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12 Best Places To Visit In Cancun, Mexico

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Tourist Attractions : Best Places To Visit In Cancun, Mexico

Mexico’s most well-known paradise is here. Cancun is perhaps the most well-known Mexican destination. It lies on an island with a L-shaped shape that measures 13 miles long and 396 meters in length, which sits just off the Yucatan peninsula’s north coast.

Cancun was always meant to be paradise. It was actually built with luxury travel in the mind. It is now one of the most popular destinations in the world and attracts more than 4 million tourists each year. 


There are endless attractions and things you can do. You’ll never be bored of adventure, from white-sand beaches and impressive coral reefs to explore to near-perfect weather.

The causeway connects the prime tourist area to the mainland, where the modern city of Cancun is located. It’s a lively hub with many interesting attractions that are worth seeing – provided you don’t mind getting away from the beaches.

This list contains the top things you should do in Cancun to make sure that you have the best time possible in this tropical paradise.

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The Mayan Ruins of Chichén Itzá # 1

Chichen Itza, one of the New 7 Wonders of the World is one of Mexico’s most iconic and well-known archaeological sites. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was established by the Mayans over 1,000 years ago.

It’s located three hours west of Cancun and is one of Mexico’s most well-restored and largest archaeological sites.  It includes important buildings like the El Castillo (30 m tall), one of Mexico’s most famous pyramids.

The Mayan Ruins of Chichén Itzá

This impressive Maya site, once the ceremonial center of the Yucatan, is best known for its central pyramid. It also features temples and ball courts as well as a cenote (freshwater sinkhole).

You wont want to miss out on the opportunity to visit one or more Mayan ruins located within Cancun’s reach. Chichen Itza is a popular day trip from.

Cancun Underwater Museum # 2

The Cancun Underwater Museum is one of the most interesting points of interest. This seabed-based attraction was created in 2009 after storm damage to the Cancun National Marine Park. It is an absolute delight for divers to explore.

While many cities have museums of art, history and culture, Cancun is unique. The Cancun Underwater Museum of Art, or Museo Subacuatico de Arte, is an ongoing project that promotes art and coral reefs. Divers and snorkelers can see more than 500 sunken sculptures, some of which are up to 20 feet (6 m) deep.

Cancun Underwater Museum

This unique collection is centered around more than 500 sculptures that are spread over two underwater galleries (some are on land in a nearby shopping mall).

They are submerged at depths between three and six meters and include human figures in various poses (even a concrete car).

Six artists from Mexico and Britain have gathered the sculptures, which will eventually form the foundation for new coral reefs. There are many options for guided snorkeling or diving tours. 

This amazing collection can also be seen from the comfort of a glass-bottomed boat that cruises the waters.

El Meco Archaeological Site # 3

The El Meco Archaeological Site is another interesting Mayan site, which can be reached easily from Cancun’s main resort. It is located at the northern end of the main beaches. It was first inhabited in AD 300.

The site rose to prominence as a Mayan trading center during the 1100s and then declined after the arrival of Spanish in 16 century.

El Meco Archaeological Site

The El Castillo pyramid, which is 12.5 meters tall and the only one of its kind in the region, is of particular interest. The remains of an ancient temple are perched high above the pyramid, offering stunning views of the coast and Isla Mujeres. This is a worthwhile addition to your Cancun itinerary.

Isla Mujeres # 4

Isla Mujeres, also known as the Island of Women, is another destination closely linked to Cancun. It is located 13 km from the mainland, and only a short hydrofoil ride away from the Cancun Center pier.

Isla Mujeres, also known as the “Island of Women”, is well-known for its abundant marine life and beautiful beaches. You can snorkel at Manchones Reef or scuba dive into the Cave of Sleeping Sharks.

You can just relax on the white sands of North Beach, Playa Norte. You’ll also find a lively nightlife on land, with many bars and restaurants offering fresh seafood.

Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres, or the Island of the Women, is only 4.3 miles in width. Yet it offers breathtaking views of the Caribbean and has very few sights. You can reach the island by ferry from Cancun.

The island is popular among beachgoers who prefer a slower pace. Taxis and buses are the only means of transportation on the island, but they are greatly outnumbered by scooters and golf carts. 

Isla Mujeres is a popular day-trip destination for people who stay elsewhere on the Riviera Maya because of its fine restaurants that offer spectacular views of the ocean to Cancun.

