TRAVEL BLOG

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church

Nuestra Senora del Carmen Catholic Church

Nuestra Senora del Carmen is a pretty little Catholic church located in Playa del Carmen. This traditional Mexican church overlooks the Caribbean Sea and is a must for those who love anything cultural and steeped in history.

If you are here around Christmas or Easter time, make sure to visit the church as the building is decorated with flowers and ornaments to celebrate the festive season.

Many Catholic weddings are also held here throughout the year, so if you’re lucky you might spot a traditional ceremony taking place. It is highly recommended to join in one of the Sunday masses which takes place once in the morning and again in the evening. Many of the locals dress up smartly, so if you wish to attend please dress appropriately.

Address:

15th Ave. and 12th St., Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Website:

www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g150812-d2279558-Reviews-Nuestra_Senora_del_Carmen_Catholic_

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Riviera Art Gallery

Riviera Art Gallery

Riviera Art Gallery is a fine art gallery located in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. There are a number of original oil and acrylic paintings, lithographs, photographs, sculptures, tribal handcrafts and prints on display here.

Some of the most well known artists include Noel Rodriguez, Ricardo Campero, Daniel Lewis, Ellie Newman, PUAC, Lourdes Ibarra, Naomi Gittoes, Chatillon and works from the Mayan community.

Address:

20th Street, between 5th and 10th Avenue, Playa del Carmen, Q. Roo, Mexico

Phone:

0052 984 803 1037

Website:

www.rivieraartgallery.com/

 

 

 

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Riviera Maya Golf Club


Riviera Maya Golf Club

Riviera Maya Golf Club was designed by the famous Robert Trent Jones II, who managed to create a fantastic 27-hole course which borders a Mayan jungle and features beautiful natural lakes and challenging water holes.

The golf course appeals to every level of golfer. The design of the Mayan Riviera golf course provides players with a variety of different challenges such as obstacles in the form of lakes and sand bunkers.

The course is split into two. The championship course is made up of 18 holes with a length of 7272 yards, whilst the Executive course is made up of just nine holes.

There is also a large driving range at the club with an area of more than 300 yards, capable of holding more then 50 players. In addition, there is an area to practice in sand bunkers as well as a putting green, chipping green and a double tee box.

On site you will find an exclusive clubhouse which features a restaurant, bar and social area. There is even a Pro Shop, which sells polo shirts, golf balls, towels and caps. You can also rent out equipment such as buggies, shoes, and clubs, regardless of your level.

Riviera Maya Golf Club has won various awards for its excellence. In 2011 the Top Ten Golf & Spa Magazine named it as the third best golf course in Mexico.

The club is open seven days a week from 6am. If you are interested in visiting this golf club you may also be interested in staying at the Gran Bahia Principe Riviera Maya Resort. This is a five-star hotel complex made up of three hotels which are right next to Riviera Maya Golf Club.

Address:

Akumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

0052 984 875 5048

Website:

www.rivieramaya-golfclub.com/

 

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Playa Paraiso Golf Club


Playa Paraiso Golf Club

Playa Paraiso Golf Club is an 18-hole par-72 course located in Riviera Maya just 30 minutes away from Cancun International Airport.

This popular course was designed by P.B. Dye and includes parts of a Mayan jungle. The course is also situated right next to the Caribbean Sea, so you are guaranteed stunning ocean views! Due to its extreme beauty this makes it one of the best golf courses in the world. Not only is the scenery breathtaking but the course is also pretty challenging. It boasts a number of narrow fairways, undulating greens and deep sand banks which will challenge you from start to finish.

There are a number of other facilities on offer at Playa Paraiso including a pro shop, which supplies well-known brands such as Titleist, Nike and Mizuno. There is also a driving range and putting green if you want to practice before you tee off.

One of the innovations at Playa Paraiso Golf Club is the all-inclusive service. You can forget about the extra charges for food and drinks and you can even have them delivered to the green whilst you are playing.

Address:

Playacar, Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

0052 984 877 2800

Website:

www.cancun.com/Golf/Iberostar_Playa_Paraiso_golf/

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club


El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club

El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club is an 18-hole course designed by the legendary Greg Norman. This stunning course bends through three distinct landscapes – dense tropical jungles, mangrove forests and oceanfront stretches of sand and crystal clear water. Greg Norman has even incorporated an underground cavern and river system into the center of the opening fairway.

