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Mexico: Caribbean coast: Riviera Maya and Holbox

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On Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, the Caribbean Mayan Riviera refers to the stretch of uninterrupted pale golden sands running south from the purpose-built resort of Cancún to Tulum, home to the celebrated cliff-top Mayan ruins. The coastline is followed by a close-to-shore barrier reef rich in undersea marine life; offshore are leisure-destination islands such as Isla Mujeres and Cozumel. Small resorts and former fishing villages cater for visitors, notably the family-friendly Playa del Carmen. There is plenty to see and do on the Riviera Maya, including outdoor activities, marine parks and diving opportunities. Within easy reach are several ruined Mayan cities buried away inland in rainforest, including the grand pyramids of Cobá.

Isla Holbox is only about 75km from Cancún, but worlds away from the glitz of that burgeoning resort. If even super-chic Tulum is a bit too trendy for your liking you can head for Isla Holbox, a low flat new-agey island separated from the Mexican mainland on the tip of the Yucatan peninsula by a shallow azure lagoon which attracts migrating flamingos. With virtually no vehicles permitted on the island, the streets in the lazy village are made of sand, and you get around in golf buggies. There’s a virtually uninterrupted stretch of powder white beach on which to sunbathe, but there is scope for other activities: whale-shark viewing is some of the best in the world (Jun-Sep) and the island is popular for kite-surfing.  Because it has not been readily accessible, the island’s tourist infrastructure is in its infancy but new establishments are creating possibilities for yoga retreats and spas. The island is a good choice for everyone from romantic couples to families.  

Our holidays to Caribbean coast: Riviera Maya and Holbox

View all holidays
El Castillo Pyramid at Chichen Itza

Signature Mexico: Cultural heartlands to Caribbean coast

Private journey

14 days from £2,358pp

Tulum

Honeymoon in Mexico: Lost cities and beaches of the Mayan Riviera

Private journey

12 days from £3,220pp

Mestizo dancers in Merida.

Value Mexico: Mayan Yucatan and coast

Private journey

8 days from £986pp

Ruins at Tulum

Family Mexico: Mayan temple adventures

Private journey

12 days from £3,217pp

Things to do in Caribbean coast: Riviera Maya and Holbox

beach

Visit Tulum Mayan ruins

Whale shark

Swim with whale sharks


Cenotes

Visit the Yucatan's colonial haciendas and bathe in limestone cenotes

Underwater gallery

Visit an underwater sculpture gallery

What our experts say

From Europe, it is a long way to Mexico. So try and combine a visit exploring the Yucatán with a few days on the beach to relax. Tulum and the Riviera Maya offer great beaches with a decent infrastructure, and the less developed stretch of coast at Holbox is now quicker and easier to get to now that a new road from Holbox to Playa del Carmen has been opened.

Rafe Stone

Rafe Stone

Product and Marketing

What our clients say

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