Fun Things to Do in Cancun, Mexico

pool-side

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing beach or poolside vacation, or whether you’re looking for adventure, Mexico is guaranteed to deliver. Adventure enthusiasts will find that there is plenty of action to be found within hours of Cancun, all designed to keep you busy and entertained at any time of the day or night. Here are a few of our favorites:

Culture: Ruins, ruins and more ruins. Take a step back into time.

Chichen-Itza: Discover the most important cultural center of the Mayan civilization just a short two and a half hour drive from Cancun. Chichen-Itza, ancient capital of the Mayan empire, also lays claim to being one of the new wonders of the world.

Tulum: The massive walled city of Tulum is unique for being the only one of its kind to overlook the Caribbean and it’s only a short distance south of Cancun. Over seventeen centuries ago, this Mayan archeological site was a major trade center due to its strategic geographical location. Wander around the ruins for a couple of hours and then cool off with a dip in the ocean before heading on to your next destination.

Coba: Coba can be found deep in the heart of the jungle, three hours south of Cancun. It is thought to be one of the largest of all the Mayan cities, yet only a small percentage of these ruins have been excavated. The 50 square kilometer area holds well over 6,000 structures, with an impressive ball court, over 20 stelae and several pyramids, including the Pyramid of Nohoch Mul. This pyramid is the highest of its kind on the Yucatán Peninsula and is worth the climb to the top. Today, the Pyramid of Nohoch Mul is the only pyramid among these three Mayan cities that can still be climbed.

Ek-Balam: Ek-Balam is located near the colonial city of Valladolid and it is still considered a relatively new site to the public. Although too new to be drawing the crowds that Chichen-Itza, Tulum and Coba bring in, Ek-Balam is home to some remarkably well-preserved Mayan ruins. It’s also a little bit off the beaten path, but it’s not difficult to find. From Vallodolid, go through the main square of El Zócalo and then follow the signs to Tizimin.

Nightlife: The hotel zone in Cancun has some of the best discotheques in the world. Whether you’re looking for high-flying acts, burlesque shows, jazz bars or pubs, there’s a place for everyone here.

Coco Bongo: Get ready for flying acrobats, musical tributes and shows, lights and special effects, live bands and DJ’s, giant video screens, balloons, confetti streamers, soap bubbles and 1800 of your closest friends.

Captain Hook: Ay ay, mate! Enjoy a swashbuckling adventure aboard authentic 17th century Spanish galleon replicas as you cruise the Caribbean Sea. Enjoy a unique dining experience and beware of pirates.

Eco-theme Parks: Enjoy amazing water activities at Mexico’s famous eco-theme parks. These natural sea-aquariums are renowned for their stunning beauty. If you’re a water nut, you’ll want to take advantage of the numerous water activities that these parks offer. You can swim with the dolphins, snorkel, scuba or snuba dive, enjoy the lagoon or explore the caves and underground rivers.

Xcaret: Archaeological ruins, a dolphin show, horses, a farm with tropical birds, butterflies, bat caves and a stunning beach can all be enjoyed in this natural paradise.

Xel-ha: This magnificent water park has a variety of water activities, natural and ecological attractions. Relax on the river as you sail along on an inner tube or take a nap on Hammock Island.

Other fabulous day trips

Nohoch Jungle Trek: Book your adventure and head out into the jungle in a 4X4 all-terrain vehicle. Stop at a charming ranch called San Felipe and cool off in Nohoch Nah Chich Cenote, a long underground river that will refresh and revive you with its crystal-clear water.

Horseback riding: Animal lovers will rejoice in a fantastic day of trail-riding.  Enjoy two hours of trail riding in the bush before ending your day with a refreshing ride in the sea.  There are several terrific options for horse-back riding in Cancun. Tours can be booked through your resort, at eco-theme parks or at one of the horse ranches in the area.

 

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7 thoughts on “Fun Things to Do in Cancun, Mexico

    • Carrie Post author

      Mexico has changed a lot in the last ten years. It’s super-duper touristy now, but the ruins make it worth it if you can get there on a day when there aren’t massive crowds of tourists to move through. You can still climb the pyramid in Coba. It gives you a great view of the entire Yucatan Peninsula. In my opinion though, they don’t even come close to comparing to Angkor Wat.

      Reply
    • Carrie Post author

      Tulum has really changed. You can’t just walk in from the main entrance anymore. Everything has been built up into proper walking paths. The grounds are immaculate. The iguanas are all gone, which makes me really sad as they add so much charm to the area. I thought it was way overdone and gimmicky. However, nothing beats that ocean backdrop, especially in the fading light of day.

      I enjoyed my experience with Xel-ha the last time I went. I thought it was really clean and well organized. I wonder if it has to do with the tourist seasons. More people, more ick? That would be my bet.

      Reply
  1. nicole

    well i went to cancun and stayed at the one and only cancun imperial fiesta club ONE WORD AMAZING omg if you are looking for a relaxing week were you can just unwind and relax with your friends and family this is it. and the beaches are just wonderful the water like vodka clearr clear no jelly fish. there are so many things to do and i promis u will love everthing in cancun and i know the swine flu was going around but please hunny its gone gone gone it left there and now its by us so yeah trust me and that one<3

    Reply
  2. caty coolidge

    This is a very good website for infotmation i am doing a research paper on Cancun and i can use some of this so THANKS!!!

    Reply
  3. Cancun 4 You - Travel Guide

    Another great day trip is Merida, Yucatan, It is 4 hours away from Cancun, by bus, and it’s really easy to get there. One night in Merida will give you the chance to know its colonial downtown, the Paseo Montejo Avenue and its regional markets with all kind of local merchandises. Highly recommended to spend ther a saturday night, as they have folklore dances and shows at the street in downtown and sundays morning, in downtown too, they close streets and have stands of regional clothes, food, souvenirs, antiques, books, coins, jewerly, toys, etc. You will find this city so nice and interesting, quiet different than tourist mexican cities.

    Reply

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