You can spend your days in Tulum just enjoying the beautiful beach and feasting on delicious food. That would certainly be very relaxing – but also a pity, because there is so much to experience in this beautiful part of Mexico. Here is a list of great activities, interesting excursions and things to do in Tulum.
Estimated reading time: 6 minutes
- 1. Discover the Mayan Ruins of Tulum
- 2. Take a sunbath on the famous beach Playa Paraíso
- 3. Explore the unspoiled nature of Sian Ka’an
- 4. Immerse in the cool water of a Cenote
- 5. Fly in breezy heights through the jungle in Aktun Chen
- 6. Experience an unforgettable day in Xcaret
- 7. Marvel the diversity of the underwater world in Xel-Há
- 8. Climb the pyramid in Cobá
- 9. Try Kitesurfing
- 10. Stroll through boutiques of Tulum
- Recommendation for even more things to do in Tulum
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1. Discover the Mayan Ruins of Tulum
The Mayan ruins of Tulum have rightly been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The beautiful complex on a rock above the turquoise Caribbean Sea is the only one of its kind – no other known Mayan town is located directly on the coast.
This wonderful place is just around the corner if you’re in the city of Tulum. And for sure, it is one of the things to do in Tulum that you should not miss. No way. You can even explore the ancient site by yourself, if you do not want to opt for a guided tour to the Mayan Ruins of Tulum.
2. Take a sunbath on the famous beach Playa Paraíso
The beach Playa Paraíso close to the Mayan ruins is one of the most beautiful beaches on the Riviera Maya. At this beach, operators offer unforgettable excursions to the famous coral reef Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. A must-go when we talk about things to do in Tulum.
3. Explore the unspoiled nature of Sian Ka’an
Just south of Tulum, you will find the Biosphere Reserve Sian Ka’an. This incredibly large nature reserve covers an area of more than half a million hectares and is hardly inhabited by humans.
Most parts of this area may not even be entered, but in some zones there are guided excursions. Untouched beaches, coral reefs, tropical jungle, sand dunes and mangrove forests await you here. The diversity of wildlife is one of the largest on the planet.
4. Immerse in the cool water of a Cenote
Here we go with one of the most famous things to do in Tulum. In the area there is a large variety of very unique cenotes. The Yucatan Peninsula is crisscrossed by a vast system of underground rivers. In some places, the rock of the surface has collapsed due to erosion, and the water veins appear.
These so-called cenotes are magical places that were already sacred to the Maya. In many of them you can swim or dive and explore a unique world in the depths.
There are guided excursions to selected locations. If you prefer to go on your own, you have to pay close attention to your safety. Especially diving without a guide is not advisable, as it is easy to get lost.
The tides of the nearby sea can also cause the water level in the underground passageways to rise sharply in the short term, so that without an experienced guide there is a risk of drowning.
5. Fly in breezy heights through the jungle in Aktun Chen
If you want to experience adventure in the unique nature of the Mexican Caribbean coast, the Aktun Chen Natural Park is a good choice. There is a large cave with stalagmites, which have been shaped over millennia and let you feel the breath of bygone times. You can let yourself drift through geological formations in the cool water of an underground river.
A Zip-Line (“Tirolesa“) carries you at airy heights between the treetops across the jungle and ensures just the right adrenaline kick. Afterwards you can admire the animals and plants of the region during a walk through the forest and let yourself be enchanted by monkeys, toucans and parrots.
6. Experience an unforgettable day in Xcaret
A day at the Xcaret Adventure Park is a unique experience. Admittedly, admission is not quite cheap. However, the investment is always worthwhile. You can’t just snorkel and swim there, there’s an incredible amount of things to discover.
A breeding station for sea turtles, exotic birds, butterflies, jaguars and flamingos are only part of the program. You can enjoy underwater experiences of a special kind – while enjoying Seatrek or swimming with sharks you can test your courage.
There are Mayan ruins in the park, and an incredibly diverse presentation of Mexico’s history and culture. The Voladores de Papantla, the equestrian skills of Mexican Charros, an entire Maya village including old Indian dances and ritual ball game as well as a very impressive show in the evening make a day in Xcaret always seem too short.
7. Marvel the diversity of the underwater world in Xel-Há
In the lagoon of Xel-Há you can experience many adventures in the water. There, the seawater mixes with fresh water from a river, and the result is a unique hot spot for snorkeling. But of course that’s not all – your adrenaline level is taken care of as well as your physical well-being, so that a day in Xel-Há will certainly be unforgettable. A must-go when we talk about things to do in Tulum.
8. Climb the pyramid in Cobá
The Mayan ruins of Cobá are not far from Tulum. A visit to the ancient site is absolutely worthwhile. The city is not as big as the famous ruins of Chichén Itzá, but it is worth seeing.
The Great Pyramid of Cobá is the only Mayan pyramid in the region that can still be climbed today. Admittedly, climbing the 120 steps can be sweaty. But the view from the top is worth the effort.
9. Try Kitesurfing
On the beaches of the Yucatan Peninsula, a lively breeze often blows from the sea. The wind can be pleasantly refreshing in the hot, humid climate of the region. But it can also be quite lively. And there the sportspersons come into play when we talk about things to do in Tulum.
This is exactly the moment to make a virtue out of necessity. On the southern beach of Tulum, several vendors are waiting for you to teach you how to kitesurf. Flying over the waves is a spectacular adventure for windy days.
10. Stroll through boutiques of Tulum
Shopping in Tulum is pretty popular, and if you can’t resist an extensive shopping tour, you should definitely check out the city’s trendy boutiques.
Many shops are located on the road of the hotel zone (“Beach Strip”) in the south of the city. A leisurely walk or a bike will take you there. In the stylish shops you can often find really cool things that will make you happy long after the holiday. But you should prepare for the price shock, cheap bargains will be hard to find here.
Of course, you shouldn’t forget the beautiful beach about all the exciting things to do in Tulum. Take your time to swim, snorkel and sunbathe. Enjoy the many water sports offers you will find on the beach and in the city. After all, that’s why you’re here.
Recommendation for even more things to do in Tulum
Of course, there are many more exciting tours and activities available for your trip. Check out GetYourGuide for a great variety of offers, excellent service and good prices. Find the event that suits you best and read customer reviews. So you will not miss any of the great adventures of your choice!
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