Cancun Travel Guide
Looking for the best things to do in Cancun, what to see, the best places to eat, and where to sleep?
You’ve come to the right place!
On this page, you will find my Cancun Travel Guide and all the useful information you need to plan your trip to Cancun with ease and confidence. From insider tips to unique things to do, I’ve got you covered!
As someone who has traveled to Cancun multiple times, I’ve discovered some hidden gems and unique activities that I can’t wait to share with you.
Whether you’re planning your first trip or returning for another adventure, this page has all the useful information and links to my posts about Cancun to make planning your trip a breeze.
So, let’s dive in and explore all the incredible things to do and see in Cancun together!
Cancun Travel Blog
Cancun Travel Guide FAQ
Below, find answers to frequently asked questions about traveling in Cancun.
Is Cancun in the Caribbean?
Cancun is located on the northeastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, facing the Caribbean Sea. So, Cancun is considered to be a Caribbean destination.
Which state is Cancun in?
Cancun is located in the state of Quintana Roo, in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.
Is Cancun and Riviera Maya the same thing?
No, Cancun and Riviera Maya are not the same thing. Cancun is a city located on the northeastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, while Riviera Maya is a region south of Cancun that stretches along the Caribbean coast. Riviera Maya includes popular tourist destinations such as Playa del Carmen, Tulum, and Akumal.
Is Cancun Safe?
Overall, Cancun is a safe destination for tourists. Like any popular tourist destination, there is always a risk of petty theft or scams, so it’s important to exercise caution and take basic safety precautions. Additionally, Cancun has a strong police presence, and many hotels and resorts have their own security measures in place to ensure the safety of their guests.
What should I avoid in Cancun?
While in Cancun you should avoid drinking tap water and always use bottled water, as tap water in Cancun may not be safe for consumption. Also, be careful of scams and avoid carrying large amounts of cash or wearing expensive jewelry in public areas. Additionally, it’s important to respect the local culture and customs.
Is it safe to drive in Cancun?
Driving in Cancun is safe, but it’s important to exercise caution and follow traffic rules. Some roads may be poorly maintained or lack proper signage, and there may be unexpected speed bumps or other obstacles. It’s also important to be aware of the local driving culture, such as the prevalence of motorcycles and the tendency of some drivers to ignore traffic signals. If you’re not familiar with the area, it may be best to use a reputable taxi service or hire a private driver.
What is the best month to visit Cancun?
The best month to visit Cancun is between December and April, as this is the dry season with mild temperatures and plenty of sunshine. During these months, you can expect less humidity, clear blue skies, and comfortable temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to mid-80s Fahrenheit.
Worst time to visit Cancun
The worst time to visit Cancun is during the hurricane season, which typically runs from June to November, with the peak season from August to October. During this time, there is a higher risk of experiencing severe weather conditions, including strong winds, heavy rain, and even hurricanes.
When should you avoid Cancun?
You should avoid Cancun in the Hurricane season, Spring Break (if you’re not interested in a party scene or large crowds), major holidays (Cancun can be very crowded and expensive), and during local events.
What is the rainy season in Cancun?
The rainy season in Cancun runs from May through October, with the heaviest rainfall occurring in September and October. During this time, you can expect hot and humid weather with occasional thunderstorms and heavy rain. However, it’s worth noting that even during the rainy season, the weather in Cancun is usually warm and pleasant with plenty of sunshine in between the rain showers.
What is the rainiest month in Cancun?
The rainiest months in Cancun are September and October.
What is the cheapest month to go to Cancun?
September is the cheapest month to go to Cancun due to lower airfare and hotel rates. However, keep in mind that this is also the height of the hurricane season, and the weather can be hot and humid.
What is the cheapest month to fly to Cancun?
The cheapest month to fly to Cancun is September, with lower airfare and hotel rates due to the hot and humid weather and increased likelihood of hurricanes during this time.
What is the cheapest time of year to fly to Cancun?
The cheapest time of year to fly to Cancun is during the low season, which runs from late August to early December. During this time, you can often find lower airfare prices and hotel rates, as well as fewer crowds.
Should I visit Cancun in late august early September or mid October?
Both late August/early September and mid-October are considered low season for tourism in Cancun, which means you might be able to find better deals on flights and accommodations during those times. However, late August and September fall during the hurricane season, which could potentially affect your travel plans, while mid-October is usually a bit cooler with more pleasant weather.
