After seeing beautiful pictures of white sand beaches with sapphire blue waters in travel magazines and Instagram, you’ve decided that Cancun is the perfect place for your honeymoon. As you start researching all-inclusive resorts in Cancun, you also see Riviera Maya as an option with equally beautiful resorts and beaches. Oftentimes, people use Cancun and the Riviera Maya interchangeably; however, they are two different things. Cancun is a city with a lot of residents while the Riviera Maya is a region south of Cancun with many smaller resort towns such as Playa del Carmen, Tulum, and Puerto Morelos all located along the water.
Article by: Theresa Chu-Bermudez of Get Out! Custom Travels
When tourists head to Cancun, they typically stay in the Hotel Zone near the beaches and rarely make it into the city itself where many of the residents live. The Hotel Zone is notorious for crazy nightlife and even crazier spring breakers, but that’s not all it has to offer. You can find great shopping and dining in Cancun steps outside of your resort as well. Cancun has many high rise hotels that are very close together (making it seem more crowded) while the resorts in the Riviera Maya region are low rise and more spread out. Because of this, having access to shopping and dining outside your resort is more difficult in the Riviera Maya unless you are in Playa del Carmen which is the largest town in the region. Despite the fact that the beach is beautiful in both places, some people prefer the beach in Cancun because it’s wider and more vibrant in color than in than the beach in the Riviera Maya. Many honeymooners choose the Riviera Maya because the regions tends to be more romantic.
How do you decide which area to stay when both options are seemingly great? One other factor to consider is what excursions and activities you’d like to do. If you would like to visit the Mayan ruins (like Tulum), snorkel the beautiful cenotes (swimmable sinkholes resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock which exposes the crystal clear groundwater), or go on a horseback ride, then the Riviera Maya region might be the best choice. If you are looking to snorkel the Underwater Snorkel Museum or take a party cruise, then Cancun will be the better option.
If you still need help deciding which area or resort is right for you, please don’t hesitate to reach out and we will work with you to find the perfect location.