Places to Visit
There are so many remarkable places to visit in Cancun, it's difficult to know where to start. You can spend the day taking in the amazing natural scenery or visiting some of the unique tourist attractions. Cancun forms part of the region, currently known as Maya World or the Mundo Maya which contains 3,000+ important architectural sites.
Tour Mayan Ruins
A must-see tourist attraction is the spectacular Mayan ruins. The ancient archeological sites of Chitzen Itza, Coba, Uxmal and Tulum are some of the most popular sites. They are remarkably beautiful and provide you with a glimpse into the history of the area and the ancient Maya.
One of the world's most famous and frequently visited Mayan ruins is Chitzen Itza, located 2.5 hours away from Cancun. Visitors can rent a car, take a local bus or arrange a tour to visit these impressive Mayan ruins. Founded in 445 B.C., the area was occupied until 1204 A.D. when it was suddenly abandoned. The site contains many interesting areas including the Ball Court, the Sacred Well, the Temple of the Warriors, the Observatory and the incredible 75-foot high pyramid of Kukulkan. Thousands of visitors gather every year during the Spring (March 20 or 21) and Fall (September 21 or 22) equinoxes to witness a stunning light show. During this event, lights descend the main pyramid in the shape of the great Mayan snake God, Kukulcan.
Xcaret Theme Park
This 25-acre theme park is another must see for visitors. The attraction is located only one hour away from Cancun, and you can easily spend an entire day taking in the various attractions. Visit a Mayan village, explore a jungle trail, interact with the animals at the wildlife breeding farm, visit the coral reef aquarium or butterfly pavilion. If you enjoy the water, you can snorkel or swim with bottlenose dolphins in the lagoon or relax at the beach. One of the most unique attractions is the underground river where you can swim through underground channels and caverns.
One of the highlights of this attraction occurs during the evening at the park's majestic 6,000 seat outdoor theater. An evening show called the Xcaret Spectacular Mexico Night Show begins with a re-enactment of a ancient Maya ballgame and beautiful horse-riding event, before leading to the 90-minute grand finale. You will be amazed by the colorful costumes, lively music performed by 300 talented performers who represent the various regions of Mexico. This impressive show is included with your entrance fee.
Xel-Ha is another water theme park that is hailed as the world's largest natural aquarium. Visitors young and old will be delighted with the amazing variety of bright tropical fish found in the area's lagoon. You can spend the day relaxing in a hammock and soaking up the sun, snorkeling in the large shallow lagoon, feeding the tropical fish or diving in ancient caves. If you are looking for a unique opportunity, you can also swim with playful dolphins. Another option is to rent an inner tube and float down a long river that begins in a field of mangroves.
Parque Nizuc Water Park
If you're looking for a way to spend a refreshing, excitement-filled day, make sure to visit Cancun's only water park. This 18-acre park is conveniently located in the hotel zone, and it feature 9 fun attractions for kids and adults, alike. You can enjoy breathtaking, twisting water slides, tube slides or water toboggans. If you are really adventurous, prepare yourself for the Double Space Bowl. You'll drop at 30 mph into an elevated chute, where you'll spin around in a giant bowl before dropping into the water below. Small children will enjoy the Kids Park with trained lifeguards. If you prefer to relax, you can float gently down the Lazy River that flows through the entire park. The Atlantida animal research center provides you the rare opportunity to swim with playful sea lions or dolphins!
Cancun's aquarium offers a great way for visitors of any age to enjoy the day while learning about marine life. This is no ordinary aquarium where all the sea creatures are behind glass walls. At the Interactive Aquarium Cancun, you can touch sting rays, sea urchins, conches or sea turtles in the open-air section, swim with the dolphins or have your photo taken with a colorful macaw. If you are brave enough, you can even feed hungry sharks from a locked, covered cage!
Almost everyone who visits Cancun is amazed at the number of beautiful beaches the areas has to offer. The crystal clear, turquoise water of the Caribbean is truly an attraction in itself. There are 10 public-access entries to the famous sandy white beaches of the hotel zone. You can sunbathe, swim, sail or snorkel in the warm, clear water or enjoy a wide range of water sports. There are literally miles of beaches, so you're sure to find a place to relax during your trip.