Day 1: CANCUN - arrival at Cancun airport - transfer to the hotel - afternoon and evening free.
Day 2: CANCUN - morning: guided bike tour of the Cancun hotel zone / free lunch / afternoon guided tour: discovery of the El Rey archaeological site + Mayan world museum / free evening
In the morning, we invite you to discover Cancun in a different light. Explore the city’s hotel zone riding a bike and enjoy the pleasures of this modern area of Cancun at your own pace. This 16 mile (23 km) strip of land between the Caribbean Sea and the Nichupté lagoon can be easily explored by bicycle. Cycling is both green and practical, and it also allows you to stop and enjoy the beaches in Cancun at will.
Free time to have lunch in the hotel zone or return to your hotel.
In the afternoon, you’ll discover Cancun’s Mayan Museum. This excellent museum is the perfect introduction to the Mayan world before venturing into the exploration of the great archaeological sites in the Riviera Maya, such as Chichen Itza, Coba and Tulum.
Opened in 2012, the museum boasts an avant-garde architecture and showcases artefacts from the Mayan civilization collected across the states of Yucatan, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, Chiapas, and Campeche. From its terrace, you’ll enjoy a magnificent view of the jungle and the Nichupté lagoon.
After the museum, it’s time to visit one of the archaeological sites in Cancun. The entrance to the museum is actually adjacent to that of the Mayan ruins of San Miguelito. Despite its modest dimensions, these archaeological remains shed an interesting light on the Mayans’ way of life in this coastal area.
You have the evening for yourself to enjoy Cancun’s hotel zone and have dinner where you see fit.
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Day 3 : CANCUN - Chichen Itza tour + cenote + Mayan culinary experience / evening in VALLADOLID for a sound and light show.
Get up early for a departure at 5:30 am. Your private driver will meet you in the lobby of your hotel and drive you to Chichen Itza, Yucatan.
The archaeological site of Chichen Itza is one of the major ruins in the region. Listed as a World Heritage Site and classified among the 7 Wonders of the Modern World, it is a must for visitors who wish to learn about the Mayan civilization. One of the singularities of Chichen Itza is that it presents several periods of settlement and successive constructions, as well as the cohabitation of Toltecs and Mayas.
Arrival at 8 am at the archaeological site. Visit of the city-state of Chichen Itza in the company of a tour guide.
On the program are included the Great Pyramid of Kukulkan, the Observatory, the Sacred Cenote, the Temple of the Thousand Columns, the Temple of Warriors, and the Great Ball Game court (the largest in all of Mesoamerica).
For lunch, you’ll participate in a culinary experience organized by a Mayan community.
Discover all the flavors of the Yucatan peninsula and make the most of the millenary know-how of your hosts by learning how to prepare typical dishes of the region during this atypical cooking lesson.
In the afternoon, you’ll discover a cenote located near Chichen Itza. The famous cenote Ik Kil, one of the most impressive in the Yucatan Peninsula, is an open air cenote. Between noon and 2 p.m., daylight falls there as if by magic, illuminating a stone platform located in the center of the water hole. A truly wonderful thing to see.
Time to rest and relax with the possibility of swimming in the cenote. Your guide will explain to you the crucial sacred role that cenotes played for the Mayan people.
Road to Valladolid,where you’ll spend the rest of the day strolling through the colorful alleys of this pueblo magico also known as the Pearl of the Orient.
In the evening, free time for dinner and then sound and light show on the facade of the Bernardine convent which tells the history of the "heroic city" Valladolid (duration 20 min, Spanish - English).
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Day 4 : VALLADOLID - Ek Balam - guided tour of Valladolid and free time for lunch - Coba - TULUM
In the morning, departure for the archaeological site of Ek Balam. Less known than its neighbor the city-state of Chichen Itza, the ancient city of Ek Balam is no less remarkable and worthy of interest.
Its large pyramid with very steep stairs offers several major attractions. On the first level, superb and surprisingly preserved stuccoes show characters with incredibly expressive faces. The other particularity of this site is its impressive entrance in the shape of a jaguar's mouth with sharp teeth. Then, at the top of the temple, a panoramic view of the surrounding jungle will give you a glimpse of the surrounding nature.
Return to Valladolid for a guided tour of the city. You’ll get to know the main buildings of this old colonial city with a heavy historical past. During the visit, discover the central square and its monuments, the cathedral, the roadway of friars, and the former San Bernardino convent.
Free time for lunch in Valladolid.
In the afternoon, drive to Coba, the mysterious Mayan city buried in the heart of the Quintana Roo jungle. This former trading city of the Riviera Maya was a place of great importance for the Maya civilization. Built between 50 and 100 AD, it quickly became one of the most powerful city-states in the Yucatan Peninsula.
If you feel like it, you can climb the pyramid of Nohoch Mul. With its 42 meters high and 120 steps, it is also the tallest pyramid on the Yucatan Peninsula. At the top, enjoy a magnificent panoramic view of the jungle.
At the end of the day, drive to Tulum, the trendiest seaside resort on the Riviera Maya.
Check-in at the hotel and free night in Tulum.
Day 5 : TULUM - Sian Ka’an Reserve - birdwatching tour.
