Are the beaches in the north better than the hotel zone? Where is there less seaweed? Where can you swim without risk? Is there a private beach?
Looking for the best hotels on the beach in Cancun is overwhelming.
Wouldn’t it be great to have an article that explains the different Cancun areas and compares the best hotel options to you?
Look no further. You’re in the right place.
In addition to my 2 months in the Riviera Maya (including 10 days in Cancun), I spent many hours analyzing the thousands of reviews from travelers who come here to spend their holidays.
Read on to find your ideal beach hotel and know the essential criteria to consider (2nd part).
Plan your trip around Cancun
In 2 months, I’ve spent more than 10,000 USD to test the best activities in the Riviera Maya. Stay with me to quickly decide which experiences you should do and learn how to make the most of your trip.
👉 Don’t hesitate to read our Cancun guide to plan your vacation and not make any more mistakes. You will find all our articles about this destination.
Best hotels on the Beach in Cancun: The Map
Best hotels on the Beach in Cancun: Playa/Costa Mujeres
Situated in the north of Cancun, Playa/Costa Mujeres is a hotel zone that covers a narrow peninsula on the Caribbean Sea. It comprises large resort complexes, most of them with high-capacity accommodations, buildings of reasonable height, and a private beach area.
Its long, beautiful stretch of white sand beach with palm trees is famous for its quiet, warm, shallow waters, which are most appropriate for family bathing rather than swimming fans. However, although clear, the waters are not the dreamy turquoise blue of the Hotel Zone.
Playa Mujeres faces Isla Mujeres, much appreciated by scuba divers and snorkelers.
It is ideal for enjoying quiet days, thanks to its many restaurants, it becomes lively at night. On the other hand, it’s a bit far away from the festive center of Cancun.
1# Secrets Playa Mujeres Golf & Spa Resort: Vast & Quiet
The Secrets Playa Mujeres Golf & Spa Resort is a large, all-inclusive adult-only complex of modern design in the center of the Playa Mujeres, on a palm trees domain with two large lagoon-style swimming pools. The hotel is bordered by a superb white sand beach on the Caribbean Sea, with private access. The 424 elegantly designed suites are large and have a private balcony or terrace. You can enjoy a VIP offer by joining the resort’s Club.
- The staff of the hotel is numerous enough and quite nice.
- The full-service spa is excellent.
- Food drinks and 24-hour room service are included. The food is correct without being exceptional.
- Middle-aged people mainly attend the Secret Playa Mujeres Spa & Golf Resort; the atmosphere is relatively calm.
- There are buggies to transport you throughout the resort; you might have to wait.
- Better to wake up early if you want a sunchair around the pool or a cabana on the beach.
- Don’t forget your formal clothing for dinner, to respect the dress code or you will pay a high price for your new trousers.
Prices: From 653 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 30 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
2# Beloved Playa Mujeres: Ideal for couples
The Beloved Playa Mujeres is an all-inclusive resort for couples only, located in Punta Sam in front of Isla Mujeres. With its small capacity, white and pure design, and atmosphere devoted to tranquillity and cocooning, it’s the perfect place for a romantic stay if you’re on your honeymoon or celebrating your wedding anniversary. The hotel has private access to a beautiful white sand beach well protected from seaweed, 3 outdoor swimming pools heated by the sun only, and provides great massages at the spa (extra cost).
- Food and drinks are included. There are only 4 restaurants, all serving exquisite cuisine. You will be able to enjoy your favorite cocktail.
- The numerous staff is professional, welcoming, and attentive.
- There is no Premium package within the 107 suites of the hotel, all of them nicely decorated. The Junior Suite is, therefore, a rather exciting option.
- By booking in the Consentida building, you will be closer to the beach.
- According to the season, those sensitive to cold might find the water chilly.
- The choice of courses is big enough unless you are spending several days.
- The limited selection of beers may disappoint fans.
Prices: From 470 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 7 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 45 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
3# Majestic Elegance Costa Mujeres: Recent & Family paradise
This huge all-inclusive resort with 570 suites is a new building in the hotel zone of Costa Mujeres. It is located 10 km north of Punta Sam and has direct access to a large private white sand beach. The “Familia” section, with suites for 4 people, is very suitable for a family stay. For more tranquility, you can book a suite in the “Elegance Club” area for adults only. All the rooms have private balconies and 24-hour room service.
