Playa Del Carmen Activities List
Playa Del Carmen activities are what many people look for while on vacation. Even if you are staying at an all inclusive hotel, most people want to get out and see what things there are to do. When you come to the Riviera Maya you will find so many activities in Playa Del Carmen and around! Don’t worry about not having enough to do while here! The Riviera Maya is a very safe place to get out and explore, so feel free to get out there and see the amazing things to do here!
We want to run down a list of fun and adventurous tours , Playa Del Carmen activities, and things you can do when here on vacation. Some of these things are more for people staying in Playa Del Carmen but most are activities available to people staying everywhere in the Riviera Maya. Make sure you look at the Tips at the bottom of the page. Some of the tips save you money!
Activities in Playa Del Carmen for active people
With year round warm temperatures you are guaranteed to be able to do a lot of outdoor sports.
- For those that like to run on vacation, check out our running guide to Playa Del Carmen complete with maps of where to go.
- A great local tour is the MTB Bike Tour in Playa Del Carmen. This affordable tour takes you in the Mayan Jungle and afterward a swim in a beautiful cenote. We really enjoyed this tour and recommend it.
- If you want to get out to see Cozumel on the far side and see nature, an electric bike tour might just be for you. This tour is as hard or easy as you want to make it.
- Most running races take place from October until March. While most of the north is frozen, this is a great time to plan entering a race here for practice or fun. One great event here is the Bravest Race at Xplor park.
- If you like to go biking on vacation you can read our guide to biking in Playa Del Carmen complete with maps on where to ride.
- Want to swim in a cenote? There are some just 15 minutes south of Playa Del Carmen. The best one we recommend is Cenote Jardin Del Eden. There are also two cenotes right next to this one that are a little different. Cenote Azul and Cenote Cristalino.
- Want to paddle board or learn? See our article on paddle boarding not only here in Playa Del Carmen but also in Puerto Aventuras.
- Want to practice yoga? If you would like a private yoga lesson you can contact Mariana.
- If you are looking to stay in shape while on vacation you might like to check out our gym guide to Playa Del Carmen. We tell you where the gyms are and what are the best gyms to visit.
Beach Activities in Playa Del Carmen and around
Most all inclusive hotels have staff that round up people for sports on the beach but if you are staying at a non inclusive hotel and in Playa Del Carmen, here are some things you can do at the beach.
- Swimming right off the beach. The water is beautiful and warm year round.
- You can play beach volleyball anywhere you like with friends as long as you have space or you can join in a game. The two best locations are Mamitas beach just north of Mamitas Beach Club and the beach where Juarez Avenue ends with the beach, that is just north of the Cozumel Ferry Pier. Both of these beaches usually have nets.
- Wave boards, have you seen or heard about this? It is where you have a board that shoots out water and it lifts you up out of the water. You can also dive in to the water like a dolphin and be propelled by the shooting water. It is pretty crazy to see and something new to try. You can do this at Mamitas beach.
- Mamitas beach (where 28th Street goes to the beach) is also a popular place rent jet skis, go parasailing, or take a small catamaran out on the water.
- Other things to mention are kite surfing, paddle boarding, or just snorkeling off the beach to see a little underwater life although the beaches off Playa Del Carmen does not have the best snorkeling.
Tours and Excursions from Playa Del Carmen
Many of the tours go to Mayan Ruins like Chichen Itza, Ek Balam, Tulum and Coba. These are all day trips from the Rivera Maya and Playa Del Carmen. Many tours add on other activities to round out the day like a stop at a cenote or in the colonial city of Valladolid.
Make sure you see our master list of all the Excursions from Playa Del Carmen that includes a cool interactive map.
One tour company we like is allTOURnative. We like them because they work with the local communities and preserve the living Mayan culture that is here in our area. Many of there tours provide activities like ATV’s, snorkeling, rappelling and zip lines in addition to a visit of a Mayan ruin like Ek Balam. Many of the tours go to natural areas that only they take people to.
Some other interesting tours to take are fishing tours right from Playa Del Carmen, whale shark tours, Sian Ka’an Tours, diving tours, snorkel tours or Sky Diving tours.
