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13 Hidden gems to visit while in Playa del Carmen

Playa del Carmen: Cenote Chaak Tun

Playa del Carmen: Playa del Carmen is a vibrant tourist destination known for its stunning beaches, buzzing nightlife, and luxurious resorts. However, beyond the mainstream attractions, there’s a whole world of hidden gems waiting to be discovered. From secluded cenotes and ancient Mayan ruins to charming local markets and vibrant art galleries, Playa del Carmen offers unique experiences for the adventurous traveler.

Here are 13 hidden gems to add to your itinerary:

1. Cenote Chaak Tun: Playa del Carmen

This mesmerizing cenote is located just a short drive from Playa del Carmen and offers a truly magical experience. Sunlight streams through the openings in the cavern roof, illuminating the crystal-clear waters and creating a breathtaking spectacle. You can swim, snorkel, or simply relax on the platforms and take in the beauty of this natural wonder.

 Playa del Carmen: Cenote Chaak Tun

2. Rancho Baaxal:

Experience the authentic Mexican countryside at Rancho Baaxal, a working horse ranch offering horseback riding tours through the jungle. Explore the lush landscapes, encounter local wildlife, and learn about traditional Mayan culture from the friendly staff.

3. Gastón Charó Art Gallery:

Step into a world of vibrant colors and dynamic textures at the Gastón Charó Art Gallery. This renowned artist’s gallery showcases his unique creations, inspired by Mayan mythology and the natural beauty of the region. It’s a must-visit for art lovers and those seeking a cultural immersion.

4. Chikin Ha: Playa del Carmen

Escape the crowds and find tranquility at Chikin Ha, a secluded cenote surrounded by lush vegetation. This natural pool is perfect for swimming, snorkeling, or simply enjoying the peaceful atmosphere. Pack a picnic lunch and make a day of it!

Playa del Carmen: Chikin Ha

5. Cenote Misterio Maya:

This hidden cenote is a true adventure for the daring souls. Access is through a narrow opening in the ground, leading to a cavern with a magnificent stalactite and stalagmite formations. The crystal-clear waters invite you for a refreshing swim in this unique underground world.

6. Quinta Avenida:

No visit to Playa del Carmen is complete without strolling down the iconic Quinta Avenida. This pedestrian-only street is lined with shops, restaurants, bars, and street performers, offering a vibrant atmosphere and endless entertainment.

7. Parque Fundadores:

Located in the heart of Playa del Carmen, Parque Fundadores is a beautiful green space perfect for a relaxing escape. Take a stroll through the park, admire the local artwork, or simply enjoy a picnic lunch under the shade of the palm trees.

8. Portal Maya Statue:

This iconic statue is a landmark of Playa del Carmen and represents the ancient Mayan civilization. Capture stunning photos with the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea as a backdrop.

9. Xcaret Eco-Park:

Immerse yourself in the wonders of nature at Xcaret Eco-Park. This sprawling park offers a variety of activities like swimming in cenotes, exploring underground rivers, snorkeling in coral reefs, and watching traditional Mayan cultural performances.

Playa del Carmen: Xcaret Eco-Park

10. Sian Ka’an Biosphere:

Venture into the Sian Ka’an Biosphere, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its diverse ecosystems. Discover hidden lagoons, mangrove forests, and pristine beaches, all while learning about the region’s unique flora and fauna.

11. Rio Secreto:

Embark on an unforgettable adventure at Rio Secreto, a natural underground river system. Walk, swim, and float through caverns adorned with stunning stalactites and stalagmites, experiencing the beauty of this geological marvel.

12. Akumal:

Just south of Playa del Carmen lies the charming town of Akumal, known for its beautiful beaches and abundant marine life. Snorkel with gentle sea turtles in their natural habitat and create memories that will last a lifetime.

13. Isla Mujeres:

Hop on a ferry and escape to the laid-back island of Isla Mujeres. Explore the colorful downtown, relax on pristine beaches, and discover the island’s hidden coves and snorkeling spots.

These are just a few of the many hidden gems waiting to be discovered in Playa del Carmen. So, go off the beaten path, explore beyond the tourist hotspots, and create your own unique adventure in this captivating Mexican paradise.