Akumal Vacations

Akumal (place of turtles) is famous for its beautiful beach and large, swimmable lagoon, and does attract turtles, though in far fewer numbers than before due to the massive development that has encroached on nearly all of their nesting grounds.  Akumal is an Americanized beach community which is home to divers, fishermen, and laid-back residents from the U.S. and Canada. It’s basically a long string of upscale homes and condos along three bays. Akumal Bay is the best base for visits, with a good selection of hotels and restaurants plus the best all-around beach for swimming and snorkeling. Half Moon Bay, just beyond, has decent snorkeling and more condos for rent, but the beach is narrow and rocky. For snorkeling, go to Laguna Yalku.  For a detailed description of all the beautiful beaches of the Riviera Maya, visit here.  Akumal Vacations planning is simple, just read on and find everything you need for your Akumal beach vacation.

Akumal Weather – When to Visit

Summers are hot and humid in Akumal, and with the rainy season running from June to August, visitors should expect torrential rains almost every day at sometime.  The rains do make the evenings cooler and more pleasant.  Hurricane season runs from June thru October, further complicating summer weather.  The best time to go, and busiest, is January thru March.  Weather is at its best during this time.  Prices for hotels  will be the most expensive during these months, to purchase as far in advance as you can.

Best Akumal Beaches

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Akumal bay has shallow waters that it is calm with little surf, making it the best in the area for lounging and for children to play in the sea.  Akumal Bay is most popular for relaxing, swimming, and snorkeling. With many of Akumal’s amenities also located at the main beach area, such as; dive shops, beach bar, and restaurants, it is the busiest beach in Akumal.



Soliman Bay, Akumal beaches, best beaches of Mexico, best beaches of the Riviera Maya, things to do in Akumal, Akumal Vacations, Akumal travel guide, Akumal tours & activities, best Akumal hotels, best Akumal restaurants, best Akumal barsSoliman Bay

Located south of Xel-Ha, Soliman Bay is a beautiful location for many TV commercials. This picture perfect bay on the Riviera Maya is home to a number of large, exclusive Akumal rental homes.  It is a private gated community, so the beach is less crowded than the main Akumal Beach.

Jade Beach, Akumal beaches, best beaches of Mexico, best beaches of the Riviera Maya, things to do in Akumal, Akumal Vacations, Akumal travel guide, Akumal tours & activities, best Akumal hotels, best Akumal restaurants, best Akumal barsJade Beach

Jade Beach is located about one mile south of the village of Akumal on the Riviera Maya. This is a quiet area made up of private vacation homes and also a great place to snorkel as the reef comes very close to the beach here.  There is a small restaurant on this bay, although it is an easy walk along the beach to the amenities of Akumal.

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South Akumal Beach is a lovely white sandy bay to the south of Punta Sur on the other side of the point from Jade Bay. This is a quiet and gated residential community of Akumal vacation homes and the Seven Seas condos.




Xcacel Beach, Akumal beaches, best beaches of Mexico, best beaches of the Riviera Maya, things to do in Akumal, Akumal Vacations, Akumal travel guide, Akumal tours & activities, best Akumal hotels, best Akumal restaurants, best Akumal barsXcacel
Xcacel Beach is located south of Chemuyil, between Aventuras Akumal and Xel-Ha. A sea turtle sanctuary and protected area, the beach offers fantastic kiteboarding and surfing for those who are so inclined; there is a Cenote on the grounds as well. There are restrooms facilities, but pack a lunch as there are not restaurants.



Akumal Tours & Activities

Tulum Ruins and Snorkeling Tour

Checkout the Mayan archaeological site of Tulum with a certificated archaeological guide and learn about Mayan Culture. Afterwards, snorkel alongside marine life in their natural habitat and discover an under water world like no other. Lunch and hotel transport are included.  Read more about Tulum Snorkeling Tour at Akumal Bay with Lunch

Cenote and Akumal Snorkel

Explore the fascinating underwater world of Turtle Bay on a leisurely snorkel tour in search 3 of the world’s 7 sea turtle species. Brightly colored tropical fish, spectacular coral, amazing rock formations, rays and unbelievable visibility makes this an unforgettable experience.  Then journey deep into the subtropical rainforest of the Yucatan to relax, swim and snorkel in the crystal clear fresh waters of a massive “cenote”, and marvel at the thousands of spectacular stalagmites and stalactites that surround you at every turn.  Read more about Cenote and Akumal Snorkel 

