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15 Greatest Day Journeys from Playa del Carmen

The Yucatan Peninsula is without doubt one of the most magical locations on the planet, for my part. There’s a magnificence and an power that may’t be discovered anyplace else, and Playa del Carmen is true within the coronary heart of it. The town itself is unimaginable, however there are day journeys from Playa del Carmen that may utterly blow your thoughts.

I spent practically 5 months in PDC and was fortunate sufficient to discover some incredible day journeys round Playa del Carmen. From island hopping and swimming in pure springs to climbing historical ruins and studying in regards to the native tradition, there’s no excuse for a uninteresting second.

Greatest Day Journeys From Playa del Carmen

playa del carmen

Probably the greatest issues about Playa del Carmen is its completely central location. Inside a brief drive or bus journey, you’ll find your self in a model new, unimaginable location and be again earlier than supper time. These are the very best day journeys from Playa del Carmen that have to be in your itinerary.

1. Cozumel


From the mainland in Playa del Carmen, in case you look out east into the ocean, you’ll see the island of Cozumel. You may hop on a ferry from the principle pier and spend the day on this lovely island.

Cozumel is thought for its snorkeling and scuba diving, in addition to being a well-liked cruise ship vacation spot. You may spend the day buying, eating, and swimming within the Caribbean Sea, all only a brief journey from Playa del Carmen.

There are additionally loads of seaside golf equipment if you wish to lease a lounge chair for the day and snorkel within the reefs. Cozumel was certainly one of my favourite locations to “change up the surroundings” for the day with out breaking the financial institution.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 45-minute ferry journey. 20 miles/30kms.
Location: Cozumel, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: The one possibility is to take a ferry. It runs typically, and the Ultramar Ferry is usually the most well-liked possibility. Tickets can vary from $6 (a method) to $20, relying on the category.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Cozumel: Starfish, Stingrays, and Turtle Bay Snorkeling Tour
Should-Do Actions: Stroll alongside the promenade and buy groceries. Take a taxi to a seaside membership. Lease ATVs. Take a glass-bottom boat tour. Snorkel, swim, and scuba!
The place to Eat: Loopy King Burrito on Cozumel is my favourite restaurant on the island. You actually can’t miss it. Each merchandise is to die for.

2. Coba


When most individuals consider ruins and pyramids within the space, they normally consider Tulum (extra on this under) or Chichen Itza, nonetheless, you’re doing your self a significant disservice in case you don’t go to the ruins of Coba.

Experiencing the ruins and pyramid of Coba is without doubt one of the most original day journeys from Playa del Carmen. You’ll have to take an organized tour or bus from Playa del Carmen to the ruins, and when you’re there, I extremely suggest renting a motorcycle so you may cruise across the paths that take you from one historic Mayan website to a different.

For those who’re feeling up for it, you may climb the steep ascent to the highest of the Coba pyramid. It’s a dramatic incline, however when you attain the highest, you’ll be excessive above the jungle cover and have probably the most unimaginable view.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: About an hour and a half drive from Playa del Carmen. 69 miles/111 km.
Location: 77793 Coba, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: You could have a couple of choices to get to Coba. You may lease personal transportation, or you may take a bus or a shuttle. It could actually vary from $9 to $30 USD.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Coba Day Journey from Riviera Maya
Should-Do Actions: Trip bikes by means of the ruins. Climb to the highest of the Coba pyramid. Take an archaeological tour.
The place to Eat: El Cocodrilo is the place to eat after a day on the ruins. The meals is top-notch, and the terrace is the right place to unwind.

3. Cenote Kantun Chi

Cenote Kantun Chi

The Yucatan Peninsula is thought for a lot of issues, and certainly one of them is its beautiful cenotes. Cenotes are primarily sunken underground freshwater springs that maintain crystal clear waters. The Mayans used them for water sources in addition to for spiritual functions.

One of the well-known and exquisite cenotes of all is Cenote Kantun Chi, and visiting is by far one of the distinctive day journeys from Playa del Carmen. Actually, there’s not only one cenote right here however 5 of them!

Spend the day swimming, snorkeling, or simply taking within the surroundings at this beautiful pure marvel. You may even stroll the paths or go spelunking in case you’re feeling adventurous. You gained’t discover some other place on the planet prefer it.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: half-hour. 16 miles/25 km.
Location: FPRX+F5 Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: You may lease a automotive, take a taxi, or prepare a shuttle.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Kantun Chi Cenotes, Snorkel & Jungle Mountain climbing
Should-Do Actions: Swim, snorkel, take a cave tour, hike within the jungle.

