The Best of the Yucatán Peninsula

The Best of the Yucatán Peninsula will dazzle you with ancient Maya ruins, azure Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico waters, and colonial cities all in one fell swoop. The Yucatán Peninsula includes three separate Mexican states: Yucatán, Quintana Roo and Campeche. Quintana Roo is probably the best known thanks to the tourism of Cancún, Tulum and Playa del Carmen, where millions flock annually to get their share of vitamin D on brochure-perfect beaches or resort infinity pools. But head just a couple of hours west and you hit Mérida, capital of Yucatán state, with contemporary restaurants and a satisfying change of pace, not to mention the many cenotes (freshwater springs) nearby. Neighboring Campeche state is home to mind-blowing Maya ruins galore. This entire peninsula holds wonderful, varied and accessible travel surprises.  The Yucatán Peninsula Mexico is a destination for any beach lover, history buff, or just for those who want to enjoy the cuisine and culture.

There are oceans that are many shades of blue, long stretches of pearly white and chlorophyll green jungles. Plus swimming in a limestone sinkhole (cenote), diving in coral reefs, and exploring ruins that are thousands of years old. The people of Yucatan are among the friendliest and warmest people around. They will welcome you and proudly show off their regional cuisine and culture. While you might come for history and a beach, you’ll leave with a lot more. You can also visit our Cozumel Travel Guide, or the Cancun Travel Guide to start making your plans today.  Read more now on the Yucatán Peninsula Mexico.

Yucatan Peninsula Weather – When to Visit

Mexico’s dry season runs from November to April, with the rainy season stretching from May to October. It isn’t a problem if you’re staying close to the beaches, but for those heading to Chichén Itzá, Uxmal, or other sites, temperatures and humidity in the interior can be stifling from May to July. Later in the rainy season, the frequency of tropical storms and hurricanes increases.  But they can lower temperatures, making climbing ruins more fun, as you’ll have cool air and a slight wind. November is especially nice for traveling to the Yukatan.

High season in the Yucatán begins the end of December and continues to Easter week. This is the best time for calm, warm weather; snorkeling, diving, and fishing, and for visiting the ruins. Book well in advance if you plan to be in Cancún around the holidays.

Yucatan Peninsula Destinations

Tulum, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaTulum

Tulum has some of the best beaches on the entire continent, as well as beach -side Mayan ruins. Tulum is one of the safest places to visit in Mexico. Fortunately, Tulum has managed to keep its status as a backpacker town. There are dozens of incredible hostels in Tulum to choose from, including the all-inclusives.  Vacationing to Tulum?  Visit our Tulum Travel Guide for a comprehensive Tulum guide.  Best Tulum Hotel:  Zamunda Garden View Apartments

Playa del Carmen, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaPlaya del Carmen

Playa del Carmen’s location on the Mayan Riviera means it’s the perfect base for day trips to explore all that the Yucatan has to offer. From here, you can take a dip in several nearby cenotes (underground swimming holes), explore the nearby “ecotourism theme parks” like Xcaret, or venture further afield to see the Mayan ruins at Coba. Vacationing to Playa del Carmen?  Read our comprehensive Playa del Carmen travel guide and start planning!  Best Playa del Carmen Hotel:  Hotel Xcaret Mexico All Parks All Fun Inclusive

Isla Mujeres, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaIsla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres is the perfect retreat for those looking to escape it all, and easily one of the best places to visit in Mexico. There is excellent snorkeling just off the island, including snorkeling with whale sharks during the summer.  Otherwise, there just isn’t a whole lot to do here except lounge on the island’s beautiful sand beaches, meander its many shops and stalls, and watch the sun slowly slip down over the ocean.  Visit our Isla Mujeres travel guide and plan your relaxing vacation here.  Best Isla Mujeres Hotel:  Izla Beach Front Hotel

Isla Holbox, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaIsla Holbox

On the isolated island of Isla Holbox, you won’t find any transportation. You may feel like you’ve stepped back in time.  There are only three ways to get around the island: on foot, by bike, or via golf cart.  You’ll love exploring the island’s many wild beaches, most of which sport water so shallow that you can walk a hundred meters or more into the sea.  And if you visit in May or June, you’ll be treated to the spectacular site of swimming with whale sharks.  Plan your vacation to Isla Holbox, read our comprehensive Isla Holbox travel guide.  Best Isla Holbox Hotel:  Villas Caracol