Urbano Kabah Park # 5

Urbano Kabah Park (Parque Kabah) is located in the center of Cancun. Also known as the Kabah Ecological Park, it’s located just outside Cancun. 

The two-kilometer-long trail runs through lush green gardens and tall palm trees. This natural oasis is popular for a walk, jog or picnic.

Urbano Kabah Park

Because of its playground and petting area, the park is very popular with families who are traveling with children. You can also look out for iguanas and raccoon-like coatis as well as deer and a small wild pig called the peccary.

This is a great spot to bird-watchers, especially during migration season when many species come from the USA and Canada. The Casa Maya Museum is another highlight. It’s a small but fascinating attraction that tells the story of the region’s development.

Tulum # 6

Located 90 minutes south, Tulum is a well-known Mayan town with a clifftop location. It also has the only Mayan fortified coastal town. The Temple of the Frescos, which features reliefs and sculptures of seated figures wearing elaborate headdresses, is the most notable structure in Tulum. 


Castillo, which is perched on the cliff-edge with a view of the ocean, is the largest building at the site.

The 3-in-1 Discovery Combo Tour takes you to the Tulum ruins and cenotes. It also includes some reef snorkeling. This day-long adventure includes transportation, bilingual guides, all equipment, and a traditional Mexican lunch.

El Rey Ruins # 7

El Rey Ruins are another Mayan archaeological site found in downtown Cancun.

The ruins, named after an El Rey skeleton that was found at the site and believed to have been a king, are now located downtown Cancun. 

This site was once a major Mayan city. Now, it is home to many Iguanas that have adapted to the tourists. 

El Rey Ruins

Cancun may be designed for spring breakers but it’s equally suitable for history enthusiasts who want to dig into the remnants of the ancient past.

Rio Secreto Nature Reserve # 8

Rio Secreto, also known as the “Secret River”, is a series caves formed by an underground river that flows through Mexico. The reserve is best known for its half-sunken cavern, which is a popular spot for diving.

Rio Secreto Nature Reserve

However, you can explore the dark passageways and swim in the river to admire the stalactites and stalagmites that drip.

Playa Tortugas # 9

The Turtles beach, one of the most visited beaches in the area, is alive and well with many activities. This beach is renowned for its white sands and turquoise waters, as well as the wonderful restaurants and tropical cocktails.

Playa Tortugas

You can indulge in a variety of activities, including bungee jumping and beach volleyball. Or just take a dip or go snorkeling. You can relax with the amazing sights and tropical weather.

Mayan Ruins of Coba # 10

The ruins of Coba (Zona Arqueologica de Coba) are located in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. They are an ancient Maya city that is considered one of the most important settlements of Mesoamerican history. Coba was home to 50,000 people and served as the hub for complex Maya roadways. 

Mayan Ruins of Coba

Although the jungle site is still being excavated by archaeologists, visitors can see the remains of thesesacbes (or stone causeways) as well as many engraved and sculpted monuments.

Playa Langosta # 11

Playa Langosta, located between downtown and the Hotel Zone is a must-see Cancun beach. 

The calm waters of Cancun’s protected area are ideal for floating and admiring the night sky. Families will love the beach’s calm waters and plenty of local restaurants.

Playa Langosta

Playa Langosta is still a quiet place despite the fact that many tourists are heading to Playa Mujeres and others staying closer to the Hotel Zone. 

There will be plenty of space to sprawl out on this beach, which is loved by the locals.

Playa Delfines # 12

Playa Delfines, or Dolphin’s Beach is a peaceful beach known for its breathtaking views.

Playa Delfines

Playa Delfines, although it’s considered an escapist beach, is a great place to relax and spot dolphins. The only beach that offers free parking is located 18 km from the center of the city. 

Playa Delfines, unlike other beaches, isn’t lined with restaurants or hotels. Locals love the street food that is affordable. You can also explore the Mayan ruins that are located around the beach.

FAQs About Cancun, Mexico

What is unique about Cancun?

It has the longest underwater cave in the world.
Cancun is most well-known for its diving and snorkelling opportunities. However, cenotes offer even more spectacular diving and snorkeling experiences.

Why is it called Cancun?

Cancún is derived from the Mayan name kàan kun, composed of kàan ‘snake’ and the verb kum ~ kun ‘to swell, overfill’. Two translations have been suggested: the first is ‘nest of snakes’ and the second, less accepted one is ‘place of the golden snake’. Snake iconography was prevalent at the pre-Columbian site of Nizuc

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