4. Valladolid


One among my favourite day journeys from Playa del Carmen was going to the beautiful, historic metropolis of Valladolid. Positioned inland on the peninsula, this beautiful city is filled with character, appeal, tradition, and many enjoyable issues to do.

Valladolid is a standard Mexican metropolis, the place you may actually get a glimpse at native life. It’s much less touristy than Playa del Carmen, however way more “genuine.” There are retailers, lovely cathedrals, historic structure, and even cenotes and ruins simply outdoors the town.

You may simply spend the complete day simply wandering the streets on foot or by bike. It’s the perfect spot for historical past buffs and foodies – the Mayan delicacies is phenomenal.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: Roughly two hours. 88 miles/141 km.
Location: Valladolid, Yucatan, Mexico
Getting There: You may lease a automotive, prepare for personal transport, or take a public bus.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Chichen Itza, Cenote and Valladolid Day Tour
Should-Do Actions: Stroll, stroll, stroll! Go to museums, discover the structure, and swim in a cenote.
The place to Eat: Eat at El Atrio del Mayab Restaurant and thank me later. They’ve a number of the most mouthwatering, genuine Mayan delicacies within the area. And the atmosphere is totally beautiful.

5. Tulum


Tulum is a type of locations that simply doesn’t appear actual. The laid-back bohemian city is dwelling to beautiful white sand seashores, ruins that perch alongside the cliffside overlooking the ocean, and many enjoyable boutiques and eating places.

There are three most important areas of Tulum. The “central” space of Tulum is positioned a bit of inland and is the place many of the locals stay. There are many retailers and eating places to discover right here. Then, you’ve gotten the “vacationer strip” by the seaside, the place you’ll discover boutique inns, smoothie retailers, and boutiques. Lastly, there are the ruins.

Since Tulum is simply an hour south of Playa del Carmen, it’s an ideal place to spend the day if you need extra of a laid-back vibe. Bear in mind that it could possibly get fairly busy throughout peak seasons and is usually a bit pricier than Playa del Carmen.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: One hour. 40 miles/64 km.
Location: Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: Attending to Tulum is straightforward from Playa del Carmen. Lease a personal automotive, take a taxi, take the bus, or prepare a tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Tulum Archaeological Strolling Tour
Should-Do Actions: Sunbathe on the seaside, swim, snorkel, buy groceries, and discover the ruins.
The place to Eat: Each time I’m in Tulum, I’ve to cease at Aca Tacos de Canasta. Their tacos are a number of the finest I’ve ever had – and I’ve had lots of avenue tacos.

6. Xcaret

Xcaret flamingos

For an expertise that you simply really can’t get anyplace else, you must spend the day at XcaretXcaret. This iconic park is an ecological protect, amusement park, and water park multi functional.

The Caribbean Sea is included into the park, so you may swim, snorkel, cliff dive, and discover to your coronary heart’s content material. Additionally they have zip strains, stay leisure, and the choice to swim with dolphins and manta rays.

What’s cool about Xcaret is which you could buy all-inclusive tickets. That method, you’ve gotten entry to the park and limitless meals and drinks for the complete day.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 20 minutes. 6 miles/9.7 km
Location: Carretera Chetúmal Puerto Juárez Kilómetro 282, Solidaridad, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico
Getting There: Xcaret is conveniently positioned south of Playa del Carmen, and you will get there by taxi, bus, or organized tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Xcaret Park Full-Day Admission with Lunch and Evening Present
Should-Do Actions: Swim with the dolphins, snorkel, cliff dive, and watch a stay efficiency.
The place to Eat: There are a couple of eating choices in Xcaret; nonetheless, my favourite is the El Manglar Restaurant proper on the seaside. Take pleasure in contemporary ceviche and different contemporary seafood with a incredible view.

7. Akumal Seashore

Akumal Beach turtle

A simple and enjoyable day journey from Playa del Carmen is heading south to Akumal Seashore (Playa Akumal). The seaside itself is idyllic. It has clear, heat waters that keep shallow for fairly a while. Nevertheless, the principle draw to this seaside is the ocean turtles.

Generally known as “the place of the turtle,” it’s a well-known breeding floor for regal sea turtles, and in case you hand around in Akumal lengthy sufficient, you’re just about assured to see one.