Swimming in an area known for Turtles and Cenotes Tour

Swim in an area known for sea turtles, snorkel a coral reef, and explore a cenote on a 5-hour nature tour in the Riviera Maya. You're guaranteed to see some of the wild, native sea turtles that thrive along the coast, or receive a full refund for the tour. This 5-hour turtles and cenote tour includes all equipment, snacks, and hotel pickup and drop-off in Cancun or the Riviera Maya.  Read more about Swimming in an area known for Turtles and Cenotes Tour 

Akumal Marine Turtle Tour

Swim and snorkel alongside marine turtles on this guided tour to Akumal Bay. Spot hundreds of colorful fish, mantas, and other marine life at the area’s coral reef. Plus, take a dip in a nearby cenote or choose to snorkel again in the underground waters. Learn more about these underwater caves and their historical significance from your guide.  Read more about Akumal Marine Turtle Daily Tour

Early Access Tulum Ruins Private Tour with Turtle Experience and Cenote Swim

Combine ancient temples with a cenote and sea turtles on a full-day, private tour that includes an a la carte lunch at a local restaurant. An early morning departure means cooler temperatures and fewer crowds during your private tour of Tulum archeological site, which is followed by stops to snorkel in a cenote and swim with sea turtles.  Read more about Early Access Tulum Ruins Private Tour with Turtle Experience and Cenote Swim

Best Akumal Restaurants

La Buena Vida  $11 – 30

This popular beachside eatery serves some of the best fish tacos around! If you are one who likes the option of shade, La Buena Vida offers comfortable seating areas perfectly situated beneath towering palms. There are also ultra-comfy beanbag pillow beds and hammocks, ideal for sinking into for an afternoon siesta.  Telephone:  52-984-875-9061   Web:  La Buena Vida.

Turtle Bay Café & Bakery  $11 – 30

For fresh baked goods (some of the best pies in the region), and a divine mix of local and international cuisine (from eggs benedicts to seafood stuffed chili rellenos,) Turtle Bay Café is a must when in Akumal. It has been around for a while, filling customers’ bellies with home baked goodness and delicious meals for nearly 20 years!  Telephone:  52-984-875-9138  Web:  Turtle Bay Café & Bakery.

Lol-Ha Restaurant & Snack Bar  $11 – 30

Ocean views, a flavorful menu with generous portions and friendly staff. There is a vast selection of items on the menu including the popular nachos al pastor (a thinly shaved pork marinated with chiles and achiote, a very traditional regional spice.) They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, so you have the choice to sip coffee while watching the pelicans feast, have a cold corona with your nachos in the afternoon, or try a fried whole fish dish, caught fresh, while you enjoy the evening breeze off of the bay.  Telephone:  52-984-875-9012  Web:  Lol-Ha Restaurant & Snack Bar.

La Cueva del Pescador  $11 – 30

This is where you’ll usually find a friendly crowd of residents gathering for cold beer and fresh seafood dishes. The fish tacos are great as is the cured ceviche seasoned with cilantro. The sand floors are a nice touch and add to the relaxed, Mexican-Caribbean atmosphere.  For more information call 52-, or visit them on the web at La Cueva del Pescador.  Telephone:  52-984-875-9002  Web:  La Cueva del Pescador.

La Lunita  $11 – 30

This Mexican Caribbean-style, beachfront restaurant serves an intriguing assortment of savory entrees from duck to jumbo prawns. Enjoy the ocean views over lunch or by moonlight in the open patio area on the sand. For a unique Mexican cocktail experience, try the Serrano margarita!  Telephone:  52-984-875-9070  Web:  La Lunita.

Best Akumal Nightlife

La Buena Vida

A popular beachside restaurant/bar with sand floors, swings, roaming musicians and a drink menu with gimmicky cocktail names such as “The Viagra”, which offers you “a stiff one”.  Telephone:  52-984-875-9061  Web:  La Buena Vida

Beached Bikini Bar & Grill

Swings around the small bar create a cozy space, so you are just as likely to come away with some new friends as a hangover. Neus will give you a warm welcome in her adorable Catalan accent. Good bar food. Real fruit in the blender drinks. Soon everyone is having one more and singing along to the 70s station. It's like Cheers on the beach.  Telephone:  52-998-845-4528  Web:  Beached Bikini Bar & Grill.


