Top attractions in Cancún
Stunning beaches and a thriving nightlife are Cancun's main attractions, but it would be foolish to limit yourself in a city that offers visitors so much! From ancient ruins to top restaurants and wildlife, here are a few of the highlights.
Isla Contoy is a nature reserve and home to many birds, plants, and turtles. Tours are usually led by a biologist and end with snorkelling off its pristine shoreline!
This renowned archaeological site is the most essential item on any Cancun sightseeing list. The restored pyramid at its heart crowns an iconic city from Mayan mythology.
The Yucatan's vast groundwater sinkholes were considered portals to the underworld by the ancient Maya. Few are as famous as Ik Kil, which is open for public swimming!
Snorkel through this incredible museum at the Aquaworld scuba-diving center – home to hundreds of submerged sculptures and the world's largest artificial coral reef!
Climb the 130 steps to the top of the Mayan pyramid, and look out over the ruins of an ancient city that was once the grave enemy of Chichen Itza!
There's plenty for the whole family to enjoy at this ecotourism hotspot. Swim with dolphins, manatees, and stingrays when you're not relaxing amid the spectacular scenery!
The "Two Eyes" cenote system still hasn't been completely explored, but the parts that have offer crystal-clear waters and a lot of natural light – perfect for snorkelling!
It's only a 15-minute boat ride to the "Island of Women," where visitors can enjoy the uncluttered beaches, tour the lively town on a golf cart, or go swimming with dolphins!
Stretched over more than a million acres, Sian Ka'an boasts numerous archaeological sites and wildlife habitats, as well as gorgeous beaches that must be accessed via the jungle!
Don't have time for Chichen Itza or Coba? Then head to Tulum. The ruins aren't quite as impressive, but it's closer and there are lots of great open-air restaurants downtown!
Peak season is December to April, with near-perfect weather drawing the larger crowds. Though spring, summer, and fall may offer more enticing vacation deals and hotel rates, the summers are punishingly hot and the fall months often stormy.
With so many immersive activities and attractions, you'll want to spend at least a week in Cancun to make the most of your visit!
The official currency of Mexico's eastermost city is, of course, the Mexican peso. However, American dollars are widely accepted in the tourist areas. Either way it isn't hard to find a bank or exchange house that will swap whatever cash you came with.
- Mexican Peso (MXN)
- Time Zone
- UTC (-05:00)
- Country Code
- Best time to visit
- Summer is peak season, so delay your visit to September through November, when you'll still enjoy good weather, but fewer crowds. Just remember, the light drizzle is ever-present!
Things to Do in Cancún
Top Attractions in Cancún
Cities in Mexico
Other Sightseeing Options in Cancún
Want to discover all there is to do in Cancún? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Cancún
Who comes the Mexico and doesn’t want to try tacos! Alex was excellent tour. We was very kind, patient and informative on the local eateries. He picked us up from our resort with another driver. He drove us to the first spot and told us some information about Cancún. The first spot was the best, modern types of tacos. In total we went to 4 taco joints and all but one had beer available. The tacos were all good! Our last stop was a churro cart and lemme tell you, BEST churro I ever had! The churro cart was in an outdoor food area where me and my partner went bull riding and got amazing ice cream. Alex patiently waited for us to finish since we were the only two on the tour. I recommend Alex and this tour!
I was very pleased with the service received. Due to current Covid restrictions and some destinations still closed, the program has changed on short notice. I was contacted prior to the tour and being informed of the changes. Therefore I have been given a choice to continue or to cancel. It was handled in a very professional matter. I had reservations with others who ghosted on me by being a no-show and then blocked my number when I tried to contact them. Another big plus is the price. I got a 6 hour guided tour through the city for the price of a single trip by taxi from my hotel to the city center.
As Chichen Itzá archaeological site closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the tour was tweaked to a ¨Cenotes and Mayan traditions¨ with local tour affiliate, Ekinox Tours. The tour guide was rather knowledgeable & thorough. The tour included hotel pick-up, swimming in two impressive Cenotes (Mariposa & Chen-Ha), learning about the process of collecting honey from the Maya bee, the Melipona; traditions related to cocoa in the daily life of the Mayans; Mayan ceremony with a Shaman a nice lunch then shopping on 5th Ave in Playa del Carmen.
This was an amazing day! I did not expect such an awesome tour and I highly recommend it! Not only did we get to see the beautiful ancient ruins, we also got to meet a local Mayan family at their home. This was a small group and it was extremely personable. The guide was amazing! The cenote he took us to was refreshing. Keep in mind is a very long day, but 110% worth it!! :)
Angel was my guide. It was a great tour. I got to try food and drinks that I have never tried before- even with my multiple trips to different parts of Mexico. Everything I had on the tour was delicious. I don’t eat pork or beef and Angel was able to tailor the tour to my food restrictions.