El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club is a truly breathtaking and unique club to play at. The 7th and 15th holes play right to the edge of the Caribbean Sea, and in the distance is one of the world’s largest coral reefs and the island of Cozumel.

Other facilities at this first class golf club include a double-ended 350 yard driving range, a 20,000 square foot short-game area with putting and chipping greens. As well as golf carts, a clubhouse with shower and locker facilities, a golf shop and a restaurant and snack bar open for breakfast and lunch.

The golf shop is open daily from dawn until dusk and supplies top brand names such as Adidas, Ralph Lauren, EP Pro and Lopez Golf. You can also rent out left and right-handed clubs for both men and women.

The golf course also provides professional tuition for all abilities. The Jim Mclean Golf School offers state of the art JC Video Swing Analysis technology and is the top teaching facility in the whole of Mexico.

Address:

Carretera Federal Cancun- Playa del Carmen Km.298, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico

Phone:

0052 984 206 3088

Website:

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Sian Ka’an Jeep Tour Expedition


Sian Ka’an Jeep Tour Expedition

Sian Ka’an was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and natural reserve in 1986. Spreading across a staggering 528,147 acres, this reserve is 99% state owned and 1% privately owned with only 1800 inhabitants.

Over the years archeologists have uncovered 23 Mayan sites, including ruins of El Plantal, Chenchomac and Chunyaxche where they discovered ancient mummies, relics and ceramics dating back over 2300 years ago.

This enchanting place is also bursting with wildlife and nature. There are over 850 plant species and 326 animal species living in Sian Ka’an all together. Many endangered species also live here such as the American wood stork, the white stork, the peregrine falcon and the white eagle. There are also two species of dolphins, four species of whales, six species of turtles and contains the largest number of crocodiles found in Mexico. Other animals seen in the park include manatees, pumas, ocelots, jaguars and spider monkeys!

There are a number of tour operators in the area who will take you out to Sian Ka’an.

Espacio Natura are one of the most renowned tour operators and offer an exhilarating jeep tour through the jungle. The tour also includes a boat ride where you can observe dolphins, starfish and sea turtles. You will also be able to snorkel along the Mesoamerican reef, and finally enjoy a delicious Mexican buffet overlooking the crystal clear ocean.

Address:

Reserva de la Biósfera Sian-Ka’an, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

0052 984 109 7216

Website:

espacionatura.com.mx/UK/index.html

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Punta Laguna Nature Reserve


Punta Laguna Nature Reserve

Punta Laguna Nature Reserve sits tucked away in the jungle where Yucatan meets the state of Quintana Roo, found near the Gulf Coast. This is a Mayan village where roosters and pigs have right of way and houses still have thatched roofs.

Along with some four other villages, Punta Laguna is part of a 5000-hectare government protected nature reserve which is known in English as “House of the spider monkey and the jaguar.” The area is also home to howler monkeys, pumas, coatis and a variety of exotic birds.

Special guided tours will take you through some of the jungle trails and reveal a wealth of exotic plants and animals, as well as pre-Hispanic ruins which were believed to be built during 300 BC to 250 AD.

Before entering the jungle, visitors must participate in a traditional ceremony performed by a local Shaman in order to ask the jungle and the underworld lords for their benevolence and permission.

Once you are allowed to enter the jungle with your guide you will be able to take part in many different types of activities such as canoeing, zip lining and water hole rappelling.

A good pair of walking boots or trainers are required if you decide to go to Punta Laguna Nature Reserve. You should also plan on either packing a lunch beforehand or stopping along the way at Valladolid as there are no restaurants or shops here. It is also advised to carry with you plenty of water and sunscreen and if you want you can also bring a long a swimming costume if you decide to go water hole rappelling or want a refreshing dip in the lake.

Address:

Punta Laguna, Quintana Roo Nuevo Durango – Coba, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

0052 (985) 107 91 82

Website:

puntalagunamexico.blogspot.co.uk/

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Coba Mayan Village


Coba Mayan Village

Coba is a large ruined city of the Pre-Columbian Maya civilization located 44km northwest of Tulum. It is estimated the village was inhabited as far back as 100 BC. It is believed at its peak 50,000 people lived here but now there is just over 1000 inhabitants.

There are a number of tour operators that will take you out to Coba Mayan Village such as Alltournative who specialize in eco-archeological expeditions in the local area. They will take to you to the amazing Nohoch Muul pyramid, the tallest in the Yutacan Peninsula. You will also go to the traditional village which boasts natural lagoons, cenotes, jungle paths and flourishing flora and fauna.