You may swim, snorkel, and discover by yourself. Nevertheless, in case you go for a booked tour, your information will take you to sanctioned-off areas that aren’t accessible to the general public.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 40 minutes. 24 miles/39 km
Location: Carretera Tulum, Yodzonot, 77776 Cancún, Q.R., Mexico
Getting There: Simply get to Akumal Seashore by rental automotive, taxi, public bus, or an organized tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Akumal Bay Cenotes and Snorkeling with Turtles
Should-Do Actions: Sunbathe, swim, snorkel, and see sea turtles.
The place to Eat: Make it some extent to take pleasure in lunch or dinner at La Buena Vida. They’ve wonderful fish tacos, and the out of doors atmosphere is beautiful.

8. Swim with Whale Sharks

swimming with whale sharks

Playa del Carmen is without doubt one of the few locations on the earth the place you may stand up shut and private with whale sharks. These huge creatures and mild giants swim up and down the shoreline, offering vacationers with the chance to swim alongside them.

The title sounds scary, however don’t fear, they really don’t have enamel and solely eat plankton. From a number of tour websites all through the town, you’ll get on a ship, snorkel up, and take a swim subsequent to a 30-foot sea creature.

Whale shark season usually runs from the center of Could by means of the center of September. You may even catch a glimpse of their new infants in spring!

Distance from Playa del Carmen: Tour corporations differ in distance round city
Location: Varied areas
Getting There: Tour excursions will normally go away from marked piers in Playa del Carmen. You may stroll, taxi, or bike.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Whale Shark Tour
Should-Do Actions: Swim and snorkel with majestic whale sharks
The place to Eat: Lunch and/or snacks are normally supplied with a scheduled tour.

9. Isla Holbox

Isla Holbox golf carts

I’ve by no means been to a spot fairly like Isla Holbox. The largely untouched island has pristine shallow seashores with heat water which you could stroll out into what seems like without end, a lot of wildlife, and really, very chill vibes. Actually, they don’t even enable vehicles on the island – solely golf carts.

It’s undoubtedly a full day’s value of touring, however for my part, it’s so value it. As soon as you’re taking the ferry or a personal constitution boat to the island, you may spend the day wandering on foot or renting a golf cart to get round.

On the island, there are cute boutiques, beachside eating places and bars, and miles and miles of sandy seashores. Maintain a watch out for horseshoe crabs and flamingos – they’re well-known and cherished residents of Isla Holbox.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 3.5 hours. 76 miles/122 km
Location: Isla Holbox, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: You’ll have to drive or take a bus to the city of Chiquila. From there, you may catch a ferry or rent a personal boat to take you to the island.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Holbox Island Tour
Should-Do Actions: It’s all about rest on Isla Holbox. Sunbathe, swim, stroll, and store.
The place to Eat: Take pleasure in lunch on the seaside at Restaurante La Playa De Ñaña. Savor Caribbean flavors at this waterfront, open-air seaside restaurant.

10. Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza

One of the well-known Mayan ruins in all of Mexico is the Chichen Itza ruins. This huge UNESCO Heritage Web site sprawls throughout a large 4 sq. miles, is nearly 2,000 years outdated, and is probably the most regularly visited archeological website on the earth.

One of the well-known buildings right here is the long-lasting El Castillo; it’s probably the most photographed construction on the location and was as soon as the town’s most important temple. The Nice Ball Court docket is one other widespread spot the place Mayans as soon as performed a sport known as Pitz.

Because of its reputation, Chichen Itza will get fairly busy, irrespective of the time of yr. I like to recommend planning to reach earlier than 10 am to beat the crowds.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 2.5 hours. 115 miles/185 km
Location: 97751 Chichén-Itzá, Yucatan, Mexico
Getting There: You may select to drive a automotive, prepare for personal transport, take a bus, or prepare a guided tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Early Morning Chichen Itza, Sinkhole, and Colonial Gem
Should-Do Actions: Take within the historical past and study in regards to the tradition at this superb historic website.
The place to Eat: After you’re completed getting your cultural repair, seize a chunk to eat at Oxtun Restaurant.

11. Isla Mujeres


One other island tour you may plan for the day is to take a ferry to Isla Mujeres. It’s a sleepy, laid-back island that’s widespread on cruise ship routes.

Translated as “The Island of Ladies,” Isla Mujeres is a good spot to put on the sand, swim in turquoise waters, snorkel, and scuba diThere’sre’s even an underwater artwork museum that scuba divers can go to. It’s additionally a well-liked spot for swimming with whale sharks.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 2 hours. 53 miles/85 km.
Location: Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: You’ll want to rearrange transportation both by rental automotive, personal automotive, taxi, or bus to Cancun. From there, you may take a ferry to the island. Or, you may prepare a guided tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Isla Mujeres Catamaran Tour with Open Bar and Lunch
Should-Do Actions: Chill out, sunbathe, snorkel, and scuba dive.
The place to Eat: Do your self a favor and revel in award-winning fish tacos at La Kantina Los Tacos de Humo – you gained’t remorse it.

