All About Tulum, Mexico: A Guide
Tulum, Mexico is one of my favorite destinations, and since it’s still pretty cold in most parts of the United States, as well as, the Northern Hemisphere I thought I would warm you up with somewhere hot!
Tulum, Mexico is located on the southeastern part of the Yacatán Peninsula bordering the Caribbean Sea. Tulum, just 90km south of Cancún, is broken up into three parts the beach, the town and the popular archeological ruins.
Tulum over the years has become a hot spot for celebrities and backpackers alike. Tulum is not your average Mexican vacation, it’s a more laid-back alternative to Cancún, featuring eco-friendly hotels, and bohemian chic restaurants and shops.
How to get there
First you’ll travel by air to one of the three international airports in the region; Cancún International Airport, Cozumel International Airport, or Manuel International Airport. However, probably the easiest and most convenient way for most would be to fly into Cancún International Airport.
After you land there will be plenty of companies willing to take you anywhere you’d like to go for a flat rate. You can also choose to rent a car! I did! This part of Mexico has greatly improved over the years and it very safe and easy to navigate.
- Happy Shuttle Cancún has round trip fares for $195 for up to 10 pax.
- Car rental for four days was just under $300 for automatic Volkswagen Jetta. I opted also for the $7/day Garmin GPS system. Sadly, I didn’t use the system because all signs were in English and well marked on how to get to Tulum. Could have saved $28. Next time! You’ll also have to buy their liability insurance, unfortunately, there’s no way around it.
Renting a car was a nice option that allowed me to travel at my own pace. On top of that we could go on day trips without having to pay extra for a tour company, that saved me HUGE! Win!
When it comes to staying in Tulum you have many different hotels to choose from including Air Bnb’s and other vacation rentals. Hotels in Tulum are much smaller than your average hotels in Mexico with many hotels having twenty or less rooms on property. Because these hotels are smaller it’s recommended that you book your hotel ahead of time to ensure the best deal and availability. If you like booking your hotels on popular travel sites you’ll see that a lot of these hotels do not have ‘availability’ which might not be the case either. Contact hotels directly for the best rates and available dates.
Here is three of my favorite accommodations in Tulum.
The Beach Tulum
The Beach Tulum is one of the most sought after boutique hotels in Tulum. The staff is very friendly and accommodating. They even found out we were celebrating a birthday and took the time to decorate and have a bottle of champagne our rom for when we got back from day tripping. To book at The Beach Tulum contact them here and mention Passport On Point for special pricing.
This eco-friendly hotel is THE place to chilllll. Ahau Tulum features a beach front raw bar, yoga studio, massage room and individual beach bungalows with stunning views for the Caribbean Sea.
This hotel is where luxury meets hip. In the heart of Tulum, this hotel will not disappoint. From its’ beach front casitas, to the cute little seashore bar… Alaya Tulum does not disappoint!
Things to do/see
Tulum has much to offer; sun, beach, cocktails, naps, more cocktails… but if you get tired of all that, I not sure who would??? But if you do, there is plenty to do and see in this part of Mexico that a lot of people might not know about. It’s okay to disconnect yourself, but don’t miss out on things when it could be right underneath your nose.
Once you arrive at your hotel in Tulum the staff will be more than happy to book any day trips or excursions. However, if you have a car, you might want to get out there go on a day trip by yourselves. This could also give you BIG savings.
Below is a list of activities that you might not want to miss.
- Shop at local clothing stores; 1 hour.
- These stores aren’t your average souvenir stores. These are high end boutique clothing stores, surf shops, and decor stores. Best part its all locally made.
- Take a yoga class; 1>hour. Fee $0-15 USD
- Visit the Mayan Tulum Ruins; 1-2 hours. Entrance fee $8 USD.
- Located just at the beginning of the hotel zone, the ruins are most famous place in Tulum. Don’t forget your swim wear! This archeological site also has a beautiful beach for visitors to use. (PoP TIP: Get there early to beat the crowds, tour buses and heat.)
- Swim or Snorkel in a Cenote; 2-3 hours. Fees vary $6-60 USD
- Zipline and ATV ride at Endventure; 3-4 hours. Price $90 USD
- Road trip to Chichen Itza; 6-8 hours. Entrance fee $8 USD
- Wonder of the world. Check! You can book a tour or drive yourself. I drove myself and was totally worth the drive, plus only had to pay the entrance fee! Most tours are $170+. It’s a two hour drive there and back, and about 1-2 hours walking about the site. (PoP TIP: Leave as early as you can, 7-8am recommended. You’ll get there before the buses and have unobstructed photos of Chichen Itza.)
- Drive to Coba or Valladolid; can be combined with Chichen Itza. Free
- Great way to see the country side and pick up some local hand made goods for the best price.
To say the restaurant scene in Tulum is one word: incredible. Below is a recommended list of restaurants and the links to their menus below! Enjoy!
- Arca– Fusion
- Cenzontle Restaurant– Mexican, Fusion
- Casa Jaguar Tulum– Caribbean
- Hartwood– Mexican * menu changes weekly/daily
- Casa Banana– Argentinan
- La Zebra Beach Restaurant and Tequila Bar– Mexican, Bar
Tulum is exceptionally beautiful with much more to offer than the eye can see. Consider Tulum on your next vacation spot, or honeymoon spot!