- Food and drinks are included in the 7 restaurants and several bars, including 6 swim-up bars. The international cuisine is of very middle quality.
- The hotel offers all kinds of activities. There are no less than 12 swimming pools and infinity pools. There is an adults-only pool. Children can have fun at the kids club with a pool and play area.
- The staff is attentive, although sometimes a little overburdened in busy periods. The animation team is amicable.
- Due to the high occupancy, waiting times can be long in restaurants.
- It is a highly frequented hotel by families. It can be noisy at certain times of the day; if the children’s shouts bother you, this is not a place for you.
Prices: From 384 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 2 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 50 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
4# Atelier Playa Mujeres: Well-designed, delicious, and no kids
Atelier Playa Mujeres is a 5-star all-inclusive hotel located in Punta Sam in Cancun’s hotel zone of Playa Mujeres, between a beautiful golf course and a lovely white sand beach bathed by the Caribbean Sea. The complex, set in lush vegetation, is a stunning construction inspired by contemporary Mexican art. Everything here is luxury. All 431 suites have a sophisticated design and a nice view. Atelier Playa Mujeres is only for adults and guests over 16.
- Food and drinks are included. The restaurants serve excellent cuisine.
- Very good mixologists prepare great cocktails.
- The resort has a well-equipped fitness center and facilities for relaxation; the Nuup spa offers quality massages (at extra cost).
- The staff is pleasant and professional, but service can sometimes be slow due to a lack of employees.
- The wait in restaurants can be long.
- Plan well ahead if you want a sun bed poolside or a cabin on the beach.
Prices: From 500 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 45 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
5# TRS Coral Hotel – Adults Only – All Inclusive: Lobsters & tennis
This huge all-inclusive adults-only hotel with a modern design is located in the hotel zone of Costa Mujeres, north of Cancun. The famous white sand beach of Playa Mujeres is only 450 m from the hotel, which has a private beach area. All 469 spacious suites have a private balcony or terrace. The top-of-the-range suites have a private pool. If you are 3 friends coming to relax, there are suites for 3. The resort is perfect if you are a couple on a romantic getaway or looking for a relaxing stay with friends.
- Food and drink are included, and the cuisine is diverse and of good quality.
- Activities are focused on wellness. A superb spa offers a wide range of quality care. In the evening, the resort organizes theme dinners and live shows in the cabaret. The hotel has two huge swimming pools with a swim-up bar.
- If you’re a lobster eater, you can have lobster every day at no extra cost, but beware of stock-outs.
- The staff is attentive and responsive. The service on the beach is outstanding.
- Tennis fans can compete on the 8 courts in the complex or take a private lesson at the nearby Rafal Nadal Tennis Center.
- The hotel offers a car rental service.
- The restaurants do not require a reservation, but saving a table can avoid the long wait.
- Wine aficionados will be disappointed.
Prices: From 400 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 50 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
Best hotels on the Beach between Downtown and Punta Cancun
This area extends from downtown Cancun to the eastern end of the beach hotels area, north of the Nichutpé lagoon, where the iconic red and white lighthouse, The Faro, stands.
You’ll find white sand beaches lined with buildings and a few palm trees, bathed by the calm waters of the Caribbean Sea, and fairly well protected from seaweed. Unfortunately, due to erosion, these beaches are becoming increasingly narrow.
Close to Cancun’s downtown, the price of accommodation is more affordable than in other hotel areas. There are many restaurants, bars, discos, and shopping centers. Do not hesitate to go to downtown Cancun to find a cheaper restaurant.
Playa Langosta is a great place to practice non-motorized water sports, such as snorkeling, diving, and kayaking. And check out Playa Tortuga if you prefer to drink some beers and enjoy the local-like vibe. There is also a ferry dock that leaves for Isla Mujeres.
6# Beachscape Kin Ha Villas & Suites: Good deals for groups
This non-all-inclusive hotel is built in a planted domain with direct private access to the white sand beach. It is strategically located 10 minutes walk from Cancun’s party zone and a mini-market, 15 minutes from the famous Coco Bongo. The 132 rooms and suites have an old-fashioned look, but they are well-cleaned, and all have private balconies. The Beach Scape Kin Ha Villa & Suites has rooms for up to 6 people; this 4-star hotel is not very luxurious, but it is a good value for money and an interesting option for a family or friends’ stay.
