her relationship with Diego Rivera, the tragedies she endured, and the way she discovered inspiration and motivation to create her timeless artwork.

#Three Attempt Some Water Actions

Scuba diving in Playa del Carmen

There are such a lot of water actions to attempt in Playa del Carmen, Mexico – swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, jet-skiing, and windsurfing.

It doesn’t matter what your taste, there’s a water sport for you. Simply head on right down to the seaside and see what you will discover!

#Four Chill out on Playacar Seaside

The beach with huts in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

it’s a city that actually has the phrase seaside
in its identify, it may be surprisingly tough to seek out an important seaside in central Playa
del Carmen.

you go to on an off day, the seashores are typically fully crowded with folks,
and the buildings are so near the water in some areas that it’s laborious to
actually loosen up.

So, if you happen to’re in search of one thing rather less congested, then head out to Playacar.

Simply south of the primary vacationer space, Playacar is thought for its huge seashores, white sand, and clear waters.

remember to take a look at the Xaman-Ha ruins whilst you’re there!

#5 Go to a Few Cenotes

Light shining through the top of a cenote in Playa del Carmen

There are such a lot of cenotes in and round Playa Del Carmen that you just’ll don’t have any bother selecting an important one.

However what’s a cenote, you ask?

Cenotes are limestone sinkholes which might be full of contemporary water, fish, and exquisite moss.

Whereas I primarily explored Playa del Carmen cenotes by swimming, you may simply snorkel or scuba a lot of them.

of the very best cenotes round Playa del Carmen are Cenote Azul, Chikin-Ha,
Crisitano, and Jardin del Eden (my private favourite).

#6 E-book a Caving Tour

A cave with stalactites near Playa del Carmen, Mexico

my humble opinion, you may’t come to Playa del Carmen and never discover a cave.

It’s a must-do.

order to discover one of many space’s many caves, you’ll must take a tour.

On this tour, you’ll stroll and swim via darker-than-night passageways, be taught all in regards to the historical past of the caves, take heed to the sounds of stalactites, and really feel pleasant fish brush up in opposition to your legs.

For extra info on what it’s prefer to tour a cave, take a look at our article on Rio Secreto: A Information to Playa del Carmen’s Magical Caves.

#7 Dangle Out at a Seaside Membership

For once you need to add a little bit extra luxurious into your seaside expertise, hanging out at a seaside membership is the best way to go.

There are many totally different seaside golf equipment within the space however, after a little bit of analysis, I discovered that Lido Seaside Membership was the very best worth for cash.

Lido has an important environment, pleasant employees, and even higher lemon pie.

#eight Swim in a Rooftop Pool

A pool with bungalows in Mexico

swimming pools in Playa del Carmen are a preferred hangout for each locals and vacationers
alike and, for that purpose, there are lots to select from.

That stated, among the best needs to be Be Playa.

Be Playa has nice ambiance, a heat pool, a 250 peso minimal spend, and a number of the greatest Mezcal cocktails in Playa.

#9 Take a Salsa Dancing Class

Going salsa dancing is assured
to provide you a memorable expertise in Playa del Carmen – and train you some new
strikes on the similar time!

There are many spots to go salsa dancing in Playa, however a number of the extra fashionable ones are La Santenera and Mojito Queen.

#10 Be part of a Strolling Tour

An igauna sits perched on the beach in the Mayan Riviera
Okay, not your Playa strolling tour information, however how cool would that be?

Taking a strolling tour is one among
the very best Playa del Carmen actions.

For an important free strolling tour in Playa del Carmen, I like to recommend reserving with Estacion Excursions.

I took their 3-hour lengthy strolling tour and realized all about Mayan tradition, how Playa del Carmen was shaped, latest conservation efforts, and was given the very best Playa suggestions and tips.

For those who’re in search of a tour that’s a little bit extra sturdy, take a look at this highly-rated Native Strolling Meals Tour.

Simply remember to present up hungry!

The Greatest Nightlife in Playa del Carmen

Nightclub in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Coco Bongo

you’ll additionally discover Coco Bongo’s in Cancun, Punta Cana, and Los Cabos, this
Mexican fiesta is definitely essentially the most well-known nightlife spot in all of Playa Del
Carmen, and for good purpose.

Bongo might be one of many wildest events you ever attend.

Right here,
you’ll discover acrobats, continuous drinks, every kind of music, and a dancefloor
the place you may boogie all night time lengthy.

for Coco Bongo run at $80 USD per particular person, nevertheless it’s completely value it for the open
bar, leisure, and expertise.