12. Puerto Morelos

Puerto Morelos

Only a brief drive north of Playa del Carmen is the lovable and quaint port city of Puerto Morelos. I cherished arising right here for a change of surroundings and fewer crowds.

Puerto Morelos is an genuine Mexican fishing city with only a few vacationer facilities. Nevertheless, the seaside is beautiful and quiet; there are retailers, distributors, and loads of cute cafes to take a seat and watch the world go by.

Simply off the shore from Puerto Morelos is the well-known Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the place you may snorkel or scuba dive amongst all kinds of colourful fish.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 35 minutes. 22 miles/35 km.
Location: Puerto Morelos, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: Lease a automotive for the day, take a taxi, or buy a bus ticket for the short journey up north. You may as well prepare a guided tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Puerto Morelos Snorkel Journey with Lunch
Should-Do Actions: Stroll round city, sunbathe, swim, snorkel, and scuba dive.
The place to Eat: You gained’t discover seafood any freasher than you’ll at El Merkadito. Order your self an entire fried fish with a standard aspect of rice and beans.

13. Izamal


It’s a little bit of a jaunt from Playa del Carmen, so that you’ll wish to begin at the present time journey early, however Izamal is a metropolis in contrast to some other. Generally known as the Magical Yellow City, each constructing in Izamal is painted a vibrant, vibrant yellow.

On the heart of the town is a grand plaza known as the Convento de San Antonio, the place you’ll discover a beautiful nightly mild present that illuminates the small metropolis. There’s additionally a small pyramid which you could climb known as Piramide Kinich Kak Moo.

Along with the great thing about the town, they’ve small retailers promoting native artisan items, so you may convey dwelling an Izamal memento.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 3 hours. 148 miles/239 km.
Location: Izamal, Yucatan, Mexico
Getting There: You’ll want to rearrange for a personal automotive, buy a bus ticket, or prepare a guided tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Izamal – The Yellow Magical City Personal Tour
Should-Do Actions: Wander the magical metropolis and snap as many images as doable!
The place to Eat: Restaurante Kinich Izamal is by far the most well-liked restaurant in Izamal. The contemporary, handmade tortillas are one thing I nonetheless dream about.

14. Sian Ka’an Biosphere

Sian Ka’an Biosphere

Nature lovers will go completely gaga over the Sian Ka’an Biosphere. A lush getaway with marshes, lagoons, and Mayan-built canals, you may kayak, boat, swim, and snorkel by means of this ecologically-protected protect.

Translating to “Gate of Heaven” or “A Place The place Heaven Begins,” Sian Ka’an stays true to its title. It’s additionally been a UNESCO Heritage Web site since 1987.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: 1 hour 20 minutes. 45 miles/73 km.
Location: Sian Ka’an, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: Your finest choices for transport are renting a automotive or arranging a personal tour.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Sian Ka’an Reserve Tour
Should-Do Actions: Discover the protect by boat, snorkel, and swim.
The place to Eat: After your day in nature, fill your bellies at Ka’an Restaurant. Take pleasure in contemporary seafood in a shocking seaside setting.

15. Rio Secreto

underground cave

For those who’re not claustrophobic, taking a day journey to Rio Secreto is a incredible thought in case you’re staying in Playa del Carmen. To be trustworthy, I’m a bit of afraid of tight areas, however I’m so glad I used to be courageous sufficient to expertise this tour.

This underground cave and river system is a magical wonderland stuffed with stalagmites and stalactites that make you are feeling such as you’re on one other planet. In contrast to different pure parks within the space, there aren’t any bells and whistles right here – simply the pure glory that’s Rio Secreto.

Distance from Playa del Carmen: quarter-hour. 5.2 miles/8.4 km.
Location: Carretera Federal Libre Chetumal – Puerto Juárez Km 283.5, Ejido Sur, 77712, 77712 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico
Getting There: A non-public automotive is an efficient possibility in case you’d wish to buy tour tickets on-site. Nevertheless, reserving a guided tour prematurely take away the stress of getting the set up issues your self.
Greatest Tour from Playa del Carmen: Rio Secreto Wild Tour with Lunch
Should-Do Actions: Take a guided tour of one of the lovely pure wonders in Mexico.
The place to Eat: There aren’t any eating places on-site, nonetheless, many guided excursions embody a lunch.

