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.
- CurrencyMexican Peso (MXN)
- Time ZoneUTC (-05:00)
- Country Code+52
- Best time to visitSummer 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
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What people are saying about Cancún
Can see why Trip Adviser rates this excursion so highly! The water was crystal clear, great break for the heat outside. Our guide Katia was extremely knowledgeable and engaging. The toast at the end was unexpected and delicious, and the buffet was a wonderful way to end the day. Bring pesos to tip the van drivers out and back from the caves.
As promised we arrived as first group by bus at Chichen Itza early in the morning around 8 am. But of course not at sunrise as written in the online advertisement. We could spend 3 ours at Chichen Itza. Two hours as guided tour and one hour for ourselves. Our guide Marco did a great job! He is a relaxed and very funny guide, who is at the same time very knowledgable. I enjoyed this tour and his explanations of the Maya culture very much.
Nice day. Visited a fresh water under groud spring along the coast. Stop lasts for 30-45 minutes. Back in boat for ride over to Yum Balum. Then back in boat for two minute jump over to Holbox Isand. Both Islands were one island but the caribean thought overwise. Water split the outer edge of island into two seperate islands (cool places). Guide takes you for a walk down the beach to find the lunch host. The host was an authentic Holbox islander who cooked the catch of the day very well. You have a list of food to select from. Start off by placing some big plates of civiche with chips around the group (our group consisted of 8 people). I ordered the Whole fish with garlic and found it quite tasty. After lunch you have some time (I believe it was two hours) to explore Holbox island. A five minute walk from the beach is downtown Holbox. Dirt streets with local shops mixed in with modern tourist collectibles. Bring Pesos and water. Ride boat back to shore and take the bus/shuttle back.
We wanted to visit Las Coloradas, and found this trip included so many extras that made an amazing, personal, safe, and exciting all-day adventure! Only 12 of us, started early & on time, and never felt rushed at any stop. First visited Ek Balam - ruin you can walk on, then lots of time and photos at the lake, then boat tour, delicious Mexican dinner, and crocodile farm visit! Our guide Edder pointed out things we would never have seen (horseshoe crab to touch, tree worms at the ruin, many flamingos) & staged photos that gave us great memories throughout the day. Both Edder & our driver Jorge, made us all feel safe and welcomed. Next day took a larger bus tour to ChichenItza with a different group, and it paled in comparison to how great this Las Coloradas tour was! My daughter had the BEST first experience in Mexico thanks to Edder & Jorge & Raul! Thank you!!
Nicely developed, taking advantages of the natural resources with minimal impact. Great operation by staff to ensure smooth, hassle free enjoyment and access to the water. Only negative concerns are the confinement of the dolphins and manatees.