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Riviera Maya Holiday Guide

Relaxed beach towns, white-sand beaches, underground swimming holes and ancient Mayan sites make the Riviera Maya one of Mexico’s most compelling holiday destinations.

This stretch of Mexican Caribbean coastline, known for its beautiful turquoise sea, is on the north-eastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. Stretching from the US-holiday destination of Cancun to Tulum and once home to small fishing communities, the area has developed into a series of modern beachfront resort towns, offering everything from high-end dining and designer shopping to golf, watersports and family-friendly theme parks.Some of the best-known highlights include the historic Mayan sites of Tulum and Chichen Itza, or the underground river system that provides access to a series of swimming holes, or cenotes, formed when the limestone bedrock collapsed, leaving groundwater-filled sinkholes. Explore these on a guided tour, or take a boat trip out to the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, which runs the entire length of the coast. Here you can snorkel with sea turtles, moray eels and other marine life, or just enjoy a sunset cruise or yacht party where you can dive off the top deck for a swim or try your hand at catching a fish.

If you just want a relaxing holiday, the Riviera Maya is home to a range of all-inclusive beach resorts, family-friendly accommodation and upscale spa hotels. Book an outdoor massage, take a yoga class or enjoy a tequila cocktail as the sun goes down. Alternatively, hit up the trendy shops, bars, clubs and restaurants of Playa del Carmen’s Quinta Avenida, or take the kids to one of the nearby jungle activity parks, such as Xplor or Xenses, for caving, ziplining and underground rafting adventures.

Other Riviera Maya’s towns worth visiting on your holiday include the laid-back fishing village of Puerto Morelos, for more of an Old Mexico feel, or the quieter town of Akumal, which has a calm, swimmable lagoon and is famous for the sea turtles who nest here between May and November.

If you’re looking for a fun-filled holiday in Riviera Maya or a more tranquil setting, you’ll find accommodation to match your needs along the entire coast, so you can settle back and enjoy this glorious tropical destination at your leisure.


Guide to Exploring Riviera Maya


Top Hotel Deals

See all 1,405 Hotels in Riviera Maya
£166
Grand Hyatt Playa Del Carmen Resort

Grand Hyatt Playa Del Carmen Resort

1a Avenida esquina Calle 26, Playa Del Carmen
4.7
of 5, from 740 reviews
4.5 out of 5.0

Located in Playa del Carmen, this beachfront hotel is in the entertainment district and within a 5-minute walk of Mamitas Beach Club and Quinta Alegria. Pier Navega and Mario Villanueva Stadium Madrid are also within 10 minutes.

£148
Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa All Inclusive

Grand Riviera Princess All Suites Resort & Spa All Inclusive

Prolongacion 5ta Avenida, Playa del Carmen
4.0
of 5, from 2,396 reviews
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in Playa del Carmen, this beachfront resort is in the entertainment district, 2.2 mi (3.6 km) from El Camaleon Golf Club, and 2.6 mi (4.1 km) from Grand Coral Golf Riviera Maya. Mamitas Beach Club and Pier Navega are also within 6 miles (10 km).

£150
Mahekal Beach Resort

Mahekal Beach Resort

38 St And The Beach, Playa del Carmen
4.6
of 5, from 1,127 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

Located in Playa del Carmen, this beachfront hotel is in the city centre and within a 15-minute walk of Mamitas Beach Club and Quinta Alegria. Pier Navega and Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church are also within 1 mi (2 km).

3Beca Hotel

3Beca Hotel

CALLE 12 NORTE S/N MZ 35 LT 4, Playa del Carmen
3.3
of 5, from 41 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Situated near the beach, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Quinta Alegria, Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church and Pier Navega. Central Square and Mamitas Beach Club are also within 15 minutes.

£40
City Express Playa del Carmen

City Express Playa del Carmen

Avenida Balamkanche, Playacar Fase II, Playa del Carmen
3.8
of 5, from 568 reviews
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in Playacar, this eco-friendly hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Yucatek Divers and Playa del Carmen Maritime Terminal. Central Square and Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church are also within 2 miles (3 km).

£147
Thompson Playa Del Carmen

Thompson Playa Del Carmen

5th Avenida Norte Por 12, Playa Del Carmen
4.6
of 5, from 239 reviews
4.5 out of 5.0

Situated on the Strip, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Quinta Alegria and Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church. Central Square and Pier Navega are also within 10 minutes.

Plaza Paraiso by Playa Moments

Plaza Paraiso by Playa Moments

Av. 10 & Aviacion Street, Playa del Carmen
4.0
of 5, from 1 reviews
4.0 out of 5.0

Located in Playacar, this condo is within a 10-minute walk of Playa del Carmen Maritime Terminal and Yucatek Divers. Central Square and Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church are also within 15 minutes.

£224
The Royal Playa del Carmen All Inclusive Spa & Resort

The Royal Playa del Carmen All Inclusive Spa & Resort

Av. Constituyentes No. 2, Playa del Carmen
4.6
of 5, from 3,602 reviews
4.5 out of 5.0

Located in Avenida Constituyentes, this beachfront resort is in the city centre and within a 5-minute walk of Quinta Alegria and Pier Navega. Mamitas Beach Club and Mario Villanueva Stadium Madrid are also within 10 minutes.

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