They are located in the pueblo side of Akumal. Visitors can see the ‘authentic' side of Mexico. They have a variety of great drinks.  The food is great too!  Telephone:  52-984-875-9022  Web:  Tequilaville.

Best Hotels

Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya

Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya All Inclusive-Adults Only features an outdoor pool and year-round outdoor pool. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property and free private parking is available on site.  You can play tennis at the hotel. The hotel also provides free use of bicycles and car rental.

Villa Eva Luxury Akumal

Villa Eva Luxury Akumal has a  hot tub and a private beach area.  Free WiFi is available throughout the property and free private parking is available on site.  There is also a kitchen, fitted with a dishwasher, oven and microwave. A toaster, a refrigerator and stovetop are also featured, as well as a coffee machine and a kettle.  Villa Eva Luxury Akumal also includes an outdoor pool. Guests can enjoy the on-site bar and restaurant.  You can play tennis at the property, and car rental is available.

UNICO 20°N 87°W – Riviera Maya

Featuring free WiFi and a restaurant, UNICO 20°N 87°W – Riviera Maya offers accommodations in Akumal, just 18 miles from Playa del Carmen. The hotel has an outdoor pool and water sports facilities, and guests can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. Free private parking is available on site.  There is a 24-hour front desk, concierge services, a gift shop, and a shops at the property.  You can play tennis at this hotel, and the area is popular for snorkeling.

Villa Morena Boutique Hotel Ecoliving

There is a playground and terrace, and guests can enjoy the on-site bar. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property and free private parking is available on site.  The bed and breakfast also provides free use of bicycles.

Xio Akumal

Surrounded by exuberant vegetation, in the middle of one of the best golf courses in Mexico, Xio Akumal is located within the Tao Residential community.  These lofts and penthouse are designed with Mexican details for the visitor to enjoy a comfortable experience of tranquility and harmony with the environment.


  1. Alex Chong

    This is such an incredible review. You basically provided information to EVERYTHING about visiting Akumal.

    The place certainly sounds enticing. I love beaches and look forward to visiting Akumal one day. When I do, I will know where I can find all the information I need to plan for the trip!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      So glad you enjoyed Alex 🙂 If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. Thanks for reading!

  2. carol

    Akumal certainly looks like a fantastic place to visit. The turtles remind me of the Cayman Islands where they make the effort to preserve them too. This post has certainly given me the boost for a vacation. Getting there should not be so difficult from my border state location. Thanks for sharing, plans will definitely be in the works soon.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Akumal is a fantastic place to visit! I am glad you enjoyed reading. Thank you for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com.

  3. Jessica

    It would be amazing swimming inside of a cave. I’m curious if there are any health benefits when swimming in these waters?

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I don’t know of any benefits of swimming in the cenotes. Maybe the exercise you get, but there is nothing special in the water itself 🙂 But it is amazing! Thanks for visiting Akumal Vacations!

  4. Anna

    My favourite type of holidays – by the beach.
    Have not heard of a lot of these beaches, and so many of them are amazing.
    Akumal caught my attention because I lived in Mexico for six months a couple of years ago but I was on the west coast Barra De Navidad. I learnt very quickly that I should have done my homework with regards to the weather as by the coast in May and onwards is incredibly hot. This guide is perfect for when I return next year!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great, and you will LOVE the area.  There is just so many things to see and do, besides just laying by the beach.  Or you can do just that if you like 🙂  Thanks for reading Akumal Vacations!

  5. Steve


    We stayed in Akumal a few years back. We actually Stayed in the Bahia Principe Akumal just up the Coast but visited Akumal a good few times. I even got my Diving Certification there!

    The Whole area is incredible and we explored the Cenotes, Tulum Ruins, Coba Ruins and the whole coastline. We Snorkeled with Sea Turtles and enjoyed the incredible reef of Akumal Bay.

    We also drank FAR too many Margaritas and too much Tequila!

