In the Riviera Maya there are a variety of luxury condos and vacation homes available for rent or sale, but it can be tough to decide whether they offer a better value than the promised “all inclusive” big-box resorts. But as Travel Weekly recently observed, there are enormous advantages to venturing “off property,” such as better proximity to local attractions and the staggering array of activities available in this part of the Riviera Maya.
“For those who can resist the temptation to spend their vacations entirely within the confines of a resort, one of the benefits to staying at a property in or around downtown Playa del Carmen is the many activities that are a short distance away”, wrote Travel Weekly.
Here are five of the best reasons to stay in one of the luxury condos or vacation homes that are located off-resort in downtown Playa del Carmen:
1. Museo Frida Kahlo Riviera Maya
The Frida Kahlo Museum of the Riviera Maya is located in downtown Playa del Carmen and takes guests on an interactive digital experience that recreates the most significant events from the renowned artist’s life. Guests get to browse recreations of the artist’s now-infamous tram accident, as well as the bedroom where she spent most of her time recovering from that horrible tragedy and ultimately began to paint.
2. Coba Mayan Ruins
Situated about a half hour from Tulum, the ruins of Coba are also about 60 miles east of Chichen Itza, which is another popular ancient Mayan destination in the Riviera Maya region. Coba is currently one of the last remaining Mayan sites that still permits visitors to climb the ruins, perhaps most notably the Nohoch Mul pyramid, which is the tallest on the entire Yucatan peninsula!
3. Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve
Located only 40 miles south of Playa and just south of Tulum lies the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, which contains more than 1.3 million acres of federally protected land. As a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sian Ka’an is also home to 23 archaeological sites, more than 336 species of birds, 103 species of animals and at least two endangered species of marine turtles.
4. Kitesurfing Xpu-Ha Beach
Easily one of the best beaches in the world, Xpu-Ha is situated between Playa and Tulum in the heart of the Riviera Maya, making it ideal for a day trip excursion. Xpu-Ha is home to a gorgeous natural reef that is perfect for kite surfing, with onshore winds that cross from the southeast to the northeast to make for some excellent waves!
5. Kantun-Chi EcoPark
Although eco parks are popular throughout the Mexican Caribbean, Kantun-Chi is slightly less well-known, although it’s only 15 miles south of downtown Playa del Carmen. Offering easy access to four gorgeous freshwater cenotes that are ideal for swimming and snorkeling, its location off the beaten path means there’s always a chance you’ll have Kantun-Chi all to yourself!
Do you like to venture outside of the “all-inclusive” experience? Tell us why (or why not) in the comments!
Want more ideas? Read Downtown Playa del Carmen: Modern Luxe Meets Old World Style!