Furthermore, your tour guide will then let you have a go on a thrilling zip line which glides over cenotes and treetops. Then you will have the chance to take a dip in a hidden cave.

Finally, to finish the day off you will enjoy some delicious handmade tortillas and refreshing soft drinks.

Another popular tour operator is Coba Mayan Village itself and Mayic Travel. Many of the tour operators do similar activities such as mentioned above or they may add a few extras including kayaking and the Coba archeological site. It is best to enquire beforehand if you want to do a particular activity.

Many operators will also pick you up from your hotel. The route is about two hours from Riviera Maya and runs from Monday to Friday. There are a number of multilingual guides at the village including English, French, Spanish, Russian and Italian.

It is best to bring along comfortable walking shoes, swimsuits and an extra set of clothes incase you get wet!

Address:

Coba, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

984 803 88 70

Website:

www.cobamayanvillage.com/

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Akumal Tour Centre

Akumal Tour Centre

Akumal Tours are a Mexican run company located in the small town of Akumal which was founded in 2004.  They offer a top selection of trips and tours including visits to the Mayan ruins, ATV journeys, Jeep safaris, boat trips, swimming with dolphins, visits to theme parks, snorkeling and deep sea fishing.

The archeological sites include Chichen Itza, Coba and Tulum. You will be picked up between 7 to 8:30am from your hotel, you will then be transported to one of the popular tourist sights. Make sure to bring your camera, water and sturdy walking shoes.

You can also hire out an ATV, which is basically a quad bike. You will be able to visit a “rancho” where you can admire caves, cenotes and breathtaking caverns. You will also have the chance to swim in the crystal clear waters of a cenote or an underground river. Furthermore, there’s also the chance to meet beautiful wild animals such as spider monkeys and snakes. This tour takes approximately three hours or you could choose the daylong tour. You will be able to ride through the small town of Akumal, visit a traditional Mayan village and cross a crocodile infested lagoon on a zip line! This is the perfect package for those seeking an adrenaline rush.

Akumal tours also offers a number of water sports and sea fishing opportunities such as swimming with whale sharks and dolphins, snorkeling, paddle boarding and boat tours to Puerto Aventuras and Isla Contoy.

Address:

Camino Caleta Yal Ku Lote 44 – Half Moon Bay, 77780 Akumal

Phone:

0052 984 875 9004

 

Riviera Maya, Mexico | Attractions | Dolphin Discovery


Dolphin Discovery

Dolphin Discovery is located in Puerto Aventuras, a tourism development specifically planned to show respect for nature. The park offers its visitors all the attractions and amenities of a small city in the middle of the beautiful Yucatan Peninsula jungle.

The Dolphin Discovery facilities are located in the center of the complex and were built inside a tropical green island with a lagoon, which is home to the dolphins. Not only can you swim with dolphins, but also you can even interact with manatees!

There are a number of programs to choose from such as Dolphin Royal Swim, Dolphin Swim Adventure, Dolphin Encounter and Sea Life Circle Manatees.

Dolphin Royal Swim is the most dynamic of them all, making it one of the most talked-about experiences at Dolphin Discover. The program includes an unforgettable “foot push” from the dolphins and you will be able to hold onto the dorsal fins of the dolphins whilst they pull you along. If you’re lucky you may even be able to get a kiss from a cheeky dolphin too!

The Dolphin Swim Adventure includes the famous “belly ride.” The ride consists of you holding on to the dolphin’s fins as he/she swims backwards. These beautiful animals will also give you a kiss, sing to you and say hello with their fins.

The Dolphin Encounter is especially designed for little ones and family holidays. Your family will be able to enjoy a number of safe and fun activities in the water. The program includes a fin handshake, a hug, a peck on the cheek and a special song from the dolphins themselves.

Last but not least, Sea Life Circle Manatees is a completely different activity available for tourists to the area. You will be able to stroke the gentle manatees and learn about their diet, cares and anatomy.

Address:

Dolphin Discovery, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Phone:

+1 866 393 5158

Website:

www.dolphindiscovery.com/mayan_riviera/riviera-maya-location-overview.asp

Where to buy ticketsYou can book tickets from Dolphin Discovery’s website at http://www.dolphindiscovery.com/