The waters of the Caribbean lie calm and peaceful here under the brilliance of an awakening sky in this place chosen by the gods for the enjoyment of man. The plants, beautiful aromatic flowers, and the plethora of wildlife all bask in this unending paradise under the bemused gaze of the heavens that offer the warming gifts of the sun by day – and by night, the most romantic moments created by the pale light of the moon and constellations of a starry sky.
The Riviera Maya, also known as Mayan Riviera and commonly confused with Playa del Carmen, is located in Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula in the State of Quintana Roo and is nestled alongside the Caribbean Sea. Playa del Carmen is a part of the Riviera Maya, although it lies to the south. The actual Riviera Maya area starts in Puerto Morelos (south of Cancun) and ends in Felipe Carrillo Puerto (south of Tulum).
The unspoiled Caribbean coast of the Riviera Maya stretches south of Cancun for 75 miles, fronted by the second-largest coral reef in the world. Tranquil powder-sand beaches washed by translucent blue waters, lush tropical jungles, Mayan heritage, and the spirit of Mexico all contribute to the seductiveness of this inspiring land. The Mandarin Oriental Riviera Maya, Rosewood Mayakoba, and Fairmont Mayakoba, three of our luxury resorts in the area, are located 30 minutes south of Cancun and north of the seaside village of Playa del Carmen. These resorts are unique unto themselves but share one common quality: a perfect balance between the lush mangroves characteristic of the area and beautiful sandy beaches.
Visitors enjoy easy access to nearby Mayan ruins, breathtaking beaches, countless water sports, and world-class diving in the Great Mayan Reef.
The mysticism and magic of an ancient culture is still present. Serene sunlight flickers and dances on emerald lagoon waters, and the rolling surf of the Caribbean washes the shore, creating a natural symphony of sound and smell. This is the heart of Mexico’s famed Riviera Maya.
A rich backdrop of tropical forest and the cerulean blue of the Caribbean Sea lap miles of white sandy Yucatan coastline. This is easily one of the most irresistible destinations in the world. On top of this, underwater explorers have the second-largest reef in the world, teeming with a wonderful diversity of marine life. For naturalists, there’s the unique ecosystem in the surrounding mangroves and jungle, even the rare opportunity to view nesting turtles on the beach. But unusually for such a paradise, there is also a wealth of fascinating history to be explored. Dotted throughout the area are the ancient cities of the Maya. You can climb any number of pyramids and walk through the ceremonial buildings that they inhabited; dive in sacred freshwater cenotes, and let your mind evoke the Maya’s gladiatorial challenges on the remarkably intact ball courts of Chichen-Itza. These fascinating archaeological sites are extremely well-preserved, allowing us to unravel the mysteries of a highly sophisticated culture that died out nearly one thousand years ago.
The Riviera Maya area can also be a very romantic destination if you consider staying at some of the boutique resorts we feature in our portfolio. Closer to Cancun, you can stay at some very spa-oriented resorts like Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita or Maroma Resort and Spa; and closer to Playa del Carmen you can choose to stay at Tides Riviera Maya or Hotel Esencia.Quote Your Trip to Riviera Maya