Travel Till You Drop Logo

Discover Tours and Selvatica Activities in Cancun & Riviera Maya

Tour plan

Are you ready to embark on an exhilarating journey through the stunning landscapes of Cancun and Riviera Maya? These vibrant destinations offer a plethora of thrilling activities and unforgettable experiences for the adventurous at heart. Whether you’re exploring ancient ruins, zip-lining through the jungle, or swimming with dolphins, there is something for everyone in this tropical paradise. Let’s dive into the exciting tours in Cancun and activities that await you in Cancun and Riviera Maya!

Breathtaking Views of Cancun and Riviera Maya

From the moment you arrive in Cancun, you’ll be greeted with breathtaking views of turquoise waters and pristine white-sand beaches. Take a moment to soak in the beauty of this tropical paradise and prepare yourself for the adventures that lie ahead.

Exploring the Cenotes of the Yucatan Peninsula

One of the most unique experiences in Cancun and Selvatica activities in Riviera Maya is exploring the cenotes, natural sinkholes found throughout the Yucatan Peninsula. These crystal-clear pools provide the perfect opportunity for swimming, snorkeling, and even diving. Immerse yourself in the cool, refreshing waters and marvel at the stunning rock formations that surround you.

Thrill-Seeking Zipline Adventures in the Jungle
Credit: Ali Haider

Discovering Ancient Mayan Ruins

Step back in time and discover the rich history of the Mayan civilization as you explore the ancient ruins scattered throughout the region. From the iconic Chichen Itza to the lesser-known Tulum, these archaeological sites offer a glimpse into the past and leave visitors in awe of the remarkable engineering and cultural significance of the Mayans.

Snorkeling Excursions in the Great Mesoamerican Reef

Mesoamerican Barrier
Matthew T Rader

Dive into the colorful underwater world of the Great Mesoamerican Reef, the second-largest reef system in the world. Join a snorkeling excursion and discover the vibrant coral formations, tropical fish, and other fascinating marine life that call this reef home. It’s an experience that will leave you mesmerized.

Explore Underwater Wonders: Alright, ladies, get ready to dive into the mesmerizing underwater world of the Mesoamerican Reef, the second-largest coral reef system that’s practically begging you to grab your snorkel gear and explore. Stretching over 1,000 kilometers along the coasts of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras, this vibrant ecosystem is a haven for marine life. Pssst, keep an eye out for colorful coral formations, tropical fish, majestic sea turtles, rays, and maybe even a sassy reef shark!

Crystal-Clear Waters: Ladies, let me introduce you to the Riviera Maya, where the waters are so clear and turquoise, you’ll probably mistake them for a luxury infinity pool. Seriously, if you’re all about that visibility life, the Riviera Maya is where it’s at. Whether you’re snorkeling around shallow reefs close to the shore or feeling adventurous and venturing out to deeper waters, you’ll be treated to stunning views of the underwater landscape and all its fabulous inhabitants.

Variety of Snorkeling Sites: Calling all snorkeling newbies and pros alike! The Riviera Maya has got your underwater adventures covered with a smorgasbord of snorkeling sites for every skill level. From the protected marine parks of Cozumel and Puerto Morelos, where you can swim alongside vibrant coral reefs teeming with marine life, to the otherworldly cenotes – natural sinkholes filled with freshwater – where you can have a surreal experience swimming amidst stalactites and stalagmites, there’s something for everyone.

Guided Tours and Excursions: If you’re the type of fearless woman who prefers a little hand-holding (no shame, we all need it sometimes), fear not! There are plenty of tour operators in the Riviera Maya ready to guide you to the best snorkeling spots in the area. These tours come with all the bells and whistles: transportation, snorkeling equipment rental, and the wisdom of experienced guides who know the local marine ecosystem like the back of their fins.

Environmental Conservation: The Mesoamerican Reef is not just a pretty backdrop for your Instagram selfies; it’s an ecological powerhouse that supports a whole ecosystem of marine life and provides livelihoods for coastal communities. That’s why the Riviera Maya is all about environmental conservation and sustainable tourism practices. Show the reef some love by using reef-safe sunscreen, respecting the coral formations by not touching or damaging them, and following responsible snorkeling guidelines.