Coco Maya

For those who’re in search of a beachfront membership, then
look no farther than Coco Maya.

This booming place is a Playa del Carmen
staple, and there’s nothing higher than partying all night time with an important view of
the ocean.

La Bodeguita del Medio

Primarily based on the favored Cuban nightclub of the identical identify, La Bodeguita del Medio is smaller than the aforementioned golf equipment, however nonetheless packs a punch in the case of enjoyable.

Together with free salsa classes on Mondays and Wednesdays, you’ll additionally discover a enjoyable dance flooring, infinite mojitos, and employees who prefer to celebration simply as a lot as you do.


The Mandala nightclub in Playa del Carmen

Positioned proper within the heart of Playa, Mandala
is a bit of Playa del Carmen nightlife you may’t miss.

All the two-level membership is embellished with
Asian aptitude, they’ve an eclectic music choice, and the environment is
undoubtedly cosmopolitan.

Go for the $55 USD open-bar
choice. For those who’re a partier, this may in all probability prevent some dough.

The Greatest Eating places in Playa del Carmen

A colorful taco spread with chips and salsa

El Fogon

El Fogon is famend as having the very best tacos in all of Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and I’ve to agree.

Their tortillas are contemporary, there’s a multi-tiered salsa tower on each desk, and the flavors will make your mouth water. Critically, it’s a must to attempt their sirloin con queso taco.

That stated, El Fogon’s Playa areas are also called having a number of the longest traces within the metropolis.

To skip the road, I recommend going round fashionable consuming instances or heading there for a late-night snack.


For those who’re in search of a eating expertise that’s a little bit extra upscale, then take a look at Alux.

deep underground in a cave, this high-quality eating restaurant could have you sampling
top-of-the-line Mexican spirits, exquisitely crafted delicacies, and an environment
like none different.

Alux is taken into account costly by Mexico requirements, it actually received’t break the
financial institution so long as you account for it in your price range.

and the employees will encourage you to stroll round and take a look at extra of the cave
when you’re completed consuming. It’s positively value a wander!


is an open-concept restaurant that focuses on scrumptious, but relaxed, American
and Mexican delicacies.

can be dwelling to a full bar, numerous artwork and murals, and dwell music on choose

Cerveceria Chapultepec

these days once you’re feeling a little bit bit extra budget-conscious, take a look at
Cerveceria Chapultepec.

for its fabulous greenback menu, these eating places (there are two in Playa del
Carmen) are dwelling to pleasant employees, bumping music, and a number of the greatest consolation
meals within the metropolis.

specific, don’t miss attempting their fish tacos – there’s a full salsa bar to

The place to Keep in Playa del Carmen: The Greatest Hostels and Motels

Palm trees, the beach, and the ocean at Playacar Beach in Mexico

The place to remain in Playa del Carmen
depends upon your price range, preferences, and elegance. Fortunately, there are many
motels, hostels, and leases all around the metropolis, so that you’ll remember to discover
one thing that fits your style.

My solely actual suggestions are to
rigorously learn the critiques earlier than you guide and ensure you choose a lodge
that’s central.

Prime Motels in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

  • CondoHotel Fabiola – For those who’re in search of an attractive luxurious place to remain, then take a look at CondoHotel Fabiola. Take a look at CondoHotel Fabiola on and Hotelscombined.
  • Hacienda del Caribe – A highly-rated mid-budget lodge, Hacienda del Caribe is simply across the nook from the seaside, options Mexican-style design, and is dwelling to an outside pool. Study extra about Hacienda del Caribe on and Hotelscombined.

Prime Hostels in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

  • Wabi Hostel – For you price range backpackers on the market, Wabi Hostel is a enjoyable and colourful place to return again to after lengthy days of exploring. Take a look at Wabi Hostel on and Hotelscombined.
  • The Yak Hostel – The Yak is among the top-rated hostels in all of Playa del Carmen. Whereas I by no means really stayed right here myself, I did take an important Mojito class on the premises, and completely liked the employees and the frequent space setup. Take a look at The Yak on and Hotelscombined.

Day Journeys from Playa del Carmen

The sun setting behind the main pyramid at Chichen Itza, Mexico

Day Journey #1 – Chichen Itza

Itza is among the hottest websites within the Yucatan Peninsula, and one of many
New Seven Wonders of the World!

