The Yucatan Peninsula is one of the most magical places on the planet, in my opinion. There’s a beauty and an energy that can’t be found anywhere else, and Playa del Carmen is right in the heart of it. The city itself is incredible, but there are day trips from Playa del Carmen that will completely blow your mind.
I spent nearly five months in PDC and was lucky enough to explore some fantastic day trips around Playa del Carmen. From island hopping and swimming in natural springs to climbing ancient ruins and learning about the local culture, there’s no excuse for a dull moment.
Best Day Trips From Playa del Carmen
One of the best things about Playa del Carmen is its perfectly central location. Within a short drive or bus ride, you can find yourself in a brand new, incredible location and be back before dinner time. These are the best day trips from Playa del Carmen that need to be on your itinerary.
From the mainland in Playa del Carmen, if you look out east into the ocean, you’ll see the island of Cozumel. You can hop on a ferry from the main pier and spend the day on this beautiful island.
Cozumel is known for its snorkeling and scuba diving, as well as being a popular cruise ship destination. You can spend the day shopping, dining, and swimming in the Caribbean Sea, all just a short trip from Playa del Carmen.
There are also plenty of beach clubs if you want to rent a lounge chair for the day and snorkel in the reefs. Cozumel was one of my favorite places to “change up the scenery” for the day without breaking the bank.
Distance from Playa del Carmen: 45-minute ferry ride. 20 miles/30kms.
Location: Cozumel, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Getting There: The only option is to take a ferry. It runs often, and the Ultramar Ferry is generally the most popular option. Tickets can range from $6 (one way) to $20, depending on the class.
Best Tour from Playa del Carmen: Cozumel: Starfish, Stingrays, and Turtle Bay Snorkeling Tour
Must-Do Activities: Stroll along the promenade and go shopping. Take a taxi to a beach club. Rent ATVs. Take a glass-bottom boat tour. Snorkel, swim, and scuba!
Where to Eat: Crazy King Burrito on Cozumel is my favorite restaurant on the island. You really can’t miss it. Every item is to die for.
When most people think of ruins and pyramids in the area, they usually think of Tulum (more on this below) or Chichen Itza, however, you’re doing yourself a major disservice if…