    Akumal is a fantastic Holiday Destination!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I agree that it is a great destination, and hey what is a beach vacation without margaritas?  They just go hand in hand, right?  I am glad you enjoyed, sounds like you had a wonderful time!  Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com!

  6. Max

    All of these wonderful places to go and I am overdue for a vacation. I must bookmark this page and look at the packages once I am ready to book a vacation.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Max! Yes, so many wonderful beach destinations to choose from! Thank you for visiting Akumal Vacations! See you back again when you are ready to book!

  7. Melissa

    Hi Leahrae,
    You always bring us these amazing places and you have not disappointed. This place sounds amazing and that cave looks so amazing. I can imagine me and my husband exploring it together. The colors are gorgeous and it looks like you can get lost there(not physically). Is that top image one of the sea turtles from Akumal Bay?

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you for visiting Akumal Vacations Melissa and taking the time to comment. Yes, the top image is from Akumal Bay 🙂

  8. Kourtney

    wow this place looks incredible, I would love to check out that atkun-chen cave. Its safe to say this is now officially on my bucket list haha. As a lover of tequila, if I were to go you would most likely find me at tequilaville!

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Well Tequilaville is a fun place! And this is an incredible place! Thanks for visiting Akumal Vacations!

  9. Jan

    Hi Leahrae!
    Wow, so much inspiration in this article.
    I really like the look of Xel-Há and I would really like to go snorkeling there with my kids 🙂
    Thanks for the tips!
    Take care!
    Regards, Jan

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You bet Jan! Thanks for visiting and your kids would love it. I know my son does. Glad you enjoyed reading about Akumal Vacations!

  10. Stella Obiozor

    Akumal” place of Turtle”the name alone sounds great.I love the beautiful description and no issue about the safety part.Most importantly the hotels around are great.Also getting around is good.What a good place to visit!Thank you for this great article.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Stella for visiting Akumal Vacations. Yes, it really is a slice of heaven plopped down into Mexico. Everything you could want 🙂

  11. Lyndsay

    what a great article! I wish I came across this last year when we were in Akumal. It’s a great area, we have been twice and stayed at the Grand Bahia Principe and love the resort. It is quite a distance from the Cancun airport, so I always recommend two weeks if you can swing it and visiting some of these great places you have recommended. I didn’t realize that it was home of the sea turtles. I would have guessed home of the iguana’s 🙂 never seen so many iguana’s in all my travels and I love the little guys, just like humans, love bathing in the sun! thanks for the great article, although I have been to Akumal, I learned lots from your article and can reference next trip we take there.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Wow, great Lyndsay.  Most people have never even heard of Akumal.  It really is a great place, and yeah lots of Iguanas for sure!  Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com!

  12. Celeste

    I love travel. Akumal sounds fantastic. I have never been to Mexico before but hopefully we can plan a trip soon. Are there regular flights from NYC? Lol-Ha Restaurant & Snack Bar sounds like my kind of restaurant. My husband and I love diving. Since we will be coming from South Africa we don’t wan to travel with all our diving gear. Do you know if there are good scuba rental shops around?

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Ok, tons of flights from NYC and lots of scuba rental shops.  Scuba diving is big here, so you won’t have any problems getting the gear.  Thanks for reading about Akumal Vacations.

  13. Steven Cook

    I’ve never been to Mexico before, but is actually a place me and my wife are wanting to go this year. Looking at your Akumal Blog, the scenery looks absolutely stunning, and seen as I’m also into diving, this looks like an ideal place to visit,

    I really like your website, and the blog is packed full of information for anyone interested in going, especially the nightlife, which sounds great.

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Glad you enjoyed reading about Akumal Vacations and visiting my website.  If you have any questions, or when you are ready to pack your bags and head to Mexico, I would love to help you find some great deals!

  14. Chris Jones

    Akumal Mexico I take it you fly into Cancun? Looks really interesting. I like going to Cancun especially the adult only all inclusive resorts.

    If you fly into Cancun how do you recommend getting there or did I miss that? I noticed you talked about rental cars and how police watch for them.

    I assume you also feel safe in that area?

    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, you can fly from Cancun or Playa del Carmen.  And yes, rent a car, but with this be very cautious and follow all the road laws.  I am glad you enjoyed reading about Akumal vacations.  And, yes, it is safe in Akumal.


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