Cancun Best places to visit on Holiday

Top 10 Places to Visit in Cancun

1.   Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres is the best place to visit in Cancun if you want to escape the bustling beaches in the main town. It's a small island about 30-min ferry ride away from Cancun. But despite being small, it has many beautiful sites worth checking out.

Rent a golf cart and make your way to Punta Sur at the southern tip of the island. It's where you will find the ancient temple that honours the Mayan moon goddess. The atmosphere here is very relaxing, and the landscape is absolutely stunning, surrounded by rugged cliffs and idyllic bays.

Isla Mujeres is also famous for its sea turtles. It's home to a turtle farm, and if you visit between August and October, you could witness baby turtles hatching. The best way to get to the farm is to take a taxi from the town of Isla Mujeres. And if you're looking to relax and work on your tan, head to Playa del Norte, where you'll find a beautiful, pristine beach.

2.   Chichen Itza

Cancun is also home to fascinating archaeological sites, and the Chichén Itzá is the most popular. As one of the most recognized landmarks in the Yucatan Peninsula, Chichén Itzá is the main hub of the ancient Mayan Civilization. It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was selected to be one of the New 7 Wonders of the World.

The focal point of the Chichén Itzá ruins is the "El Castillo," a pyramid-like structure once used by the Mayans as a temple dedicated to the god Kukulkan. But because of its popularity, the site is often crowded with tourists. To avoid crowds, visit early in the morning before the tourist buses arrive.

To make the most of your visit, consider hiring a guide who can explain the site's history and significance. It's possible to hire a guide on-site, although it is best to book in advance. Some tour companies offer travel packages to Cancun that include a guided visit to the Chichén Itzá.

3.   El Rey Ruins

Another popular archaeological site worth checking out in Cancun is the El Rey Ruins. While they may not be as popular as the Chichén Itzá ruins, they are definitely among the top places to visit in Cancun. Plus, they are much easier to explore since they are within the Hotel Zone. What's more, the area is not too big, allowing you to explore it in a short time.

El Rey used to be a centre for maritime trade, dating back to 1200 AD. However, the ruins themselves are not the main attraction. Many tourists would come here to witness the hundreds of iguanas that have lived in this ancient Mayan village.

The El Rey Ruins is open from 8 AM to 5 PM. Like Chichen Itza, it is best explored with a local tour guide who will share the history of the ruins and other interesting things about the Mayan Civilization.

4.   Coco Bongo Cancun

Cancun is famous for its vibrant nightlife. If you want to experience a unique nightlife scene in the city, head to Coco Bongo. This place is not like your usual nightclub or beach bar. It's where you can witness incredible performances of acrobats, live bands, conga lines, and impersonators. A typical night in this nightlife spot involves lots of balloons, bubbles, confetti, and projected videos.

Coco Bongo may not offer the conventional nightclub experience many tourists would expect, but it will make your visit to Cancun even more unforgettable. It's where you can witness amazing performances and stage antics you may not find somewhere else.

The club is open from 10:30 PM to 5 AM daily. Be prepared for the long queues, especially during the peak tourist season. There will also be long lines for food and drinks, so it is best to come with a full stomach.

5.   Tulum

Many tourists visiting Mexico are often confused between Cancun and Tulum. Both are in the Yucatán Peninsula and are home to stunning beaches. If you can't decide where to go, consider visiting both places. Tulum is less than two hours drive from Cancun and can make for a perfect day trip.

What makes Tulum popular is the 13th Century Mayan archaeological site within the Tulum National Park that overlooks the glistening sea. The park is only 10 minutes from the downtown area of Tulum, right at the northern end of Tulum Beach.

Compared to the other Mayan ruins, the Tulum ruins are much smaller, so it's much easier to explore. But what makes it stand out is the view surrounding this famous area. It's sitting on a cliff that opens to stunning views of the Caribbean Sea and the beautiful white sand beaches underneath it. Make sure you check out Templo del Viento, the most popular of all the ruins in Tulum.

6.   Xcaret Park

Xcaret is an amusement park that's also home to some Mayan ruins. It's located within the Mayan jungle amidst cenotes and underground rivers and faces the Caribbean Sea. Here, you can discover flora and fauna, swim on the stunning beaches along the Caribbean, and marvel at the archaeological sites.

Located along Riviera Maya, Xcaret Park has more than fifty different attractions waiting for you to explore. Make sure you visit the Pole Mayan ruins, considered the best Mayan ruins in Playa del Carmen. Dating back to about 1400 AD, it was once home to a Mayan village involved in the maritime trade, thanks to its strategic location along the Caribbean Sea.

The other attractions you should check out in Xcaret are the Voladores de Papantla Flyers and the Xcaret Nighttime Show, featuring an elaborate series of cultural performances centred around the Mayan Civilizations.

7.   Playa Tortugas

Playa Tortugas is a popular spot for locals in Cancun, mainly due to its clean beaches and relaxing vibe. The area is in the northern part and is one of the top places to visit in Cancun. It boasts several beachside restaurants offering excellent dining experiences.

Playa Tortugas is also home to a pier where visitors can bungee jump and take ferries to Isla Mujeres. Many tourists would visit Tortugas to enjoy the laidback atmosphere and beautiful beaches. The beaches are also free to visit, and the water is calm on most days, so it's perfect for those tourists with little kids.

Getting to Playa Tortugas is easy as it's in the northern area of Cancun's "7", within the famous Hotel Zone. It can be reached by bus or a rental car. There are umbrella and chair rentals available at the beach.

8.   Cancun Golf Courses

Another reason why many visitors would flock to Cancun is to play golf. It's home to world-class golf resorts offering luxury golf holiday experiences. But given the various options, deciding which golf resort to visit can be daunting.

One of the most popular destinations for golf in Cancun is the 18-hole Playa Mujeres Golf Club, which offers an exciting mix of challenging tee times and scenic landscapes. While it's somewhat expensive to play, especially if you are not a guest at the Dreams or Secrets resorts, the experience is well worth it.

Another popular golf resort worth checking out in Cancun is the El Camaleón Mayakoba, which offers 18 holes on a course winding through natural features, such as mangroves, cenotes, and jungles.

9.   Playa Delfines

If you want to venture out of the Hotel Zone and visit a quieter beach, head to Playa Delfines, a largely undeveloped area close to El Rey. The beach here is not as crowded as the beach along the Hotel Zone, allowing you to enjoy peace and quiet as you frolic in its crystal-clear waters.

There are not too many cafes or beachside restaurants in Playa Delfines, so don't forget to bring drinks and snacks. Also called the "Dolphin's Beach," Playa Delfines is also famous for dolphin sightings.

Visitors to Playa Delfines must be mindful of the heavy currents and riptides. To get here, you can take a bus or taxi. But if you have a rental car, you can take advantage of the free public parking in the area.

10. Avenida Kukulkan

Avenida Kukulkan is the main street in Cancun, stretching from the Hotel Zone towards the downtown area and into the airport. So even if you do not intend to visit this area, you will most likely come across it during your holiday to Cancun.

Avenida Kukulkan is lined with pathways and numerous shops and restaurants. If you love walking, you'll enjoy strolling through this famous avenue, especially during sunset. But it's also possible to ride a bus through it since most local buses would pass this area.

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