In historical Mayan instances, Chichen Itza was used as a ceremonial gathering place, and its primary pyramid (El Castillo), dates all the best way again to 550 AD.

take you round 2-Three hours to fully case the positioning, so I like to recommend getting
there as early as you may to beat the crowds and the warmth.

Find out how to Get to Chichen Itza from Playa del Carmen

  • By Bus – The ADO bus from Playa del Carmen to Chichen Itza will take you wherever from 2.5 – 3.5 hours, relying on the bus schedule and your changeover in Valladolid. That stated, I nonetheless discovered that the bus was the simplest option to get to Chichen Itza.
  • By Tour – There are tons of superior excursions that may take you from Playa del Carmen to Chichen Itza. Take a look at this highly-rated Chichen Itza tour that can even take you thru Valladolid and right into a cenote.

Day Journey #2 – Tulum

The sun sets over the Tulum Ruins in Tulum, Mexico

One of the vital bohemian cities on the Mayan Riviera, Tulum has been making waves lately for its lovely seashores, pleasant city, and glorious foodie scene.

The city is great regardless of
your price range – there’s all the things from hostel dorms to top-of-the-line luxurious
motels – and the Tulum Ruins will take your breath away.

Find out how to Get to Tulum from Playa del Carmen

  • Bus – Taking the ADO bus from Playa del Carmen to Tulum is by far the simplest option to make the journey. The bus solely takes an hour, and prices about 70 pesos. Needless to say you will get the bus from downtown Playa del Carmen to both the Tulum Ruins or Downtown Tulum, and it’s a little bit of a jog between the 2.
  • TourThis thrilling tour won’t solely present you the very best websites round Tulum City, nevertheless it’ll additionally have you ever ziplining and snorkeling.
  • Colectivo – One of many extra adventurous methods of getting across the Mayan Riviera, a Colectivo is a small shuttle bus that may take you proper from downtown Playa to downtown Tulum, making a couple of stops alongside the best way. Colectivo’s are the locally-preferred means of journey on this space and can value you a bit lower than taking the bus.

Wish to be taught extra about Tulum? Then take a look at these articles in regards to the Tulum Ruins – The Inside Information, and 10 Causes You Ought to Go to Tulum, Mexico ASAP.

Day Journey #3 – Akumal

A turtle swims in Akumal, Mexico

is a fast 30-minute journey down the street from Playa del Carmen and is probably
most well-known for being a spot to swim with sea turtles.

you may positively lease your personal snorkel gear and swim with the turtles proper
off the seaside, I like to recommend happening a guided tour to get the total impact.

Find out how to Get to Akumal from Playa del Carmen

  • Tour This tour could have you swimming in a cenote and snorkeling with the ocean turtles all with the corporate of an knowledgeable information.
  • Taxi – On account of Akumal being so near Playa del Carmen, it’s best to be capable of discover a driver keen to take you there. Simply keep in mind to haggle the value earlier than you get within the automotive.
  • Colectivo – There’s a Colectivo that may take you to Akumal, however make sure that to inform the driving force once you need to get off.

Day Journey #4 – Cozumel

Two people lounging on the beach in Cozumel Mexico

For those who’re in search of a simple island getaway from Playa del Carmen then add Cozumel to your itinerary.

Identified for its picturesque seashores, glorious scuba diving alternatives, and laid-back environment, Cozumel is ideal for a day of exploring.

remember the fact that as a result of Cozumel is a primary cruise ship port, it may get fairly
busy if you happen to go when a ship is docked.

potential, go to Cozumel through the low season, or when you recognize there received’t be
a cruise ship within the space.

Find out how to Get to Cozumel from Playa del Carmen

  • Ferry – As a result of Cozumel Ferry Terminal being proper downtown in Playa del Carmen, it couldn’t be simpler to get to the island. A return ticket prices round 400 pesos, and ferries depart each half hour.

Professional Tip: While you get to the terminal, you’ll
discover that there are two ferry firms to select from — one price range (Winjet)
and one a little bit extra high-end (Ultramar).

two ferries go to the identical place, are comfy, and are pretty new.

these causes, I like to recommend skipping the posh ferry and taking a simply as
comfy journey for much less cash.

Day Journey #5 – Valladolid

Colorful buildings lined up in Valladolid, Mexico

A colourful colonial city simply an hour away from Playa del Carmen, Valladolid is true subsequent door to Chichen Itza and is one of the crucial attention-grabbing cities to discover in all the Yucatan (in my humble opinion).