Sailing and Catamaran Tours Along the Coastline

sailing along the Riviera Maya
Jenny Pansing

Take to the waves and embark on a sailing or catamaran tour along the stunning coastline of Cancun and Riviera Maya. Feel the sea breeze in your hair as you glide across the azure waters, and soak up the sun as you relax on deck. It’s the perfect way to unwind and enjoy the beauty of the Caribbean Sea.

Spectacular Scenery: The coastline of the Riviera Maya is like a postcard brought to life, with its picture-perfect beaches, turquoise waters, and tropical greenery that’ll make you feel like you’ve stepped into a screensaver. And how do we soak up all this fabulousness? By sailing or cruising aboard a catamaran, of course! It’s like being treated to a VIP tour of Mother Nature’s best work.

Relaxation and Luxury: Picture this: you, lounging like a royal on the deck of a sailboat or chilling in the spacious interior of a catamaran, basking in the glorious sun and feeling like you’re living your best life. These sailing tours aren’t messing around when it comes to pampering you. Think comfy seating, shaded lounges to escape the sun’s relentless rays, and onboard bars serving up refreshing drinks and snacks.

Swimming and Snorkeling: Prepare to dive into the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean Sea, because most sailing and catamaran tours here include stops for swimming and snorkeling. Trust me, it’s the perfect opportunity to cool off with a refreshing dip and get up close and personal with some seriously colorful marine life. We’re talking tropical fish, sea turtles, and rays.

Sunset Cruises: Ladies, if you’re ready for some romance and Instagram-worthy moments, the sunset cruises along the Riviera Maya coastline are about to steal your heart. Picture this: the sun slowly sinking below the horizon, painting the sky in hues of gold and pink, while you’re sailing on the open sea. Whether it’s a special occasion with your partner or just a ‘treat yourself’ kind of evening, this is the definition of magical. #RomanceAtSea

Adventure and Exploration: Now, for the badass adventurers among us, some sailing and catamaran tours crank up the excitement with extra activities like kayaking, paddleboarding, and yup, even parasailing! If you’re all about exploring hidden coves, gliding through mangrove forests, and discovering scenic coastal attractions, these excursions have got you covered. 

Unforgettable Whale Shark Encounters

Whale Sharks
Matthew T Rader

If you’re visiting Cancun during the summer months, don’t miss the opportunity to swim alongside the gentle giants of the sea – whale sharks. These majestic creatures migrate to the area to feed, providing an incredible experience for snorkelers. Witnessing the sheer size and grace of these magnificent creatures is truly unforgettable.

Swimming with Gentle Giants: We’re talking about the whale sharks, the superheroes of the ocean. These majestic creatures may be the largest fish in the world, but don’t let their size intimidate you. They’re like the gentle giants of the seas, gracefully gliding through the waters. So, grab your snorkel gear and prepare for a once-in-a-lifetime chance to witness their magnificence up close and personal.

Seasonal Migration: Hey, did you know that whale sharks are jet-setters? They love a good vacation, just like us. And lucky for you, they like to spend their holidays in the waters of the Riviera Maya from May to September. It’s the ocean equivalent of a pool party, with these gentle giants gathering in large numbers to feast on plankton and tiny fish.

Guided Tours and Excursions: Now, I know you’re a fearless solo traveler, ready to conquer the world on your own terms. But let’s be real, when it comes to swimming with whale sharks, a little guidance wouldn’t hurt. That’s where those amazing tour operators in the Riviera Maya come in. They’ve got your back, offering guided snorkeling tours and excursions designed specifically to encounter these gentle giants. Departing from coastal towns like Cancun, Isla Mujeres, or Holbox, these tours are led by experienced guides who know everything there is to know about whale shark behavior and conservation.

Responsible Tourism: When it comes to swimming with these magnificent creatures, responsible and sustainable tourism is the name of the game. Choose a tour operator that prioritizes the well-being of the whale sharks, by following guidelines to minimize disturbance. Take a step back, maintain a safe distance, keep the noise levels down, and please, resist the urge to turn this into a game of “chase the giant fish”.

Incredible Biodiversity: Besides swimming with whale sharks, you’ll have the chance to encounter a diverse array of marine life. We’re talking manta rays, playful dolphins, elegant sea turtles, and a kaleidoscope of tropical fish that’ll make your jaw drop. So, keep those eyes peeled as you snorkel, because you never know what fabulous creature will pop up next. 