For boat tours and getting out on the water you will have to go out of Playa Del Carmen just a little bit because there is not a marina or dock for boats. Puerto Aventuras offers many catamaran tours. This is just 20 minutes south of Playa Del Carmen. Catamaya is a company we have taken and we like the large catamaran they have. One option you can do with them is sail up the coast, go snorkeling at a reef, eat a meal and then sail back down the coast. It can be a great way to get out on the water. Did we mention they have open bar as well? You can make this trip what you want and it can be fun for all ages.
Cooking classes and tastings in Playa Del Carmen
If you like tequila you might be interested in a tasting to learn more about tequila. The Tequila Academy does public and private tasting classes. These events are about 2- 2 1/2 hours long and where you will learn about tequilas and sample about 5 different tequilas.
Cooking classes in Playa Del Carmen include learning local dishes. These can be something to enrich your vacation time in Mexico and are great indoor activities when it rains.
Cocina Cosmopolita Culinary School is one place you can take classes. They focus on regional dishes and offer classes on the north end of Playa Del Carmen.
In El Pueblito you can take short or longer cooking classes. See what this cooking classes are like in our article on El Pueblito cooking school here.
Mexico Lindo cooking school focusses on Mexican cooking in its jungle location near Puerto Morelos.
Day trips on your own
Are you looking to do some exploring on your own? We have a Day Trip Guide From Playa Del Carmen for you. We mention 11 different excursions you can do, each a full day trip. Some of the best are going to Cozumel on the ferry to explore there, the three adventure parks listed below or going to the colonial town of Valladolid.
Adventure Parks and Activities
Mentioned in our Day Trip Guide were three parks that you can visit. Each is a full day and well worth the money. these are one of the most popular Playa Del Carmen activities! They are Xplor -which is a zip line swimming in underground rivers and more park. Xel-Ha -which is a bay that you can snorkel all day in. Xcaret -which highlights Mexican Culture and has shows and animals to visit among many other things.
Other Playa Del Carmen Activities
Still looking for something to do?
- Why not walk on 5th Avenue in Playa Del Carmen? It has about 20 blocks of restaurants, shops and entertainment. It is bound to keep you entertained for many hours. For unique places to shop in Playa Del Carmen, check out our shopping section. Discover more of 5th Avenue in our article about it here.
- Go out for a dinner in one of Playa Del Carmen’s great restaurants.
- The 3D Museum is a fun place to take photos and jump into the art.
- Go to a beach club or roof top pool in Playa Del Carmen. Both can be great places to relax ad get a drink. There are five good roof top pools to visit and all are a good place to grab a drink. One of our favorites is The Palm Hotel roof top.
- Clubs and bars. One of the most popular is Coco Bongo Night Club. This is a Vegas style show that will have you entertained from about 11:00pm-3:15am in the morning! This is a must if you want to go out for a big night on vacation!
- If you like seeing birds, there is the Xaman-Ha Aviary in the Playacar section of Playa Del Carmen.
- Looking for some free entertainment? All over 5th Avenue in Playa you can find street performers (of course tips are welcome). One of the best places is Park Fundadores right at the beach and Juarez Avenue. There are usually several performances going on at the same time. Make sure you watch the Papantla dancers fly!
- In Akumal you can swim in a bay with sea turtles! There is the Yal Ku Lagoon where you can snorkel.
- If you want to remote beaches that are more like parks, you could try Xpu Ha and Xcacel beaches.
Shows that you can attend
- You can visit Cirque Du Soleil’s Joya show. This is an evening experience that is unrivaled entertainment here in the Rivera Maya. This makes for a good activity to do later in the day and leaves your day for the beach.
- Another show you can visit it Rauxa. This is a dinner show between Playa Del Carmen and Tulum. It is an amazing show that is a mix between cabaret, Moulin Rouge, rock band, and pop culture all mixed together in a creative show. For more on Rauxa show see our article here.
