Cancun has undoubtedly cemented itself as the number one place to be in the Mexican Caribbean, most popular among American tourists.
As it welcomes more and more people to its famous hotel zone each year, some tourists may be deterred by its apparent busyness and overcrowding, especially during the winter and summer months.
That is why this special island destination is stealing all the attention, offering a far more peaceful and tranquil vacation setup than its neighbor, and that destination is Isla Mujeres.
Voted as one of the best island getaways in the world, it is no surprise that in 2023 it maintained an overall hotel occupancy of 80%; an extremely impressive statistic when those numbers are expected to drop in non-peak times.
What Is It About Isla Mujeres?
Located a mere 20 minutes from Cancun via ferry, this charming little island is approximately 4.3 miles long and half a mile wide; we are talking pretty small.
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Don’t be fooled by its size, however, as Isla Mujeres is one of the most idyllic locations in the Mexican Caribbean, surrounded by crystal clear waters and white, sugary sandy beaches as far as the eye can see.
With only a handful of hotels on the island, offering a dramatic difference to its backdrop of the Cancun hotel zone skyline, this is the perfect place for those who want calm and serenity from their vacation, free to bask under the hot Mexican sun in peace.
It is slowly becoming an increasingly popular location for day trippers from Cancun and other surrounding areas, which can create certain busy times, but for the most part, the island keeps its quiet vibe.
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Feeling Safe On The Island
Isla Mujeres is ridiculously easy to get to.
The 20-minute ferry ride can be boarded from the dock in Puerto Juarez, located in downtown Cancun, as well as three other docks in the hotel zone.
There are also options to travel via catamaran to the island if you are looking for a more glamorous arrival, but one thing is certain regardless: you are in safe hands.
With the municipality considered one of the safest destinations in the Mexican Caribbean, the safety measures that are in place in Isla Mujeres will ensure that you have nothing to worry about.
Increased patrolling from police and the military, as well as higher levels of surveillance in popular tourist areas, ensure that crime rates remain low.
All The Things To See And Do On The Island
If you are a lover of being in the water, you will be hard-pressed to find a better destination than here.
Perfect for snorkeling and diving, these waters are rich with marine life and fascinating landscapes.
For the underwater explorers among you, the famous MUSA must be high up on your list.
Brought in to help encourage more marine and coral life in the waters, these manmade sculptures on the sea floor are breathtaking and totally unique, something you won’t see anywhere else in southeastern Mexico for sure.
If you prefer dry land, the island is host to a number of local eateries and upscale restaurants, littered all along the charming streets, which are perfect for exploring and working up an appetite.
We also recommend jumping on a catamaran to have a scenic tour around the island’s coastline, basking in the sun as you go and witnessing the stunning landscape that you find yourself surrounded by.
Don’t Forget The Beaches
And of course, let’s not forget the beaches!
Home to one of the top beaches in the world, according to TripAdvisor last year, Playa Norte is the perfect place for you to unwind and forget all your troubles.
Complete with shallow, crystal blue waters, sugary-white sand, and beach clubs that offer tasty food and excellent cocktails, you could easily spend the entire day here.
There is also Playa Centro and Playa Albatross for those of you wanting to skip the beach club vibe and get closer to that peaceful, serene experience that you see in the postcards.
Regardless of which one you choose, they are going to be nothing like the busy beaches of Cancun, and, more often than not, miss out on the sargassum season that is affecting so much of southeastern Mexico’s coastlines.
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