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Tulum Crime Rates Drop As Security Operations Increase Safety For Tourists

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The Mexican Caribbean has taken its pledge to increase security for tourists extremely seriously this year, and Tulum is seeing the positive effects of its efforts this summer. 

Mayor Diego Castañón Trejo stated that the work his administration has done in collaborating with federal and state corporations has been successful in protecting the hotel zone and coasts, as well as seeing a decrease in homicides. 

a stunning beach alcove in Tulum

Tulum had been fast creating a name for itself this year, as the popular cultural and historical hotspot saw crime rates rising exponentially only months ago. 

With this having a worrying effect on the destination’s reputation, authorities have been quick to intervene by introducing stringent security measures with a zero-tolerance policy approach in order to keep itself as a go-to tourist destination. 

What was once a simple fishing village only 15 years ago has grown into a thriving hub for tourists looking to explore the archaeological and historical areas that Quintana Roo has to offer as well as being home to a strong expat and digital nomad community. 

a street in Tulum

This growth in popularity has naturally had an effect on the area’s crime levels, drawing gangs to the destination, with stories of violence beginning to plague the tourist hotspot. 

Trejo has stated, however, that his commitment to reducing crime levels and increasing security presence in the area is his top priority, with the effects already showing promise.

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a happy couple on a beach in Tulum,

He said, “We will continue to work for security in our municipality 24 hours a day. The homicide rate is going down a lot, and we are going to continue; we know that it is not from one day to the next, we have to work very hard and this is also the result of the coordination we have with the governor and the federal government and we also work on preventive actions.”

Tulum is seeing growth in terms of its hotel occupancy levels, sitting at around 80% capacity in most areas, a true sign that tourists are not being deterred by the reports of crime levels rising from just a few months ago. 

Aerial view of a Tulum beach with waves

This is a direct result of the security campaign that was launched earlier this year in Cancun, Playa Del Carmen and Tulum, by working closely with the National Guard, the Navy, and the police to ensure that a strong security presence was felt in the areas.

Deployment of troops has been extended to beaches, archaeological sites and national parks, and has since resulted in many drug and weapon seizures, as well as countless arrests. 

Tourists on a Sargassum Covered Beach With the Ruins in the Background in Tulum, Mexico

As this seems to be having a positive impact on Tulum, Trejo is keen to look forward to the future of the tourist hotspot, stating that his next priority is to improve hotel infrastructure and accelerate development to meet demand as the Mexican Caribbean looks like it will be experiencing a record-breaking winter season, much like it has this summer. 

So what exactly can you expect from the security presence in Tulum if you choose to visit this year and just how safe is it?

A street with a motorcycle in Tulum

Well, to begin with, it’s worth noting that crime rarely affects tourists, and so long as you stick to the well-protected hotel zones and downtown area, it is very likely you will not come into contact with any such situation whilst you are enjoying your vacation. 

Beaches have increased security presence, as well as lifeguards to protect tourists during the day, and this also extends to Tulum’s famous Mayan Ruins situated on the cliffside of the coast, as well as its popular national parks. 

Travelers are recommended to remain cautious in these areas irrespective of the security detail, as petty crimes still occur throughout the municipality.

Nightlife in the Mexican Caribbean with travelers and locals

Try not to carry too much on your person and make sure it is stored in a safe place that you can see/access easily, as pickpocketing still seems to be an ongoing issue. 

It is also recommended not to travel anywhere by yourself in the evening, especially away from the popular tourist spots so you do not find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time.

With all of this being said, anyone traveling to Tulum is going to find themselves feeling rather safe, with the increased security measures already having a hugely positive effect in the area, ensuring you will have a stress-free, wonderful vacation. 

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Denny McWayne

Sunday 13th of August 2023

The police are the only ones that have stolen money from me and my wife.