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These 3 Mexican Caribbean Destinations Have Smashed Their Tourism Records As They Skyrocket In Popularity

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Before the world went through the pandemic, the Mexican Caribbean was more popular than ever, with a whole host of tourism records broken in 2019.

And while that may feel like a lifetime away for some, the destination, as well as other destinations throughout the world, have been working hard to return to the high-flying days before masks and lockdowns dominated the news cycle.

A deep blue port area on the island of Cozumel

For the Mexican Caribbean, the recovery has been phenomenal, with more travelers than ever choosing this stunning corner of Mexico for their hard-earned vacations.

Surprisingly, it isn’t the tourism powerhouses of Cancun and Playa del Carmen that are leading the pack and moving past their 2019 records, but three smaller and more intimate destinations that are drawing in more travelers than ever.

Aerial view of beautiful Playa Norte beach in Isla Mujeres

Isla/Costa Mujeres

Travelers will no doubt have heard about the beautiful destination of Isla Mujeres. Located a short 20-minute ferry ride from the coast of Cancun, this small but attractive island has captured all the magic of Cancun’s hotel zone while retaining its Caribbean charm.

The only issue is Isla Mujeres’ limited space, with almost nowhere left to build on the island without negatively impacting its delicate balance. An aura of exclusivity is quickly growing with the destination.

Tourists enjoying a sunny day at Playa Norte in Isla Mujeres

Thankfully, travelers can enjoy an almost unchanged experience on the Costa Mujeres. Just 30 minutes from downtown Cancun by car, Costa Mujeres is quickly earning a reputation as a true contender to the hotel zone in Cancun.

Like Isla Mujeres, travelers who choose to vacation here can enjoy a more relaxed Caribbean vacation with beautiful beaches and no big crowds. However, the real strength of the Costa Mujeres is its close proximity to both Cancun and Isla Mujeres.

Ocean views in Costa Mujeres with greenery


Another island entry, Cozumel sits directly off the coast of Playa del Carmen. However, unlike Isla Mujeres, there is no shortage of space to explore, with Cozumel coming in at almost 300 square miles in size.

While Cozumel has been a popular stop for cruise ships for decades, land-based travelers are beginning to recognize the amazing beauty and huge value the island provides for a vacation.

Home to a large area of protected jungle, many of the mainland Mexican Caribbeans’ adventurous activities can be found here.

Cozumel Beach

On top of this, Cozumel provides an interesting and educational insight into the cultural history of the Mexican Caribbean, with an ancient reputation as a sacred place and well-preserved Maya ruins present for travelers to visit.

Additionally, the islands’ main town of San Miguel de Cozumel is home to delicious restaurants, as well as a relaxed and enjoyable bar scene that values authentic experiences over flashy big-destination nightclubs.

The huge increase in traveler numbers here has broken the previous highs in 2019, showing that this hidden gem of the Mexican Caribbean won’t stay hidden for long.

Aerial View of the Island of Cozumel Surrounded by Aqua Blue Water


Out of all the entries, Chetumal is where travelers can find the most unique and authentic Caribbean experience.

Nestled directly on the border between Mexico and Belize, Chetumal isn’t the standard Mexican Caribbean beach vacation hotspot but instead acts as one of the best places to use as a base to explore the increasingly popular attractions that surround it.

Aerial View of the Coast of Chetumal, Mexico

The towns of Mahahual and Bacalar are both just a short drive away, with each offering amazing experiences for travelers that have helped to fuel whispers of them being the Mexican Caribbeans’ new “Hidden gems”.

But the biggest draw to this border area of the Mexican Caribbean, and why many travelers are choosing to stay at Chetumal, is its proximity to some of the most breathtaking and memorable Maya ruins in all of Mexico.

maya ruins at kohunlich

While Chichen Itza is Mexico’s most popular attraction and one of the seven wonders of the world, the ruins of Kohunlich just west of Chetumal are arguably even more important to the preservation of Maya history and culture.

Furthermore, the less-manicured condition of these extensive ruins is a notable positive for many travelers, who see the creeping jungle around it as a huge piece of the puzzle that makes Kohunlich one of Mexico’s most magical experiences.

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Thursday 29th of February 2024

Happy times yahoo