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These 2 Mexican Caribbean Destinations Have Been The Most Crowded This Year

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The Mexican Caribbean’s tourism scene is booming this summer, with the state of Quintana Roo expected to welcome more than 1.8 million tourists by the end of August.

In a recent statement, the Mexican Secretary of Tourism unveiled the hotel occupancy rates for several beachfront destinations in the country, highlighting a notable 3.45% increase compared to the previous year.

Akumal beach

And in the heart of the Mexican Caribbean, two destinations stood out: Akumal and Playacar.

Boasting 85% and 83% hotel occupancy rates, respectively, these two coastal gems even outshined the illustrious Cancun, which reported a 76.6% occupancy.

So, if you want to find out the secret behind these Mexican Caribbean destinations that are drawing more visitors than even Cancun, read on!



This paradise not only boasts some of the most spectacular beaches in the Riviera Maya, but it’s also renowned as a premier snorkeling destination, featuring key spots like Akumal Bay, Media Luna Bay, and the Yal-Ku lagoon.

The name “Akumal” is derived from the Mayan language, meaning ‘Land of the Turtle.’ And Akumal lives up to its title, as you’re more than likely to encounter these creatures graciously grazing on seaweed along the seabed.

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Sea turtle

To ensure a memorable experience of swimming alongside these gentle creatures, the best approach is to enlist the services of a tour guide who will also provide the necessary gear.

Yet, Akumal has much more to offer beyond this incredible turtle experience. 

Just off Akumal’s shoreline lies the Great Mayan Reef, the world’s second-largest coral reef, home to more than 60 coral species.

Here, you can plunge into a fascinating underwater realm, swimming alongside countless tropical fish species (including the menacing-looking but harmless barracudas), stingrays, crabs, octopuses, and much more.

@gringomexicano20 Just 1 day is all it takes 🇲🇽🥰 #akumal #gringomexicanoenmexico #mexico #quintanaroo #springbreak2023 #playadelcarmen #ecom #traveladvisory #tulum #livinginmexico #playa ♬ Como La Flor – Selena

Following your snorkeling adventure, treat yourself to a delicious meal at one of the numerous nearby restaurants. 

Right along the beachfront, the Lol-Ha restaurant serves up traditional Mexican cuisine accompanied by magnificent seaside views.

And for an exceptional seafood experience, look no further than La Cueva del Pescador. Afterward, don’t miss out on the delightful desserts at the Turtle Bay Café and Bakery.

If you wish to extend your stay at this coastal gem, there are several excellent accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets.

Akumal Natura Glamping provides small Mayan-style cabins with private cenotes, spa, and a pool, while the cozy Beachfront Hammock heaven offers a beachfront apartment with a private terrace, hammock, kitchen and access to the beach.

Secrets Akumal Lobby
Image courtesy of: Secrets Akumal

But for the ultimate luxury, Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya is your best choice. Featuring spacious rooms with jacuzzis, an outdoor pool, spa, tennis court, and a privileged beachfront, this lavish all-inclusive has everything you need for an unforgettable Akumal experience.


This upscale enclave, located south of the town of Playa del Carmen, is known for its collection of 5 -star all-inclusives, extensive golf courses, and exclusive residential areas.

Playacar consists of two distinct phases: Playacar Phase 1, which boasts a beachfront location close to downtown Playa del Carmen, and Playacar Phase 2, nestled alongside a golf course designed by Robert von Hagge.

playacar palace

And beyond the luxurious accommodations, Playacar’s pristine beaches are undoubtedly one of the main reasons travelers are flocking to this stunning destination.

The aptly named Playa Playacar stretches out with its sandy shores and inviting turquoise waters. Set against a backdrop of lush tropical vegetation, it’s the perfect spot for simply soaking up the sun or engaging in water sports such as snorkeling, windsurfing, sailing, and diving.

History enthusiasts will be amazed by the nearby archaeological site Xaman-Há, which features three hidden edifices tucked away in the vibrant jungle.

The area is also brimming with local wildlife, so you can expect to find numerous endemic bird species, along with iguanas, coatis and agoutis.

Quinta Avenida

And let’s not forget the iconic La Quinta Avenida, situated about 3 miles from Playacar.

This vibrant avenue is an essential stop on any Playa del Carmen itinerary, offering an array of international restaurants, lively nightspots, and a treasure trove of art and crafts stores. 

So, now that you know the secret behind these two Riviera Maya hotspots’ popularity, be sure to include them in your upcoming Mexican Caribbean adventure!

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