- The staff is welcoming and helpful.
- The beach, with its calm and transparent waters, is regularly cleaned. The hotel has a large outdoor swimming pool and a kids’ area.
- The food is quite good. The breakfast buffet is terrific (extra cost).
- The atmosphere is quiet; your nights will be calm.
- Lovers can choose the “Romantic Gateway” package, including breakfast, a private romantic dinner on the beach, a massage session, and more.
- The Beachscape Kin Ha Villa & Suites doesn’t offer an all-inclusive option. However, its fitness center is free of charge.
- The wine selection is not the greatest.
Prices: From 120 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 1-3 days | Meals: Breakfast sometimes included | Location: 30 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
7# Breathless Soul Resort & Spa: Party with style
Breathless Cancun Soul Resort & Spa is an all-inclusive hotel located in the Cancun area, with a total capacity of 429 large and modern-sized suites with private balconies. The hotel has a VIP offer for those who join the X-hale Club. The many activities and facilities, definitely focused on entertainment in a sophisticated atmosphere, classify this hotel as a party resort for adults only. It is the ideal place to have a bachelor’s or bachelorette party.
The hotel has access to a non-private beach, which is not so big and is very crowded by the locals.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. The cuisine is international, diversified, and of reasonably good quality. You will enjoy excellent cocktails.
- DJs animate the days around the 3 pools, two of which are infinity pools with a breathtaking ocean view. It is better to be a fan of techno music here!
- The staff is friendly and welcoming, and the animation team stimulating.
- If you travel with friends, you can get a discount.
- Remember, this is a party resort, so techno music and light shows are almost permanent in all complex areas. For a more restful sleep, avoid rooms on the corner of buildings (traffic noise).
- In the low season, the resort offers less entertainment.
Prices: From 332 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 30 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
Best hotels on the Beach in Punta Cancun
The Punta Cancun area is at the northern end of the thin “7” shaped lido bordering the Nichupté lagoon and on which Cancun’s hotel zone covers a length of 22 km.
Its proximity to downtown Cancun and this vast resort’s main shopping and entertainment venues developed at the tip of the Yucatan make it a trendy destination.
The northern part of the resort area is partially protected from hurricanes by Isla Mujeres to the northeast and by the horn of Punta Cancun; its sand is fine, and its beaches are well protected from seaweed.
From Punta Cancun, it is easy to get to Playa Caracol, a small, quiet beach with white sand and turquoise waters bordered by two pontoons, giving it a lot of charm.
A short walk to the Faro, the lighthouse of Punta Cancun, is worth admiring the beautiful panoramic view over the coast.
If you want more fun, slightly to the south of the point, Playa Forum is a nice and lively beach with shallow waters where you can rent sun beds and eat. It is close to the famous Coco Bongo club.
Punta Cancun is very crowdy, so you will never be alone.
8# Grand fiesta coral beach: Ideal for young kids
Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach is a vast all-inclusive resort facing the sea and located on a private white sand beach with shallow and clear waters. It offers many entertainment and water sports activities for all age levels. Its amenities, such as a kids’ club, play area, and babysitting service (extra cost), make it a good option for holidays with your children or in groups. The 602 suites are comfortable and spacious and have private balconies or terraces; the view is wonderful. This Cancun resort has 4 swimming pools, one of which is enormous and wanders through the domain, as well as 3 swim-up bars. A beautiful spa provides a wide range of treatments.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. 7 restaurants, a buffet, and a café, with a refined design serve good Mexican and cosmopolitan cuisine.
- The staff is friendly and very professional.
- You can play a table football match or pool with your family in the Sport lounge.
- Playa Forum is only a 2-minute walk.
- If traveling solo, this resort is not for you; look for another hotel if you don’t want to put up with kids screaming.
Prices: From 412 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 1 day | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 30 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
9# Hotel Riu Palace Las Americas: Fun & Affordable
Hotel Riu Palace Las Americas is an all-inclusive resort with immaculate and chic architecture, colonnades, and wood and marble decorations. It offers a beautiful view of the Caribbean Sea, close to shops, restaurants, nightclubs (Coco Bongo), and water sports centers. Its private white sand beach is next to Playa Caracol to the east. Since its last renovation, it has developed exclusive services that make it one of the best beach hotels in Cancun, for adults only, especially couples or friends looking for an entertaining and relaxing stay.
