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Playa del Carmen

Playa del Carmen - Mexico

Playa del Carmen is one of the top diving destinations in the world, thanks to vibrant sea life and underwater caverns or Cenotes. Spend some quality time on the golf course or on the roof tops of the best resorts. Explore the ancient ruins of the Coba Mayan Village and Tulum or shop and stroll along 5th Avenue.

As a world-class vacation destination, Playa del Carmen is well prepared to offer milions of recreational opportunities for visitors and residents. Restaurants are abundant, bars and nightclubs located on the Quinta Avenida offer a vibrant night life. Just offshore lies the world’s second largest reef system. Fishing, diving, boating, and snorkeling are widely available through many guides and tour operators. Playa del Carmen and the entire Riviera Maya of Mexico attract those who love the water and water activities, even if that means lazing around and trip to discover the amazing Xcaret park. On days when the beach isn’t on your schedule, there are modern theaters, malls, and access to the rest of the Yucatan Peninsula, if you wish.

Table of Contents

Playa del Carmen Mexico

Where is playa del carmen?

Playa del Carmen is a popular beachfront town tourist destination located along the eastern Caribbean coastline of  Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula known as the Riviera Maya. It is situated just 45 minutes south of Cancun International Airport and one hour north of Tulum. The name Riviera Maya was invented a few years ago by the Mexican tourist board as they wanted an attractive name in order to attract more tourists. The Riviera Maya starts in Cancun and stretches down to Tulum.

The location of Playa Del Carmen is amazing. It is bang in the center of the Riviera Maya. That means it is the right in the center of tourism in Mexico.

The best way to get to Playa del Carmen is by a private driver for only $60. It’s the easiest and quickest way to get your vacation started! Unless you are planning to do a lot of independent day trips from Playa del Carmen, then we would suggest renting a car.


Playa del Carmen Airport Shuttle

How to get to Playa del Carmen from Cancun International Airport?

By private driver

The best way to get to Playa del Carmen is by a private driver for only $60. And we know a good one!!!!! 😉 It’s the easiest and quickest way to get your vacation started! Unless you are planning to do a lot of independent day trips from Playa del Carmen, then we would suggest renting a car.

The shuttle service, Super Shuttle, is straightforward and easy, but more expensive if you are traveling as a couple or just one person. The shuttles start to make more sense when you are a group of 4 or more. You can book the Super Shuttle at the airport, no need to book in advance.

By bus

Inside each terminal, after the security and customs area, there will be an ADO bus company booth to purchase tickets to Playa del Carmen. Buses run roughly every 20 minutes. You can pay in either local currency or US dollars. ADO uses nice coach buses with A/C (sometimes too much A/C) and will make one stop between the airport and Playa to drop people off in Puerto Morelos (2-3 minute stop).

When you arrive in Playa del Carmen you will need to find a taxi to take you to your hotel in Playa del Carmen. The ADO bus station is on 5th Avenue (the main walking street)  and Calle Juarez. If you don’t have much luggage it’s best to walk a block or so away from the bus station to get a taxi at a better rate.

Safety in Playa del Carmen Mexico

Is Playa del Carmen safe?​

MExplor Private driver from Cancun Airport shuttle

Playa del Carmen is one of the top spots on the Riveria Maya in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. What was once a small fishing village has rapidly developed into a trendy place for package holidays and backpacking adventures alike – and there’s a good reason for that. Playa Del Carmen, Mexico has been safe place especially compared to other tourist destinations or even where you might live. There are things however, to watch out for and know what are areas of concern. In general tourists have few issues with safety in Playa Del Carmen. Boasting beautiful blue sea, good beaches, a laid-back atmosphere and a reputation as being safe, it’s a popular place where visitors can soak up some sun, lounge around with drinks and enjoy the relaxed vibe – and, with plenty of vibrant marine life to see, go scuba diving.

Despite being worlds away from the hazards of Mexico City, the gleaming reputation for the safety of Playa del Carmen has been tarnished with a recent spate of violent crime. Naturally, visitors to this city will be wondering whether or not it actually is safe to visit at all…


Best time to go to Playa del Carmen Mexico

When is the Best Time to Visit Playa Del Carmen?

Best weather

The best time to visit Playa del Carmen is between April and May, when there are fewer people along the shore. Day temperatures hover between 25 and 32 degrees Celsius, dropping slightly in the evenings. From October to March, the climate is generally dry and slightly warm. Summer days and nights tend to offer high temperatures and humidity. Hurricane season lasts from June to September, so check weather forecasts and hurricane warnings before booking your trip.

