Things to do in Riviera Maya

Top Riviera Maya Excursions

Embrace your inner adventurer at the top excursions in Riviera Maya, where unforgettable journeys await.

From discovering gargantuan stone temples leading high above the jungle canopy to appreciating pristine beaches and beautiful beaches, there’s no shortage of adventurous things to do in Riviera Maya. This region’s history and culture are as beautifully diverse as its vast ecosystems.

Cultural and Historical Excursions

Take a trip back in time to explore centuries-old ruins and untamed jungles. These cultural and historical Riviera Maya excursions introduce you to the rich Mayan history the region is known for.

1. Chichen Itza - Ik Kil Tour

Depart from Playa del Carmen and visit some of the most popular historical sights on the Yucatán Peninsula when you take the Chichen Itza - Ik Kil Tour. This full-day tour guides you through awe-inspiring architecture and archaeological sights, including Chichen Itza’s ruins and the Temple of Kukulkan.

Enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime chance to swim in the Ik Kil cenote, a natural sinkhole filled with groundwater. Your Riviera Maya tour concludes at the archaeological site of Coba, immersed in jungle trees.

Photographer: Mario La Pergola

2. Tulum Archaeological Site Visit

Tulum's ancient ruins sit on the edge of a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Ocean. Stone structures are all that remain of the once lively village, but the local iguanas don’t mind — they bask atop the stones.

Explore El Castillo, the main pyramid that once served as a lighthouse. The Temple of the Frescoes proves that artistry is an inherent part of human nature, displaying a painted mural that survived through the ages. Make the hike down a wooden staircase, and you'll come to a secret Riviera Maya beach underneath the main ruins.

3. Coba Ruins Day Trip

Discover the ancient Mayan city of Coba as you weave your way through the jungle. These ruins have stood the testament of time for nearly 2,000 years and offer a glimpse into the world the Mayans called home. Explore by foot or bike, or opt to have a tour guide lead the way.

Photographer: Robin Canfield

Adventure and Nature Excursions

Put on your adventure cap, and get out in nature! These adventure and nature excursions take you into environments so unique you'll have a hard time believing they’re real.

4. Xplor

At Xplor in Riviera Maya, you experience a whole new adventure, complete with zip lining, underground expeditions, and rafting along underground rivers.

Be the chauffeur of your crew's Amphibious Vehicle as you roll through the jungle.

5. Rio Secreto Expedition

The underground rivers throughout the Yucatán Peninsula weave through caves dotted with stalactites and stalagmites, and when you join a Rio Secreto Expedition, you’ll wander through what looks like part of a fantastical world.

It’s a chance to swim through a prehistoric river and climb through caves, all while a tour guide explains your surroundings. You can’t bring your camera with you to document your journey, but the memories will last a lifetime.

6. Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve Safari

Traverse through the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve on a safari. This World Heritage Site is dedicated to protecting the fragile ecosystem in the Yucatán Peninsula. Encounter the vibrant, diverse nature that calls this region home and discover what happens when safari and sustainable tourism collide.

You can snorkel in the Mayan Canal alongside turtles and dolphins, try your hand at fly fishing, or just admire the beauty of the lush jungle.

Marine Life and Water Activities

It wouldn’t be a true Caribbean adventure if you never set foot in the Caribbean Sea. Pack up your wetsuit and beach towel — you’re going to need them!

7. Akumal Turtles Tour

Ever wanted to get face-to-face with a sea turtle in its natural habitat? When you take an Akumal Turtles Tour, your dream will come true.

This marine tour takes you under the sea, where you can swim with the turtles and watch them dive down to eat seagrass. Children and adults delight and marvel at the vibrant reefs and colorful fish that often make appearances during the tour.

Photographer: Jeremy Bishop

8. Whale Shark Snorkeling Excursion

Jump into the Caribbean Sea, and take a Whale Shark Snorkeling Excursion. Whale sharks are one of the ocean’s largest gentle giants, and you can snorkel alongside these massive creatures as they travel through their natural habitat.

Whale sharks only visit the area for a few months at a time, typically between May and September, but this awe-inspiring adventure is worth it if you can time it right.

9. Cenote Diving or Snorkeling Tour

Cenotes are some of the most stunning, unique aspects of the Riviera Maya landscape. While you’re in the area, you can jump right in for a diving or snorkeling tour to see them in a whole new light. Often surrounded by jungle vegetation or mind-blowing stalactites and stalagmites, they’re the perfect setting for an out-of-this-world swim.

These aquatic excursions can take place in the stunning Dos Ojos, Dreamgate, and Taj maha cenotes, as well as others scattered across the area.

Photographer: NEOM

Leisure and Relaxation Excursions

Even if you’re vacationing at some of the best resorts in Riviera Maya, these excursions will convince you to get out and enjoy some leisure and relaxation time.

10. Luxury Catamaran Sailing to Isla Mujeres

Relax in style on an Isla Mujeres Luxury Sailing experience from Cancún to Isla Mujeres. Aboard a luxury catamaran, you can indulge in the unlimited open bar while the briny breeze billows through your hair and you soak in the beautiful Caribbean sun.

If you’re adventurous at heart, put on some snorkeling equipment and see what awaits under the surface.

11. Playa del Carmen Food Tour

Only 20 minutes from Riviera Maya, enjoy some of the best local restaurants on a Playa del Carmen Food Tour, where you can taste the region’s best culinary creations. Delight in local flavors presented by local guides as you walk through Playa del Carmen’s food scene, savoring delectable tacos and more.

Photographer: Sergio Sala

Unforgettable Adventures in Riviera Maya

Adventures await in Riviera Maya. When you’re exhausted after your treks and daring journeys, it’s time to leave the rest to us.

Sit back, relax, and let us take you into our universe. Our show JOYÀ, which is playing at Vidanta Riviera Maya, lives up to its awe-inspiring surroundings, embarking on journeys into worlds that provoke your senses every step of the way. The adventure never stops on our stage, where we make dreams into reality.

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