Immersing in the Rich Cultural Heritage of the Maya

Guatemala
Rialfver at nl.wikipedia

Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the Maya by visiting traditional communities and participating in authentic cultural experiences. Learn about their traditions, taste traditional cuisine, and perhaps even witness a traditional Mayan ceremony. This is a chance to connect with the vibrant history and culture of the region.

Ancient Ruins: Uncovering Maya Marvels

So, in Riviera Maya, you’ve got these jaw-dropping archaeological sites that are basically like time machines to the ancient Maya civilization’s heyday. Tulum, sitting pretty on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea, is a total showstopper. And hey, let’s not forget about Coba, with its ridiculously towering pyramid, and Muyil, nestled right in the heart of lush jungle vibes.

Maya Traditions and Customs: Getting Your Maya Mojo On

If you’re all about diving headfirst into Maya culture, why not immerse yourself in some seriously cool cultural experiences offered by local communities? Think traditional Maya ceremonies like sweating it out in a temazcal (sweat lodge) or getting artsy by learning the ins and outs of Maya handicrafts, like weaving and pottery.

Maya Cuisine: Tasting History, One Bite at a Time

Oh boy, get ready for a flavor explosion! Maya cuisine is like a delicious time capsule of indigenous ingredients and flavors that have been passed down through the ages. Wrap your taste buds around traditional Maya dishes like cochinita pibil (slow-roasted pork), papadzules (tortillas stuffed with egg and topped with pumpkin seed sauce), and sopa de lima (lime soup) at local eateries and food markets.

Maya Villages and Communities: Dive into the Local Scene

Take a break from the touristy stuff and dive deep into Maya village life. You’ll get a firsthand look at how the contemporary Maya roll. Meet local artisans, get your creative juices flowing in cultural workshops, or why not kick it for a night in a traditional Maya homestay?

Maya Language and Music: Talk the Talk, Groove to the Beats

Did you know the Maya language, also known as Yucatec Maya, is still alive and kickin’ in the region alongside Spanish? Impress the locals and show some love for their culture by learning a few basic phrases in Maya. And when it comes to getting your groove on, don’t miss out on the traditional Maya music scene – think marimba and jarana music at cultural events and festivals.

Festivals and Celebrations: Party Maya Style

The Riviera Maya doesn’t hold back when it comes to throwing epic festivals that showcase Maya traditions and heritage. From vibrant Day of the Dead shindigs, with their eye-popping altars and processions honoring the ancestors, to the Maya New Year celebrations and religious festivals, there’s always something incredible happening. 

Marine Turtle Conservation Efforts in Cancun

Riviera Maya are dedicated to the conservation and protection of marine turtles. You can learn about these efforts and even participate in turtle release programs, where you can help the baby turtles make their way to the sea. It’s a heartwarming experience that highlights the importance of preserving our natural environment.

Volunteer Opportunities: Dive into the Turtle Conservation Scene

If you’re itching to get up close and personal with some marine turtles, then listen up! There are plenty of badass conservation organizations out there offering volunteer opportunities for fearless individuals like yourself. Get ready to roll up your sleeves and dive headfirst into the world of marine turtle conservation.

You’ll be part of exhilarating activities like beach patrols, keeping those stunning nesting sites safe and sound. Nest monitoring? Yeah, you’re on it! And the cherry on top? You get to release those cute little hatchlings into the wild, watching them start their incredible journey. Oh, and let’s not forget about habitat restoration projects – because turtles deserve the best cribs, too.

Community Engagement and Sustainable Tourism: Rockin’ the Responsible Travel Game

You see, it’s all about encouraging a kick-ass shift towards responsible travel. We’re talking about community-based ecotourism initiatives that not only allow us to witness the magic of turtle watching tours but also support the long-term conservation efforts. Think about it – you get to experience the wonder of these majestic creatures while ensuring their habitats stay intact.

And hey, when it comes to accommodations, let’s be eco-warriors too. Look out for those awesome eco-friendly options that minimize negative impacts on those nesting sites. It’s like staying in a hip, sustainable hideaway and knowing you’re part of the solution.

Adventurous ATV and Off-Road Experiences

ATV Offroading

For those who love a bit of off-road adventure, hop on an ATV and explore the rugged terrain of Cancun and Riviera Maya. Navigate through lush jungles, splash through mud puddles, and discover hidden cenotes along the way. It’s an adrenaline-pumping experience that will add an extra thrill to your vacation.

