Mexico has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, which pops the question…
What are the best beaches in Mexico?
There are many beautiful beaches in Mexico, however, if we narrowed it down to the top 3, they are…
- Balandra Beach
- Akumal Beach
- Tulum Beach
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Let’s take a more in-depth look at some of the best beaches in Mexico...
15. Punta Maroma
Location: Quintana Roo, Mexico (Yucatán Peninsula)
Looking for a truly breathtaking beach to visit during your time in Mexico?
Then, Punta Maroma is well worth visiting. It’s only a little more than six miles north of Playa del Carmen, and if you’re flying into Mexico specifically for this beach, the Cancun International Airport is about 22 miles north of this piece of paradise.
One of the best aspects of this beach is that the Mesoamerican Reef is easy to reach from its shores, which offers some fantastic diving opportunities. There’s a variety of different marine species to witness and there’s even the option to swim up close with the dolphins that call these waters home.
If you prefer to suntan on the beach, this is a relatively quiet part of Mexico where you can relax on the shore without much interruption. Horseback riding on the beach is also an option, and there are even all types of shops and eateries to enjoy in town.
14. Maya Chan Beach
Location: Quintana Roo, Mexico
Maya Chan Beach is a private beach destination that is located in Costa Maya, which is an area of Mexico that has become a popular cruise port. The beach is only about five miles south of the port, so it’s easy for cruisers to reach, and since it is an all-inclusive beach option, there’s food and drink included with entry onto the beach. In fact, a Mayan inspired buffet is offered here.
The water in this area is remarkably calm, so it opens up the perfect opportunity to go snorkeling or take a kayak out into the water to explore. These kayaks are designed with a glass bottom so it’s easy to see the tropical fish and sea life below the kayak.
Cruise guests who visit this beach will also be able to enjoy round-trip transportation between the cruise ship and the beach. Each guest will be given a beach chair to relax on, and there are also floating chairs that allow for relaxation on the water itself.
13. Yelapa Beach
Location: Yelapa, Mexico
Yelapa Beach is a secluded beach that is 20 miles south of Puerto Vallarta, that’s not well known by tourists.
This beach can only be reached by boat, and since it’s so untouched, there are a number of places that snorkelers will love. The boat that brings guests to this beach will come right up onto the sand.
The beach is crescent-shaped, and along the stretch of white, pristine sand, there are some chairs and umbrellas to relax on. Palm trees line the coast, and there are even hammocks where you can relax and listen to the gentle waves rolling up onto the shore.
Since the water in this area is so gentle, this is the perfect place to swim for visitors of any age. Parasailing is also an activity that many enjoy on this beach because the gentle wind is more than enough to move across the water.
12. North Beach
Location: Isla Mujeres, Mexico
Also known as Norte Beach, this slice of paradise is located on Isla Mujeres, which is positioned right off of the coast of Cancun. The water is a beautiful shade of turquoise, and the sand is lined with palm trees that belong on a postcard. Since the water in this area is so calm, it is the perfect location to swim, paddleboard, or snorkel. And if you have small children, you’ll be happy to know that the water stays relatively shallow for a good distance.
This is an easy to reach beach, making it popular amongst tourists. It can quickly become crowded, especially on the weekend.
This beach faces west, so when you look out over the ocean, a picturesque sunset will be looking back in the evening. There are also beach bars and restaurants that you’ll find along the beach.
11. Paradise Beach
Location: Cozumel, Mexico
Paradise Beach is an ideal location for anyone traveling to Cozumel, but even more convenient for cruiser-goers because it’s only about five miles from the port in Cozumel. This beach does have an admission cost, but for only $3, visitors will be able to enjoy the soft white sand, the warm turquoise water, a chair to relax on, and an umbrella to block the sun during the hottest part of the day. There’s also a heated pool for those that don’t want to swim in the saltwater, located just off the beach.
