The best beaches in Cancun on the map:
1. Playa Delfines:
When we talk about the most famous public beaches in Cancun, the first thing that comes to mind is Playa Delfines. It has turquoise water and snow-white sand. However, if you’re traveling with kids, don’t rush to put it on your wishlist – the strong surf and waves make Flame Dolphins one of the best beaches for surfing, but not for the younger members of the family.
Playa Delfines has Blue Flag certification and all the necessary beach equipment, although the sun loungers may not be everywhere. Also for the comfort of guests there are showers, ramp and first aid station.
An important feature is the presence on the beach service of lifeguards who are regularly on duty and watch for those who are in the rough sea.
Please note: the rescue service is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
There is also no problem with food – near the beach is an abundance of vendors street food, drinks and fruit.
For more activities on Playa Delfines, you can go parasailing, or visit the El Rey archaeological site, where the ruins of the Maya civilization are located. It is across the street from the beach.
- Popular and beautiful beach with a developed infrastructure.
- Not suitable for children because of the strong sea disturbance.
How to get to Playa Delfines Beach: Playa Delfines is practically in the heart of Cancun’s main hotel promenade, and you can hardly find a person on the coast who doesn’t know where to get here. However, if you decide to get on your own, focus on Golf Club Iberostar. The beach will be right across the street from it.
2. Playa Tortugas:
Now let’s ask the locals about the best beach in Cancun. Any locale is sure to start its list with Playa Tortugas, and it is truly impressive in its beauty and the purity of the water. In some places it even resembles a pool of natural origin, which makes it a great place to relax with children. Not surprisingly, it is beloved by hoteliers – picturesque landscapes are very conducive to a comfortable stay.
Sports enthusiasts will find beach soccer and volleyball courts here. You can also go snorkeling or diving from the tower. There are enough restaurants, and if you want you can eat right on the beach, where there is all the necessary infrastructure.
There is also a pier for ferries, from which you can take an excursion to the island of Mujeres. It will appeal to lovers of scuba diving, and the children will have an unforgettable experience visiting the dolphinarium.
A nice feature of Tortugas beach is its location, thanks to which it is safely protected from storms.
- Ideal for holidays with children.
- Quite noisy and fussy.
How to get there: the main reference point for tourists who choose to vacation in Playa Tortugas will be the large hotel Riu Palace Peninsula. In principle, if this beach suits your request, it will be easier to book a vacation at this hotel.
3. Playa Marlin:
Marlin is one of the most beautiful beaches in Cancun, with one small «but». There is a strong undercurrent, so you should not let children into the sea without adult supervision, and it is desirable to swim closer to the shore. This, however, also applies to those who are not very good swimmers in general.
Please note: there is free parking on this beach, but it is small and tends to fill up quickly.
The beach infrastructure is ready to provide a comfortable stay, but only for guests of local hotels. Therefore, going here from another area of Cancun you need to be prepared for the lack of restrooms, showers and cafes. However, there are enough hotels that are willing to share sun loungers and umbrellas for a fee for all comers.
As for sports, you can play volleyball or beach soccer, and surfers come here to catch their luck on hazardous waves to strong waves. There is a rental shop for surfboards and aqua-bikes, snorkeling equipment. And if you travel in season, from August to November, you can watch the sea turtles, which are right there to lay eggs. And lovers of the real exotic sea, depending on the season, you can even meet with whale sharks.
An interesting feature of Marlin Beach is the presence of architectural monuments from the Mayan era – the ruins of the temples of Scorpio and the Hands are available for free visit to all comers.
- Suitable for fans of active water sports. You can watch sea turtles (depends on the season).
- Strong undercurrent, it is not safe to swim.
How to get there: the local shopping center Kukulcan Plaza can be used as a basic reference point. Of the nearby hotels, we recommend the Westin.
4. Playa Punta Cancun:
If you look at Punta Cancun on Google Map, you will see that it is located in the upper right «corner» of the so-called hotel area. It is deservedly considered one of the best beaches in Cancun because of the crystal clear water in different shades of blue. In addition, there are nice coral reefs.
Perhaps the main attraction of this beach is the beautiful lighthouse, located on a rocky stretch of coast – a perfect installation for your photos. The lighthouse is about a 10-minute walk away.
Sports activities such as diving, snorkeling, windsurfing and kayaking are available on the beach. Motorized sports are prohibited here because of the presence of coral reefs.
Nice bonuses that will add vivid impressions on this beach, you can call the presence of a dolphinarium and oceanarium.
- The presence of reefs, developed infrastructure, installations.
- Not detected.
How to get there: it is quite a popular place, at least due to the fact that it is located in the area of the national nature park with the same name Punta Cancun. Alternatively, you can stay at the Hotel Ziva Hyatt, which is placed just on the same beach.
5. Playa Langosta:
If you like crowded and noisy beaches, we recommend considering Playa Langosta. Crystal clear water, calm currents, few waves. This is definitely one of the best beaches to visit as a family, especially with young children. In addition, it is a public beach with developed infrastructure: free parking, toilets and showers.
In Playa Langosta you can rent sun loungers, beach chairs and umbrellas. There is also a pier that takes boats to the island of Mujeres.
Active recreation lovers will be able to play volleyball, or beach soccer. There are kayak rentals. There is a playground and an outdoor gym nearby. The name of this beach comes from the fact that lobsters were caught here many years ago.
- Good for active families with children, convenient connection to the island of Mujeres.
- The noisy festival atmosphere and high density of guests can be tiring.
