Natural Attractions in Riviera Maya

Photo Credit: © Gary J. Wood
 

The beauty of the Riviera Maya is believed to be unmatched by millions.  From coastal property to inland forests, the terrain, flora, and fauna are so varies that you'll encounter differences within each town you visit.  From underwater cave to conservation areas, you won't want to miss the opportunity to get outside and learn about the important role Mother Nature plays in keeping this area vibrant.

Nature Preserves and Hiking

Do you like spending time outdoors? You might be happy to find out that the area has some nature preserves available.

Jungle Place is a great nature preserve situated in Riviera Maya. Jungle Place is located near the town of Chemuyil, between Tulum and Playa del Carmen.

Be sure to look at this table to find out more about nature preserves.

Nature Preserves and Hiking In Riviera Maya
Name Type Location
Jungle Place Nature Sanctuary/Wildlife Reserve 4.4 mi. South West of Central Akumal
Ocean Research Facility Nature Sanctuary/Wildlife Reserve 2.3 mi. South of Central Riviera Cancun
Pez Maya Research Center Nature Sanctuary/Wildlife Reserve 14.0 mi. North of Central Punta Allen

Caves

Aktun Chen Cave System

Even though most travelers come for the beaches, that isn't the only way to enjoy the natural wonders available. Riviera Maya offers some interesting choices, including 4 caves.

You might enjoy a visit to Aktun Chen Cave System, which is located in Riviera Maya. The tour of the cave system is a 656 yard walking tour that leads visitors through paths that have been made safe to walk on. Of particular note within the caves are the domes and the 39 foot deep cenote filled with water.

An additional attraction worth considering is Cristalino Maya Cenote. It is located within the vicinity of La Gloria, in central Riviera Maya. This cave has a cenote in it that is perfect for taking a quick swim, but many cave divers love this spot as well. Features of the cenote include an overhanging ledge that is fun for jumping into the water.

The table below provides more information about caves.

Caves In Riviera Maya
Name Type Location
Aktun Chen Cave System Cave 6.2 mi. Northwest of Central Akumal
Chac Tun Cave Tour/ Paintball City Cave 3.7 mi. Northwest of Central Playa del Carmen
Cristalino Maya Cenote Cave The vicinity of La Gloria, Central Riviera Maya
Jardin Del Eden Cenote Cave The vicinity of La Gloria, Central Riviera Maya

Parks and Botanical Gardens

Selvatica

Visitors can experience one of the many parks, or a botanical garden in Riviera Maya.

Kantun Chi Eco Park is found in the vicinity of La Gloria, in central Riviera Maya. Kantun Chi is accessible just 200 meters south of the Barcelo Maya Hotel. Buses from Cancun drive right up to the property, while those driving can take Federal Highway 307 south from Cancun.

A second popular choice in this category is Selvatica. There are four different adventure packages at Selvetica. The Extreme Canopy Adventure features a zip line tour and cenote swim; the Off-Road and Flight Challenge includes one of the fastest ziplines availale, an aerial challenge complete with a parachute experience, ATVing, and a cenote swim; the Zip & ATV Jungle Expedition is a zip line and ATV tour that finishes with a cenote swim; and finally, the Corona Rally is a zip line tour followed by a trip through the jungle on a Corona buggy that ends up at the cenote for a swim.

The parks and gardens you'll be able to find are provided in the chart below.

Parks and Gardens In Riviera Maya
Name Type Location
Kantun Chi Eco Park Park The vicinity of La Gloria, Central Riviera Maya
Manati Cenote Park 10.4 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Plaza 28 De Julio Park Park Downtown Playa del Carmen
Punta Allen Park Park 0.0 mi. East of Central Punta Allen
Selvaje Cenote Park 19.3 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Selvatica Park 16.1 mi. North of Central Playa del Carmen
Tajmahal Cenote Park Central Riviera Maya
Vaca Ha Tortugas Cenote Park 13.6 mi. South West of Central Akumal
Xunaan Ha Cenote Park 6.5 mi. South West of Central Akumal
Yax-Che Jardin Botanico Botanical Garden 4.5 mi. South West of Central Riviera Cancun
Yaxmul Cenote Park 8.9 mi. South West of Central Akumal

Zoos and Aquariums

Crococun Zoo

If the idea of passing some time at the zoo sounds like fun, you should visit Crococun Zoo. For an up close experience of some of Mexico's native wildlife, Crococun is a great place to check out. This crocodile farm features a wide range of exhibits from large and fearsome crocodiles to babies that you can pet and hold.

Another similar attraction is Dolphin Discovery. Make your vacation of a lifetime even more special by adding some dolphins into the mix. Dolphin Discovery offers a number of possibilities, most ending with guests swimming with the dolphins.

Take a look at the chart below for more information.

Zoos In Riviera Maya
Name Type Location
Crococun Zoo Zoo 1.9 mi. South West of Central Riviera Cancun
Dolphin Discovery Zoo Puerto Aventuras, Central Riviera Maya
X'Cacel Turtle Conservation Area Zoo 4.7 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Xaman-Ha Aviary Zoo 1.6 mi. South West of Central Playa del Carmen

Land Formations

Another fun idea is to go see some of the more popular area land formations. Fully natural attractions like these in Riviera Maya are provided directly below.

Land Formations In Riviera Maya
Name Type Location
Aktum Cenote Pond 5.8 mi. South of Central Tulum
Aktun Ha Cenote Pond 3.1 mi. North of Central Tulum
Azul Cenote Pond The vicinity of La Gloria, Central Riviera Maya
Chikin Ha Cenote Pond The vicinity of La Gloria, Central Riviera Maya
Crocodile Swamp Swamp 3.7 mi. South of Central Riviera Cancun
Dick's Reef Reef 0.9 mi. East of Central Akumal
Dos Ojos Cenote Hot Spring 9.0 mi. Northeast of Central Tulum
El Encanto Cenote Pond 20.9 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Escondido Cenote Hot Spring 5.1 mi. West-Southwest of Central Tulum
Gran Cenote Pond 13.9 mi. South West of Central Akumal
Kaape-Ha Cenote Pond 19.3 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Kaape-Ha Cenote Pond 19.3 mi. South-Southwest of Central Akumal
Morgan's Reef Reef 0.8 mi. East of Central Akumal
Motorcycle Reef Reef 0.8 mi. Southeast of Central Akumal
Puerto Morelos Commercial Port Harbour Puerto Morelos, Northeastern part of Riviera Maya
Regina Cenote Hot Spring 5.8 mi. West-Southwest of Central Tulum
Tortuga Reef Reef 0.6 mi. South-Southeast of Central Akumal
Underground River Other Natural Formation 2.5 mi. Northeast of Central Puerto Morelos
Xohken Reef Reef 2.2 mi. Northeast of Central Punta Allen
Yal-Ku Lagoon Lagoon 1.1 mi. Northeast of Central Akumal

If you are looking for more points of interest beyond the category on this page, you might want to consider other locations. To navigate to our detailed page about other attractions, read this article.

 

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