If you’re looking for a thrill, there are a number of inflatable activities to enjoy. Including water trampolines, water slides, icebergs, blast bags and more. There are also kayaks, water mats, and snorkeling gear that can be rented.
10. Delfines Beach
Location: Cancun, Mexico
Looking for a beautiful beach that’s ideal for families to enjoy? Delfines Beach is a relatively secluded spot that’s located a bit further away from the hotels than some of the other beaches in the area. Located only about 10 miles from Cancun, it has pristine white sand and crystal clear water with gentle waves that are safe for swimming. Though at high tides, the waves can become a bit rough, so swim with caution.
The word ‘Delfines’ translates to dolphin, and as the name implies, there are plenty of these beautiful creatures in the water here. There are even excursions that can be booked for an up-close experience with them. For those who wish to take a swim or snorkel up the coast, there are lifeguards on duty here to ensure the safety of anyone in the water.
Local Mexican cuisine is also offered on the beach for those who need something to eat during their day at the beach. The Cancun sign that is often seen on postcards can be seen here, so make sure to take a picture beside it.
9. Mayan Beach
Location: Tulum, Mexico
This beach is a great option for history buffs to enjoy because it is located right near the Mayan Ruins in Tulum. The coastline here is covered in soft sand that is white and pristine, but a bit further from the water, there’s a rocky area that makes for a picturesque view. These rocks are also in the water, especially at high tide, so make sure to swim with caution at all times.
If you’d like to take a dip without the waves, there are limestone pools, making it ideal for families who want to enjoy the water without worrying about the current.
The beach is located away from many of the beach hotels, so it will be a bit more secluded than some of the other best beaches that we have explored. However, it still can get crowded, so visit it early in the day for fewer people.
8. Xpu-Ha Beach
Location: Puerto Aventuras, Mexico
This is a beach that is located right between Tulum and Playa del Carmen, which are two popular towns for tourists to visit. The water is a breathtaking shade of blue, and the sand is pristine white. The best time to visit this beach is early in the morning to watch the sunrise. For those looking to relax, there are massages offered on the beach as well.
Looking for a bit of excitement? No worries, because there are several types of water activities offered here. In fact, on the shore, there will be games of volleyball and soccer at various times throughout the day. There are even yoga sessions that are designed to make the beach more relaxing.
It’s also a great area to snorkel because the water is so clear, so make sure to take the time to explore the wildlife under the waves.
7. Lover’s Beach
Location: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Lover’s Beach is one of the more difficult beaches to reach, but water taxi access is provided by the marina at Cabo San Lucas. The beach is small and secluded, so it is the perfect getaway for a couple looking for a romantic day away from the crowds. One side of the beach touches the Pacific Ocean, so the waves are a bit rough and swimming here can be dangerous. And the other side is very gentle, so it is the ideal place for snorkeling, swimming, and simply relaxing.
The beach has quite a few rock formations on it that have been shaped by the water over the years, but they are ideal for minimizing the wind and creating opportunities for beautiful pictures. During the early months of the year, this area is home to not only tropical fish but also baby whales who find safety in the bay for their first few weeks of life.
6. Paamul Beach
Location: Tulum, Mexico
Located along the Riviera Maya, slightly to the north of Puerto Aventuras. Loved by locals, but it’s not as well known by those visiting this area of Mexico. One of the reasons that this may be the case is that the sand is not as soft as it is on other beaches because it is made from a combination of sand and limestone. Even though the sand is less appealing, the water is phenomenal and well worth taking time to explore.
In the water, there is a lovely coral garden that is great for scuba divers and snorkelers alike. The coral is quite a sight to see, and there are a ton of tropical fish and other wildlife in the area. Within the limestone pools on the beach, there will be snails, hermit crabs, and other small creatures. Iguanas and turtles love this beach, so anyone looking for wildlife will want to stop here while visiting the area.