Enough options for activities? Here are some tips
We hope you have found some great activities for you to try while here on vacation. If you would like a more specific recommendation for things, feel free to contact us here on the site. We like to give unbiased opinions to our readers and try to give you the best advice for you.
Tip: Always try to book directly with the tour company, you will get the best price. Even booking online can save money. When we talk about a tour or activity from Playa Del Carmen we always try to tell you the best price.
Tip: Before you book a tour, know what their rain policy. Ask yourself, will the tour goes rain or shine, do I want to go if it is raining. Some places will let you book 24 hours in advance.
Tip: If you want to visit a cenote make sure you check out the information on colectivos . Public transportation can save you money. This saves renting a car. Also make sure you don’t wear chemicals on your body that pollute the water. This includes sun cream unless it is biodegradable.
What Playa Del Carmen activities do you like here? What are some of your favorites? We would love to hear from you in the comment box below.
Hi, is Catamay tours still in business because we already sent them an email and our questions via Facebook a few days ago, but we did not get a reply yet and we think their catamaran snorkling Tour looks great. We just want to know which day between 1 and 5 November will be best to do the trip (because they know better what the weather will be then).
Family Engelen from Belgium
As far as we know they are in business. Sometimes they have been slow to reply. We will send them an email as well to check on them.
We contacted Catamaya and they are open. They are looking for your email because it might have gone to spam. You can always call them perhaps for faster service. Hope you have a great time.
ciao…innanzitutto complimenti per il sito…sembra molto completo.vorrei venire a fine febbraio 2016,ma mi hanno detto che il mare è un disastro per via delle numerosissime alghe. mi sapete dire qualcosa???grazie
L’oceano sembra molto bello e ora dovrebbe essere migliore durante l’inverno. E ‘stato perfetto, l’altro giorno. Se vedete la nostra pagina di facebook abbiamo pubblicato una foto del mare. E ‘sempre divertente qui e si può godere, non importa cosa. Vi auguriamo una bella vacanza!
Howdy! Wow, so many activities to choose from in Playa Del Carmen. Thank you so much! I am looking forward to my vacations much more now.
Greetings! I see there are so many activities to check out when we are in Playa Del Carmen. We are trying to decied which park to go to. Xplor or Xcaret. What are your suggestions?
Well Cory, it depends on what activities you want to experience. Xplor is more active park with zip lines and swimming and Xcaret is more about seeing animals and shows. Both parks are great to go to so you cannot make a wrong decision. If you are basing it on budget, Xplor will be the cheaper option.
Way cool! Cannot wait to get to Playa Del Carmen for my vacation! There seems to be so much cool stuff to do. I have never been on water skies or ATV’s so that looks like a fun time!
Wow, there are so many activities to do in Playa Del Carmen! I fee like we should of booked for longer. I remember coming the first time two years ago and we drove down the highway to our hotel and the area did not look there was much to do. I guess things have changed and it is also good you highlight all the activities to do there. Now I have my homework to narrow it down.
The paddle boarding in Playa is great in a calm ocean day. We like renting on 4th Street and the beach and going out there.
We are a bunch of active people coming to the Riviera Maya, are there any nature hikes or other activities like that?
There are not really any hiking trials in the Yucatan. The peninsula is flat so it there is no hiking, just walking or trekking. Even then there are not any trials and the best is just beach walking since all beaches are public in Mexico. If you are an active bunch there are a lot of sports and outdoor activities to participate in.
wonderful post, very informative. We had in mind going to one of the parks but maybe this time will check out Ya Ku Lagoon. Our friends went last year and they cannot stop talking about the beauty of the place. I just hope all the issues of beach access in Akumal does not ruin it.
Hello. I am coming with my mom this time to Playa Del Carmen and need to find some activities for her. She does not do many water sports and I wondered what you recommended? Thanks
Well there is a lot of things to do here in Playa Del Carmen. This is not just a young town. For one the cenotes can be peaceful just to visit and some have shallow areas just to sit and get your feet wet. There are cooking classes that can be fun is she is interested in that. Some of the roof top restaurants in Playa Del Carmen are nice to have a drink at the evening time, if you are thinking of going to a Mayan ruin, Tulum is small enough to walk for a short while and Coba has bike taxis that can take you to see the parts of the ruins. We hope this gives you some ideas and you have a great time checking out some of the activities in Playa Del Carmen.