What is the cheapest way to plan a trip to Cancun?
If you’re planning a budget-friendly trip to Cancun: look for flight deals, travel in the low season, stay in a budget-friendly hotel or hostel, eat like a local (try the best tacos in Cancun), and take public transportation.
Which side of Cancun is better?
Cancun is divided into two main areas: the Cancun Hotel Zone and Downtown Cancun. Both areas have their own unique charms and attractions, so it really depends on what you’re looking for in your Cancun vacation.
– At Cancun’s Hotel Zone you’ll find many of the all-inclusive resorts, beautiful beaches, and lively nightlife. This area is often considered the more touristy and upscale part of Cancun.
– Downtown Cancun is the historic and cultural center of the city. Here, you’ll find local restaurants, markets, and shops, as well as some smaller hotels and guesthouses. This area can be a great choice if you’re looking for a more authentic and budget-friendly experience.
Which is the best beach in Cancun?
Cancun white sand beaches will surprise you, and that’s why it’s so hard to choose which one is the best, but some of the most popular and best beaches include Playa Delfines, Playa Chac Mool, and Playa Tortugas.
Playa Delfines is known for its turquoise waters, white sand, and stunning views; while Playa Chac Mool is a great spot for snorkeling and sunbathing. Playa Tortugas is also popular for its calm waters and wide range of water activities, such as jet skiing and parasailing.
Is Cancun good for snorkeling?
Yes, Cancun is a great destination for snorkeling! The clear, warm waters around Cancun are home to a wide variety of marine life, including colorful fish, coral reefs, and even sea turtles. Some of the best snorkeling spots in Cancun include the Great Mesoamerican Reef, the Underwater Museum of Art, and the Cancun-Isla Mujeres National Marine Park.
Many tour operators offer snorkeling excursions, which provide all the necessary equipment and guidance to explore the underwater world of Cancun.
Is Cancun good for scuba diving?
Yes, Cancun is a great destination for scuba diving! There are many dive sites located in and around Cancun, including the famous Cancun Underwater Museum (MUSA), which features over 500 sculptures submerged in the water. Other popular dive sites include the Manchones Reef, Punta Nizuc, and the C-58 shipwreck. There are also many dive shops in Cancun that offer lessons, equipment rentals, and guided dives.
What activities are available in Cancun?
There are many activities available in Cancun, ranging from water sports and outdoor adventures to cultural and historical attractions. Some popular activities include snorkeling, scuba diving, parasailing, jet skiing, beach volleyball, zip-lining, jungle tours, ATV rides, cenote diving, eco-parks, traditional markets, nightclubs, live music, and cultural shows.
Must visit places when in Cancun
There are many must-visit places in Cancun, but here are some of the top attractions:
– Cancun Hotel Zone: A bustling strip of high-end hotels, restaurants, and nightlife options with beautiful beaches.
– Cancun Cenotes: Natural sinkholes filled with crystal-clear water and surrounded by lush vegetation.
– Isla Mujeres: A beautiful island with crystal-clear waters and white sand beaches.
– Xcaret Park: A natural eco-park with a wide range of activities, including snorkeling, and exploring underground rivers and caves.
– Cozumel: A popular day-trip destination with some of the best diving and snorkeling spots in the world.
What is Cancun famous food?
Cancun is known for its delicious and flavorful cuisine, which blends traditional Mexican flavors with international influences. Some of the most famous foods in Cancun include:
– Tacos al Pastor: Thin slices of pork marinated in a blend of spices and cooked on a vertical spit.
– Ceviche: A fresh seafood dish made with raw fish, lime juice, onion, and chili peppers.
– Cochinita Pibil: Slow-roasted pork marinated in a blend of spices, including achiote paste, and wrapped in banana leaves.
– Chilaquiles: Fried tortilla chips served with salsa, cheese, and often topped with chicken or eggs.
– Guacamole: A creamy avocado-based dip that’s often served as an appetizer or snack.
– Mole: A rich, flavorful sauce made with a blend of chili peppers, spices, and chocolate, often served with chicken or pork.
– Tamales: A traditional Mexican dish made of masa (corn dough) filled with meat or vegetables and steamed in a corn husk.
– Seafood: Cancun is known for its fresh seafood dishes, including grilled fish, shrimp cocktail, and lobster.
How much is food in Cancun?
The cost of food in Cancun varies depending on where and what you eat. A meal at a local street food stall can cost as little as $2, while a three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant can cost between $20-$50 per person. Dining at high-end restaurants can cost upwards of $100 per person.
