Playa del Carmen

Photo Credit: © Daryl Mitchell CC BY

Set in a resort town of the same name, Playa del Carmen is one of the most popular beaches in the Maya Riviera. Just south of Cancun, the beach is not only known for its gorgeous tropical scenery, but the wealth of activities than guests can partake in, such as snorkeling and other water sports, fishing, beach volleyball, sunbathing, and more.

Located in the heart of downtown Playa del Carmen, this beach is on the East coast of Mexico. You might want to drop by regardless of whether you are staying particularly close by. Beaches in Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean are often though of as calm, pleasant, and quiet. While these beaches are a perfect fit for some, busy vacationers may prefer something a little less out-of-the-way, like Playa del Carmen.

How to Access The Beach
Playa del Carmen's Main Beach is located on 4 Nte. bis, between Hotel All Riviera and Fusion.

Amenities and Ambiance

Playa del Carmen enjoys calm waters because of a break provided by a small off-shore reef formation. This makes it a great location for novice swimmers who want to splash around in the clear aquamarine waters, as long as they keep an eye out for sailboats that take off right from the beach. On shore, the sand is white and well kept, lined with lounge chairs palm trees, and the occasional life guard stand.

Keep in mind that restrooms won't be found on-site, which is something to consider if you plan to spend a full day in the sun. The water here is clear enough for snorkeling, so bring along some equipment if you are looking to do some underwater exploration.

Be mindful that the region in which Playa del Carmen is located is visited by quite a number of tourists, so plan accordingly.

What's Nearby


Beachgoers will find Playa del Carmen on the East coast of Mexico. It is close to Sol Jaguar, which is located about a hundred yards to the northwest, and it is one of a few the area's interesting attractions.

Historical attractions like Xcaret Maya Ruins provide a nice compliment to a soothing day at Playa del Carmen, and provide beachgoers with the opportunity to learn about Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean's past. As a matter of fact, this coastline is located a half mile from this historical destination.

The beach is one type of attraction you can visit, but there will be more options available in Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean. The following table includes the closest attractions.

Activities and Attractions Near Playa del Carmen
Attraction Type Distance Direction
Sol Jaguar Art Gallery 0.1 mi. NW --
D'Garheti Gallery Boutique Art Gallery 0.1 mi. N --
Plaza Principal Attraction 0.2 mi. SW --
Mexican Handcrafts Art Gallery 0.2 mi. SW --
El Faro Lighthouse Lighthouse 0.2 mi. NE --
Xcaret Maya Ruins Historical Site 0.5 mi. SW --
Puetra del Cielo Historical Site 1.3 mi. WSW --
El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Course 5.3 mi. NE --

Cities and Towns

Those visiting this beach who are hoping to find some additional excitement should consider heading to Playa del Carmen, since it's close-by and is a particularly busy area of Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean. From the beach, Playa del Carmen is just up the road, roughly less than a mile (a kilometer and a half).


The number of other people sharing spots in the sand can vary widely, depending on everything from the time the sun sets to how many of the nearby hotel rooms have been booked. You can typically expect to encounter a fair number of visitors from lodgings in the area.

Since this beach is situated in a relatively popular vacation spot, it is not typically that difficult to find just the right kind of hotel close-by. For visitors looking to get a place that's near the beach, the table below shows the accommodation options closest to Playa del Carmen.

Accommodations near Playa del Carmen
Hotel Distance Direction Type
Hotel Mimi del Mar 0.0 mi. SW Hotel
All Riviera Resort 0.1 mi. SW Resort
Hotel Vista Caribe 0.1 mi. N Hotel
Fusion Beach Hotel Restaurant & Lounge 0.1 mi. NNE Hotel
Hotel Delfin Playa 0.1 mi. NNW Hotel
Hotel Lunata 0.1 mi. N Hotel
Playa Maya 0.1 mi. NE Hotel
Illusion Boutique Hotel 0.1 mi. NNE Motel
Hotel Hacienda del Caribe 0.1 mi. W Hotel
The Beach House 0.1 mi. NE Hotel


If someone in your group starts to get a little hungry at the beach, it's alright because you'll have many local dishes to choose from at nearby establishments. One of the nearest places to eat is Big Lobster. This restaurant serves delicious Mexican food. Visitors often rave about their seafood. Some guests will choose to take a cab here, while others will want to walk as it's just a little ways away.

The following table provides a list of nearby restaurant options.

Restaurants near Playa del Carmen
Restaurant Name Phone Cuisine Style Distance Direction
Big Lobster (984) 137-9547 Mexican Informal 0.1 mi. NW
Las Mananitas (314) 572-9650 Mexican Fine Dining 0.1 mi. NW
Karen's (984) 147-7640 International -- 0.1 mi. W
Carboncitos (984) 873-1382 Mexican Very Casual 0.1 mi. WNW
La Casa Del Agua 52 984 80 302 32 International Informal 0.1 mi. WSW
La Patrona (984) 157-1162 -- -- 0.1 mi. SW
Casa Mediterranea (984) 806-4679 Mediterranean Fine Dining 0.1 mi. N
Pez Vela (984) 873-0999 International -- 0.1 mi. W
Limones -- Mexican Informal 0.1 mi. N
Las Brisas Terrace (800) 540-6088 International Fine Dining 0.1 mi. WNW
La Parilla Grill (984) 873-0687 Mexican Informal 0.1 mi. N
McDonald's 5 Avenida -- American Very Casual 0.1 mi. SW

Other Beaches

Mexico has many nice beaches, so Playa del Carmen is just one of your options.

If the active mood at Playa del Carmen has you wanting more of the same, think about checking out Playa Secreto, another location where you'll find fun and action. It is located 16 and a half miles to the northeast. Playa Secreto is an unknown jewel of Cancun. Privacy, sand, and sun are awaiting the lucky traveler who stumbles upon this secret. If you're looking for something a little more private, you might find what you want at El Faro. You'll find it not far off the beach at all.

Another sun-drenched spot to consider is Maroma Beach, which is located just a cab ride away.

Of course, there are lots of other things to do and see in Cancun and the Mexican Caribbean; then again, a trip to Playa del Carmen could end up a family favorite.


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