How to get there: Playa Langosta is the closest neighbor of Playa Tortugas, to be precise, literally one and a half kilometers away. You can just walk along the beach towards Cancun itself, and you definitely won’t get lost.
6. Playa Gaviota Azul (Forum):
Playa Gaviota Azul is characterized by shallow water near the shore, making it one of the most successful beaches for swimming – ideal for a quiet family vacation by the sea. At the same time, there are still lifeguards on duty. Available to rent sun loungers. The parking lot and restrooms used by visitors are located in the Plaza Forum shopping center. From there you can go directly to the beach. For those who like a more comfortable holiday is a separate beach club.
The presence of the mall provides a rich catering infrastructure – there are plenty of popular restaurants and cafes, including the famous chain Hard Rock Café.
Fans of water sports will not be bored. This beach offers snorkeling and scuba diving lessons for beginners and equipment rentals for the more experienced. There is also equipment rental for windsurfing, surfing and kitesurfing. Here you can relax until late at night – after the sun goes down to dance at the beach club Mandala, one of the largest and best places to party in the area.
- Developed infrastructure, beach clubs, suitable for a variety of tourists.
- The sea can be very rough.
How to get there: Playa Gaviota Azul is adjacent to Punta Cancun, but the main reference point will be the Plaza Forum shopping center.
7. Playa Chuck Mule:
This place is beloved by fans of extreme water sports. It is considered one of the best in the region for kitesurfing and surfing.
It is a «Blue Flag» award. The waves here range from moderate to strong. It is also considered ideal for parasailing or water-skiing.
The beach has free parking, toilets and showers. Sun loungers and beach umbrellas are available. Rescue service is on duty. There are all kinds of cafes and beach restaurants around.
Another curious attraction at Chuck Mule Beach is the turtle nesting, which takes place from August to November.
- Good for active tourists. You can meet sea turtles (depending on the season).
- For a holiday you have to look for a beach with a calm sea.
How to get there: it will be very easy to find this beach, because it shares its territory with Playa Gaviota Azul. Just walk north about 100-200 meters and you’re there.
8. Playa Nisuk:
We included this beach in our list because it is less well-known than its popular neighbors. It is located in the southernmost point and is quite removed from the noisy infrastructure, but if you like to relax in a quiet atmosphere – it is ideal. It’s not easy to find, either. If you go here purposefully, focus on the Club Med Hotel. Or better yet, just book a hotel close to this picturesque and peaceful lagoon.
Playa Nisuk has the clearest water and few waves. Shallow water will please those looking for a nice and quiet beach for a family vacation. Infrastructure is provided by the hotels on the coast. So if you decide to visit this beach on your own, keep in mind that you probably will not be able to rent a deck chair.
- A good option for those who avoid noisy crowds.
- Independent visitors to the beach should be prepared for the fact that the infrastructure is available only to guests of nearby hotels.
How to get there: Playa Nizuc is located next to the Hotel Nizuc Luxury Villas, on the 25th km of Kukulcan Boulevard, towards the exit of the international airport of Cancun.
9. Playa Mujeres:
Playa Mujeres is north of Cancun and outside the hotel area. It has snow-white sand harmonious silence. The beach is public, but getting here will not be easy because of the surrounding dense vegetation, and the difficulty of building a route directly to the beach. Of course, this factor makes Mujeres Beach not so crowded, and if you are satisfied with this option, it would be easier to just stay in a hotel right there.
Note: You don’t have to worry. There are actually two resorts in the area named Mujeres – Mujeres Beach is on the mainland of Cancun. The island of Mujeres, as the name suggests, is a short distance from the coastal area. We will talk about the latter in more detail in the next paragraph.
Beach Mujeres will appeal to active tourists. The sandy strip here is wide enough, so it is ideal for playing volleyball or beach soccer. Otherwise, a classic choice for these places: depending on the season you can go water-skiing or parasailing. Or go scuba diving or snorkeling.
Another pleasant discovery this resort will make for golf lovers. There is an 18-hole course designed by the famous golfer Greg Norman. Therefore, it is always possible to diversify your beach leisure time with this elite sport. Just don’t forget that in flip-flops and beach shorts, you might not be allowed in.
- Golf club, lots of water and beach activities, not the highest guest density.
- Not the most convenient, in terms of logistics, the beach to visit on their own. It is better to book a hotel nearby.
How to get there: The easiest way is to book a room at a hotel, such as Beloved Playa Mujeres.
10. Playa Norte (Isla de la Mujeres):
Playa Norte is considered one of the most beautiful beaches around Cancun. Although it is located on the island of Mujeres, a half hour ferry ride from the coast, it is definitely worthy of this hit list, as it is a must-visit for everyone who comes to Cancun.
The beach is distinguished by the gentle relief of the bottom, so it is ideal for children. It will also please fans and, snorkeling. Tourists who prefer windsurfing will also not be left out. There is also an opportunity to do parasailing, flyboarding or just chase on a jet ski.
Those who do not have enough energy to return after an active holiday on Playa Norte can stay overnight in one of several hotels located here – on the island.
- All the charms of an exotic island resort.
- Due to the popularity of the location, it is usually noisy and crowded.
How to get there: the ferry service to Isla Mujeres is very active and you can get here from many popular beaches in Cancun. For example: Playa Langosta, Punta Cancun or Playa Tortugas.
Of course, this is not a complete list, but we have tried to collect it not only the most popular and, therefore, crowded beaches, and locations where you can relax in a relaxing atmosphere. Of course, the best option would be to choose a hotel that is located near the beach that best meets your requirements.