- Food, drinks, and 24-hour room service are included. The cuisine is refined and varied, and there is a good choice of drinks.
- The 372 spacious rooms have a mini-bar with a selection of spirits. Only the top suites have private balconies.
- The two mosaic pools are superb; the hotel has 2 swim-up bars, a fitness center, and a disco. It offers nightly entertainment in the theatre, sports, and fun activities all day.
- The staff is exceptionally attentive and professional.
- The decoration is maybe a bit too heavy.
Prices: From 301 USD / 2 people in low season – min. 3 nights | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 35 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
10# Hyatt Ziva Cancun: Upscale Family Friendly resort
The all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva Cancun is built at the tip of Punta Cancun. Its exceptional location offers a fantastic view of the Caribbean Sea from wherever you stay. It is a massive complex with 547 suites of several categories, all spacious and modernly designed and which can accommodate up to 5 people. Club membership includes additional benefits. With its design and the many sports and fun activities organized all day long, the Hyatt Ziva Cancun is perfect for a fun-filled stay with family and friends.
- Food and drinks are included. The medium-level cuisine is cosmopolitan and diverse. You can drink some good cocktails and enjoy a large selection of spirits; if you are greedy, the dessert lounge will make your taste buds happy.
- This party resort has 3 swimming pools, a kids club, and two beautiful white sand beaches.
- If you have no children, choose a suite in the adults-only Turquoize building, with exclusive access to specific areas of the hotel (adult pool).
- Don’t be afraid to mix with others or to fear loud shouts and laughs.
- The staff is not the best.
Prices: From 600 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 30 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 45 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
Best hotels on the beach in the middle of Cancun’s hotel zone
The best beaches are on the long, narrow lido that borders the Nichupté lagoon to the east, in the middle of Cancun’s hotel zone. The sand is white, and the waters are a stunning turquoise blue. They are large and calm.
Two public beaches are particularly recommended, Playa Chac Mool and Playa Marlin.
Playa Chac Mool, the most northern, is huge. An area is dedicated to water activities, with surfing lessons available. Paddle boarding is possible in the Nichupté lagoon, just behind.
At Playa Marlin, you can rent sun beds and parasols. The beach has toilets and showers at the entrance. Finding a parking place is not easy. A tip: take the bus; you will grumble less.
The area is windier than the northern part; according to the weather, waves can form. The current can be pretty strong, so be careful. If the flag on the beach is red, do not swim.
The beaches in the middle of Cancun’s Hotel zone are more vulnerable to seaweed invasion.
11# Hyatt Zilara Cancun: Bye Bye kids
With its elegant colonial architecture and design, this all-inclusive resort is an adults-only, luxury resort with 310 suites with artisanal furniture; all have a terrace with a hammock, and the higher categories have a whirlpool and a terrace with a pool. Some suites can accommodate up to 4 people. The complex has a private white sand beach, 2 outdoor pools, one of which is an infinity pool facing the sea, and a pool bar.
- The hotel offers a variety of water sports and fun activities, a fitness center, and a luxury spa. In the evening, you can enjoy a variety of theme nights and cultural shows.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. The Mexican and cosmopolitan cuisine is of high quality.
- The staff is delightful and attentive, and good service is assured, including on the beach.
- The resort has special offers for lovers wishing to get married in the tropics.
Prices: From 612 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 30 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 25 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
12# Le Blanc Spa: Luxury Adult only paradise
The Blanc Spa is a beautiful all-inclusive adults-only resort, recently renovated. Its modern architecture is exquisite; its decoration with a predominance of white is delicate and gives off a very peaceful atmosphere. The beach is gorgeous, with cabanas, sun beds, and hammocks for rent under the shadow of palm trees. It is ideal for those who want a relaxing stay with a touch of luxe and sophistication.
- Le Blanc Spa has 260 suites of different categories, all of which are spacious, with views of the ocean or lagoon.
- This luxury resort focuses on refined experiences rather than noisy, fun activities (luxury yachting, romantic dinners).
- The hotel has 4 swimming pools and 2 swim-up bars.
- The cuisine is refined and delicious; wine and alcohol are great too.
- The staff is very professional and attentive. You’ll get nice touches like a welcome ritual.
- The sea can sometimes be rough.