Valladolid is the place to go to essentially dive into Mexican tradition – with nice strolling excursions, glorious conventional Mayan eating places, and plenty of artwork.

Plus, Valladolid could be very
walkable, the individuals are so pleasant (so many individuals went out of their option to
make sure that I used to be comfy), and the city is gorgeous.

Whereas in Valladolid, remember to
take a look at a number of the close by cenotes, stroll the stalls at Mercado Municipal,
take a look at the artwork at Casa de los Venados, and go to Iglesia de San Servicio.

In fact, this listing is just for

For a full overview of Valladolid, take a look at our Final Information to Valladolid Mexico (+19 Insanely Superior Matters to Do), and The Greatest Motels in Valladolid Mexico (18 Excellent Locations to Keep).

Find out how to Get to Valladolid from Playa del Carmen

  • ADO Bus – The simplest option to get to Valladolid from Playa del Carmen, Mexico is to take the ADO bus. The bus leaves to and from Playa del Carmen a number of instances a day, takes about an hour and a half, and can value you lower than 200 pesos spherical journey.

Matters to Know Earlier than Touring to Playa del Carmen

Mayan men do a rain dance up a tall poll in Central Playa del Carmen

Tip #1 – Have Peso’s on Hand

Whereas many locations in Playa del Carmen will take USD as a type of forex, the change fee might be horrible and you’ll in all probability pay much more in consequence.

not many locations in Playa take credit score or debit playing cards.

As an alternative
of taking out a wad of money firstly of our journey, I like to recommend utilizing ATMs
present in one of many many credible banks throughout Playa.

Tip #2 – Study a Little Spanish

Whereas it’s usually stated that you could journey via the Yucatan Peninsula by talking English, I discovered this to solely be partly true.

positively be capable of converse English within the extra touristy areas, however as quickly as
you get out of that zone you’re going to must depend on Spanish to get round.

Actually, most cab drivers I encountered solely knew a few English phrases and I needed to actually refine my Spanish chops as a way to talk.

advocate studying not less than primary greetings, money quantities, and the right
pronunciation of the place you’re staying.

Tip #3 – Cabs are Very Inexpensive

Being a traveler in Mexico implies that you’ll in all probability must pay more cash for companies than the locals, however don’t let common cab rides be a kind of.

To make sure you don’t overpay for a cab, by no means hail a taxi close to fifth Avenue, the bus station, or close to the ferry terminal.

As an alternative, stroll a couple of blocks away from the seaside and check out catching a cab the place it’s a little bit quieter.

discovered that by getting simply 5 minutes away from the vacationer zones I may save
myself as a lot as 100 pesos per journey.

Tip #4 – Tipping is Widespread

Bright yellow buildings with palm trees in Playa del Carmen

Whereas tipping is a typical apply in Mexico, it’s a little bit totally different than in Europe, america, or Canada.

cab drivers is normally not anticipated, however a very good rule of thumb is to tip 10-15% for
meals or companies, or simply depart the change you get from the invoice.

stated, some sneaky eating places will tack a tip onto your invoice (regardless that it’s
technically not allowed), so control this so that you don’t double-tip.

Tip #5 – It’s a Fashionable Metropolis

Playa Del Carmen has solely actually skilled a vacationer growth within the final decade or so, and earlier than that, it was a quiet little city.

to this, Playa del Carmen is basically a really trendy metropolis and has all the facilities
you would presumably want.

Whether or not you’re planning a brief go to or a long-term keep, you’ll be capable of discover outfitters, grocery retailers, laundromats, and every kind of lodging.

Tip #6 – It’s Very Secure

Like all over the place else, you’ll must preserve your wits about you when touring to Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Particularly if you happen to determine to celebration.

Nevertheless, if you happen to implement commonsense security practices, chances are high you’ll have an incident-free journey.

For those who’re interested by whether or not or not you want journey insurance coverage in your journey to Playa del Carmen, then examine insurance policies at this Journey Insurance coverage Comparability web site, or take a look at our article on whether or not you want Journey Insurance coverage for Mexico.


That’s it for
our Final Playa del Carmen Journey Information!

Playa del Carmen is actually one of the crucial
attention-grabbing cities within the Yucatan, and I do know you’re going to have a gasoline
exploring all it has to supply.

When you have any questions on visiting
Playa, attain out within the feedback under.

And for extra journey info and suggestions, take a look at these articles on the Yucatan, Mexico, and past:

Have enjoyable in Playa!

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Travel Master

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