The Mayan civilization bloomed in this region, which now hosts a wealth of historic archaeological sites. One of the largest Mayan pyramids, Cobá, lies about two hours from Cancun.
QUINTANA ROO, MEXICO – Travelers headed to the Mexican Caribbean this summer will find myriad new activities beyond the stunning beaches. New theme parks, vibrant cultural sites, culinary variety and the natural splendor of an otherworldly landscape have drawn an alternative pull toward the iconic region this season.
“The Mexican Caribbean is much more than its beautiful beaches, offering unexpected features for every kind of traveler, from solo travelers and adventurers to families,” said Dario Flota Ocampo, director of Quintana Roo Tourism Board. “Visitors are beginning to expect and enjoy a different side to the Mexican Caribbean, and we are happy to continue surpassing that expectation with adventure, gastronomy, and of course our strong Mayan culture.”
The Mayan civilization bloomed in this region, which now hosts a wealth of historic archaeological sites. One of the largest Mayan pyramids, Cobá, lies about two hours from Cancun. Visitors can climb 120 steps to the top for breathtaking treetop views. Other landmark remnants of Mayan culture include cenotes – natural pools of crystal-clear fresh water – where visitors can enjoy swimming and water activities while learning about the famed Mayan underworld of “Xibalba.”
The Mayan community holds a deep spiritual connection to cenotes, which are considered sacred spaces. Travelers can learn how today’s Mayans live with Alltournative excursions, among other tour companies, which take guests deeper into the community. For a more off-the-grid experience, the protected region of Maya Ka’an is the heart of the Mexican Caribbean’s Mayan origins, featuring independent, community-run tours and lush biodiversity among its treasures.
Recently opened Woodward at Hard Rock Riviera Maya brings the best elements of outdoor hobbies to an indoor, all-inclusive setting. Visitors get the best of both worlds in this 29,000 sq. ft. shrine to lifestyle sports boasting a pump track, indoor skatepark, dryland skiing, obstacle course and more. For even more adventure, the latest and most daring of Grupo Xcaret’s world-class activity parks, Xavage, entertains thrill-seekers by air, earth and water. Activities range in difficulty from the tame Xavage Soft to the challenging Xavage Ultimate as guests have the chance to horizontally zip line, whitewater raft and drive off-road vehicles – among other exciting activities – through the expansive park.
Foodies will appreciate a visit to Mexico Lindo Cooking School, which shares Mexico’s rich culture through gastronomy in an array of hands-on cooking classes, workshops and farm-to-table tours that give visitors a taste of the region’s famous fare. The school’s unmissable pink casita is situated in Puerto Morelos greenery, housing an authentic journey through the senses. The Traveler’s Table is another interactive culinary experience displaying the vast influences of Mexican cuisine from Spanish, African and Middle Eastern tastes. At the table’s fun communal setting, diners enjoy a five-course meal prepared with flavors and techniques from the Mayan empire to the present day and paired with wines, mezcals and tequilas.
Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.
She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.