Tips to Explore Cancun’s Nature and History that You Probably Didn’t Know About

Cancun is by far the most lively and colorful beach destination in the Yucatan Peninsula. This Mexican resort is world-famous for its wild parties, sandy beaches, and enticing waters. Once you stray from the most popular tourist attractions and take your water activities away from the heart of the resort, you will discover new wonders only hours away.

Travel to Coba and reach the top of Nohoch Mul

Chichen Itza might be the most advertised Mayan attraction in Yucatan, but it isn’t the only one you should explore. The Coba Archeological Area in the heart of what used to be a Mayan city is only 90 kilometers east from Chicchen Itza. Close to two lagoons you can explore and a village of a little over 1200 inhabitants, Coba is the perfect destination to discover the past and present of true Yucatan life. Nohoch Mul is the tallest group of structures on the site, a former temple pyramid. You can climb to the top and enjoy the views of the surrounding scenery.


Photo by O.Mustfin via Wikipedia

El Rey, Only a Few Steps from the Cancun Beaches

If you want to explore the Mayan culture but don’t want to stray far from the Cancun hotels, clubs, and restaurants, then you will be happy to know that the El Rey archeological site is right in the resort. No travel needed – just a few hours to explore the ancient Mayan buildings which include plazas and platforms, all connected by a yard path. Named after a skeleton found here and thought to belong to a king, El Rey is definitely a must see. To travel closer to our time, take the short walk to Yamil Lu’um, a site comprising only two small temples which acted as lighthouses and watchtowers about seven centuries ago.

Explore the Xcaret Eco-Park

Mexico is not only rich in terms of culture, but also in flora and fauna. To explore underwater life, there is no better choice than the Xcaret Coral Reef Aquarium, one of the very few on the globe where you can discover the biodiversity and multicolored treasures of Mexico’s Caribbean coral reef from such close range. Inlets (Xcaret’s beach), the Butterfly Pavilion, or the underground rivers are reason enough to go see this eco-park. If that’s not enough, there are plenty of restaurants and bars within it – and if you time your trip right – you can enjoy the Xcaret Mexico Espectacular celebration.


Photo by Tina via

Snorkel in the Natural Aquarium of Xel-Ha

Named by the Mayans (Xel-Ha means where the water is born) this natural aquarium prides itself as a model for sustainable tourism. Visitors can swim and snorkel in the river or the lagoon among myriads of multicolored fish while discovering the history of Xel-Ha. In the days of the Mayan it served as a port, trading center and place of pilgrimage to the present. This is the best place to discover the flora and fauna of Yucatan in its natural habitat while surrounded by restaurants serving traditional Mexican food. If you’re looking for a bit of adventure, try to fly on a vine, consider zip lining, jump from a cliff, or test your balance and agility with the Trepchanga.

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