Some people travel to shop, others to eat, and some live to ride rollercoasters and tower over jungles on zip-lines. If the latter category fits you, then turn your eye to Mexico, where theme parks span the width of the country and will surely fulfil your adrenaline quota for the entire summer.
Xcaret, Playa del Carmen
Probably Mexico’s most famous theme park, Xcaret has everything: wildlife, snorkeling, zip-lining, swimming, food, shows, hiking, diving, shopping, history, gourmet dining experiences, kids’ games and a top-of-the-world tower to look out over the entire property. If you can’t find something you like at Xcaret, just give up on theme parks. What’s more, this park is located in the stunningly beautiful Rivera Maya, where there is never a cloudy day.
Six Flags has the city’s best rollercoasters, and games for the whole family. From the bumper cars for kids to the extreme speed of the Batman Ride (adored by teenagers), the Tsunami, and the popular Splash, there are rides for all ages and tastes. Enjoy a light parade, a dolphin show, and a whole range of other high-quality attractions. There are also of course restaurants, so that you can rest and refuel. If you visit Mexico City between September and December, don’t miss the Horror Spectacle and Christmas in the Park specials.
Smack dab in the Rivera Maya splendor, Xel-Há is an aquatic park south of Cancun and north of Tulum. There are dozens of water activities to keep you cool and entertained all day. Most famous for their crystal clear cenotes (sinkholes) and underground rivers, there are opportunities to snorkel, check out tropical fish up close and personal, or you can simply float along the Lazy River on an innertube. The park also has zip-lines, a single-rope bridge to test your balance, and walking and hiking trails through the sultry coastal jungle.
Parque de los Sueños
Parque de los Sueños is on the bohemian Isla de Mujeres, just off the Gulf Coast and a quick ferry ride from Cancun. The park has two distinct areas: one with large swimming pools, waterslides and games, and one with access to the ocean. They provide all the gear you’ll need for your favorite water sports, like snorkeling, paddle-boarding, surfing and more. The adults-area has an ocean-view infinity pool and a swim-up bar. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and their main restaurant specializes in American-style BBQ.
With dozens of rides and games for kids, teenagers and adults, Selva Mágica is one of the country’s biggest theme parks. Beyond the regular list of rollercoasters and kiddie rides, you can free fall, sky dive, zip-line, rock climb and bungee jump—lots of adrenaline-inducing activities to get your blood pumping. Located in the northern part of one of Mexico’s largest cities, Guadalajara, the park is right next to the Guadalajara Zoo and the Barranca de Huentitán National Park.
Mayá Park, Lost Mayan Kingdom
A water park located on the Mexican Carribean coast, Mayá Park is themed after a lost Mayan city in the middle of a jungle. There are eight different kinds of water slides (from extreme to mellow), two zip-lines, a zip-line rollercoaster, plus an island for young children and a regular swimming pool and cenote for swimming. The price for this adventure is a little high (US $99 for adults), but the park gets rave reviews from its patrons and is worth the visit.
Brought to you by the folks of Xcaret, Parque Xplor is a jungle adventure park with a system of seven zip-lines that take you on a treetop tour of the landscape, underground rivers and cenotes, spelunking and 4X4 free-wheeling through the jungle. They have an international buffet and your ticket covers unlimited food and (non-alcoholic) drinks.
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