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Built with tourists in mind, Cancun is one destination that is tailored to the needs of holiday makers. Thanks to its combination of quality resorts, exciting nightlife, beautiful scenery, and tropical weather it is no wonder that the Mexican city ranks amongst the top tourist destinations in the world.

With a near countless array of world-class resorts in the Zona Hotelera catering to every need and budget, you could easily enjoy a Cancun holiday without venturing past the beach. While the beaches do need to be enjoyed, the wider area is rich in fascinating curiosities.

Thanks to the areas unique geology, colorful wildlife, and long pre-Colombian history there is no shortage of wonder for those who venture past the hotel zone. To help convince you to experience Cancun to the fullest, here are five of the top things to do.


The Cancun Underwater Museum

This unique art gallery is truly unlike any other. Purpose built to turn the ocean floor into an artistic exhibit, the Cancun Underwater Museum (MUSA) contains nearly 500 sculptures specifically made to co-exist with the marine life that surround them. The result is an otherworldly fusion of mother nature and artistic expression that need to be seen to be believed. You can enjoy the wonders of Musa either by glass-bottomed boat, or by taking a Scuba dive.

The Cenotes

Believed by the Mayans to be portals to the underworld, the famous cenotes of the Yucatan peninsula remain as beguiling for visitors today as they did back then. Taking the form of vast opal colored natural swimming pools these huge caves are an incredible and unforgettable place for a dip. Some of the finest examples are found only a short drive from Cancun, and there are lots of tour operators that can take you to them. The combination of the limestone rock, turquoise waters and verdant greenery above, makes for a unique environment you won’t experience anywhere else.

cetnotes near cancun via flickrSnorkeling in Cozumel

The charming Caribbean island of Cozumel is just a short boat trip from Cancun and is one of the finest places in Mexico to go snorkeling. With warm and clear waters, it is easy to see the beauty of the islands marine life for yourself. Above sea level you’ll discover a relaxed island culture that combines the best of Mexico and the Caribbean as well as some beautifully quiet beaches to dry off on.

Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres, also known as the Isle of Women, is another beautiful island of the Yucatan coast. Even closer to Cancun than Cozumel, Isla Mujeres is in sight of the high rise hotels of Zona Hotelera and offers a much more laidback experience. A hotbed of Mayan ruins, the island was named for the many monuments to the Mayan goddess Ixchel that adorned the island when first discovered by European explorers.

It is important to find the best way to go from the Cancun airport to any destination in the Riviera Maya, choosing the right means of transportation, such as, will be crucial for the travel experience you will have during your trip to the different destinations in the Riviera Maya. To get to Tulum is ideal to take some transportation from Cancun airport to Tulum or depending on the destination you choose. The travel experience will improve a lot.


Mexico’s Caribbean coast is well known for its natural beauty, but perhaps the most picturesque stretch of it is found at Tulum. Near enough to Cancun to visit on a day trip, and a destination in its own right, Tulum is one of the most popular parts of the Yucatan Peninsula. Thanks to its turquoise waters, white sands and picturesque Mayan ruins, it is also one of the most photographed. With plenty of first-class tourist amenities like restaurants, resorts, and shops a trip to Tulum should be on any itinerary.

Images by Son of Groucho and David Stanley, used under Creative Commons license. This post was written by a Crooked Flight contributor.

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