Prices: From 650 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 25 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
13# Marriott Cancun Resort: Classic and Efficient
This hotel of 450 rooms is located on a white sand beach in the first third part of Cancun’s hotel zone. It is an establishment with classic architecture and large volumes. The rooms are comfortable and have private balconies; only the higher categories have an ocean view. Facilities such as a large swimming pool, whirlpool, 2 pool bars, a well-equipped fitness center, a spa, and a kids club make it a good option for family and friends.
- The spacious meeting rooms make it also an exciting place to organize conferences or business meetings.
- The mainly Asian, Italian, and Polynesian food is of standard quality; the breakfast buffet is quite good (extra cost). You can enjoy cocktails and local beers in several bars or at the Champions Sports bar with giant screens.
- The staff of the Marriott Cancun resort is friendly and qualified, and the service is efficient.
- If you are a smoker, you must go to the smoking area.
- The decoration is a bit old-fashioned (dark wooden furniture), and some balconies are small; Rooms with ocean or pool views can be noisy.
- There is a charge for Wi-Fi except in the lobby and public areas.
Prices: From 261 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: Breakfast included | Location: 25 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
14# Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancun: Alternative to Hyatt Zilara
This luxurious and elegant all-inclusive resort for adults only, located in the middle of Cancun’s Hotel zone, faces the sea on a white sand beach and has a beautiful garden on the lagoon side. Its 371 suites are modern with refined furniture. All have private balconies; only the superior categories have a balcony with an ocean view. Aqua Club membership offers a range of benefits. The resort has various facilities for relaxation and wellness: Spa, fitness center, large swimming pools, including an infinity pool with a swim-up bar, and a private beach, where it is possible to rent a cabana (extra cost – very appreciated).
- Food and drinks are included. The food is excellent, and there is a great selection of spirits.
- The staff is very professional, extremely attentive, and responsive.
- Currently, the construction of the new Riu hotel next door may cause some noise, so when booking, ask for a suite on the other side.
- The holiday credit you can buy at check-in doesn’t include every extra cost service.
- The resort might lack a bit of nightlife; there are clubs and bars around (Congo Bongo).
- Better to bring your sun cream if you don’t want to pay the full price at the hotel shop.
Prices: From 565 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 14 days | Meals: All inclusive | Location: 25 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
15# Fiesta Americana Condesa Cancun: Swimming pools and kids
This all-inclusive resort in the middle of Cancun’s hotel zone is a vast complex with traditional Mexican architecture facing the Caribbean Sea. The domain is decorated with palm trees and “palapas.” The 507 suites of several categories are large and recently renovated; the furniture is modern and functional. Daytime activities, evening entertainment, and facilities such as two swimming pools, one of which is on two levels, and the Kids Club, with its fun pool and direct access to the white sand beach, make the hotel a good option for holidays with family or friends.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. The cuisine is good and of cosmopolitan inspiration. The resort has 3 bars and a swim-up bar.
- The staff is friendly and helpful. The service is good.
- The bathroom, attached to the room, is equipped with a rain shower,
- Wi-Fi is free in the rooms and available in all public areas.
- The hotel offers a babysitting service (extra cost).
- There are many people, so the ambiance is very noisy, especially around the pool (loud music).
- The rooms are not very well soundproofed, and some have no private balcony.
Prices: From 315 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 14 days | Meals: All-inclusive | Location: 20 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
16# JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa: Business & vacation
Located on the white sand lido, between the Caribbean Sea and Nichupté Lagoon, this vast, upscale resort, recently renovated, has a capacity of 433 rooms, luxurious and refined, all with a balcony or terrace and ocean view. The hotel offers a VIP club membership option (breakfast and some cocktails included). Although providing activities for children, the refined level of services and the large business center with offices and conference rooms make this hotel more suitable for adults (and possibly teenagers) and businessmen.
- The resort has several outdoor pools, including a large main pool, a pool bar, direct access to the large white sand beach, jet-skiing facilities, and a superb Mayan-inspired high-end spa with a health bar.
- The food is wide-ranging, from simple sandwiches to more sophisticated cuisine. The quality is correct. There is a good selection of margaritas on offer.
- The staff is friendly and helpful, and the service is good.
- The hotel is on a relatively quiet part of the beach in Cancun’s Hotel zone.
- Not much vegetarian food is available.
- WiFi in the rooms is not free.
- The screams of the children at the Marriott Cancun Resort, which communicates with the hotel, may reach you.