We always recommend Xcaret, cenotes, visiting Tulum and beach in Playa Del Carmen for the top activities for people that visit our guest house. People are always happy with the suggestions.
I’m not that much of a online reader but have been surfing more online because the information seems more up to date. I like all the guides you have on your site. We will be in Playa Del Carmen this month and looking for stuff to do. The beaches look very nice.
Thank you for the suggestions. We are staying at the Vidata Riviera Maya north of PDC and were told that a travel agency is located at the resort. I’m cautious about using this type of tour company because of the inflated tour prices they could quote. Do you recommend booking from companies in PDC, booking a taxi for the day or enjoy the convenience of the resort’s excursions?
That is a very good question. It is more about the suggestions rather than prices that will count. Many of the tour agencies in Playa Del Carmen, online or at resorts have very similar prices. We try to always tell you the best price possible or how to book so you can get the best price.
The problem comes with the suggestions of activities from most people that work at ticket counters. Many of them have not been on the very tours they are selling or have gotten fan trips for reps but have not been on many of the tours. Many people selling tours will suggest the ones that give the best commission to them. The same is with concierges that recommend restaurants. It is usually based on commission and less about the best option for you.
If you have an idea of the activities you would like to go to while here, you can research online before you come.
We hope this help you and you have a great time here! Let us know if you need any help with anything else.
Getting excited here with all the things to do in Playa del Carmen. We have two weeks so looking forward to go through some of the activities on this list for sure!
Great list of things to do in the Playa Del Carmen area. We have been twice before and are looking for new things to try out. Your site always has more to offer each time we visit. Thanks!
I wanted to thank you for including some culture activities here on your site. There are always the same touristy things but you have nice independent things. Nice Job.
We really like going over to Cozumel just to swim and snorkel. We like going to a small places and just enjoying the day. The water is so beautiful and there are quiet spots. This is really a tremendous web site. Thanks for all your suggestions.
I love paddle boarding in Playa when the ocean is flat. Last week was good but this week has been very choppy, maybe because the winter weather. It is great to get out at see the sun rise.
Hello EverythingPlayaDelCarmen. We love reading your site and getting tips for our trips. Out favorite thing this late time was going to Punta Venados to the beach club. It was just outside of Playa and a nice getaway from the crowds.
We love visiting Playa Del Carmen because things are so close. We have been to all three parks and many of the beaches and cenotes. It is so central to activities that is why we like coming year after year.
Hello, I just got back from Playa Del Carmen. I had an amazing time and wish I had more time. There was so much to do. I think we loved watching the people in Park Fundadores and spending time at the beach the most. We spent one day at Xplor and one day at Xel Ha. Both great parks and we are sure to come back again.
We are staying near Puerto Morelos next week (March 25). Is there easy transportation to some of the PDC activities you describe? Can you advise on activities between Puerto Morelos and PDC?
There is the ADO bus that leave from the highway going to Cancun and Playa Del Carmen and the colectivos. There is a small botanical gardens just south of Puerto Morelos that is on the edge of town. It might be of interest to some. Most things we mention are in Playa Del Carmen or south. Playa Maroma is on location where you can take a catamaran, take ATV’s and more. It is not walkable from the highway though and you would need to get off the colectivo and take a taxi to the beach. Other then that there is not much between Puerto Morelos and Playa.
How do I find out about the MTB Bike tour?
We have a video and article here along with how to book this bike tour. We really enjoyed doing this tour. https://everythingplayadelcarmen.com/mtb-bike-tour-playa-del-carmen/
Hello EverythingPlayaDelCarmen. We love reading your site and getting tips for our trips!!
Question could you recommend any affordable golfing in the area?
The term affordable and golf seldom collide. There are only a few options available. You can check out Grand Coral golfing and the Playacar gold course to see what offers the best deal. We don’t know what is the most affordable one.