Playa del Carmen’s Fifth Avenue, or ‘Quinta Avenida’ as the locals call it, is a vibrant avenue worth visiting, even just for the old pleasure of walking. Take a stroll and do some window shopping, or actual shopping, admire the detailed handicraft, jewelry, or a piece of clothing. Breathe in the fresh afternoon air with the scent of the Caribbean while you feel the energy of this beautiful neighborhood and delight in everything Playa del Carmen has to offer. Here’s a list of 5 reasons why travelers should visit Quinta Avenida in Playa del Carmen.
Take Home a Piece of Mexico
Mexico’s traditional craftsmanship is very rich and striking and is a blend of millenary cultures and art passed on from generation to generation. On the “Quinta,” it’s possible to find beautiful handmade objects made from natural fibers, stones, ceramics, wood, bone, leather, threads, silver, and any material that these skilled artisans can turn into an artistic piece.
One of the products in which Mexicans show expert skills is in the elaboration of hammocks, the canvas or woven fabric tied with ropes between two trees or two other fixed points, and are used to rest or take a siesta. They use natural and artificial materials and fibers to manufacture them, and hand-woven Mexican hammocks are distinguished by their strength, durability, and lively colors. Admire the hammocks displayed in stores, and choose from any multicolored models.
Enjoy Fine Dining
One of the things that surprise visitors to Playa del Carmen is the large number of establishments serving Italian and Argentine meals. This is due to the large colonies of these nationalities residing in the city. On the Quinta Avenida, you’ll find traditional Mexican, Italian, and Argentine restaurants. Many other international gastronomic options are offered, mainly Spanish and other European, Latin American, and Asian cuisines. If you prefer, you can also find the best-known global chains.
Cacao and Tequila Culture
Cacao is linked to Mexico’s history more than any other country in the world. The Mexican and pre-Hispanic natives used cacao seeds as bargaining chips to barter. It was also considered to be an aphrodisiac. Legend has it that Aztec emperor Montezuma drank up to 40 cups of cocoa a day to satisfy his harem. In Playa del Carmen and on Fifth Avenue, you can enjoy the aromatic cacao and the exquisite Mexican chocolates. One of the best-known establishments in la Quinta is Ah Cacao, a chain of stores that claims to possess the oldest secrets around this delicacy.
Tequila is Mexico’s national drink and is present in all the country’s major cities and towns. More than a drink, tequila is part of the culture and even has museums that tell its story. On Quinta Avenida, you’ll find “Hacienda Tequila,” a shopping mall with a traditional façade reminiscent of the old Mexican haciendas. There you can buy and participate in a tequila tasting. Make sure to visit the Tequila Museum on-site; you’ll become an expert on this millenary liquor.
Your visit cannot end without spending some time on Avenida 12, which intersects with Fifth Avenue and where you’ll find the nightlife action in Playa del Carmen. There are bars and performance venues for all tastes, where you can sit and have drinks or just enjoy the music.
One of the most pleasant surprises you can find on Fifth Avenue in Playa del Carmen is a performance from a mariachi band. The mariachi is a band that interprets Mexican national music and is a delight to see and listen to. You’ll spot them from a considerable distance by the unmistakable sound of their trumpets and traditional instruments. If you come across a mariachi, admire their formal attire, and ask them to perform one of the famous pieces of Mexican folklore; the friendly musicians are sure to please you.
There are many colorful shops in the district. Very close to Quinta Avenida, at one end, is a square called Paseo del Carmen, which communicates with the Quinta by a picturesque alley. It is a great place to stay fresh from the hot weather and cozy. Here you can stop and have a drink or a coffee before embarking on your tour of this grand avenue. Paseo del Carmen offers brand-name stores and many other establishments if you can’t wait to start shopping.
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