Greatest Day Journey Excursions from Playa del Carmen

spider monkey

With so many locations to go to close to Playa del Carmen, it could possibly really feel overwhelming to determine the place to begin. Listed below are a number of the finest day journey excursions that go away immediately from Playa del Carmen.

1. Cozumel: Starfish, Stingrays, and Turtle Bay Snorkeling Tour: Discover the colourful underwater world of marine life throughout this exhilarating snorkeling tour in Cozumel. Dive into the crystal-clear waters of El Cielo, El Cielito Seashore, and Cozumel Turtle Bay as you seek for stingrays, starfish, and many different fascinating sealife. The tour is 4 hours and meets on the Cozumel Ferry port. Click on right here for extra particulars.

2. From Riviera Maya: Coba, Punta Laguna & Cenote Day Journey: Embark on a beautiful full-day tour to the Coba archaeological website. Discover the plush jungle both by bicycle or by foot, spot charming spider and howler monkeys within the wild, take a refreshing dip in a crisp cenote, and savor a tasty conventional meal on the lakeside. The tour is 9 hours lengthy and consists of lodge pick-up. Click on right here for extra particulars.

3. Tulum Archeological Web site Guided Strolling Tour: This charming strolling tour takes you thru the Tulum Archaeological Zone, the place you’ll uncover the wealthy historical past of the traditional Mayan metropolis, together with its temples, fortress partitions, and different outstanding ruins. The tour is a fast 75 minutes and meets on the Andreas Lodge in Tulum. Click on right here for extra particulars.

4. From Playa del Carmen: Whale Shark Tour: Expertise the last word thrill within the Caribbean by being conveniently picked up out of your Playa del Carmen lodge and embarking on a captivating journey snorkeling alongside mild giants, the magnificent whale sharks, whereas additionally encountering the various marine lifetime of the world. The tour is 7 hours lengthy. Click on right here for extra particulars.

5. From Riviera Maya: Mayan Ruins & Sian Kaan Reserve Tour: Take an exhilarating half-day journey by means of the center of the traditional Mayan civilization, immersing within the breathtaking fantastic thing about the Sian Ka’an Nature Reserve. You’ll see jungle wildlife, and peacefully float within the crystal-clear turquoise waters earlier than ending your memorable journey. The tour is 6 hours lengthy and consists of lodge pick-up. Click on right here for extra particulars.

Day Journeys Round Playa del Carmen: FAQs

Listed below are some solutions to probably the most generally requested questions on the very best day journeys from Performs del Carmen:

What’s the hottest day journey from Playa del Carmen?

The most well-liked day journey from Playa del Carmen is to Tulum or Chichen Itza.

What number of days do you want in Playa del Carmen?

I’d suggest not less than a couple of days in Playa del Carmen. A minimal of three or 4 to discover and expertise. Nevertheless, the longer you may keep, the higher!

What are the very best day journeys from Playa del Carmen with a automotive?

The perfect day journeys from Playa del Carmen with a automotive are plentiful. In case you have your individual automotive or personal transportation, any day journeys can be found to you.

What’s the most lovely place close to Playa del Carmen?

Essentially the most lovely place close to Playa del Carmen is the picturesque Tulum Ruins.

What are the very best day journeys from Playa del Carmen by prepare?

Sadly, there isn’t any prepare transportation from Playa del Carmen. Solely vehicles, shuttles, and buses.

Can you’re taking a day journey from Playa del Carmen to Tulum?

Completely! Tulum could be very accessible and solely an hour away from Playa del Carmen.

Which widespread place could be very near Playa del Carmen?

Tulum and Cancun are the 2 of the most well-liked locations near Playa del Carmen.

What journeys can you’re taking from Playa del Carmen?

There are dozens of journeys you may take from Playa del Carmen all through the Yucatan Peninsula. Nature preserves, water parks and historic cities are all brief distances away.

What number of days is sufficient in Playa del Carmen?

You’ll wish to keep in Playa del Carmen for not less than three or 4 days, nonetheless, in case you can keep longer, you need to!

Are you able to do a day journey from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel?

Sure! You may simply do a day journey from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel. Hop on the Ultramar Ferry from downtown Playa del Carmen for a 45-minute ferry journey to the island.

In Conclusion

Though I spent 5 months in Playa del Carmen, I might have simply spent 5 years. Not solely is the town lovely, cultural, and vibrant, however there are such a lot of unimaginable day journeys close by.

It doesn’t matter what your pursuits or exercise stage, Playa del Carmen affords a mess of experiences that might be treasured in your reminiscence financial institution without end. Expertise all of the magic that the Yucatan has to supply with these distinctive day journeys from Playa del Carmen.

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