The Mexican city of Cancun boasts gorgeous white-sand beaches, each one attracting its own type of traveler. However, not all beaches are created equal, so to make sure you’re seeing the best of this coastal paradise, read our guide to Cancun’s top beaches.
Known for its thrashing waters, this beach is best experienced from a comfortable chair on the sand. While the strong currents crash in the water, tanning oil is being applied on the shore.
With no hotels or resorts hogging prime space, you can expect a relaxed vibe and magnificent views. Playa Defines is a public beach filled with locals and food and drink vendors.
Want to snap a selfie in front of the famous “Cancun” sign? You’ll find it here, but first you’ll have to stand in line behind a slew of other Instagrammers.
Thirty minutes south of Cancun lies the quiet fishing village of Puerto Morelos. When the crowds and action of the main part of town become a bit too much, head for a calmer pace in Puerto Morelos.
With groomed beaches, friendly locals and that cozy small town vibe, travelers never have to worry about being run down the beach by timeshare salesmen. One of the most notable parts of this area is the closed-off piece of the Mesoamerican Coral Reef that is readily available for exploration from snorkelers and divers.
While some travelers can wash the day away reading books in the sand, others cringe at the thought. Playa Chac Mool is the perfect destination for the beach-goer who actually wants to dive into the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.
Playa Chac Mool offers beach-side rentals for water sports equipment and activities. Calmer waters and smaller crowds are attractive to sports enthusiasts from all over the world.
Venturing to the eastern coast of Mexico without really exploring these sparkling waters is a crime.
The crystal-clear waters of Playa Tortugas truly need no introduction. This beach has a direct connection to the Isla Mujeres ferry, which means this tiny beach can become very crowded.
This doesn’t stop the chatty traveler who wants to experience all that Cancun has to offer. With softer currents than some of the other nearby spots, this beach is great for a calmer swimming environment.
Reasonable prices for drinks, food and shopping just might keep you here longer than you expected.
Who says you can’t get everything you ever wanted? Playa Forum is a mashup of everything you could need in a beach retreat. Located directly behind one of the hottest spots for nightlife in the region, Playa Forum is vibrant, beautiful and full of life.
Located in the heart of the hotel zone, there is no shortage of restaurants, bars and entertainment. Away from the hustle and bustle of town, this beach offers all the signature white sand and gorgeous water you’d expect from Cancun.