Welcome to Cancún


Beaches

One look at Cancún's aquamarine Caribbean waters and it makes perfect sense why planners back in the 1970s were so eager to develop the area as Mexico's next big resort destination. With about 19km of powdery white-sand beaches in the Zona Hotelera and a quieter 15km stretch of coast north of downtown, Cancún is a beach bum's haven. You'll find some of the most swimmable waters on the Zona Hotelera's north side, between Km 4 and Km 9, while north of Cancún Centro, Isla Blanca beckons with its long stretch of relatively undeveloped coastline.

Maya Culture

When most people think of Cancún, wild party town comes to mind. But rest assured that you can also soak up some Maya culture in between the fiestas. The Museo Maya de Cancún, a world-class museum with some 400 Maya artifacts on display, is a must-see and it's adjoining San Miguelito archaeological site is well worth checking out as well. For a day of ruins-hopping, head about 2km south to El Rey, known for its small temple and several ceremonial platforms. Cancún's Maya sites may not have the wow factor of say, a Chichén Itzá, but they provide intriguing historical context when paired with the museum visit.

Food

From Yucatecan comfort food and atmospheric downtown taco joints to Michellin-starred haute cuisine in the Zona Hotelera, Cancún's diverse culinary scene keeps your tummy thoroughly content. Classic Yucatecan menu items such as cochinita pibil (slow-roasted pork with achiote and orange juice) and panuchos (bean-filled fried tortilla snacks) rank among Mexico's most iconic dishes, while thatch-roofed restaurants serving high-quality fresh fish and seafood add yet another facet to the varied dining experience. A growing number of establishments specializing in contemporary Mexican cuisine draw on Caribbean and indigenous Maya recipes to create innovative regional dishes.

Outdoor Activities

Outdoorsy types and children will truly appreciate the activities on offer in Cancún. Great diving and snorkeling sites are nearby, including a famous underwater sculpture museum, and in addition to ocean dives, you can hook up tours to explore nearby cenotes (limestone sinkholes) and their fascinating underwater cave systems. Nature enthusiasts will enjoy a day trip from Cancún to Isla Contoy, an uninhabited island that provides great hiking, bird-watching and snorkeling opportunities. And, of course, there's the beach, where water activities range from swimming and kayaking to kiteboarding.


Top experiences in Cancún

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Cancún activities

$70 Cultural & Theme Tours

Chichen Itza VIP Early Access with Private Guide from Cancun

Your Viator Exclusive tour begins with an early morning departure. Arriving at Chichen Itza, join your specialized guide for an in-depth tour of the site, and enjoy the tranquility of your early-morning visit before the crowds arrive. Throughout the trip, your archaeological guide’s commentary provides essential background to the well-preserved site of Chichen Itza. Learn how this large pre-Colombian city played an important role in Mayan civilization from around A.D. 600 to 1200, and remained a center of worship and pilgrimage until the arrival of the Spanish. Even today, it is still considered a sacred site by the Yucatán peninsula’s Maya population. Like many of ancient Mexico’s cities, the site was abandoned, and its ruins were hidden by jungle. Hear how the site was discovered and unearthed by archaeologists, gaining UNESCO protection and considered today one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Your guide will explain the philosophy, cosmology and mythology behind this ancient site, such as the meaning of the stone carvings, pyramids, platforms, ball courts and staircases. Visit the Observatory, Temple of the Jaguars, Temple of the Warriors and of course the famous El Castillo, also known as the Temple of Kukulkan.  Return around 3:00 p.m. With this Viator Exclusive, your early morning trip to Chichen Itza helps you to beat the crowds so you can enjoy the remainder of the afternoon at your own leisure!

$64.50 Cultural & Theme Tours

Cancun to Chichen Itza Day Trip with Admission and Lunch

During your stay in Cancun, you simply must take the opportunity to visit Chichen Itza, the most important archaeological zone in Yucatan. After hotel pickup in Cancun, explore the ancient capital of the Mayan Empire and learn why it has been designated one of the modern wonders of the world. Its extraordinary architectural beauty and geographical location are sure to leave you in awe. Your first stop is a 50-minute visit to either the Ik Kil cenote . The cenote visited will depend on which area is less populated on the day of your tour. You'll have free time to explore this natural wonder, so be sure to bring along your towel and swimsuit! By 10:50, you'll head to the world famous archaeological site of Chichen Itza. At approximately 12pm and once inside the archaeological site, you'll be divided into English and Spanish speaking groups for a guided tour. You'll be taken on a 1.5 hour tour with a certified guide who will introduce you to the secrets of the Mayans. Your guide will explain the historical significance of all the most important sites before leaving you to enjoy the ruins on your own until 3pm. See the Pyramid of Kukulkan, el Castillo (the Castle), the Temple of Warriors and much more. After exploring the site, you'll head to the local restaurant and enjoy a buffet of fresh salads, soups, rice, meat, chicken, fish, vegetables and other regional dishes (drinks at own expense). After lunch, you'll be transported back to your Cancun hotel.

