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These Off The Beaten Path Destinations South Of Cancun Are Soaring In Popularity Right Now

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As Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean continue their unstoppable surge in travel popularity, a growing number of visitors are seeking new, quieter destinations to explore.

And two destinations south of Cancun, the crown jewel of the Mexican Caribbean and its most popular resort hotspot, are quickly gaining popularity thanks to their laid-back ambiance and soul-soothing wonders.

aerial view of a colorful lagoon in bacalar

Xul Ha and Huay Pix, two small eco-travel hubs situated in the south of Quintana Roo, have seen booking numbers skyrocket in the past months.

Home to a handful of stunning lagoons and oases, these picturesque destinations have what it takes to become even trendier.

overwater bungalows in bacalar with colorful wter

As more travelers set their sights on the Mexican Caribbean this winter, here’s why Xul Ha and Huay Pix are worth adding to your next itinerary. 

Serene Nature And Stunning Views Captivate Travelers In These Booming Hotspots

The south of Quintana Roo – encompassing everything from Tulum to Chetumal – has surged in popularity with travel. Unlike other resort-heavy destinations, this region is all about immersing oneself in local culture and nature and enjoying a wide range of outdoor activities. 

Two destinations in particular, Xul Ha and Huay Pix, are increasingly on travelers’ radars thanks to their growing number of boutique hotels and online rentals.

@travelsbytash Make sure to visit Bacalar on your next trip to Mexico! The colour of the water here is insane 😍 #backpackingmexico #solofemalebackpacker #bacalarmexico #visitmexico🇲🇽🇲🇽🇲🇽 #mexicotips ♬ Walking On a Dream – Empire of the Sun

According to the local tourism and hospitality association, destinations like Bacalar are trending with travelers right now thanks to their picturesque lagoons and unique accommodations.

Although travelers can certainly find a handful of traditional all-inclusive resorts in the area, this part of Quintana Roo is famous for its charming and modest boutique hotels, which offer stunning views of surrounding nature.

With Bacalar alone home to hundreds of small family-run accommodations and countless online rentals, places like Xul Ha and Huay Pix are posted to become new hotspots for travelers. 

@tui.benelux 📍Bacalar Lagoon, Mexico 🇲🇽 #tui #mexico #bacalar #bacalarlagoon #paradise #lagoon #tiktoktravel #travellife #livehappy #travel #foryou #fyp #foryoupage ♬ original sound – Owen

Located just south of Bacalar and west of Chetumal, Xul Ha is a small village with a big culture and breathtaking natural scenery. Some 30 new hotels are currently under construction in the rural location, representing around 240 rooms. 

And while that number pales in comparison to destinations like Cancun, which offer well over 30,000 rooms, it’s great news for travelers seeking off-the-beaten-path destinations with fewer crowds. 

@marggom With little yummy snacking 😋😋 #traveltiktok #foryou #hiddenplaces ♬ Wonder – Shawn Mendes

According to Andrade Angulo, head of the regional hotel association, many of the upcoming properties in Xul Ha will offer all-inclusive packages. Offering all the benefits of a standard resort but without the crowds & noise, it’s a great destination for nature and culture lovers. 

The spokesperson also added that in addition to providing all-inclusive packages, many of the area’s new properties will focus on nature-based activities and excursions, including snorkeling, yoga, and mindfulness sessions. 

@digidudenate This weekend, we enjoyed some time at Los Rápidos de Bacalar, which is about 30min north of Belize. The Rapids are basically a 12,000-year-old natural lazy river that runs between the Bacalar and Xul-Ha lagoons. It's lined with these white rock-like formations created by microorganisms called stromatolites. They're actually living fossils that grow really slow and are only found in a few salty lagoons around the world. Stromatolites are the oldest evidence of life on Earth, and since they're so important to the ecosystem, it's forbidden to touch them. The Rapids are definitely a nice relaxing spot to chill in nature if you ever find yourself in Bacalar. #LosRapidos #Bacalar #Stromatolites #LazyRiver #Mexico #Lagoon #Relax #Travel #TravelGram #InstaTravel #HansonsOnHiatus ♬ Paradise – TELL YOUR STORY music by Ikson™

Destinations in the southern region of Quintana Roo are ideal for wellness travel. With medical tourism set to grow by over 30% over the next decade, demand for medical and wellness services will skyrocket. 

Chetumal, Bacalar, and new destinations like Xul Ha and Huay Pix are uniquely positioned to cater to the growing travel trend. As tourists seek to connect with nature and local culture, the Mexican Caribbean aims to become a leading hub for wellness travel. 

@veronicabrunoo #tulum #mexico #zenseswellnessandyogaresort #resort #wellnessresort ♬ Sunshine – WIRA

For now, Xul Ha is best reached by car or private transfer, although the completion of the Maya Train in December this year will make it significantly easier for travelers to discover the Mexican Caribbean’s wide range of beautiful destinations.

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