Best prices

Price can be a factor when looking at a vacation. The two biggest cost for your vacation are going to be the flight and hotel. If cost is a consideration then you should plan around these two things.

Airlines are excellent in charging the most during higher demand times and can raise it daily to adjust. In general the best times to get a cheap flight are late January-February, Late April-early June and October. These times are before or after holidays and a lower season in Playa Del Carmen.

Fortunately hotel deal or decent prices can be found year round. There are so many hotels you can find something in your price range. You may not be able to afford the hotel you want because prices can go up 25% or more during peak seasons or holidays.

What is the Best time to visit Playa del Carmen?

Storm in Playa del Carmen

Things to do in Playa del Carmen

What are the best thing to do in Playa del Carmen?

There are so many incredible things to do in Playa del Carmen that it can be hard to sort through the options. From the secret beach spots, scuba-diving in Cozumel, to the best day trips in the Riviera Maya or spend a night out in the vibrant nightlife, you will find a way to discover the beauty and magic of the Mexican Caribbean coast. Mayan archaeological sites like the World Heritage Chichén Itzá are at hand, as well as imaginative theme parks like Xcaret and Xenses where the Mayan Riviera’s culture and nature roll together into something both exhilarating and educational.

While staying in Playa del Carmen, you should:

Xcaret park

Xplor park

Rio secreto

Xenses park

Playa del Carmen to Cozumel

Best areas to stay in Playa del Carmen Mexico

Where to stay in Playa del Carmen?

One of the biggest choices you have to make when considering where to stay in Playa del Carmen is whether you want to be in Playacar or in Playa Centro. 

Economic hostels

Playa Del Carmen is a huge destination for backpackers because the great beaches, fun nightlife and is a great place to hangout for a while. Playa Del Carmen hostels are trying to keep up with the fun loving people that come to town. Playa has a whole host of fabulous hostels to choose from. From relaxing, Eco-friendly boutiques, to vibrant and colorful party centers, this beach town has it all. We stayed at Boho Beach Hostel.

Cheap hotels

Most people prefer to stay near Playa del Carmen’s 5th Avenue walking street because that’s where all the action is. There are a variety of affordable accommodations when it comes to finding a place to stay. Try the Hotel Barrio Latino.


If you go tom Playa del Carmen with your family or a group of friend, you might like renting a private vacation home to have enough space and privacy. You will find in Playa many vacation rentals, from simple condominium to luxury villas. The one we have been recommended is called Villas la Ceiba.

All-Inclusive resorts

Playa del Carmen has, like Cancun, a wide range of resorts and all-inclusive hotels. Most of the time, there are located outside the city but have private beach and the activities you can do in the Riviera Maya. There is a wide choice of them. The trend of the moment is The Fives Beach Hotel and Residences.

Playa del Carmen Travel budget

What budget would I need in Playa del Carmen?

You should plan to spend around M$708 ($33) per day on your vacation in Playa del Carmen, which is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors. Past travelers have spent, on average, M$249 ($12) on meals for one day and M$91 ($4.28) on local transportation. Also, the average hotel price in Playa del Carmen for a couple is M$730 ($35). 

So, a trip to Playa del Carmen for two people for one week costs on average M$9,908 ($469). Of course, the budget will not be the same if you choose to stay in a resort! All of these average travel prices have been collected from other travelers to help you plan your own travel budget. If you’re traveling as a family of three or four people, the price person often goes down because kid’s tickets are cheaper and hotel rooms can be shared. If you travel slower over a longer period of time then your daily budget will also go down. 

Two people traveling together for one month in Playa del Carmen can often have a lower daily budget per person than one person traveling alone for one week.

Our favourite
The Best tripadvisor experience in Cancun - MExplor

If you want to try something different while staying in Playa del Carmen or the Riviera Maya, we recommend this experience of learning Salsa and do Yoga on the beach in Puerto Morelos. You will spend 2 hours dancing and doing yoga in a paradise environment. 

Rent a Car in Playa del Carmen

While you should always be prepared and take precautions while driving in Mexico, there’s no need to be fearful: driving in Playa del Carmen and renting a car are safe activities for tourists. It is highly recommended to have more freedom to visit the country and no rely on public transports or taxis. You will find very reliable and economic vehicles to rent in Playa del Carmen. 

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