cancun - copyright Stephany Wiestling. all rights reserved.
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Top 5 Family Activities in Cancun

cancun - copyright Stephany Wiestling. all rights reserved.
cancun – copyright Stephany Wiestling. all rights reserved.

Cancun has gorgeous weather practically any time of year, and it’s a relatively short flight from anywhere in the US, making it a fantastic family vacation spot.  Even though there are tons of things to do there, many of the resorts are so nice you never have to leave!  Here are 5 things worth venturing out for…

Xel-ha – Pronounced ‘shell – ha’, this is an eco-friendly snorkel park.  The setup is great… for one price, you get snorkel gear, lockers, towels, and all you can eat and drink all day.  Granted the margaritas are very watered down, but refreshing none-the-less.  Even if your child is too young or too afraid to snorkel, there are LOTS of things to do there for all ages and abilities.  There is also a glass-bottom boat anchored on the shore so you can still watch the fish without getting wet.

Xcaret – Pronounced ‘esh-car-ette’, this is the same company that runs Xel-ha.  Xcaret is more of a zoo and theme park with exciting live shows, but also very eco-friendly.  I recommend booking directly through their website to avoid any issues with third party transportation or extra fees.  All ticket prices include transportation to and from your hotel.  It’s very slick.

Tulum & other ruins – Tulum is one of the most beautiful and kid-friendly of the major Mayan ruins.  You can book Xel-ha and Tulum together from the Xel-ha website (and I recommend that you do) for a full day excursion.  There are other Mayan ruins closer to Cancun – like El Rey, which is right in the Hotel Zone of Cancun.  But, those require a good imagination to picture what they used to look like.

The Beach – If you are on the Caribbean side, be careful of riptides.  There are often lifeguards on duty, but watch the little ones like a hawk.  The beach itself if gorgeous… soft and cool to walk on.  If you are lucky, you may find a big conch shell along the shore, or small crab or other small shells.  There are plenty of volleyball nets, as well as places to chill out and build a sandcastle.  The water on the Gulf of Mexico side is calmer, but do still keep careful watch.

Isla Mujeres – Take the ferry to Isla Mujeres for a few hours of fun.  The ferry takes about 30 minutes and in calm seas is super fun.  Once there, rent a golf cart (there are no cars there except for taxis and locals) to explore the island.  On the north end is calm shallow water and a breathtakingly beautiful beach, and on the opposite end is an ancient ruin.  Somewhere in between you can swim with dolphins or sea turtles (paid excursions).  The town is quaint and rustic and really feels like the Mexican fishing village that it is.

The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort Villas Cancun
The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort Villas Cancun

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