Is Cancun good for partying?
Yes, Cancun is known for its lively party scene and is a popular destination for those looking to let loose and have a good time. The Hotel Zone in Cancun is home to many bars, clubs, and restaurants that cater to tourists and locals alike, making it a great choice for those looking to party. Some of the most popular party areas in Cancun include Coco Bongo, Mandala Nightclub, and The City.
Do and don’ts in Cancun?
Here are some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when visiting Cancun:
– Cancun Do’s: try the local cuisine; explore the beaches, jungles, and cenotes; negotiate prices when shopping at local markets, learn some basic Spanish.
– Cancun Don’ts: don’t drink tap water; don’t leave your belongings unattended; don’t forget to bring cash, as some places may not accept credit cards; don’t disrespect the local culture or customs.
How New Year’s eve in Cancun is celebrated?
New Year’s Eve is a big celebration in Cancun, with many hotels and resorts hosting special events and parties. Visitors can enjoy live music, dancing, fireworks displays, and traditional Mexican food and drinks.
What part of Cancun is best to stay?
The best part of Cancun to stay in really depends on your preferences and travel style. The Hotel Zone is a popular choice for those looking to be close to the beaches and nightlife, as it offers a wide range of hotels, restaurants, and shopping options. The downtown area is a better choice for budget-conscious travelers, as it offers more affordable accommodations and local dining options.
What is the best all inclusive Cancun resort?
Some of the top-rated all-inclusive resorts in Cancun include:
– Le Blanc Spa Resort – a luxurious adults-only resort with top-notch dining, spa services, and a beachfront location.
– Atelier Playa Mujeres – an upscale, adults-only resort with spacious rooms, excellent food, and beautiful pools.
– Hyatt Zilara Cancun – a chic, adults-only resort with stunning ocean views, great food, and attentive service.
– Moon Palace Cancun – a family-friendly resort with a wide range of activities and amenities, including golf, water sports, and kids’ clubs.
– Hard Rock Hotel Cancun – a lively resort with a rock-and-roll theme, great entertainment options, and a beautiful beachfront location.
Most affordable and best all-inclusive hotels in Cancun
The most affordable all-inclusive hotels in Cancun in terms of value and quality include:
– Oasis Palm: This family-friendly resort offers all-inclusive packages that include meals, drinks, activities, and entertainment. The resort features a large pool area, a kids’ club, and easy access to the beach.
– Occidental Costa Cancun: This beachfront resort offers all-inclusive packages that include meals, drinks, and activities. The resort features multiple restaurants, bars, and a variety of water sports.
– Grand Oasis Cancun: This all-inclusive resort offers a variety of dining and entertainment options, including a nightclub and a theater. The resort features multiple swimming pools, including a swim-up bar, and is located on a beautiful beach.
Is Riviera Maya better than Cancun?
It’s difficult to say whether Riviera Maya is better than Cancun, as they both offer unique experiences and attractions. If you’re looking for a more relaxed and laid-back experience, Riviera Maya may be the better choice for you. However, if you’re looking for a more upbeat and energetic atmosphere, Cancun may be the better choice.
Is Tulum better than Cancun?
Tulum is known for its bohemian and eco-friendly vibe, stunning beaches, and ancient Mayan ruins, while Cancun is known for its lively nightlife, luxury resorts, and high-energy atmosphere. Tulum is a great choice for travelers looking for a more laid-back and natural experience, while Cancun is a better choice for those seeking a more lively and urban atmosphere with a wider variety of entertainment options.
Is Tulum safer than Cancun?
Tulum has a more laid-back vibe and a lower crime rate compared to Cancun. but both destinations are considered safe for tourists who take basic safety precautions and follow local safety guidelines and advice.
Is it safe to drive from Cancun to Tulum?
Yes, it is safe to drive from Cancun to Tulum. The highway between the two cities is well-maintained and well-traveled, with plenty of signage and services along the way.
How long is the ride from Cancun to Tulum?
The distance from Cancun to Tulum is approximately 120 kilometers (75 miles) and the driving time can vary depending on traffic and other factors. Generally, it takes around 1.5 to 2 hours to drive from Cancun to Tulum along the coastal highway (Highway 307).
Is Isla Mujeres better than Cancun?
