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Blick auf Cancun, Bild: jdross75 / shutterstock

Cancun – a fusion of culture and adventure in the heart of the Caribbean

If you travel to Cancun, it is best to do so between January and May or November and December. Then you have the best travel weather to explore the Yucatan Peninsula and the city of Cancun. Whether you want to relax on the beautiful beaches with crystal clear Caribbean waters or follow in the footsteps of the Maya, it won’t be boring.

Below are the most important sights in and around Cancun.

sights near Cancun

  • Chichen Itza, Mexico
    Chichen Itza, Image: Aleksandar Todorovic / shutterstock

    The Mayan site in Tulum , 130 km south of Cancun, shows breathtaking ruins including views. It is located on 15-meter-high hills above the Caribbean Sea. There is a lower and upper gallery, the latter was used in Mayan times as an observation tower to study the movements of the sun.

  • The Mayan city of Chichen Itza is an active archaeological site that has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1988 and was chosen as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007. It is located 75 km from Cancun.
  • The El Meco archaeological site is located just 6 km from Cancun’s city centre. It is home to the tallest pyramid in the Yucatan Peninsula.
  • The Mayan Museum of Cancun is perfect for anyone who needs a break from the beach and is interested in local culture. Exhibits from Mexico’s ancient past are exhibited here.
  • The Mexican Folk Museum houses crafts and creations by Mexican artisans. The sculptures and figurines on display here tell the story of the local people and their Mayan heritage. The most famous artifacts are the dolls of Los Dias De Los Muertos. The museum is located in the eco-archaeological park Xcaret.

The most interesting beaches and islands near Cancun

  • Isla Mujeres
    Aerial view of Isla Mujeres, Image: Darren Tierney / shutterstock

    Playa del Carmen is considered the most popular holiday destination because of its fine, white sand and blue-green waters. There is a wide range of water activities here.

  • Playa Delfines is considered a change from the crowded beaches just behind the well-known beaches and shines with its untouched nature.
  • Isla Holbox is a completely car-free island just a few hours from Cancun. You can leave the rental car in Chiquila for about 100 Pesos a day, otherwise you can get here with a 3-hour bus ride. There are many nice, small beach bars, delicious food and margaritas as well as hammocks to relax. With a golf buggy or bicycle you can explore the 42 km long island wonderfully. You can also observe many flamingos here.
  • Isla Mujeres, also known as Women’s Island, is located 13 km from Cancun’s coast and is known for snorkeling and diving trips due to the many coral reefs. On the southern side, there is a lighthouse, a sea turtle sanctuary and the remains of a Mayan temple to visit.
  • The cenotes are natural swimming pools with fresh water from the nearby rivers, but underground in sinkholes or pits. Experienced divers can dive through tunnels and get into the cenotes that way. Non-divers can reach the cenotes by abseiling or descending stairs. The most notable are the Cenote Manatî, Cristalino, Xkeken and Samula.
  • The Underwater Museum is not a conventional museum, it is a non-profit organization dedicated to the art of conservation. More than 500 sculptures lie between three and six meters deep in the Cancun National Marine Park. Originally, it was intended as an alternative for divers to protect coral reefs while creating artificial reefs. You can visit it by diving or take a boat there and marvel at it from above while snorkeling.
  • If you want to snorkel with sea turtles, Akumal is the place to be. Translated, the name means “place of the turtle”, because if you snorkel here, you are very likely to be lucky enough to have sea turtles next to you. But be careful: do not touch! This tranquil ocean area is about an hour from Cancun.

Points of interest within the city

The La Isla shopping center is considered the most beautiful and best in Cancun with an interactive aquarium, cinema and everything a shopper’s heart desires. It is located in the open air in the hotel zone.

  • The Torre Escenica is a lookout tower that goes up to 80m. Enjoy a wonderful view of the massive Xcaret complex and all the beaches all the way to Cozumel.
  • If you want to get in touch with the local people, El Parque de Ias Palapas in the middle of the city is recommended. This is where local families come together in the evening.
  • Avenida Kukulkan is a vibrant thoroughfare that leads to all resorts. It is full of shops, cafes, restaurants and nightclubs.

Wide range of theme parks

  • Xcaret Amusement Park is a water, theme, amusement and eco-archaeological park. With its location in the middle of the Mayan jungle between underground cenotes and rivers and at the same time overlooking the Caribbean Sea, this park is particularly popular.
  • The Xel-Há amusement park is considered a natural aquarium due to its great variety of flora and fauna including zip line, water slides and much more.
  • The Xplor Adventure Park offers a vibrant jungle with underground paths, rivers and caves. You can also fly over the rainforest with a zipline here.

In summary, it should be emphasized that there are a large number of activities in Cuncun and you should plan enough time to explore everything in peace and still spend a relaxing holiday.