Cancun's beaches, parties and Mayan history just got more affordable
Arrive at Cancun an average flight time of around 10 hours, ready to enjoy the sun, sea and sand.
Cancun’s position on the Yucatan Peninsula means it enjoys warm temperatures all year round. In the UK’s summer months, when rainfall is slightly higher in Cancun, you may be able to get a cheaper trip yet still enjoy the warm waters. And with the airport no more than half an hour from the hotel zone and a relatively cheap local bus service to get around the city, Cancun is very affordable for those on a budget.
Cancun is a dream destination for both adventurers and relaxation seekers. With around 22 kilometres of sandy beaches, each has something different to offer, whether you want to sunbathe, snorkel or hire a kayak. If you’re looking for a cheap meal but don’t want to compromise on flavour, stick to local dishes such as filled tortillas with strips of meat or beans with guacamole in the downtown district of Cancun.
Cheap days out in Cancun
As each beach offers something different you can spend a cheap holiday just beach hopping if you like. The beaches in the north are calmer and ideal for swimming and watching the sun set over the ocean, while in contrast those on the east coast provide the perfect waves for surfing. With so many idyllic beaches, it shouldn’t be too hard to find your favourite.
The awe-inspiring ancient remains of Mayan culture are also within easy reach of Cancun, and a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Chichen Itza is a must. Just a two hours’ drive away, these ruins include Mayan temples and El Castillo – the Pyramid of Kukulkan. The Mayan walled town of Tulum is also well worth visiting for its beach as well as its history. Or if you want to splash out on one expense during your trip, the waterfront eco-archaeological theme park, Xcaret gives you lots for your money including a zoo, waterpark, river rafting and watersports, a Mayan village and cultural demonstrations.
And, come evening, get ready to party like you’ve never partied before in Cancun. Its range of bars and nightclubs come with live music and special effects, giving you a chance to let your hair down without hurting your wallet. Dady’O is one of the best-loved clubs in the city, with a massive dancefloor, live music and themed nights.
Other popular holidays in Mexico
Mexico is a land of adventure and its other regions also offer beautiful beaches, Mayan history and lively nightlife. Playa del Carmen has a laid-back beach culture and is close to Mayan ruins. The city’s small size make it walkable and perfect for those on a budget. And the bustling city of Puerto Vallarta has beaches within walking distance, so there’s no need even to splash out on public transport. Between lazy beach days and lively nightlife, try out some nature tours to glimpse humpback whales or dolphins.
If you’ve got your heart set on a holiday in Cancun, read up on our travel guide and here are some of our top hotels.
This elegant 5* beachfront hotel allows you to live the high life without breaking the bank. Just steps away from a stretch of gently shelving white sand and a few minutes from lively Cancun, this adults-only hotel has stylish interiors and a wide range of activities. As well as three swimming pools, you can also take part in aerobics, water polo, table tennis, snorkeling and kayaking. And if after a workout you've built up an appetite, you're spoilt for choice where to eat, with a buffet restaurant and five a la carte speciality restaurants. With a range of bars to choose from and evening entertainment provided, there's no need to leave the hotel grounds.
Set right on a white sandy beach and just a five-minute drive from downtown Cancun, this 5* hotel wins favour for its location and facilities, without hurting your wallet. There are four swimming pools, one with a swim-up bar, a gym and whirlpool bath, as well as plenty of beach activities, including volleyball, snorkelling, kayaking and catamarans. And if that's not value for money, the hotel has a great choice of dining options, with a restaurant laying on themed buffets and five a la carte speciality restaurants. Daytime and evening entertainment is also provided with live shows and there are two bars to relax in.
A large 4* hotel, located right on the beach, the Crown Paradise Club offers a wide variety of activities and very good value for money. It has four outdoor pools, including one with slides and one adults-only, a gym and tennis court, as well as basketball, volleyball, waterpolo and aqua aerobics. With a buffet restaurant and five speciality a la carte restaurants, plus regular evening entertainment and movies at the bar, you barely need to venture out of the beachfront grounds.