Riviera Maya
Safaris & Wildlife Activities

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Our most recommended Riviera Maya Safaris & Wildlife Activities

Riviera Maya: Sian Kaan Boat Trip Adventure

1. Riviera Maya: Sian Kaan Boat Trip Adventure

Punta Allen is a picturesque and perfect place to park yourself on a 3-hour boat tour! Here explore the local lagoons and come face to face with the incredible wildlife of this region. You'll have the chance to see beautiful birds and maybe even the chance to see wild dolphins and sea turtles that live in these waters! On our 3-hour tour, also stop at the 2nd largest coral reef in the world, where you can jump out of the boat and enjoy a pleasant snorkel adventure (subject to sea conditions). You'll be amazed at the colors of this still very healthy coral reef and the varieties of fish are absolutely stunning. The reef system is home to more than 65 species of stony coral, 350 species of mollusk and more than 500 species of fish. After your snorkel, head to the beach, where the picture perfect sandbar awaits. Here enjoy a delicious Caribbean lunch of fresh fish and fruit before heading back out to explore a bit more. The biodiversity of the Yucatan Peninsula is important and the aim is to share this passion with you and teach you how you can all work to keep this great natural land safe for future generations. It became a World Heritage Site in 1987 and you'll understand why!

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From Tulum: Sian Ka'an Half-Day Tour

2. From Tulum: Sian Ka'an Half-Day Tour

The ancient Mayan ruins of Muyil in the middle of the Sian Kaan Jungle Reserve look like something out of an old Indian Jones movie. Here, you will discover the incredible history of this ancient civilization, as you wander through the ruins. Muyil was one of the earliest and longest inhabited ancient Maya sites on the eastern coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, and artifacts have been found here dating all the way back to 350BCE! On our day together, we will walk through this inspiring eco-preserve to the highest point in the Sian Kaan reserve, where we can gaze out at unblemished jungle that is filled with hundreds of species of birds, plants and animal life. After our hike, we will enjoy a boat ride through the trading canals of the ancient Maya civilization and visit the Maya temple of Xlapak. Here, you can gaze at the detailed facades of these old ruins, located at the bottom of the river valley. They are so well preserved, you will easily be able to pick out the figures (keep an eye out for the Rain god!) After visiting this site, we will float back down through the canals between mangroves and gently carry ourselves out in the crystal-clear waters around the peninsula. On board, enjoy an assortment of Mexican snacks as the sunsets over this beautiful landscape. Together we will experience the best of this region! The food, the culture, the nature and a bit of relaxation make this an absolutely perfect day trip from your home base in Playa del Carmen.

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Akumal: Akumal Monkey Sanctuary Tour

3. Akumal: Akumal Monkey Sanctuary Tour

Enjoy a fun and educational day out to a monkey sanctuary near Playa del Carmen, the only of its kind in Mexico that is authorized to operate an educational bonding program with primates. Spend the day exploring the sanctuary and its grounds, located in a tropical jungle. In the company of an experienced guide, meet over 200 animals including monkeys, that were orphaned, injured, abused, or unwanted pets. Learn more about the needs of each animal and their personal history and get educated on the existential threats to their ecosystem and communities.

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Rio Lagartos, Las Coloradas, and Cenote Hubiku Day Trip

4. Rio Lagartos, Las Coloradas, and Cenote Hubiku Day Trip

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel or apartment in Playa del Carmen or Cancún , and then journey by air-conditioned vehicle to the city of Temozón. Stop for a coffee and to taste some delicious antojitos (street food) before going to Cenote Hubiku to explore one of the sacred sinkholes of the Maya civilization. Get some free time to explore the archaeological site at your own expense. Encounter crocodiles in their natural habitat with a visit to a crocodile sanctuary, and look for flamingoes in the salt ponds of Las Coloradas. Marvel at the different shades of pink in the lagoons of Rio Lagartos during a boat ride through the mangroves. Keep a look out for different birdlife, including cormorants, ospreys, herons and pelicans. Stop for lunch of salad, soft drinks and a main course of your choice from fresh fish, chicken or a vegetarian option. Get dropped off at your hotel at the end of an incredible day in the Yucatán Peninsula.

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Cancun or Playa del Carmen: Turtles & Cenote Snorkeling Tour

5. Cancun or Playa del Carmen: Turtles & Cenote Snorkeling Tour

Start the tour with pickup from the lobby of your hotel then set off on your 3-hour cenote discovery tour. Find out about how these impressive underground rivers were sacred places for the Mayan civilization and are the habitat for an array of marine and wildlife. Explore a beautiful cenote, where you can swim and snorkel. First, head over to the most beautiful cenote of the area just outside Riviera Maya. Observe eagle rays and find colorful fish amongst the world's 2nd-largest reef system. Full snorkeling gear will be provided and a professional guide will be there with you at all times to ensure you feel safe and take pictures.  Then, travel to a designated bay to admire sea turtles in their natural environment. Spend approximately 1-hour swimming and snorkeling. Enjoy this incredible opportunity to get up close to these spectacular creatures with sightings guaranteed. During the tour, enjoy a buffet snack of fruit, pastries, homemade "empanadas" (stuffed pastries), and refreshments. Finally, get dropped off back at your hotel where your memorable experience concludes.