5. Isla Holbox
Location: Quintana Roo, Mexico (Yucatán Peninsula)
Isla Holbox is a lovely beach that is located approximately three hours northwest of Cancun. The island stretches about 26 miles in length, so there’s plenty of white sand and blue water to enjoy. This is a secluded beach that has not been commercialized, so there will not be many tourists, (making it ideal for a romantic getaway). It’s simply a great location to relax and unwind.
The water here is relatively shallow, which makes it an ideal location to go swimming, especially with a family. Snorkeling is also ideal for this beach because there are a number of different tropical fish to witness.
There are also great fishing opportunities here, so anglers who want to try their hand at fishing on Isla Holbox can fish to their heart’s content.
There are not many eateries directly on the beach, but there are plenty of restaurants on the island nearby that are worth checking out.
4. Chileno Beach
Location: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Chileno Beach is a fairly secluded beach that many locals visit regularly, and it’s known as one of the cleanest beaches in Mexico. The water here is very calm, but there are several tide pools that are worth exploring. This is an excellent location for snorkelers to enjoy because of the tropical fish that live here. This is also a great place to spot whales; in fact, they can even be heard under the water at certain times of the year.
A little further out in the water, there’s a reef that’s fun to explore. This reef runs parallel to the shore, and plenty of starfish, eels, sea turtles, sponges, sea urchins, and more can be found there. Kayaks are also available for anyone who prefers to explore the water from the surface. The sand on the beach is quite soft, so sunbathing and relaxing on this quiet, secluded beach is also a great option. There are not many places to eat along this beach, so bringing lunch is suggested for a full day trip.
3. Tulum Beach
Location: Tulum, Mexico
Tulum is known best for the Mayan ruins that can be found here, however, look past the ruins to find one of the best beaches in Mexico. The water is so clear that visitors can easily see their feet on the bottom, the sand is incredibly soft to the touch, and the coast is filled with lush palm trees. This beach is about a two-hour drive from Cancun, so plan ahead if you’re going to visit it.
The water at this beach is usually calm, so it’s ideal for swimming. However, it can get pretty crowded from tourists exploring the ruins, so try to hit this beach early in the day. For those who simply want to relax or explore the area, there are bicycles available to rent. Venturing into the town of Tulum is also an option because it’s only about three miles from the beach, offering plenty of shops and eateries to explore.
2. Akumal Beach
Location: Akumal, Mexico
Located south of Cancun, Akumal Beach is known as one of the most beautiful beaches in the Riviera Maya. The beach also spans five bays, providing plenty of space for those that’d rather relax in a relatively secluded place.
This is a great area to explore if you enjoy to snorkel or dive. The seagrass area provides a home for sea turtles and stingrays.
In fact, the word Akumal means ‘place of the turtle’, and it’s one of the best beaches in the area where turtles come to lay their eggs in the sand. The depth of the water in this area is going to be between three and seven feet, so don’t worry about being an ‘expert’ snorkeler.
The barrier reef is going to be a more secluded area of the water. If you do venture out to the reef, you’ll most likely spot parrotfish, butterflyfish, and other fish that call the reef their home. The water on the other side of the reef can be rough, so be cautious while exploring it.
1. Balandra Beach
Location: La Paz, Mexico
Balandra Beach is a great option as well because this beach is not as developed, and not many tourists visit it. Located only about 45 minutes from La Paz, the first thing to notice when arriving at the beach is the pristine sand, the clear waters, and the rocky hill, which makes for an Instagram-worthy view of the area.
The rocks that encircle the bay are worth climbing as well, especially if you brought shoes. The hike isn’t difficult, but the loose rocks make climbing with open-toed shoes, a challenge. From the top, the view of the beach and the bay is truly breathtaking.
The water at this beach is very mellow, so it’s the perfect location to enjoy some snorkeling or paddleboarding. If you don’t have the equipment, paddleboards and kayaks can easily be rented right on the beach. When the tide is low, it is even possible to walk along the coast to another small beach that’s even more secluded. This smaller beach is the location of the Mushroom rock, which makes for some unique landscapes.