Though you will fly into Cancun, once you drive an hour away from the hustle-and-bustle of spring-break city, you’ll find the charming, beautiful beauty of Riviera Maya, Mexico. This area of the northeastern Yucatan Peninsula is on the higher scale of beach honeymoons, allowing you and your number one to immerse yourself into nature, local communities and the endless wonders of this dynamic country. Thanks to a central location, a Riviera Maya honeymoon allows couples to unwind, while also having easy access to nearby towns, like Tulum or Playa del Carmen. For couples who seek a little bit of everything from their romantic escape, bountiful white sand beaches, Mayan ruins, freshly-caught seafood, adventure centers and all-inclusive resorts are just a few of the perks of this region in Mexico.
If you’re considering planning a Riviera Maya honeymoon, consider these must-see attractions and advice.
When to Go
Generally speaking, Mexico is a warm and welcoming destination year-round. With plenty of sunshine to fill the country, a Riviera Maya honeymoon is recommended during any month. However, if you want fewer crowds and no-rain weather, consider the dry season from late November until February. If you don’t mind a bit of stickiness and sweat, March through August is a much hotter season. Because Riviera Maya is located along the hurricane belt, you’ll find cheaper prices late August through October, but of course, it comes with a risk of tropical storm.
What to Do
From snorkeling to swimming through caves and cenotes—trust us—you won’t be bored when you’re on your Riviera Maya honeymoon. Here, just a few idea to fill your travel schedule:
- Walk through the beaches: And by beaches, we really do mean plural: Maroma Beach, Xpu-Ha, Xcacel and Akumal are just a handful of the recommended stretches of sand to consider. Whether you walk out from your hotel to put your toes in the ocean or drive to find a hidden gem, make sure you have plenty of time under the sun.
- Snorkel or scuba dive: Though any dot in the Caribbean offers a glimpse into the colorful world under the sea, if you are an experienced scuba diver, take a trip to Cozumel, where you have the best chance of witnessing fish, turtles and beyond. How come? It’s home to 25 dive sites and is situated around the second largest barrier reef system in the world.
- Take a trip to Tulum: Less than an hour away is a town with a hippie, bohemian vibe. For a day trip or an overnight, you’ll definitely find plenty of Instagram-worthy experiences—from opaque blue waters to seaside huts with style.
- Experience the Mayan ruins: When you and your partner tied the knot, you officially changed the course of your own history. Take a glimpse into the roots of Mexico by visiting nearby Mayan ruins in Tulum and Coba. For a longer journey, you can travel several hours to see one of the wonders of the world, Chichen Itza.
- Have fun at Xcaret Park: This ecological playground has endless activities for adventure-seeking duos. Here you can make your way through an underground lazy river through caves, take a photo with flamingos or have a beachside picnic overlooking breathtaking cliffs. You can also upgrade your ticket to include ziplining, bungee jumping and more.
- See a cenote: As beautiful as they sound, these underwater sinkholes are hidden passageways that lead to various bodies of water under the surface. While gorgeous for snorkeling and diving, it’s important to book a guide for safety. There are 12,000—and counting—in the area, but only a few are recommended for tourists.
- Take a trip to Isla Mujeres: Considering it’s only a 20-minute ferry ride away, it’s a fun and easy getaway to see another island in Mexico. Here, you can rent a golf cart by the hour, grab drinks as a bar with swings and appreciate a more laid-back vibe than many other tourist-heavy areas in Riviera Maya.
- Swim with whale sharks at Isla Holbox: Before you get anxious, remember whale sharks are actually rather harmless, since they only eat krill. At this area not-too-far from Riviera Maya, you can watch them migrating between the months of May to September, in or out of the water.
- Book a catamaran tour: There are endless options of boat tours in Riviera Maya, but our best recommendation for honeymoon couples is a catamaran. Look for a company that does small group tours so you have more personalized attention—and so you’ll get plenty of sunning time on the overwater nets at the front of the vessel.
- Eat seafood: If you love this type of cuisine, you’re in lucky! With endless fish and shellfish caught daily, splurge on an expensive restaurant that prepares this local fare to perfection.
Article by Lindsay Tigar