Isla Mujeres is a smaller and more laid-back island off the coast of Cancun, known for its beautiful beaches, colorful streets, and relaxed atmosphere. It’s a great choice for those who want to escape the crowds and enjoy a more authentic and local experience.
Cancun, on the other hand, is a larger and more developed tourist destination, with a wider range of accommodations, dining options, and entertainment. It’s a great choice for those who want to be in the heart of the action and enjoy a more cosmopolitan and touristy atmosphere.
Should I stay and explore Isla Mujeres or check out other areas around Cancun?
Isla Mujeres is a beautiful and unique destination that offers a quieter, more relaxed atmosphere compared to Cancun.
If you prefer a more laid-back experience and enjoy activities such as snorkeling or simply lounging on the beach, then staying in Isla Mujeres could be a great option for you. However, if you prefer a more lively and bustling atmosphere with a wider range of activities and entertainment options, then you may want to consider exploring other areas around Cancun, such as the Hotel Zone, downtown Cancun, or Playa del Carmen.
Is Cancun or Cabo better?
Cancun and Cabo are both popular tourist destinations in Mexico, but they offer different experiences. Cancun is known for its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and wide range of activities, from water sports to cultural excursions. It’s a great choice for those who want a more cosmopolitan and energetic atmosphere.
Cabo, on the other hand, is known for its laid-back vibe, natural beauty, and world-class fishing. It’s a great choice for those who want to relax and soak up the sun, or for outdoor enthusiasts who want to explore the rugged landscape.
Cabo vs Cancun for spring break
Both Cabo and Cancun are popular spring break destinations, each offering its own unique experiences. Cabo is known for its beautiful beaches and great nightlife, while Cancun is known for its all-inclusive resorts and party scene. Ultimately, it depends on what you are looking for in a spring break destination.
Is Cozumel safer than Cancun?
Both destinations are considered safe for tourists who take basic safety precautions. Cozumel has a lower crime rate compared to other parts of Mexico, has a strong police presence, and violent crime is rare. Cancun has experienced some incidents of crime in recent years; however, the majority of crime in Cancun is non-violent, such as petty theft and scams.
Is Playa del Carmen better than Cancun?
Whether Playa del Carmen or Cancun is better depends on your preferences and travel style.
– Playa del Carmen is a smaller and more laid-back destination than Cancun, and it’s a great jumping-off point for exploring nearby attractions such as the Tulum ruins and Cozumel island.
– Cancun is a larger and more developed destination with a wider range of hotel options, restaurants, and nightlife.
Is Cancun or Puerto Vallarta better?
Deciding between Cancun and Puerto Vallarta really depends on your personal preferences and what you’re looking for in a vacation.
– Cancun is located on the Yucatan Peninsula and is known for its beautiful beaches, crystal clear waters, and lively party scene. It’s a great choice if you’re looking for all-inclusive resorts, water sports, and bustling nightlife.
– Puerto Vallarta is located on the Pacific coast of Mexico and is known for its charming old town, colorful buildings, and stunning sunsets. It’s a great choice if you’re interested in exploring local culture, dining in local restaurants, and relaxing on quieter beaches.
Is it safe to drive from Cancun to Merida?
Driving from Cancun to Merida is generally safe, as the main highways in the Yucatan Peninsula are well-maintained and well-patrolled. However, it is recommended to exercise caution and avoid driving at night, as there may be fewer streetlights and potentially hazardous road conditions.
Cancun or Punta Cana for Spring Break?
Both Cancun and Punta Cana are popular destinations for spring break. Cancun is known for its lively party scene and beautiful beaches, while Punta Cana is known for its luxury resorts and picturesque beaches. Consider your budget, interests, and desired activities to help make the best decision for your spring break.
Cancun vs Hawaii
Cancun and Hawaii are both popular tourist destinations, but they offer different experiences. Cancun is known for its white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and vibrant nightlife; while Hawaii is known for its stunning natural beauty, diverse landscapes, and rich culture.
Miami or Cancun
Choosing between Miami and Cancun depends on what you are looking for. Miami is a vibrant city with great nightlife, shopping, and dining options, while Cancun offers a mix of beach and adventure activities. If you are looking for a beach vacation with plenty of outdoor activities, Cancun may be the better choice. If you want a city experience with a beach, then Miami could be the better option.
How much does the average trip to Cancun cost?
On average, a typical trip to Cancun for a week can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 per person, including airfare, accommodations, food, transportation, and activities. However, it’s possible to spend less or more depending on your travel preferences and budget.