Prices: From 279 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: Breakfast sometimes included | Location: 20 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
17# Wyndham Alltra Cancun All Inclusive Resort: Excellent value
This all-inclusive resort facing the Caribbean Sea is a huge complex with Mediterranean architecture and a modern design in white and turquoise tones. The 458 suites are bright and elegant; all have private balconies with full or partial ocean or garden views. The Alltra VIP Club suites include additional services. The many daytime activities, night-time entertainment, and the well-equipped kids’ club make this resort an excellent option for a family or friends’ holiday. Furthermore, the cost makes it a good value for money.
- The hotel has a private beach area with sun beds, cabanas (extra cost), and 3 swimming pools, including a sprawling pool with a bar and a family pool.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. A buffet and restaurants serve good quality Mexican and cosmopolitan cuisine. The resort also has several bars and cafes.
- The staff is amicable and professional.
- In addition to the restaurants, there are various outdoor spots to eat and drink at any time.
- The Family Junior Suite can accommodate 2 adults with 3 children.
- The Aura Spa offers great massages (at extra cost).
- The drinks are a bit too sweet.
- During peak periods, the nightly entertainment areas are a bit crowded.
Prices: From 248 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 14 days | Meals: All-inclusive | Location: 20 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
Best hotels on the beach in Cancun’s southern hotel zone
The southern part of the lido on which Cancun’s hotel zone extends is the quietest area. It is limited to the south by Punta Nizuc, famous for its coral reefs. The shallow, clear waters with rich aquatic life are great places for snorkeling; the underwater art museum (MUSA) is very close.
The beach is beautiful, and the hotels have private areas. There are simple Mexican restaurants, and you can eat fish and seafood on the beach. Some parts are quite well protected from current and seaweed except Punta Nizuc.
The point borders the Nichupté lagoon, where you can go kayaking to see manatees and turtles.
To the north of this area is Playa Delfines, a white sand beach with shallow waters where dolphins can be seen.
It’s the part of Cancun’s hotel zone closest to Cancun airport. Between Punta Nizuc and the airport, the waters are not turquoise.
18# Sun Palace Cancun: Smaller is better
This all-inclusive resort is a relatively small luxury resort with modern architecture and design. It is for couples only. It has a beautiful view of the Caribbean Sea and a private white sand beach with sun beds. The 252 suites are bright and comfortable and have private balconies, some with ocean views. The Sun Palace has 2 infinity pools. One is quiet; the main pool with its bar is lively (pool games). There are daytime activities and live entertainment in the evening.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. There are only 4 restaurants, various bars, and snack bars with good cuisine. The breakfast buffet is quite nice.
- The staff is discreet but attentive and helpful, and the service is good.
- The resort has a beautiful spa.
- The cocktails are too sweet and not the best; better to have a glass of wine (good selection).
- The inclusive services are ample; you can do without the hotel credit proposed at check-in.
Prices: From 496 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: All-inclusive | Location: 15 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
19# The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun: Peaceful and affordable
The hotel, at the southern end of the lido, enjoys the quietest location in Cancun’s hotel zone. It is a geometrically designed complex with functional interiors and exteriors. The 376 rooms of different categories are bright and large, and all have a view of the ocean or the lagoon. The hotel has a beautiful, almost private beach, 6 outdoor pools, a swim-up bar, a fitness room with a sea view, a beautiful spa, several reception rooms, and a kids’ club with fun activities. This is a suitable option for families or couples looking for a quiet stay far away from the excitement of Cancun’s hotel zone.
- The resort has 3 restaurants with sea views and several bars. The cuisine is good. They serve a good variety of seafood dishes.
- The staff is friendly and professional.
- The hotel has meals and all-inclusive options for children.
- A 24-hour city bus service allows easy access to the center of Cancun’s hotel zone.
- There are rooms without private balconies.
- Some areas and bedrooms are a bit dated.
- Wifi is not free.
- Some meal prices are relatively high.
Prices: From 170 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 3 days | Meals: breakfast is sometimes included | Location: 15 minutes drive from Cancun Airport.
Best hotels on the beach in Isla Mujeres
Isla Mujeres is an island off the coast of Costa Mujeres opposite Punta Sam, about 30 minutes from Cancun by ferry (several terminals and rotations).
It will be an excellent alternative to Cancun during the seaweed season (the west side is protected).
