The stretch of green jungle and white sandy beaches that run from Cancun to Tulum on the Yucatàn Peninsula is a lush tropical paradise. The 127 km stretch has become so popular with American and Canadian tourists that it even has a new marketing inspired name and theme: The Riviera Maya. This corner of the world is popular, though, for a good reason – it just might be the most perfect vacation destination on the planet.
Traveling there has the exotic feel of visiting a non-English speaking country yet the comfort of actually being able to speak English pretty much everywhere. It has exotic sea and jungle life, ancient archeological ruins from a mysterious culture, great bars and clubs, luxury hotels and cool budget hostels, world-class scuba and snorkeling, and amazing white sand beaches.
No matter what type of warm weather vacation you are looking for, you’ll find it in the Mayan Rivera. It’s the perfect place to go for a week on the beach or for a jumping off point to explore more places in Mexico.
Here then is our simple, budget list of places and things that we recommend. Again, like anything we post on Gulch Guides, everything is highly recommended – no need to look for the four stars or the thumbs up – it’s all our favorite.
There is no real reason to rent a car here. There is one major highway that runs parallel to the cost (Hwy 307) from Cancun to Tulum. Every town has a bus station and buses run frequently along the highway. Buses in Mexico are usually very nice. They come in levels from the basic to the luxurious and are almost always on-time.
There are also collective taxis (known as colectivos or combis) that run up and down the highway between towns. To catch one, simply walk out to the highway and wait for a large white Ford Econovan with a green or red stripe and the word “Colectivo” painted on the side. Flag it down and hop in – no matter how far you want to go, it will only set you back a few dollars. The collectivos are used a lot by tourists, so don’t by shy.
Taxis are also fairly affordable and make good inner-city transport when it’s too far to walk.