$25.99 Transfers & Ground Transport

Cancun Airport Round-Trip Transfer

You will be met at the airport and be taken directly to your hotel in the Cancun area. An English-speaking representative will greet you when you clear airport customs and your vacation can start! Arrival Information - you must include the following flight and hotel details in the 'Special Requirements' box: Airline Flight Number Departing City Arrival City Arrival Time Hotel Name and Address Departure Information - For your return journey, you will be met at your hotel and taken directly to the airport for your departure flight. At time of booking, you must advise the following information: Airline Flight Number Departing City Arrival City Departure Time Hotel Name and Address Shuttle service is available 24 hours daily and includes transport between Cancun Airport and your hotel in both directions. Transfers are available from Cancun Airport to the following locations: Cancun Hotel Zone Or specific areas within Riviera Maya: Puerto Morelos Playa del Carmen Puerto Aventuras Tulum/Tulum-Akumal

$64 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Sightseeing and Snorkeling Catamaran Cruise from Cancun

With seven hours and three stops, this activity-filled catamaran cruise from Cancun offers something for everyone in your party, from snorkeling to dancing! Board the catamaran and start your day with a continental breakfast of pastries, fruit, freshly brewed coffee, milk and juice before making your first stop at Meco's reef. You have the option to take the included 1.5-hour snorkeling activity or stay on the catamaran, where you can take a salsa dancing lesson or simply relax and soak in the rays.Next, enjoy more fun on the water – slide down the two-story slide into the warm waters of the Caribbean or dive off the boat’s diving board. Then enjoy a freshly prepared buffet-style fajita lunch with chicken, beef, rice, salad, chips and guacamole.After lunch, head to your third stop on Isla Mujeres, where you’ll have two hours to venture into town and visit the various shops. You can ride on a golf cart (if option selected) and explore the beautiful cliff-side lookout points that offer breathtaking panoramic views.As you make your way back to the port, enjoy live entertainment and access to the fully stocked open bar on board the catamaran. Prepare for a night out in Cancun by practicing your newly learned salsa moves. eres. Enjoy a freshly prepared fajita feast and open bar while dancing the day away.

$39 Cultural & Theme Tours

Tulum Ruins Early Access Tour with Archeologist, Beach Stop

Start your Viator Exclusive tour after early departure. Join your guide, a certified archaeologist, for an in-depth tour of Tulum — a walled Mayan city perched atop a cliff that overlooks the sparkling Caribbean Sea. You’ll arrive at the site and take in this tranquility just in time to beat the crowds. As you tour Tulum, a Mayan word for wall, your guide provides informative commentary. Learn about the archaeological studies of the site and the Mayan civilization that occupied it. Hear evidence that places Tulum as one of the major Mayan cities of the 13th and 14th centuries in Quintana Roo, highlighted by its strategic coastal location, its elevation — the highest of any city the region — and its efficient defense system. As you stroll among the ruins of this important city, you’ll discover what researchers have uncovered: a political settlement along a commercial route that exploited the rich marine resources off the coast. Today, Tulum is best known for its sandy beaches and the remnants of elaborate murals — once painted a vibrant red and blue over stark white walls. Return in the afternoon and enjoy the rest of your day. With this Viator Exclusive, your early morning trip to Tulum lets you beat the crowds so you can enjoy the remainder of the afternoon at your own leisure. Please note: Bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen to help beat the heat for the duration of your tour. There will be a beach break in Tulum, too, so come prepared with a suit and towel if you plan on swimming.

$98.99 Cultural & Theme Tours

Tulum and Coba Ruins with Cenote Swim and Lunch from Cancun

Tulum Ruins Tour (7 hours)Following morning pickup from your hotel in Cancun or Playa del Carmen, travel two hours by air-conditioned minivan to the southern tip of the Riviera Maya, where the archaeological site of Tulum awaits. An ancient walled city perched high on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea, Tulum was built by the Mayans and dates back to the pre-Columbian era. The city thrived during the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, but fell following attack from the Spanish conquistadors. Today it’s among the best-preserved of all coastal Mayan sites.Take a 45-minute guided tour of the site to learn about ancient Mayan civilization and hear how the walled fortress of Tulum served as a gateway to the heart of the Mayan Empire. Follow your tour with an hour of free time to explore independently.Cool off from the sun at your next stop, a cenote — a cavernous sinkhole created by the erosion of limestone bedrock. Take a dip in the waters of this incredible subterranean world, and then head to a local restaurant for a buffet lunch of Yucatán Peninsula specialities such as pork, chicken or beef quesadillas with salad, served with beer, soda or water. Follow lunch with a late-afternoon drive to Coba.Coba Ruins Tour (4.5 hours)An hour from Tulum lies the ancient Mayan village of Coba, surrounded by lush vegetation and large lagoons. It was once a busy commercial center and traded extensively with other Mayan settlements in the Quintana Roo area, and today boasts many impressive archaeological wonders. During your 1-hour guided tour, climb the tallest Mayan pyramid in the Yucatan region, the Nohoch Mul Pyramid, and enjoy panoramic views over the rainforest canopy from 140 feet (42 meters) high. Admire the engraved-stone buildings in the Mayan Ball Court and learn of the beliefs and lifestyles of the ancient Mayan people. Explore on your own for another hour after your tour.After a long day of exploring ancient Mayan ruins, relax on the 2-hour drive back to your Cancun or Playa del Carmen hotel.