The Caribbean sea bathes it with shallow, clear waters, making it a pleasant place for scuba diving and snorkeling fans. Its white sand beaches are gorgeous, especially Playa Norte.
For sunrise, go to Punta Sur on the cliffs. Some hotels have private areas. The coasts, especially the island’s western side, are well protected from seaweed.
It is easy to move around the island by renting a golf buggy, a motorbike, or a bicycle. There is also a bus and taxi service.
At night, life is concentrated on a pedestrian street full of restaurants and bars. However, there are no clubs and few things to do; you come to Isla Mujeres to relax, not to party.
In high season, the town can be very crowded.
20# Zoetry Villa Rolandi Isla Mujeres Cancun: Luxury & Small
This luxurious all-inclusive hotel, with its Mexican-Mediterranean architecture, is located on a narrow strip of white sand on the island’s west coast. It is one of the smallest and quietest hotels in Isla Mujeres. The 35 suites of different categories are elegant; all have a sea view. It is an ideal hotel for a quiet couple’s stay (although you can bring your kids too). You’ll love the private beach with sun loungers, the 3 outdoor pools, one with a saltwater Jacuzzi, the spa, and the fitness room.
- Food, drinks, and room service are included. The hotel has 2 restaurants and 3 lounge bars. The cuisine is of high quality.
- The staff is pleasant and attentive.
- Casa Rolandi, its Italian restaurant, is one of the best on the island.
- The hotel cooks fresh fish and favors organic ingredients.
- Transfers from Cancun are included. Call 24 hours before your arrival.
- Wifi is free, but the connection is irregular as anywhere on the island.
- Its beach is narrow.
Prices: From 684 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 4 days | Meals: All-inclusive | Location: Travel time from Cancun airport (car + boat) can take up to 2 hours depending on traffic and boat rotations.
21# Hotel Secreto: Boutique hotel near Playa Norte
Located on the northern tip of Isla Mujeres, Hotel Secreto is a small boutique hotel with elegant architecture. The décor is modern with touches of lively colors. The hotel has direct access to Playa Norte. Several restaurants and bars are only 3 minutes away by walking from it. Hotel Secreto is suitable for couples looking for a quiet stay. It can be convenient for families. The 12 suites are luminous with large bay windows. Not all suites have a private balcony or an ocean view.
- The hotel has a pleasant 20-meter-long lap pool with a wooden deck and sea view, a fitness center, and a spa offering massages.
- The staff is friendly and efficient.
- The standard rooms (for 2 people) can be joined together to accommodate a family. Standard rooms do not have balconies or ocean views, and the windows do not open.
- There is no restaurant on site.
- In December, the pool is in the shadow.
- The hotel would need some renovation work.
Prices: From 180 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 4 days | Meals: Breakfast | Location: Travel time from Cancun airport (car + boat) can take up to 2 hours depending on traffic and boat rotations.
22# Villas Najo’ Isla Mujeres: Comfy and affordable apartments
The Villas Najo’, located on the east coast of Isla Mujeres, near Playa Paraiso and Playa Norte, are 10 individual and adjacent apartments, on the ground floor or on the first floor, facing the sea. Each flat has a double bedroom, a kitchenette with a corner for dining, and a bathroom. Some apartments have a sofa bed. The upstairs flats have a balcony or terrace. The furniture is simple and functional. Villas Najo’ is a good choice for couples who want to enjoy a quiet stay with their toes in the water, listening to the sound of the waves.
- A small patio on the ground floor has private access to a narrow white sand beach with sun beds. There is a small swimming pool.
- A friendly and helpful private host supervises the villas.
- Sunrises are great.
- Restaurants and other amenities are easily accessible by golf buggy or walking.
- Bicycles can be rented on-site.
- Air conditioning is only in the bedroom.
- Villas are not very well soundproofed.
- Cleaning is not daily; there are not enough towels.
Prices: From 125 USD / 2 people in low season | Cancelation Policy: 14 days | Meals: no | Location: Travel time from Cancun airport (car + boat) can take up to 2 hours depending on traffic and boat rotations.
23# Casa Alkimia Isla Mujeres
Casa Alkimia is a beautiful guest house with white and pure Mexican architecture located on the east coast of Isla Mujeres. It has 4 rooms for 2 people, distributed over 3 levels. The one on the ground floor has access to the beach, and the others have a private balcony. All of them offer a beautiful ocean view. The white and neutral decoration tones, the fine materials, and the touches of raw wood provide a zen atmosphere. It is an attractive option for a romantic getaway for two or solo travelers looking for privacy and calm. Adult only.
