Playa del Carmen — “Carmen’s Beach,” in English – is located just south of Cancun in Mexico. Not just a popular resort city, Playa is also filled with adventure and intrigue for kids.
We’ve left no stone unturned as we unearth the topmost amazing things that kids can do while vacationing in Playa del Carmen. Let the games begin!
Fun On The Beach: Running around on the sandy beaches of Playa del Carmen, building sandcastles, searching for those tiny exotic sea shells, playing beach volleyball, throwing frisbee, or just swimming in the ocean – these are some of the fun activities that kids can indulge in the picture-perfect beaches of Playa del Carmen. The soft white sand of Playas beaches is just perfect for making sandcastles and at most times the surf is gentle enough for small children. “The Beach” (It doesn’t even have a proper name!) is still the highlight for most vacationers and makes for a delightful way to spend an afternoon or two. Also, the busy La Quinta Avenida (5th Avenue) runs parallel to the sand, so children can walk over to the area’s stores or restaurants.
Bird-Watching At Xaman-Ha: Kids of all age groups will love visiting the aviary at Xaman-Ha which has approximately 200 individual birds showcased over 32 acres. In addition, it is the home of several rare plants, like the ya’axnik and guayabillo.
Cenotes: Playa del Carmen region is home to many partially collapsed underwater caves, also known as cenotes. The cenotes are flooded with crystal-clear water, perfect for diving and viewing the lush flora and exotic wildlife. Since some are often quite deep, little kids and poor swimmers should take a life jacket with them. Children will be enthralled to see exotic inhabitants as loggerhead turtles, splendid toadfish, and tarpon reaching 8 feet long and small colorful fish.
Swimming With Dolphins At The Xcaret: This is the largest and most impressive theme park in the Riviera Maya. Here children can snorkel in an underground river, learn about marine life in a living aquarium, walk through a butterfly pavilion, see jaguars and pumas, learn about sea turtles and even swim with dolphins!
Xel-Ha, The Natural Aquarium Park: This has an impressive variety of brightly colored tropical fish. It is a wonderland of cenotes, mangroves and lagoons. Sure to delight the kids!
Croco Cun Zoo: Children can get up close and personal with crocodiles, monkeys, turtles, deer, peccaries and snakes at Croco Cun, the interactive zoo! Hold and touch crocodiles and snakes or feed deer, birds and monkeys – truly a unique experience!
Adventurous Fun At Xplor: If you are traveling with children you must definitely spend some time at the Xplor Adventure Park, the major attractions of which are ziplines, an underground river, amphibious vehicles and rafting. Children under 5 are not allowed.
Sports Clubs & Playgrounds: Located in Juarez and 105th Avenida, in the neighborhood of El Ejido, Poliform is a sports club that is perfect for older kids. It has tennis, racquetball and basketball courts and also two soccer fields. Another good spots club is The Estadio Mario Villanueva in downtown Playa del Carmen. There is a wonderful imaginative playground area at Parque la Ceiba for children with many fun and educational activities and programs for kids.
Enjoyable Day Trips: Only half an hour from Playa, Akumal is famous for its sea turtles. Its small, shallow protected cove is perfect for swimming with little ones. Another option is to get onto a ferry and head to the island of Cozumel at the south end of Quinta. Kids will enjoy the ferry ride and watching the huge cruise ships dock in Cozumel’s port.
Beat The Heat In The Indoor Malls:
A great way to beat the heat in style is to check out the large, air-conditioned malls that playa has to offer. With a great deal of shopping and other entertainment like movie theatres and bowling alleys, Centro Maya Mall and Plaza las Americas are worth a visit specially on days when the heat gets a bit too much for you to handle. The little ones are sure to love the miniature train rides and all the fun.
Animal lovers must not miss out on The Jungle Place, a spider monkey sanctuary that offers food, shelter and medical care to injured spider monkeys. Located 15 minutes south of Playa, this is definitely a must-see!
Teenagers will have a great time burning off some of their energy at Extreme Central playa Paintball.
Author Bio: Martin Cowell is a Mexico property expert. In his leisure time he helps people discover the Riviera Maya region through his blog http://www.iownakumal.com/akumal-real-estate-blog/