Discover Cancun
City of ancient Maya and snow-white beaches
On the coast of the Caribbean Sea stretches a piece of earthly paradise — Cancun

Parts of Cancun

The city can be divided into two parts: Downtown and Zona Hotelera. Downtown is the mainland area of the city, where the houses of the locals are located. Here you can rent a room in a cheap hotel or find a hostel. You will have to take a city bus to the coast from here, but it does not take long. It is not only cheaper to stay here, but also to eat. However, you can't find any nighttime entertainment here. From this area, you can go sightseeing in El Meco (Mayan City) and see the bullfights.

Zona Hotelera is a tourist center, the concentration of resort life in the city. Here you can choose the beach you like: calm and quiet, or with active recreation and nightlife. In this area, there are night clubs, rental offices, expensive hotels, cafes and restaurants, golf courts, shopping centers.

Map Cancún


According to the 2010 census, more than 600 thousand people live in the city. Mexicans prevail among them — about 60% of all residents. The next largest ethnic group is Indian.

History in brief

The remains of the ancient Mayan civilization have been found on the territory of the modern city. They were preserved due to the fact that the Spanish conquistadors were not particularly keen on wars on these lands in the XV - XVI centuries. The process of colonization proceeded without much destruction. The settlement first appeared on maps in the XVIII century. It is believed that its name sounds in the Mayan language, and the translation means "a magic snake" or "a throne of the snake".

Even before the early 1970s, Cancun was a small, unknown village on the coast. New prospects for the settlement opened up in the 1960s. At that time, Fidel Castro came to power in Cuba. As a result, the wonderful resorts of Cuba were closed to the wealthy holidaymakers from the United States and other countries.

The Mexican government decided that it was the right time to develop its own resort industry. And it turned its eyes to Cancun. Foreign investments went here, and government financial programs were involved. The mainland part was connected to the nearby sandy spit, and several bridges were built. Infrastructure was actively growing in the city, and high-class hotels were built. A modern airport was built, which was the second-largest in Mexico.

The city of the ancient Maya has gradually turned into a fabulous place, with magnificent beaches and tropical nature that fascinates and captivates.

Trip budget

Before the trip, you should calculate the approximate budget that you will require for the travel:

The best time to visit Cancun

The city has a mild maritime climate. Throughout the year, the average air temperature is +25 ºС — +29 ºС. Sometimes, the stem of the thermometer rises to +36 ºС and falls to +18 ºС. It is a rainy season from the beginning of May till the end of November. Holidays in Cancun are possible at any time of year, and the beach season lasts all year round. The water in the sea is always warm, and its temperature is approaching that of the air.

Every year, on September 15, Cancun celebrates Independence Day. During this time, there are grand celebrations, historical theatrical performances, and parades. Independence Day ends with a magnificent fireworks display.

Fans of extraordinary entertainment come to Cancun on November 1, when the Day of the Dead is celebrated here. Mexicans remember their deceased relatives and arrange altars of memory in their homes. But the most interesting spectacle awaits guests at night. All the streets are full of fun parades with lots of lit candles. They arrange colorful carnivals, prepare original sweets in the form of skulls.

Useful notes

What should a tourist do in Cancun?

The unusually atmospheric city fascinates from the very first minutes. There's something to see and do for every traveler. But to fully enjoy all the charms of Cancun, take a stroll through the most popular places.

  • Spend the day in El Meco, the ancient Mayan city. The archaeological work on its territory has not yet been completed. But already now, visitors can admire the remains of ancient temples and service buildings. Here is the only pyramid in Cancun that is more than 12 meters high. From the peak where the monument is located, there is a beautiful panorama — an excellent background for a photoshoot.
  • Walk in the ancient Mayan royal settlement — El Rey. It was founded back in 1300 BC. After the Indians left it, a secret pirate base appeared here. Take a look at the remains of ancient temples, pyramids, and private homes. Notice the main attraction of El Rey, the bright Mayan frescoes. Here you can feed the iguanas, who live on the site.
  • See the Plaza de Toros, the site of the legendary bullfighting. The round building of the arena is located in the central square. During the week, it hosts concerts and various entertaining events. If you are interested in bullfighting, come here on Wednesday. On this day, you can not only see the bullfight but also try on the role of a bullfighter. For safety reasons, amateur bullfighting is conducted with a small size bull.
  • Take a walk to Isla Mujeres (Women's Island). This territory owes its name to the numerous stone female statues that are located here. They all represent the goddess of happiness and fertility Ixchel. Fabulous island amazes the imagination with its bright colors. The hotels and houses of the locals are painted in bright shades, and the lush greenery of the tropics is a beautiful frame of the landscape. It is on Women's Island that the National Park is located, famous for its rare coral reefs, estimated to be over 125 thousand years old.
  • Go scuba diving in the unique Museum of Underwater Figures. At a depth of 2-10 m, there are more than 400 sculptures. They are made of materials that not only can withstand the effects of seawater, but also support the life of corals. Tourists can see four underwater expositions, the exhibits of which are figures of people, houses, cars, and household items. Sea creatures and coral colonies have already loved them. If you do not risk going underwater, you can see the sculptures from above. To do this, take a tour in a boat with a transparent bottom.
  • Get acquainted with the most exciting exhibits of the Mayan Museum. Its building occupies more than 5 thousand square meters. More than 300 unique artifacts, telling about the life and culture of ancient Indians, are waiting for visitors. Here you can see the ancient skeletons of people who lived in the city 14 thousand years ago. Permanent expositions occupy two halls of the museum. The third hall hosts world-class exhibitions.
  • Admire the unusual creation of nature — the underground river Sac Actun. The fantastic wonder of the country, a system of 300 caves, passages, and tunnels is the second-longest in the world. Extremely pure mineral water of the river, fantastic stalactites and stalagmites, ringing silence of caves — it is difficult to find a place on the planet with such a stunning beauty. If you like scuba diving, make sure you take a dive that will linger in your memory forever.
  • Hike to the unique reserve of Sian Ka'an. Excursions in the park, which stretches for 5 thousand square kilometers, can last more than 10 hours. But no one's going to be bored. Here you can see the rarest specimens of tropical flora and fauna, go for a ride on motorboats or kayaks, swim in the clear waters of mangroves. Tourists will have to refuse using typical protective cosmetics. In order to protect nature, only local sunscreens, which are considered to be the safest for the environment, can be used in the park.
  • Visit the interactive aquarium, which is one of the largest in the world. Take a look at the close proximity of the inhabitants of the deep sea, among which there are quite predatory species. You can swim with dolphins and sea lions, and even feed them. For the thrill-seeker, there is a unique attraction — swimming in a pool with predatory sharks.
  • Feel the flavor of local markets. If you want to buy fresh fish, extraordinary national dishes, have a look at Mercado 23 market. Are you looking for original gifts and souvenirs? Then you can go to Market 28, a flea market. Always bargain with local sellers. If so, you can knock down the original price several times.
  • Try dishes of Mexican cuisine, which are known for their spicy, even burning taste, as they are generously seasoned and spiced. Order tacos (minced beef, ham, beans, and tomato), enchilada (minced meat, cheese, mushrooms, and vegetables stuffed roll), pasta guacamole (a mixture of avocado, lime, tomato, garlic, chili pepper, and greens). Mexico is home to chocolate. Be sure to try Molė peanut chocolate sauce, Molcajete (a Mexican fondue), or hot chocolate for dessert.

Hotels in Cancún

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