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Akumal, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaAkumal

Akumal is best known for one thing… turtles!  Akumal is one of the best places to swim with these sea creatures. You don’t need to pay for a tour to do it: just rent some snorkel gear from a stall by the beach, swim out a few dozens meters, and look around.  Vacationing to Akumal?  Read our comprehensive Akumal Travel Guide and start planning.  Best Akumal Hotel:  Villa Morena Boutique Hotel Ecoliving

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Cozumel, Yucatan Peninsula beaches, Quintana Roo beaches, Yucatan beaches, Campeche beaches, Mexico beaches, best beaches of Mexico, things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula destinations, best hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula, Yucatan Peninsula tours & activities, The Best of the Yucatán PeninsulaCozumel

Cozumel may be best known as one of the most popular cruise ship destinations in the world, but it also offers some of the best diving.  The island is quiet in the evenings after the cruise crowd heads back to their ships. This means the island will be all yours!  Vacation to Cozumel!  Read our Cozumel travel guide and start making plans today!  Best Cozumel Hotel:  The Landmark Resort of Cozumel

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Yucatan Peninsula Beaches

World renown as a spring break hot spot, the Yucatan Peninsula is a prime location for anyone looking for some time at the beach. Ranging from urbanized shores in the center of Cancun to nearly empty stretches in the south, the Yucatan will not disappoint.

Since the Yucatan has such a long coast, you can expect there to be a number of natural beaches that are empty of visitors or lifeguards. While this will offer a great deal of privacy, you do take a risk when swimming in unsupervised water. The more urbanized area of the Yucatan have developed a color system similar to that of beaches in the US.  Visit the best beaches in the Yucatán Peninsula.

Best Yucatan Peninsula Tours & Activities

36 Comments

  1. Adel

    That is it…this is going on my bucket list. Thanks for an awesome and informative post.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are so welcome Adel! Yes, anywhere in the Yucatan Peninsula is a bucket list item. You can’t go wrong with all the gorgeous beaches and great history to see.

      Reply
  2. Steven

    This was a very interesting article to read . Cenote Santa Barbara is on my bucket list

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Great Steven, you will love it 🙂 Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com!

      Reply
  3. Penelope

    I’ve been planning my first “real” trip to Mexico and I’m so glad I found this site. I’ve wanted to check out “the pyramids” btu there’s just so much more to the Mayan ruins than the few I’ve seen in my friends’ photos from Cancun! I have a much better idea how to plan this trip after this post, and definitely gonna check out the Tulum ruins. thanks for the info!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are quite welcome Penelope and I know you will have a great time! Cancun and Tulum are not a great distance from each other, making that part easy if you are planning on visiting both. Thanks for reading about the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico!

      Reply
  4. Eric

    I have always wanted to go to the Yucatan peninsula, but usually, it’s a fear that I will somehow get stuck while in Mexico that becomes overwhelming.

    That doesn’t stop me from mentally going there and visualizing all the nice beaches which I make a part of my daily exercises.

    This also saves me on gas or travel expenses lol. Thanks for the wonderful images.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are welcome Eric, and come back any time for your trip to Mexico 😀 Thanks for visiting Yucatan Peninsula Mexico!

      Reply
  5. Kasey

    Wow! These are just beautiful! My husband and I have been looking for somewhere different to go so I’ll need to show him these. I’m glad you explained them so we’re not going in blind folded.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Yes, the Yucutan Peninsula Mexico is a great destination filled with wonderful beaches, great culture, and amazing history. You will love it anywhere you go here. Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com

      Reply
  6. Hellmut Loetzerich

    Hi,
    I am a seaman, and have seen many beaches all over the world. Unfortunately I have missed Yucatan.
    I was always interested in the culture of the Mayas, and I learned that their calender was more accurate then ours.
    I like the way you capture the beauty of the beaches on this beautiful peninsular.
    Carry on with the good work.
    To your success.
    Hellmut

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Thank you so much Hellmut! You are a lucky man to have seen beautiful beaches all over the world. At least you got to visit the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico by visiting my site 🙂 Thanks for reading!

      Reply
  7. Andrew

    There is a lot of history and enchantment in the Yukatan peninsula, and mexico itself is a great tourist attraction. Nice hot sunshine and lots of tequila, sounds like paradise. Unfortunately i wish i had the money to go, but when I do….I will be back to plan thru you. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Yes, lots of great variables and reasons to visit the Yucatan Peninsula. Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com. When you are ready to start planning please let me know. I know I can save you some money on your vacation!

