Once a sleepy fishing village, in the last 20 years the coastal town of Playa del Carmen has transformed into a bustling tourist mecca, with top-notch diving as well as a plethora of shops, restaurants, and resorts catering to an English-speaking clientele. Couples as well as families find this resort town a welcoming destination, and our Playa del Carmen vacation rentals are the perfect home-away-from-home in this bustling seaside town on the Riviera Maya.
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Playa means beach, and Playa del Carmen doesn't disappoint with its great beaches! Playacar is the best spot in town. The north side can teem with tourists, so head to the more secluded and relaxing south side to avoid the crowds. If you're looking for a bit of adventure, look no further than Cenote Chaak Tun. These caves offer a place to admire stalactites and stalagmites as well as a chance to snorkel. Bring the kids, as families are welcome!
Playa del Carmen is also a shopper's paradise. The main shopping thoroughfare is Quinta Avenida, and here you'll find high-end retailers such as Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior as well as more budget-conscious boutiques such as Zara and H&M. The street is also home to myriad restaurants and bars, including the Hard Rock Cafe and Senor Frogs.
The town is a diving mecca thanks to the coral reefs offshore. Scores of scuba diving outfitters can be found in the city center. Instructors are on hand to lead even novices on dives of up to 30 feet. If you have more time - and aren't claustrophobic - get certified. Then the whole undersea world of turtles, fish, and pristine caverns will be open to you.
Coba is arguably the most celebrated attraction in the area. Just two hours from Playa, here you'll find a well-preserved Mayan city, rediscovered 120 years ago. Stroll through the ruins and admire the tropical hardwood, carved stelae, and vegetation, then climb the pyramid to the top. Excavations revealed that the 80-square-mile site was an important Mayan trading post and commercial hub.
Nestled in the jungle between Playa del Carmen and Tulum lies The Jungle Place Spider Monkey Conservancy. Owners Heidi and Joel rescue malnourished, ill, and abused spider monkeys, often victims of the illegal pet trade. Book an appointment, learn about the species, and make a donation to their care.
However you choose to spend your time in this bustling city, the sun and the sea are never too far away from any of our Playa del Carmen vacation rentals!
Photo credit: Giorgio Galeotti via Flickr