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Tourism Boat In Tulum Seized After Narcotics Found On Board

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On Thursday in Tulum, a boat typically used to transport tourists around the region was seized when it was discovered that narcotics were being hidden on board. 

Panoramic view of the mayan ruins of Tulum, Mexico. God of Winds Temple in a sunny day. Mayan ruins of Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico.

According to the local report, late Thursday morning, police got an anonymous call to 911, alerting them that there were drugs on board the registered tourist boat located by one of the main tourist beaches in Tulum.

Following the anonymous tip-off, the small passenger boat was then confiscated by officials of the Quintana Roo State Attorney General’s Office, also known as FGE Quintana Roo. There was concern that the drugs were going to be used to sell to tourists in the area.

Tourists on the Beach in Front of the Tulum Ruins in Mexico

Operation Registered At Playa Maya Beach In Tulum

The tourist boat capture operation went down in Playa Maya, one of the major tourist spots in Tulum throughout the day. 

Playa Maya is a pristine and quaint strip of beach that overlooks the Tulum Ruins Archeological Zone. It’s undoubtedly a popular spot year-round with tourists in the Riviera Maya and a unique natural wonder amidst the busyness of downtown Tulum and the bustling beaches closer to the center of town. 

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Tourists on a Tulum Beach Covered in Sargassum

No Persons Were Reported Detained On The Scene

The vehicle in question was seized in order to be inspected for narcotics by the authorities, which were eventually found hidden in the boat.

Along with the state officials, the operation was handled by the local police officers at the narcotics office of the Specialized Prosecutor for Crimes Against Health, which is located in nearby Playa del Carmen.

Inside the boat were a number of small bags filled with a white powder substance they said to be similar to cocaine. The drugs were seized, and there were no reports of anyone being detained on the scene during the boat inspection. Officers also discovered that the tourist boat was registered in the nearby beach city of Playa del Carmen. 

Military on Tulum Street driving down the road in front of a restaurant.

Does This Type Of Thing Happen Often In The Riviera Maya?

While a number of crackdowns on illegal narcotics in Cancun and the surrounding area have been highly reported on in 2022 and years past, this boat operation is the first of its kind so far this year.

One of the bigger news stories happened last June when state law enforcement carried out raids in the Benito Juarez district, and over 200 kilos of illegal substances were seized during the operation.

And a few months later, in August, we reported that a Chicago native was arrested along with his Mexican accomplice in Playa del Carmen after he was caught by local police carrying large quantities of drugs in his backpack.

Tulum Police Vehicle parked on a street in front of a building with palm trees in front.

Later in the month of August, a British tourist was arrested in Cancun after large quantities of cocaine were discovered in the woman’s suitcase during the standard airport security checks. According to the report, she was traveling from Amsterdam and attempting to pass through security at Cancun Airport’s Terminal 2.

One of the last big crackdowns reported in Tulum happened around this time last year when police swept the beaches of Tulum. During the operation, 12 people in total were arrested and taken into custody as drugs and weapons were found. Thousands of doses of drugs as well as several weapons, were seized. 

aerial drone view of Riviera Maya beach in the late afternoon.

Is The Riviera Maya Safe To Visit In 2023?

There’s been more talk of safety in the Riviera Maya recently, especially following the travel alerts that were issued earlier this month from the U.S. to its citizens for the areas of Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Tulum due to reports of increased crime rates in the region. The warning also came before the spring break vacation season, one of the most popular times for young U.S. Americans to visit Cancun and the surrounding region.

Despite the warnings, however, the Mexican Caribbean, in general, is still one of the safest areas to visit in the country. Following the travel alerts, the Governor of Quintana Roo, Mara Lezama Espinosa, announced that Cancun would be ramping up security measures in popular tourist areas in the region. You can read more about that in our report here.

If you’d like some extra travel tips, here’s our latest list of important safety tips to keep in mind for your next trip to the Mexican Caribbean.

Police Vehicle Sitting in the Cancun Hotel Zone

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