You could spend your whole Playa del Carmen vacation enjoying the city’s wonderful beaches, bars, and ever-expanding food scene. But this popular Mexican Caribbean destination also has its fair share of museums and galleries if you’re seeking a little culture during your vacation. Here are 5 must-see museums and galleries in Playa del Carmen, most of which are centered in and around the tourist-friendly Fifth Avenue.
Frida Kahlo Museum
The Museo Frida Kahlo, or Frida Kahlo Museum, is one of Playa del Carmen’s most popular cultural activities. Located just off Fifth Avenue, the museum succeeds in charting the life of this famous (and sometimes controversial) Mexican artist through a range of paintings, photographs, and stories.
Although there are no original pieces of art on display, what the museum does well is enhance your understanding of Frida Kahlo as a woman who experienced many difficulties during her short life. If you’re a fan, and can’t get to Frida’s former home (the Blue House, which now serves as a museum in Mexico City), this Playa del Carmen museum is definitely worth a look.
Location: Calle 8 between Fifth Avenue and the ocean, Playa del Carmen 77720
Cost: 15 USD per person
3D Museum of Wonders
Less a museum than an attraction, the 3D Museum of Wonders is a fun way to spend an afternoon in Playa del Carmen. Huge pieces of art fill the space, each one tricking your eyes into seeing three dimensions where there are only two.
Balance on the edge of a Roman precipice, become the decoration in the center of a cake, or get trapped inside a bubble – there are dozens of illusions to enjoy. Ideal to entertain the kids – or to bring out your inner child. Make sure you bring a camera, as this is photo opportunity heaven!
Location: Avenida 10 Norte between 8th and 10th, Playa del Carmen 77710
Cost: 35 USD for adults, 30 USD for kids
Gastón Charó Art Gallery Playa del Carmen
The well-rated Gastón Charó Art Gallery was set up by artist Gastón Charó as a way to make his own work, and the work of over 40 local Mexican and international artists, accessible to the many tourists who visit Playa del Carmen.
Charó’s art combines cubism, surrealism, and expressionism in eye-catching, colorful pieces which can be purchased and sent to worldwide addresses. The gallery also exhibits sculpture, photography, and jewelry. Even if you’re not in the market for purchasing art, this gallery makes for an interesting and inspiring visit.
Location: Fifth Avenue, between 5th and 8th, Playa del Carmen, 77710
Mar y Tierra Gallery & Workshop
This downtown Playa del Carmen establishment is a great spot if you want to purchase a bespoke piece of art or jewelry for a loved one back home. Stocking unique handicrafts made using precious stones, this gallery is owned and run by Omar, who designs and hand-makes all the items on display.
There are occasional workshops too, if you’re visiting the area and want to learn how to design and make similar jewelry.
Location: Calle 2 between 10th and 15th Avenue, Playa del Carmen, 77710
The Huichol is an indigenous population from Mexico, known for their bead-based art, where beeswax is used as a base to attach hundreds (or thousands) of tiny beads, creating beautiful designs.
A wide range of these brightly-colored statues, including animals, skulls, and plants, are on display in Tierra Huichol where you can browse, take in the intricate designs, and perhaps purchase some souvenirs. This is a great place if you’re looking to explore something a little different during your Playa del Carmen visit.
Location: Fifth Avenue between Calle 40 and Calle 38, Playa del Carmen 77710
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