There is no doubt that downtown Playa del Carmen is a foodie’s delight. Many locals even joke that there are so many restaurants, you could dine at a different one twice a day for 18 months and never eat in the same place twice! Playa (as we locals call it) is home to restaurants of all tastes and influences. Along our world-famous Fifth Avenue, there are many great places to eat, but real gems that offer some unique dining choices are a bit removed from the main tourism zone.
Here are four of my favorite places to eat in Playa del Carmen – if you happen to visit any of these fabulous Riviera Maya restaurants, I hope you enjoy, or as we say here, Buen provecho!
Craving some good old German food and a fun atmosphere? Check out Manne’s Biergartern on 4th street between 10 and 15. The restaurant is small, so reservations are necessary on many nights. Besides the great food (the Sunday night prime rib is to die for), owners Manne and Susanne always make sure everyone has a good time and it’s quite common to see Susanne leading a congo line through the restaurant and out onto the street!
You would probably never expect to see an Indian Restaurant in Mexico – but there is one (and only one!) in Playa, and it’s absolutely delicious! Curry Omm is located on 10th Street near the entrance to Playacar. It’s a popular place for people who want genuine Indian food and the outdoor tables are a great place to watch the world go by as people head towards the nightlife of this amazing little city on the Mexican Caribbean Sea.
Los Tabernacos Sports Bar and Lounge
Canadians love their poutine, so there may be a few places in Playa where you can get this Quebec staple of French fries, gravy and cheese curds. But none are more authentic than the 10 different kinds of poutine served at Los Tabernacos Sports Bar and Lounge on 10th Street between 10 and 15 Avenue. They even have a breakfast poutine that combines French fries, Oaxaca cheese, sausage, bacon, caramelized onions, Hollandaise sauce and a fried egg on top. That’s a meal!
Believe it or not, you can even find mouthwatering Chicago deep-dish pizza in downtown Playa del Carmen. Don Chendo’s pizza restaurant is located on 30th Avenue near 24 Street. This part of Playa is home to many great restaurants and, in my opinion, Don Chendo serves the best deep-dish pizza south of Chicago… Along with a variety of other delicious Italian food.
The common theme among all of these restaurants is they aren’t fancy, but the food is superb and the prices are generally much less expensive than you would find for this kind of quality at home. So whether you’re visiting a resort in the Riviera Maya, or staying in a local Playa del Carmen condo, make sure you give yourself the chance to enjoy the gastronomic delights of at least one of my top four restaurants in Playa del Carmen.
Do you have questions about traveling to Mexico? Share them in the comments!
Be sure to check out our Visitor’s Guide to Downtown Playa Carmen for insider tips about what to do when you visit this part of Mexico’s Riviera Maya.