- Casa Alkimia has a rooftop with a 360° view, a pool, and a sunset patio for relaxation.
- Casa Alkimia is managed by 2 very friendly and attentive private hosts.
- The toilet products are organic.
- Turtles may visit you.
- It takes 15 to 20 minutes to walk to the festive part of the island. Restaurants are nearby.
- Swimming is difficult; the beach does not have much sand.
- Some people will enjoy listening to the waves and maybe the wind when they sleep, others not.
Prices: From 230 USD / 2 people in low season. 2-night minimums | Cancelation Policy: no | Meals: no | Location: Travel time from Cancun airport (car + boat) can take up to 2 hours, depending on traffic and boat rotations.
Booking guide: Cancun beach hotels
You should read the tips in this section before booking your hotel. It will save you from making travel mistakes.
Famous Beaches in the Cancun hotel zone
→ Playa Chacmool is located in the middle of Cancun’s hotel zone, close to the Forum by the Sea, a huge shopping complex. It is a long white sand beach where you can have surfing lessons in the water activities area. There can be waves.
→ Playa Marlin is a little further south. A beautiful beach with clear water and sun loungers for hire. It is close to the Kukulcan Shopping Mall, a large shopping center with beautiful dome architecture.
→ Playa Tortuga is located at the beginning of Cancun’s hotel zone, in front of Isla Mujeres; ferry connections are assured from its dock. The calm waters are suitable for swimming, especially with kids, and several activities. You can go bungee jumping, waverunner, and parasailing. Locals mostly frequent it.
→ Playa Langosta, close to Playa Tortuga, is a long beach with shallow and calm waters, a play area, and restaurants. There are slightly fewer hotels than in Punta Cancun. On Sundays, it is crowded with locals. You can find a quiet corner on the pontoon side.
→ Playa Delfines is located in the southern part of Cancun’s hotel zone and is well known for its dolphin watching, even if they are getting rarer. The current and the backwash are strong, and there are often waves that will make surfers happy. Better to be a good swimmer. The white-sand beach is beautiful, and you’ll find a few palapas available for free—better arrive early, though.
→ Playa Gaviota Azul & Playa Forum are twinned into one beach under Punta Cancun. The public access is next to the Coco Bongo. The waters are transparent, with eventual waves, especially on Playa Forum. Restaurants, bars, and shops are very near; they are crowded and noisy.
The weather is changeable in the tropics. It is better to check the weather forecasts by referring to the data on the myforecast.com website, which gives hourly, 48-hour, and 7-day forecasts.
The best time of the year to enjoy the beaches of Cancun is from November to March, possibly April. Beware of Springbreak, which attracts a crowd of American students who come to celebrate the end of their exams. This is the dry season, it doesn’t rain often, and there is no or little seaweed.
All the beaches in Cancun can be affected by sargassum, but generally, the farther north you go, the less there is. The upper bar of the “7” hotel zone and the western coasts of Isla Mujeres are better protected.
To avoid the sargassum, better not to go to Cancun between April and June; it’s the moment when there is the most sargassum, in quantity and every day.
The resorts do their best to clean their stretch of beach every day, but it is sometimes complicated.
The seaweed is usually gone by October.
You will have the prettiest waters in the middle and the southern part of Cancun’s hotel zone. But beware, after Punta Nizuc, on the beaches towards the airport, waters are less clear as you leave the Gulf of Mexico.
If you are looking for semi-private beaches and therefore less crowded by tourists, selecting a hotel on the Costa / Playa Mujeres is better.
The southern part of the hotel zone, more distant from Cancun and its attractions, is less crowded and quieter.
Calm & Shallow water for your kids
To ensure that your kids are swimming safely and that you are in peace, choose the area between Punta Cancun and Cancun downtown, with Playa Tortuga and Playa Langosta in particular. The beaches of Costa / Playa Mujeres are also calm and shallow.
Bottom line: Cancun beach hotels
Most of the hotels on the beach in Cancun are huge resorts that offer all-inclusive stays. Before making your reservation, remember to consider the seasons and the sargassum. It will have a significant impact on your tanning sessions.