The Riviera Maya is a hundred-kilometer coastal strip of the Caribbean Sea, stretching from Cancun to Tulum. The main resorts here are Playa del Carmen and the island of Cozumel.
This coast began to be developed relatively recently, when free territories ended in Cancun. The main contingent of the resort is Europeans. Riviera Maya is well suited for families, including children. The beach strip here is white sand. In addition, tourists are attracted by excellent diving conditions, professional golf courses and high-quality spa centers. Check itypeusa for other cities and countries as well as brief information about North America.
How to get there
Not far from the Riviera Maya, there are two airports: the first is located in Cancun, and the second on the island of Cozumel.
A flight to Cancun from Moscow will cost from 641 USD with one change in New York (round trip), however, such flights are rare, transfers are long, and flights are inconvenient, so it’s better to count on 800-900 USD or more. The center of the resort of Playa del Carmen is located about 60 km from the airport, buses, minibuses and taxis go there.
How to get from Cancun Airport to the hotel
Buses run frequently, but only during the day, the fare is 4 USD one way per passenger, these buses stop at many popular hotels. The most budget option is minibuses – colectivo, which run along the coast. Fare 2 USD, stops only on request, but you will probably have to walk to the hotel. There are only official taxis here, there are no private taxis (nominally there is Uber, but it works intermittently here), it is easy to recognize them – they are white cars with a green stripe. A trip from the airport to the resort center will cost about 35 USD.
Flights to Cozumel
Flights from Moscow to Cozumel Island are rare and cost more than to Cancun – from 1000-1500 USD with a transfer in Miami. To get to the Riviera Maya from the airport, you must first get to the pier, and then transfer to the ferry, which will take you to the resort of Playa del Carmen. The whole road from the airport to the resort will take about 2-2.5 hours.
Riviera Maya Hotels
The Riviera Maya offers its guests 368 hotels with 37,000 rooms in total. Hotels generally do not exceed the height of palm trees. Over the past few years, the Riviera has been actively developing, new hotels are being built here: from modern European to exotic Caribbean bungalows. As a rule, the local hotels have large territories and all-inclusive meals. At the same time, in the Riviera Maya they are more affordable than in Cancun.
The beaches of the Riviera Maya
Playa del Carmen is located in the center of the Riviera Maya, 70 km south of Cancun. This is a youth resort center, which is very popular. On the pedestrian zone along the coast, life is in full swing 24 hours a day.
Cozumel, Mexico’s largest island (14 km wide and 53 km long), is located 19 km east of the Yucatan. It is famous for its underwater world and the second largest coral reef in the world with a length of over 700 km. The sandy strip of the beach occupies only 3% of the entire territory of the island, the rest is a national park.
Entertainment and attractions of the Riviera Maya
How to relax in the resorts of Cancun and the Riviera Maya, you can even without leaving the hotel – but few deprive themselves of the opportunity to explore the ruins of Mayan and Toltec cities.
Chichen Itza is the largest ancient Mayan and Aztec city, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tulum is the only seaport-fortress of the Maya. It is also worth visiting the Xel-Ha reserve park, a favorite resting place of the Mayan emperors, famous for its stalactite caves and karst lakes, take an excursion to Ek-Balam, where an acropolis with a secret room was excavated. In the most famous ecological park of the Riviera Maya, Xcaret, you can swim along the underground river, visit the aquarium museum, turtle farm, butterfly park, orchid park, jaguar island, play with dolphins, swim with a snorkel and mask, and in the small fishing village of Rio Lagartos admire the huge flocks of defiantly pink flamingos.
In 2009, the Xplor Ecopark was opened in the Riviera Maya, a nature reserve located on an area of 50 hectares. This unique underground world invites tourists to go rafting or take a trip along underground rivers surrounded by stalactites and stalagmites. The water temperature in the rivers is +24 °C. The underground journey ends in cenotes – natural wells that the Mayans used as sources of water. Age-old rock formations, walks through the jungle and suspension bridges will make your vacation truly unforgettable.