These stunning destinations are surrounded by diverse ecosystems, packed with dense jungles, mangrove forests, and coastal dunes. And guess what? Off-road ATV tours are here to take you on a wild journey through these natural wonders.

Jungle Exploration: Strap on your helmet, buckle up, and dive headfirst into an ATV tour through the jungle. Immerse yourself in the vibrant tropical vegetation and become one with the wild. As you navigate through dense forests and rugged terrain, keep your eyes peeled for howler monkeys swinging from branches, tropical birds showing off their colorful plumage, and butterflies that make your social media followers green with envy.

Cenote Exploration: After your heart-pounding ride through the jungle, level up your experience with a refreshing swim in the cool, turquoise waters of a cenote. Surround yourself with ancient rock formations and lush vegetation as you take a moment to recharge and snap the most envy-inducing Instagram posts ever.

Mayan Ruins: Consider an ATV tour that takes you to ancient Mayan ruins hidden deep within the jungle. Yeah, you heard me right. Channel your inner Indiana Jones as you explore sites like Coba, where you can climb towering pyramids and soak up panoramic views of the breathtaking jungle canopy.

Beach Rides: ATV tours along the beach are the thrilling experiences dreams are made of. Picture yourself racing across sandy beaches and rugged coastlines while the Caribbean Sea hypnotizes you with its majestic beauty. Feel the wind in your hair, pause to take in those mind-blowing vistas, and who knows?

Guided Adventures: Now, let me tell you, my adventurous babes, all of this awesomeness isn’t something you have to tackle alone. Most ATV tours in the Riviera Maya are led by experienced guides who know the region like the back of their helmets. These local legends provide essential safety instructions, equipment orientation, and, wait for it… interesting insights into the history, culture, and ecology of the area. 

Learning the Art of Tequila Tasting

Tequila Tasting
Kevin White

No trip to Mexico is complete without indulging in the traditional spirit – tequila. Take part in a tequila-tasting experience and discover the different flavors and aromas of this beloved drink. From blanco to añejo, educate your palate and gain a deeper appreciation for Mexico’s national beverage.

Tequila Distilleries: Who needs a backseat when you can take the driver’s seat and explore the heart of tequila production yourself? Hop on a guided tour and head straight to the town of Tequila, Jalisco – the holy land where tequila is born. Here, you’ll be schooled on everything from agave cultivation to distillation, learning about the traditional methods that make tequila the elixir of the gods. Plus, they’ve got these amazing guided tastings led by experts who will make sure you never forget the taste of your favorite tequila.

Tequila Tasting Workshops: If you’re the type of gal who wants to dive even deeper into the world of tequila, join one of those fancy-schmancy tequila tasting workshops or classes led by certified tequila sommeliers or experts. Picture yourself sipping tequila like a pro while soaking up all the knowledge about the glorious history, production process, and tasting techniques. And let’s not forget the best part – you’ll be sampling a variety of tequilas like a true boss, all in the comfort of resorts, hotels, or specialized tequila bars in Cancun and the Riviera Maya.

Cultural Tours: Cultural tours got you covered, girl! These bad boys will take you to local agave plantations, also known as “agave farms” or “agave haciendas.” Here, you’ll witness the magic of how these glorious agave plants are cultivated and harvested for tequila production. Oh, and did I mention they throw in some tequila tastings paired with traditional Mexican snacks?

Tequila Tasting Events: But hold on to your shot glasses, because the fiesta doesn’t stop there! Throughout the year, Cancun and the Riviera Maya host some epic tequila tasting events and festivals that will make any tequila lover weak in the knees. Picture yourself surrounded by a sea of tequila brands and distilleries, all eagerly waiting to pour you the tastiest shots in existence. And let’s not forget the live music, entertainment, and educational seminars on tequila culture and history. 

Witnessing Mesmerizing Sunsets in Isla Mujeres

Escape to the beautiful island of Isla Mujeres and witness mesmerizing sunsets that paint the sky with vibrant hues. Whether you choose to relax on the beach with a cocktail in hand or embark on a sunset cruise, the views from Isla Mujeres are guaranteed to take your breath away.