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From Tulum: ATV Ride with Monkey Sanctuary and Cenote Trip

6. From Tulum: ATV Ride with Monkey Sanctuary and Cenote Trip

Leave Tulum for a trip to the Sacred Cenote. Go deep into the Mayan Jungle and be a part of nature as you ride your own 4×4 ATV. Spend time with rescued monkeys and other animals at Akumal Monkey Sanctuary. To ensure comfort and safety during your trip, receive driving instructions from your guide. Then, hop on your ATV and put on the safety gear provided to discover the landscapes of the Mayan jungle. Immerse yourself in the wonderful waters of the spectacular Sacred Cenote. Take a swim in an underground river in the middle of nature. To complete the journey, meet and interact with rescued animals on a tour of Akumal Monkey Sanctuary.

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Playa del Carmen: Tulum Ruins, Caves and Swim with Turtles

7. Playa del Carmen: Tulum Ruins, Caves and Swim with Turtles

Get ready to discover the most important Mayan city facing the majestic Caribbean Sea, protected by a large cliff, from where you have a spectacular view. Discover the secrets kept this ancient Mayan city archaeological tour led by a guide. Then enter the vast Mayan jungle that holds one of the most spectacular places in the Yucatan Peninsula: Hilarios Cenote, where you will enjoy crystal clear waters and you can connect with nature. After, your expert guides who will show you the ancient formations of stalactites and stalagmites that decorate this beautiful place. To complete your tour, visit one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean, where you see sea turtles as well as a stunning coral reef that gives life to hundreds of fish of different colors.

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Sian Ka'an Safari with Transfer Options

8. Sian Ka'an Safari with Transfer Options

After pick-up from your hotel, arrive in Tulum for a quick briefing. Travel for about 25 kilometers before you board the boat in Paso Lagartos to start the 3-hour marine safari. On the way to Paso Lagartos, make a stop at the Boca Paila Bridge where the lagoon and Caribbean Sea meet to admire local species of crocodiles. During your marine safari, observe wild dolphins, sea turtles and different species of birds and manatees. You can even go snorkeling if the sea conditions are good. After snorkeling, head to a natural pool, Punta Allen, to swim and relax. Afterwards, enjoy lunch followed by some free time to explore the area. End with a transfer back to your hotel.

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From Cancun: Xcaret Park with Night Show and Transportation

9. From Cancun: Xcaret Park with Night Show and Transportation

The Xcaret Park Full-Day Tour is the best way to visit Xcaret Park with roundtrip transportation included and all the benefits of full-day entry. Enjoy a convenient pickup from your hotel and head straight to Xcaret, the top family theme park in Mexico. Your Xcaret tour includes: Roundtrip transportation in a bus with air conditioning and tour conductor. Access to Xcaret eco park from 8:30 to 21:30. Upon your arrival plan your day with more than 40 activities and attractions. Enjoy an unforgettable experience with free access to showers, dressing rooms, bags for belongings during the underground river journey, and life vests. Xcaret at Night begins with colorful cultural performances, aMayan Ball Game, and the Xcaret Mexico Espectacular celebration at 19:00. Water Activities: Underground River journey, Río del Paraíso journey, Beach, Inlet, and Natural Pools. Exhibitions: Coral Reef Aquarium, Marine Turtles Area, Manatee Lagoon, Bat Cave, Butterfly Pavilion, Deer Refuge, Jaguar Island, Spider Monkey Island, Mushroom Farm, Living Museum of Orchids, Tapir's Territory, Tropical Jungle Trail, Regional Wildlife Breeding Farm and Rotating Scenic Tower.Culture & Performances: Archaeological sites, House of Whispers, Mayan Village, St. Francis of Assisi Chapel, Hacienda Henequenera, Stained-glass Plaza, Nature and Culture tours, Papantla Flying Men, Pre-Hispanic Ball Game, and Fiesta Charra.

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Holbox Island Tour with Transfer Options

10. Holbox Island Tour with Transfer Options

Journey to the port of Chiquila on the mainland of the Yucatan Peninsula opposite Holbox Island just 15 minutes across the sea. Board a boat and get beautiful views of Holbox Island and its colorful houses. Look for wildlife in the protected area, including whales. Head for Yalahau Island to swim in the crystal clear waters and get in touch with nature. You will reach the port of Holbox in time for lunch. Then, take a tour of the island to capture stunning photos of all the landmarks you will see along the way. End with a visit to Isla Pasion (Passion Island) to enjoy its shallow waters and marvel at its white sand beach where the rays of the sun turn the water a stunning turquoise blue.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Riviera Maya

Want to discover all there is to do in Riviera Maya? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Riviera Maya

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 254 reviews

My sister and I both enjoyed our guide Dorian. He was very friendly and knowledgeable of the area where we went to do snorkeling with the turtles, which was in Akumal. A very beautiful area! And then we went down the road a bit to the very beautiful cenotes and had an amazing time snorkeling in the crystal clear waters of the cenotes.

A highly recommended experience, the sensations that this immersion generates is incomparable to others, it is a dream of any diver to be able to meet these majestic creatures. The attention of the excellent instructors, they have been waiting for us all the time. I will definitely be back.

Great experience seen the turtles, it was surreal. Also see string rays and other fish which just follow you around Cenote is also a great experience max we swam in two separate ones and both as enjoyable

It was a great combo to visit the Tulum ruins, swim in the Atumal bay and be able to see turtles and see in a great cenote. Our guide was great as well.

What a wonderful experience! And our guide, Obniel, was great!