While many high-end luxury resorts, all-inclusive resorts, and villas are located in the Riviera Maya area of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, extending south for approximately 70 miles from the Cancun airport, budget and mid-range accommodations can be found here as well. Where I stayed: Rosemont Mayakoba, Riviera Maya (located approximately 40 miles south of Cancun), a part of the Mayakoba resort community including the Fairmont and Banyan Tree, within a 1,600 acre resort enclave.
Scuba diving and snorkeling, beach and watersports, golf, touring Mayan ruins, spa retreats, shopping, dining and nightlife.
The Riviera Maya is known for its beautiful white sand beaches, fronting the calm, clear turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.
Food and Drink
Fresh fish and seafood are prepared with Mayan ingredients and techniques, giving them a unique flavor.
Airport code: CUN (Cancun) The Riviera Maya district is a short drive away from the Cancun airport.
Direct flights from U.S.: Austin (AUS), Atlanta (ATL), Boston (BOS), Charlotte (CLT), Chicago (ORD) and (RFD), Cincinnati (CGV), Cleveland (CLE), Dallas (DFW), Denver (DEN), Detroit (DTW), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Houston (IAH), Indianapolis (IND), Kansas City (MCI), Los Angeles (LAX), Miami (MIA), Minneapolis (MSP), New York (JFK), Newark (EWR), Orlando (MCO), Philadelphia (PHL), Phoenix (PHX), Salt Lake City (SLC), San Francisco (SFO), St. Louis (STL), Tampa (TPA), Washington (IAD); Direct flights from Canada: Toronto (YYZ)
The Riviera Maya, included in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, extends along the Caribbean coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula for approximately 70 miles from Cancun airport. There is easy access to the Mayan ruins at Tulum and to diving around the island of Cozumel.
The Riviera Maya tourism district, including the nearby town of Playa del Carmen, has a laid-back feel, less congested than Cancun.
Tulum, a walled city built as a fortress high above the sea during the Post-classic period of Mayan civilization (900-1500). The focal point is its castle, El Castillo, which once served as a lighthouse and watchtower.
Cobá, an ancient Mayan city where visitors can climb 180 steps to the top of Nohoch Mul pyramid, the highest in the Yucatan Peninsula.
Snorkel or scuba dive within the Great Maya Reef, the largest coral reef system in the Northern Hemisphere and the second largest in the world.
Visit one of the hundreds of cenotes, sinkholes fed from underground streams and rivers found throughout the Yucatan Peninsula. You can take a tour or even snorkel or scuba dive in one of the freshwater pools.
RIVIERA MAYA, Mexico — Fascination with the mysteries of the Maya is at an all-time high this year, and while nearly 3 million Americans flew into Cancun last year to vacation along 100 miles of sparkling beaches extending south from Cancun to Playa del Carmen and on to Tulum, only about a third of tourists ventured outside the resort districts to explore the Mayan ruins nearby. This year, however, those numbers are rising. Increased attendance at Tulum and many other Mayan ruin sites is due to a conglomeration of prophecies, said to have come from the ancient wisdom of the Maya, written down in their books and preserved from destruction through the centuries since the Spanish conquest
Read the rest of the article, published in the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, by opening a PDF here: Riviera Maya Mexico Article