      Reply
  8. Habib Ali

    You have given me a lot of information through this post. I will now go ahead and book my holiday. Thank you for your help.

    Habib

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are very welcome Habib! Glad I could be of assistance in planning your Yucatan Peninsula Mexico vacation. Please let me know if I can help in any way!

      Reply
  9. Nadja

    Very informative and colorful post. It looks like a perfect place to spend my vocation. The information presented in very clear and concise way, all important details are provided. I appreciate all traveling tips and advice. Great post. Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are welcome Nadja! Glad you enjoyed reading about the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico. Let me know if you have any questions.

      Reply
  10. Awa

    Lovely beaches! Next stop Mexico :-). I love the way you’ve captured the beaches, culture, fun experiences etc. Nice post

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Thanks Awa for visiting the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico. I am glad you enjoyed, and yes the beaches are gorgeous.

      Reply
  11. Dev

    It’s not very often that I can personally relate to a post like this but I have to say, you are spot on! The Yucatan is gorgeous. It’s like a slightly less spring breaky Cancun. My parents actually bought some property in the Yucatan and renovated. Though they are trying to sell it I have to say it is one of the most beautiful places to live, though I’ve only ever stayed for a few days to a week at a time. If you’re looking for a beautiful, fun and safe place to visit in Mexico, Yucatan is an excellent choice! What would you see is your favorite spot to visit in the area? I agree the Mayan ruins were also incredible. I’ll have to see if I still have some photos from my trips.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Hi Dev and thank you for taking the time to comment on the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico. I would have to say aside from the gorgeous beaches, that the ruins are top on my list! You are right, it is gorgeous and less traveled than Cancun.

      Reply
  12. Igor

    Hi Leahrae,

    another great post! Beautiful presentation of the beautiful place. I think anybody would like to go there tomorrow already.

    You are doing a great job. Wish you a lot of clients and tourists going to “your promoted places”!

    Mixing tourism and culture is a great way of spending time during vacations, or during any other possible time.

    Regards,
    Igor

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Thank you Igor for taking the time to comment and for visiting the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico! I am glad you enjoyed reading. And yes, what could be better than mixing culture, gorgeous beaches and a great vacation all together!

      Reply
  13. thomas g

    Thanks for this great information. I have been trying to get friends to backpack the Yucatan for a bit with me. This will help!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are welcome Thomas, thanks for visiting the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico!

      Reply
  14. Kathleen

    Thank you for this amazing display of culture and beauty!! I am fond of Mexico and you have captured the essence of the food, music and landscape so wonderfully. This is such a great place to go, I can taste and smell the ocean! Thank you for doing such a great service to this beautiful country.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      You are very welcome Kathleen, I try 🙂 Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com

      Reply
  15. Thomas Wilson

    Beautiful pictures and great write ups on the Yucatan Peninsula. The area has interested me for a while. I would love to visit the ruins in the area. Thanks for the wealth of information. I am ready to start planning!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Glad you enjoyed Thomas! Yes, it is nice to have wonderful beaches for lounging and soaking up the sun. But the ruins is a great way to spend some days off the beach. Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com

      Reply
  16. William

    Wow this place looks so beautiful. I’ve always see friends post pictures of their trips to Mexico at the beaches. I was always ashamed at my body at the time to go though. However, I’ve been hitting the gym hard and almost ready to go check out those beaches. Maybe within the next year

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      Yes William, make it your reward for all your hard work! You deserve it and you will absolutely love it in Mexico. The Yucatan Peninsula Mexico has so many great places. Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com

      Reply
  17. David

    I have been to Mexico a few times surfing and checking out the little shops but never been to any of these great places. I found the people in Mexico to be very friendly and welcoming contrary to what some people may say. Tons of culture and awesome places to visit here!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      I would have to agree David. I have been many times and always find the people very friendly and as you say, welcoming. Glad you enjoyed reading about the Yucatan Peninsula Mexico.

      Reply
  18. Furkan

    I was wondering about the culture I will definitely watch soulful dance performances since I just love them. You mentioned about concerts. I wonder when is the best time to go there?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae

      I would have to say April and May would be the best time. It won’t be too hot, and the weather is going to be sunshine with little rain. You would love a visit here. Let me know if you need any additional information.

      Reply

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