One of the earliest resorts in Mexico, a place of worship and solitude for the Mayan Kings and Gods in early times
Tulum is on the Yucatan Peninsula, in Mexico. The tropical beach backdrop is the main attraction of this picturesque, much-visited small ruin on the shore of the Caribbean Sea. Shortly after your arrival, you will understand why early Mayans picked this beautiful place to relax.
Be prepared for lots of people and tour groups at the archaeological site. To avoid the crowds, it is best to stay overnight and visit the ruins early in the morning before the buses arrive, or later in the afternoon. Morning is recommended since you can catch spectacular vistas when the sun is rising over the Caribbean. Tulum is a Late Postclassic site situated on cliffs overlooking the Caribbean Sea and was probably occupied at the time of the Spanish Conquest. It is a small site with architecture in a style similar to that at the bigger cities of Chichen Itza and Mayapan. The site was probably founded to expand the coastal trade routes of the Yucatán Peninsula.
To See & Do
- Tulum archaeological site
- Muyil archaeological site
- Grand Cenote
- Cenote Calaveras
- Dos Ojos Cenote – 100 pesos for entrance only (good if you bring your own equipment and are ready to walk 3km to the cenote). 300 pesos for a guide, ride to the cenote, snorkel equipment, lamp, and wetsuit if you want. Set aside around 2 or 3 hours total.
- Sian Ka’an Biosphere – The reserve features acres upon acres of pristine mangrove swamp and wetlands. Just past the information center pull into the dirt lot on the left and walk out to the beach. There are a few fishermen that dock here and are willing to take you on a tour that is much cheaper than the organized tours offered in the area. The fishermen will take you on an hour to two hour boat tour of the reserve anyt time of day. Near sunset is a great option. They will often work for hire for 100 to 200 pesos or 10 to 20USD.
- Coba ruins – Be sure to visit the Coba ruins. They are not in as pristine shape as the Tulum Ruins, however they feature “el castillo” the tallest of the Mayan ruins that juts up above the treetops in the jungle. You can still climb el castillo in Coba and the sight from the top is spectacular. A fun and efficient way of exploring the ruins is renting a bike ($35 pesos); just go to the rental place inside the ruins. You can also rent bikes to get around Coba. Coba is only a 30 minute drive west of tulum on the main road off 307. Just follow the signs to Coba!
The Kingdom of the Maya • Locations & Activities