Skip to content

Playa del Carmen the heart of the Riviera Maya

The best things to do at playa del carmen, Mexico

You’ll fall in love with this amazing paradise, Playa del Carmen is a place you have to visit at least one time. The beautiful Playa del Carmen, Mexico is located between Cancun and Tulum; Playa del Carmen doesn’t have an airport, you can choose to fly to Cancún or Cozumel Island, International airports.

If you’re flying to Cancun, Mexico the best option is to take an ADO bus to Playa (45 min.)

The ADO bus station in Cancun is downtown, so first you have to take a bus to go directly to ADO station.  My recommendation is to avoid taxis at the airport because it’s more expensive.

The ADO bus station is located at the 5th avenue in Playa, if your hotel is near you can easily walk; but if you need to take a Taxi that is easy too.

If you’re flying to Cozumel Island you can take a taxi to the ferry terminal and then the ferry to Playa. (40 min.)  The Ferry terminal is also at the 5th avenue, near to the ADO bus station.

The small church next to the Caribbean at Playa del Carmen, Mexico.
Tiny church at Playa del Carmen next to the ocean.


My first time in Playa del Carmen was in 1999 and it was so different; the 5th avenue was not that long, it was just a few hotels, restaurants and bars.

A lot of things change after the Hurricane Wilma in 2005. A lot of business suffered and closed doors. But now Playa del Carmen is better than ever, and that’s why you have to visit.

I eat in a different restaurant every time I go and it’s always a nice surprise.

Playa del Carmen is for everybody, it doesn’t matter your age, if you’re single, have kids, etc. It’s perfect for traveling with friends, family vacations, honeymoons, relax or party!

The unique flying men of Papantla in Playa del Carmen Mexico.
The unique flying men of Papantla.

Where to stay in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

  • There are a lot of options here. You can choose from hostels, guesthouses, fancy hotels or the best all-inclusive resorts.

Of course, it depends on you and the price and amenities you prefer. My favorites are hotels near to the 5th avenue, because you can walk easily to restaurants, stores, night clubs and of course you have the beach. When I stay in this area I like to take breakfast at my hotel, enjoy the beach for a few hours, take a quick shower and wander while I find the perfect restaurant for lunch. Later some shopping and maybe a drink after dinner. So, if you accommodate near to the 5th avenue, it is going to be easier for you to explore more of the charming Playa del Carmen.

The Ferry boat you take from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel Island in Mexico.
The ferry boat to Cozumel Island.

Tips to move around Playa del Carmen

  • My first choice is to walk, you can walk to most places; but if you prefer you can rent a bike too. It’s cheap and there are a lot of places to do it.
  • A taxi can be a good idea too, it’s safe and everything is near. It shouldn’t be expensive.
  • If your plan is to explore more options of places renting a car should be the best. But only if you are going to different and far places. Ask in your hotel first, cause maybe you don’t need a car at all. 
  • My last option are the local vans, those are cheap, but crowded sometimes. But if you don’t mind you can experience local adventure.
The spectacular Underground river near to Playa del Carmen at Xcaret Park
Fantastic natural places at the Riviera Maya

The Best Things to Do in Playa Del Carmen

Playa del Carmen have a lot of things to do and I will talk about all of them in different blogs, but my favorites are here.

  • Xel-Ha, Xplor, Xenotes, Xoximilco, Xenses and Xcaret.

One of the best experiences you can have in the Riviera Maya are the several ecological parks. Very different one from the other, and you can choose to pay for only one or more for different days.

The traditional Mexican Cemetery, so colorful near to Playa del Carmen at Xcaret Park, Mexico.
The amazing Mexican Cemetery

My favorites are Xplor because it is more extreme and Xenses because it is so different from everything. Both are crazy funny.

  • You can walk on the 5th avenue and enjoy the local stores, explore different restaurants with local and international food, maybe spend some money shopping at Calle Corazón, La Quinta Alegría or Paseo del Carmen.
Frida Kahlo Restaurant and Museum at the 5th avenue in Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Frida Kahlo Restaurant and museum at the 5th avenue Playa del Carmen.

At night, there are plenty of bars and clubs; you can decide if you want just a drink or two with good music or party all night.

Talking about food, there is one place in Playa del Carmen that you should consider to visit.

ALUX Restaurant; It’s a restaurant inside a cave with more than 10,000 years old. International cousine with Mexican touch. I dream about a wedding there.

Alux Restaurant inside a cave at Playa del Carmen, Mexico Delicious Mexican food
Alux Restaurant, a unique restaurant inside a cave. Alux Restaurant Photo.
  • Of course, another option is visit Cozumel Island, Cancun, Puerto Morelos, Isla Mujeres.
  • Watersports are a must in Playa, you can take a sailing trip, dive, rent a jet ski, snorkel and more.
Pink Flamingos and natural places at Playa del Carmen, Mexico at the Riviera Maya.
Lovely and sweet pink flamingos at Xcaret

I can tell you a million reasons to visit Playa del Carmen, but the most important is that is a paradise for sure.

Take a lot of photos and enjoy every moment!

Please share with people who love to Travel

Travel Mexico


Puerto Morelos
The amazing beach at Puerto Morelos.

Do you like to explore more the Riviera Maya? Puerto Morelos.






%d bloggers like this: