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Grand Velas Riviera Maya - Frequently Asked Questions

A This is a common question as Cancun and Riviera Maya are often mentioned together. The difference is that Cancun is a large city and Riviera Maya is not a city at all, but a region, that is slightly south of Cancun. The city of Cancun is situated outside of the Riviera Maya region. The cities that are inside Riviera Maya include Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Puerto Morelos, Puerto Aventuras, Xpu-Ha, Akumal, Soliman's Bay, Tank Ha Bay, and the Sian Ka'an Biosphere. Riviera Maya covers over 88 miles (133 kilometers) of beach coastline.
A Cancun and Riviera Maya are a few of Mexico's most sought-after destinations for unforgettable vacations. The Riviera Maya region and Cancun are dedicated to the safety and security of tourists and locals alike. The area is known for the warm, Mexican hospitality and friendly service. Safety is another thing that both Cancun and Riviera Maya are known for and when you book with Grand Velas Riviera Maya, you can relax and enjoy a gorgeous Caribbean vacation without worry.
A The rainy season in Riviera Maya is from June to November, however it's not uncommon for the area to receive a few light showers throughout the year.
A Many people ask if the Riviera Maya and Playa del Carmen are the same thing, and the best answer is to say that Playa del Carmen is a city and Riviera Maya is the region where Playa del Carmen is located. Riviera Maya is home to many beautiful and touristic destinations but Playa del Carmen is the largest city that you'll find in the Riviera Maya region of Mexico.
A Mexico's hurricane season is typically from June 1 - November 30, however it's rare for hurricanes to make landfall in Riviera Maya, Mexico. 
A Depending on your final destination within the Riviera Maya, most hotels are within 40-60 minutes from the Cancun International Airport.
A One of the beautiful things about Playa del Carmen is the mix of locals and tourists. It's interesting to know that the locals enjoy many of the same places as the people who travel to Playa del Carmen for vacation. The locals in this area love to grab a folding chair and lounge on the beach under the Caribbean sun. They love swimming and snorkeling beside the gorgeous reefs and wildlife or visiting the small towns of Tulum and Akumal just outside of Playa, where there is a relaxed vibe and opportunities to snorkel beside sea turtles. There are several ways to soothe the soul and experience holistic wellness in Playa including yoga classes and the unique experience of a traditional Temazcal ceremony led by a Mayan shaman. There are so many things to enjoy "off the beaten path" that all you need to do is walk past the chain restaurants to enjoy something a little more quaint and authentic.
A Playa del Carmen offers numerous eco-tours and attractions for on your next trip to Riviera Maya! The top attractions and best tours that you'll find in Playa del Carmen include 4x4 ATV tours through the lush jungle, swimming or snorkeling in the crystal-clear Caribbean ocean alongside the vibrant sea life, and the famous snorkeling tours inside the cenotes (underwater caves). Some cenotes are open-air and some are located deep within majestic caves with rock formations to swim beside.
A Playa del Carmen offers a fantastic nightlife scene that is a little more mellow than Cancun clubs. There are a strip of clubs along 5th Avenue in Playa del Carmen, but if you're looking for something a little different to do at night in Playa, you'll also find an array of options that include art classes, art walks, a beautiful Teatro De La Ciudad with live performances, wine tastings, live music, cooking classes and the famous Cirque du Soleil Joya has a permanent location in Riviera Maya. Whether you want a night on the town, a live show, or a cultural adventure, there are plenty of things to do at night in Playa del Carmen.
A A popular shopping and dining destination in downtown Playa Del Carmen, 5th Avenue begins by the Cozumel Ferry Pier on the south end of town. 5th Avenue spans about 22 blocks and is the primary place to walk and enjoy Playa del Carmen. You'll find many restaurants and places to eat, souvenir shops, clothing stores, local and chain department stores, jewelry stores, and street vendors and artisans.
A Playa del Carmen has a thriving nightlife scene that's a little calmer than Cancun, but still one of the best destinations in Mexico for a night out. Most of the clubs are located on 10th or 12th streets in downtown Playa del Carmen. There's everything from relaxed jazz clubs to techno dance clubs and even relaxed hookah bars with couches to enjoy people watching.
A Most tourists begin shopping on 5th Avenue (or "Quinta Avenida" in Spanish), the main pedestrian street that is parallel to the beach and stretches out across 22 downtown city blocks. This avenue is an attraction in and of itself with its shops, restaurants, bars and tourist attractions. Souvenirs are a must when shopping in Playa Del Carmen, and on 5th Avenue there are several choices. You can find t-shirts, tequila, and Mexican sombreros in local shops, as well as department stores, handmade jewelry, locally made art, and high quality artisans selling their handicrafts and clothing.
A The Riviera Maya region is known for (and named after) the ancient underground rivers still flow under this region of Mexico to this day. These interconnected waterways and underground caves were considered sacred to the ancient Maya people and can still be enjoyed today. One of the most popular things to do in Riviera Maya is swim in a cenote, which is a small pool where the underground rivers meet. Sometimes the cenotes are open and sometimes they are located inside beautiful caves and caverns. We invite you to visit a cenote on your next visit!
A There are countless beaches in Riviera Maya, each offering their own array of charms! Maroma Beach, located just 10 minutes north of Playa del Carmen, is renowned as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world by Discovery Travel and Living. It's the perfect place to take breathtaking beach photography or simply kick back and relax in the sun. You may also want to visit the famous Akumal Bay. Akumal means "land of the turtles" and it lives up to its name. This is a favored spot for large sea turtles to lay their eggs and the perfect beach for snorkeling beside the sea turtles. For a more cultural beach, you can't miss Tulum's Paraiso Beach. Located a few minutes from the Maya ruins, the calm Caribbean waves, soft sand and relaxed vibe set the stage for an unforgettable beach day.
A Most international flights arrive into the second largest airport in Mexico, the Cancun International Airport. From there, most places in Riviera Maya are accessible via a highway that hugs the coast and links Cancun, Tulum and Playa del Carmen.
A There are a variety of all-inclusive resorts to choose from in this breathtaking region of Riviera Maya. Grand Velas Riviera Maya is among the best hotels in Riviera Maya for its unparalleled standard of quality and the warm, Mexican hospitality that they've come to be known for. Luxury is found in the subtleties and the exclusivity of a resort that not only embraces the natural beauty of the Maya jungles but also includes a jaw-dropping stretch of Caribbean coastline with soft-sand beaches and a relaxed vacation vibe.
A There are numerous reasons that people flock to Riviera Maya each year, of course, one of the primary reasons is to escape the cold and enjoy the beautiful tropical atmosphere and laid back beach vibes, but there is so much more to the Riviera Maya than the 88 miles of breathtaking Mexican beaches and coastline. Riviera Maya is also home to some of the most fascinating wonders of the ancient Maya world including the ruins of Tulum, the tall pyramids of Chichen Itza and Coba and the Sian Ka'an Biosphere - one of Mexico's most impressive natural wonders! The Riviera Maya is also home to delicious Mexican cuisine, a thriving nightlife and great shopping. From eco-tours to a night on the town to lazy days on the beach, Riviera Maya is a beautiful destination to visit.
A Taxis in Quintana Roo (Riviera Maya) cost approximately $30 Mexican pesos per kilometer (approx $1.50 USD). However the fare may vary based on time of day, daily tolls or available routes.
A Visiting the ancient Maya ruins at Chichen Itza is like taking a step back in time. This is one of the largest archeological sites that tourists can visit in Mexico and the grounds are spread out over 4 square miles, so you'll want to take as much time as possible to truly take in the whole experience and walk the grounds to each site in the area. There are 2 ancient cenotes where the underground rivers have joined to create a fresh water pool. The towering pyramids create dramatic photos at any time of day. We recommend taking a guided tour and buying an informational map of the site so you understand the nuances of the ancient Maya civilization.
A Riviera Maya has roots that run deep as well as a rich and mysterious history. Some of the most well known ruins in Mexico reside in the region, including the ancient city of Tulum, the towering pyramids at Chichen Itza and Coba as well as Muyil, nestled deep within the breathtaking Sian Ka'an Biosphere. Each one is unique and a must-see on your next visit!
A Every traveller has different expectations for their best vacation. Some people enjoy vacationing on a dime and enjoying the culture and others enjoy the subtleties and nuances that accompany luxury vacations. When you travel to Riviera Maya the Grand Velas Riviera Maya is a wonderful option for enjoying the curated luxuries that visitors enjoy on their vacation in Mexico.
A There are countless things to do in the Riviera Maya region, home to 88 miles of breathtaking Caribbean coastline and beaches as well as numerous towns and cities and ancient archaeological sites, Riviera Maya truly has something for every type of traveler. Visit some of the most fascinating wonders of the ancient Maya world like the ruins of Tulum, Coba or Chichen Itza or visit a Cenote - one of the natural freshwater pools that are connected by a series of underground rivers and waterways. You'll also find great shopping and delectable Mexican cuisine in Riviera Maya to fill you up for full days of eco-tours and adventure, or simply a quiet day on the beach under the tropical sun.
A The weather in the Riviera Maya is divided into the rainy season and the dry season. The rainy season is from May to October each year with the average temperatures reaching 82°F (28°C). This wetter season also sees the highest average temperatures for the year. The dry season is considered the months from November to April and the average temperature is at 75°F (24°C). The coldest month is January at 73°F (23°C) and the month with the most rainfall is September with an average of approximately 10 inches of rain. The best month for swimming in the ocean is in August (during the rainy season) when the water temperature is the warmest at 29°C (84°F).
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Riviera Maya is a beautiful coastal region of Mexico located on the Yucatan Peninsula, just south of Cancun that is home to popular tourist towns including Playa del Carmen. The Riviera Maya spans more than 88 miles (133 kilometers) of gorgeous Caribbean Sea coastline, dotted with white sand beaches  ancient Mayan ruins, and the cities of Puerto Morelos, Tulum, Puerto Aventuras, Xpu-Ha, Akumal, Soliman's Bay, Tank Ha Bay, and the Sian Ka'an Biosphere.

A Riviera Maya is a region of Mexico located on the Yucatan peninsula just south of Cancun. It's named after the large system of ancient rivers that run underground in the region and it's also home to several popular tourist cities and towns including Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Puerto Morelos, and Puerto Aventuras. Riviera Maya stretches along more than 88 miles (133 kilometers) of breathtaking Caribbean beach coastline.
A Riviera Maya is a region of Mexico located on the Yucatan peninsula just south of Cancun. It's named after the large system of ancient rivers that run underground in the region and it's also home to several popular tourist cities and towns including Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Puerto Morelos, and Puerto Aventuras. Riviera Maya stretches along more than 88 miles (133 kilometers) of breathtaking Caribbean beach coastline.
A Riviera Maya has a variety of things to do from eco-tour activities to sea adventures, scuba diving and snorkeling to a thriving nightlife for those who want to dance the night away on a fantastic vacation in Mexico. Riviera Maya delivers the whole package for visitors, from the historical archeological sites like Tulum, Coba and Chichen Itza to the modern areas of downtown Cancun and 5th Avenue in Playa del Carmen - there is an adventure awaiting every type of traveler!
A Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen and Cancun are all on Eastern Standard Time (EST) which is the aligns with the time zones for New York, Miami and 8 different Canadian airports.
A Riviera Maya is home to a breathtaking array of tropical birds, lizards and small mammals. Some of the species you might encounter on your next trip to Riviera Maya are parrots, iguanas, geckos, coati, as well as horses and donkeys. In the ocean, you'll find many types of tropical fish, rays and even sea turtles, wild dolphins, and if you visit between June to September, you can have the opportunity to swim with the gentle giants of the ocean - the whale sharks - during their migration.
A Riviera Maya and Playa del Carmen are located on the east coast of Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula, just south of Cancun, Mexico.
A This is a common question as Cancun and Riviera Maya are often mentioned together. The difference is that Cancun is a large city and Riviera Maya is not a city at all, but a region, that is slightly south of Cancun. The city of Cancun is situated outside of the Riviera Maya region. The cities that are inside Riviera Maya include Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Puerto Morelos, Puerto Aventuras, Xpu-Ha, Akumal, Soliman's Bay, Tank Ha Bay, and the Sian Ka'an Biosphere. Riviera Maya covers over 88 miles (133 kilometers) of beach coastline.
A Yes, Riviera Maya is in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo.
A Riviera Maya is a tourist destination along the Caribbean coastline, in the state of Quintana Roo.
A As a prestigious tourist destination in Mexico, Riviera Maya is one of the safest places to visit.
A There are countless things to do in Riviera Maya: snorkel in a coral reef, go scuba diving in an underground river, explore the marvels of an eco-park, enjoy horseback riding in the jungle, swim in a cenote, soak up the sun on the beach, and delight in cochinita pibil tacos.
A Riviera Maya is a region to the south of Cancun, both destinations are located in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico.
A Playa del Carmen is located in the Riviera Maya area, along the Caribbean coast of Mexico.
A Absolutely! There are no current travel restrictions to visit Cancun and Riviera Maya, which are two of Mexico's most popular beach destinations.
A Riviera Maya is located along the turquoise waters of the Caribbean sea.
A The Cancun International Airport is the closest to Riviera Maya, which is located 20-60 minutes away, depending on where you go.
A Hurricane season starts in June and ends in late October.
A If looking for incredible things to do in Playa del Carmen, we recommend you to explore the colorful Fifth Avenue, enjoy sunbathing on the beach, delight in a margarita at Playa Mamitas, take a ferry to the Cozumel island, have fun at Xcaret eco-park, dance all night long by the nightlife area (Calle 12), and swim in Cenote Cristalino.
A Playa del Carmen is definitely a safe destination. Given that there is not travel restriction, this tropical wonder offers a relaxing vacation for you and your family.
A The distance between Playa del Carmen and Cancun is 63 km or 70 minutes.
A Playa del Carmen boasts stunning family hotels and resorts. We highly recommend Paradisus Playa del Carmen, featuring a pirate ship playground; The Fives Azul Beach Resort, offering a program for babies and children; Iberostar Paraíso Lindo, with a real sense of the region's culture; and Grand Velas Riviera Maya, recently recognized as the Best Family Resort by National Geographic.
A The Cancun International Airport is the closest to Playa del Carmen. The distance between both destinations is 45 minutes.
A Playa del Carmen is 60 minutes south of downtown Cancun.
A Certainly! Playa del Carmen is one of the most popular tropical treasures in Riviera Maya.
A This tropical wonder is a picturesque town with a hippy atmosphere, embraced by exotic jungle vegetation and turquoise color waters.
A There are six options to get Playa del Carmen from the Cancun airport or downtown: Colectivo (shared van), ADO buses, taxi, private shuttle, resort pick-up, and rental car.
A Playa del Carmen is 45 minutes by ferry from Cozumel.
A The Cancun International Airport is the nearest. It is a 45-minute drive from Playa del Carmen.
A Playa del Carmen is full of tropical treasures; exotic vegetation, white sandy beaches with turquoise waters, picture-postcard hotels, luxury All-Inclusive resorts, eco-parks, cenotes, underground rivers, and much more.
A Absolutely! There are a number of trusted car rental agencies in Cancun and Riviera Maya.
A Rainy season runs from September to November, and dry season from January to August. Weather in Riviera Maya ranges between 14°C (57°F) and 32°C (90°F).
A The weather in Riviera Maya in January ranges between 14°C (57°F) and 24°C (75°F).
A The Riviera Maya weather is usually warm all year round. Daily temperatures range from 14°C (57°F) to 32°C (90°F), depending on the season.
A The average temperature in November ranges between 23°C (73°F) and 29°C (84°F).
A October tends to be the last month of the rainy season. The average temperature ranges between 23°C (73°F) and 29°C (84°F).
A Riviera Maya daily temperatures range from 14°C (57°F) to 32°C (90°F).
A The weather in Riviera Maya in December is great for travelers looking to escape the cold. Daily temperatures range from 21°C (70°F) and 28°C (82°F).
A The time zone in Riviera Maya is Eastern Standard Time (EST).
A It depends on your preferences. If you seek to escape the chilly winds of your country, December-February is the right option as the temperature ranges between 14°C (57°F) and 24°C (75°F). But if you prefer warmer temperatures, April-August is the perfect choice.
A It's important to consider that the dry season starts in late December and ends in June, which makes it the ideal time to visit Riviera Maya.
A Playa del Carmen is located in Riviera Maya, 60 minutes south from Cancun and 40 minutes north from Tulum.
A Playa del Carmen is in the Riviera Maya area, 45 minutes from the Cancun International Airport.
A Absolutely! Riviera Maya is a resort area that straddles from Puerto Morelos, Playa del Carmen, and Tulum to the Sian Ka´an reserve.
A There is so much to do in Riviera Maya. You can snorkel alongside colorful fish species, swim with turtles in Akumal, have fun at Xplor natural park, marvel at the Tulum archaeological site, visit La Ruta de Los Cenotes, take a stroll on the Fifth Avenue, explore the 30 Museum of Wonders, and visit the Frida Kahlo museum.
A You will only find docile bull and whale sharks. So you don't have to worry about dangerous shark species.
A You can visit Riviera Maya anytime, but it depends of your weather preferences. If want to avoid the rainy season, we recommend you to come from December to June. But if you seek to escape the cold temperatures of your country, January and February are the best options.
A Playa del Carmen is located 35 km south of Cancun International Airport (CUN), which is approximately a 45 minute to one-hour car ride.
A Grand Velas Riviera Maya is just 15 minutes from Playa del Carmen, a quick drive southwest along Carr. Tulum - Cancún/México 307 highway.
A Cancun is one hour north of Grand Velas Riviera Maya via Carr. Tulum - Cancún/México 307 highway. If renting a car, the drive is easy and quite beautiful with scenic vistas along the way.
A If your plan does not include transportation provided by the resort, you may take a taxi or rent a car right to the Grand Velas Riviera Maya. Some buses run to Cancun, and your Concierge is available to schedule transportation or taxi pickup at any time, as well as help with car rentals.
A Depending on which Ambiance you're staying in at Grand Velas Riviera Maya Resort, there are a few options. To get to the beach from the Zen Grand ambiance, our complimentary transportation is available 24 hours a day; the ride takes just 2-3 minutes. The Ambassador ambiance overlooks the beach, and you can walk from the suites to the sand. The Grand Class Ambiance is situated directly on the beach for an even more decadent stay.
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Most major airline carriers fly into Cancun International Airport (CUN) this airport serves international arrivals and departures for the entire region stretching from Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Akumal, Xel-ha and Tulum or Cozumel Airport (CZM) from across the globe. The most common are Delta, American Airlines, United, Aeromexico, JetBlue, and Spirit. Select your dates to see which carrier best works for you.

A Depending on where you are flying from, you could fly into Cozumel (CZM) or Cancun International Airport (CUN) which tends to be the most common.
A Since there are so many unusual places to check out in the Riviera Maya and the surrounding areas, guests find it easy to rent a car while in town. There are numerous car rental agencies at the Cancun Airport and in town. Our hotel concierge will be happy to assist you in making your rental car arrangements right from our resort. Some of the standard rental companies include Alamo, Avis, Enterprise, BBB Rent-a-Car, Budget, Dollar, Hertz, and National. Typically, renting a car in Mexico is generally more expensive than in the States, but is probably cheaper than taking taxies everywhere. To rent a car, you need a valid driver's license, credit card, and must be at least 25 years old.
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