In the morning, get up early for a departure from the hotel at 5:30 am. Drive to the Sian Ka'an Reserve following the road leading to Punta Allen.
The Sian Ka'an Reserve is one of the largest biodiversity reserves on the Yucatan Peninsula. For the ancient Mayan peoples, this area was a sacred place which they designated as "the place where the sky was born". Listed as World Heritage by Unesco in 1987, it’s home to a unique ecosystem.
Sian Ka'an is the ideal place to indulge in activities related to ecotourism such as the observation of flora and fauna.
Once at the heart of the reserve, transfer to the pier to navigate the lagoon in a “lancha”, a typical flat-bottomed boat. During the tour, you’ll have a guide specialized in the region’s wildlife, and you’ll have the opportunity to watch birds and lagoon fauna (crocodiles, manatees, dolphins, etc.).
Lunch included in your tour.
At the end of the day, return to Tulum. Free time for dinner.
Day 6 : TULUM - day trip to Bacalar - catamaran tour - Cenote Azul (optional trip)
In the morning, departure to the south of the Riviera Maya to discover one of the most paradise-like places in the Yucatan Peninsula.
Bacalar, also called the seven colors lagoon, owes its name to the superb shades of blue that can be admired on its surface. From turquoise to deep blue, the seven colors lagoon shows an extraordinary variation of hues.
Upon arrival, transfer to the Bacalar pier for a catamaran ride in a magnificent setting. On-board service includes an open bar, snacks and light catering.
In the afternoon, back on dry land, drive to Cenote Azul for an afternoon of relaxation and rest. You may swim and practice snorkeling to admire the cenote’s aquatic life.
At the end of the day, return to Tulum. Free time for dinner.
Day 7 : TULUM - Tulum ruins - Akumal - PLAYA DEL CARMEN
In the morning, guided tour of the Tulum ruins. Perched on a cliff facing the Caribbean Sea, this astonishing ancient fortified city is one of the best preserved cities of the entire Maya civilization. Compulsory passage point for trade coming from the sea, the city of Tulum was a powerful port city. Its most impressive building called "El Castillo" (The Castle) also served as a lighthouse for boats wishing to dock. Thanks to an ingenious light system, it guided ships through the channel, thus avoiding the pitfalls of the coral reef.
Road to Akumal and lunch on site.
In the afternoon, you’ll discover Akumal, one of the most beautiful beaches of the Riviera Maya. It is a succession of five bays with shallow and crystalline waters.
The name Akumal translates in Mayan as "the place of the turtles", because many sea turtles choose these beaches as a nesting place every year. In addition, seagrass located not far from the beaches attracts turtles which feed on them. It is therefore common to be able to watch turtles in this area.
Accompanied all the time by a specialized guide, equipped with life vests, and snorkeling equipment, you’ll watch sea turtles in their natural environment.
Important note: this supervised practice implies outings in groups of 6 people maximum, keeping a certain distance from all marine animals, and it’s completely forbidden to touch them and/or use sunscreen.
At the end of the day, drive to Playa del Carmen.
Check-in at the hotel. Free time for dinner and to enjoy downtown Playa del Carmen.
Day 8 : PLAYA DEL CARMEN - Cozumel - Quinta Avenida - Xoximilco show
In the morning, departure for a day trip to the island of Cozumel located just opposite of Playa del Carmen. .
Transfer to the pier in Playa del Carmen and ferry crossing to the island of Cozumel. Once there, nice trip by motorboat to the coral reef off the island. The Mesoamerican Reef is the second largest coral reef in the world. It is home to a great diversity of marine fauna, and it’s one of the most recognized diving spots in the Riviera Maya.
During the tour, you’ll make several stops near the reef to snorkel and watch aquatic fauna.
After lunch on board, the visit continue to the north of the island in order to discover one of the most beautiful beaches in the Riviera Maya: Playa Cielito. This beach owes its name to the crystal clear waters that border this white sand beach and to the starfish that can be seen in large numbers on the seabed.
At the end of the day, return to Playa del Carmen by ferry.
In the evening, show in the Xoximilco theme park. Enjoy a fun boat trip to the sound of mariachis and taste the country's rich gastronomy while admiring Mexican folklore.
Day 9 : PLAYA DEL CARMEN - CANCUN - shopping tour
In the morning, you’ll have free time to enjoy the beaches of Cancun. The beaches in the hotel zone are among the most beautiful beaches in the Riviera Maya. Whether you are looking for a quiet beach to spend the day with your children, a sporty beach to go surfing, or a festive beach to enjoy the entertainment of a beach club, you’ll find a beach to your liking.
Find all our best advice on the beaches in Cancun, here.
After having some free time for lunch, transfer to Cancun shopping district.
The shopping tour is one of Cancun's most renowned activities. An international city, Cancun offers many state-of-the-art shopping malls, major international brands, Mexican designer boutiques, craftsmanship from all over Mexico. La Isla, las Americas, Mercado 28… you’ll be amazed by the diversity of high-end boutiques and luxury shops.
In the evening, free time for dinner in the hotel zone of Cancun.
Day 10: CANCUN - airport transfer
In the morning, transfer to Cancun airport. The driver will meet you in the lobby of your hotel.
Departure by car to your terminal, assistance with unloading your luggage.
Flight to your home country.
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