Cycling Routes in the Picturesque Countryside

For a more active adventure, explore the picturesque countryside of Cancun and Riviera Maya on a bicycle. Pedal through lush landscapes, quaint villages, and hidden gems as you immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the region. It’s a fantastic way to discover the area at your own pace.

Scenic Horseback Riding in the Riviera Maya

Saddle up and embark on a horseback riding adventure through the stunning landscapes of the Riviera Maya. Traverse sandy beaches, lush jungles, and ancient Mayan sites as you admire the beauty of your surroundings from atop a majestic horse. It’s a unique and peaceful way to connect with nature.

Exploring the Mysterious Caves of Aktun Chen

Delve into the mysterious underground world of the Aktun Chen caves, where awe-inspiring rock formations and crystal-clear cenotes await. Join a guided tour and discover the secrets hidden within these ancient caverns, as you marvel at the natural wonders that have been formed over millions of years.

Indulging in a Spa Day in Tulum

Rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul with a luxurious spa day in Tulum. Pamper yourself with unique treatments inspired by ancient Mayan rituals and techniques. Relax in beautifully designed spa facilities, surrounded by tranquil nature, as expert therapists guide you on a journey of ultimate relaxation.

Diving into the Underwater Museum of Art

Take your diving adventures to the next level by exploring the Underwater Museum of Art (MUSA). This unique museum houses a collection of submerged sculptures, serving as an artificial reef that provides a habitat for marine life. Dive beneath the surface and witness the incredible fusion of art and nature.

Discovering the Flora and Fauna of Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve

Embark on a journey through the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its diverse ecosystems and abundant wildlife. Take a boat tour through the mangroves, spot dolphins and manatees, and observe exotic bird species in their natural habitat. This is a paradise for nature lovers.

Luxurious Yacht Excursions in the Caribbean Sea

For those craving a touch of luxury, indulge in a yacht excursion that allows you to explore the stunning Caribbean Sea in style. Sail along the coast, anchor in secluded coves, and indulge in gourmet meals prepared by a private chef. It’s the epitome of luxury and relaxation.

Unleashing your adventurous side in Riviera Maya is an experience like no other. From exploring ancient ruins to diving into natural wonders, these destinations offer a multitude of exhilarating activities that will leave you with lifelong memories. So, pack your curiosity, bring your sense of adventure, and get ready to immerse yourself in the beauty and excitement of Cancun and Riviera Maya!

No matter where you head off to next, always remember to Travel Till You Drop

Book Your Trip : Check Out My Resources for Your Travel Needs

 

Use Skyscanner to find a cheap flight.  This is my very first stop when I’m looking for my next trip. It’s a fast, easy-to-use search engine that is perfect for finding an affordable flight, a perfect hotel, and the right rental car for you in locations around the globe.

Book Your Accommodation

If you are looking for a super budget friendly location and are open to a hostel stay, make sure you book your hostel with Hostelworld. It offers the broadest range of quality hostels around the world

If you’d prefer a hotel or a guesthouse for stays less than 28 days, drop on over to Booking.com It’s perfect for providing excellent options, a ton of user reviews, and prices to fit every budget.

For stays over 28 days, AirBnB still remains my #1 choice. User reviews and monthly pricing allow for some incredible deals all around the world.

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is but a small up-front investment that you won’t want to leave home without. After just one experience of having to delay or cancel your trip or having your luggage stolen, you’ll wish you would have made that investment.  I’ve hated my life a few times when the moment arose, and I decided to skip out.  Let’s just say, I’ve changed my ways and recommend each of the following companies to protect your ass-ets.

My favorite companies are:         

Want to Travel for Free?

Travel credit cards allow you to earn points that can be redeemed for free flights and accommodation — all without any extra spending. Check out my guide to getting free flights to get started.

Ready to Book Your Trip?

Check out my Resource Page for the best companies to help you book your travel at reduced rates!  This list will help you get to where you’re going.  I know-I use them ALL the time!  

Postage
About Jill

Hi, Jill Here

Hi! I’m Jill, a Dallas, Texas girl traveling the world. After a career in the Air Force and touring over 50 countries later, my need to explore keeps going! It’s time to rock & roll and find all those places I never knew I was missing.

Join me to get exclusive travel tips, giveaways and more!

I only recommend products I would use myself, and all opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links that, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission.