Best places to take pictures in Cancun, Mexico
From relaxing at world-class resorts in the famous Hotel Zone to kicking back with a Mexican cerveza on tap at the local cantina to exploring the beautiful beaches along the Riviera Maya, 🍺 Cancun has something for everyone. Nestled on the Yucatán Peninsula, the warm azure waters and white sand beaches beckon everyone to enjoy the good life outdoors. Rounding up the best places to take photos in Cancun was no small task with such beauty to be found off the coast of the Caribbean Sea! 🌊 ¡Salud!
The wide sandy beach and viewing deck make Playa Delfines a popular spot for classic Cancun beach photos. Grab a shady spot under one of the thatched umbrella huts (known as palapa) that dot the beach and enjoy the view. 🏖 Just north of the Hotel Zone, this beach is a stunning spot to spend the day with your toes in the powder-white sand. Don’t miss a photo op with the Cancun sign, too! 📸
Located directly in front of some of the major resorts in the Hotel Zone, Playa Ballenas is one of the best beaches if you’re looking for easy-access sand and sunshine. Crystal blue water meets endless blue sky, and it’s easy to see why it’s a popular spot for locals and visitors alike. If your dream is rolling out of bed and straight into a sunrise photo session on the beach, you can’t get more convenient than this. (We just recommend changing out of your PJs first! 😉)
Only a quick ferry ride from Cancun in the Caribbean, Isla Mujeres is the perfect island getaway. With plenty of restaurants offering fresh seafood, popular spots for snorkeling and scuba diving, the Cancun Underwater Museum, and a local crew of sea turtles, this is a must-see destination during any trip to Cancun. 🥽 Compared to the bustling resorts, Isla Mujeres is a place where time moves a little slower and “island time” is a way of life. 🏝⏱
Just south of the Hotel Zone, Playa Chac Mool offers both rocky outcrops and sandy shores. In one direction, nothing but clear waters stretching into the horizon; to the other direction, take in views of the skyline from this beautiful public beach. Rough waters are common, but strong swimmers will enjoy an invigorating swim 🏊♀️ Despite its proximity to many of the resorts, it retains a laid-back atmosphere — and it’s absolutely stunning at sunrise!
5. Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve
When you’re relaxing on a stunning beach surrounded by the hustle and bustle of the city, it’s easy to forget the beautiful natural habitats that still thrive outside the city. The Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located outside of Cancun, and it’s the largest natural protected area in the Mexican Caribbean. Pristine beaches, tropical rainforests and 23 archaeological sites dating back more than 2,000 years to Mayan times. The name itself is a guarantee of its beauty: “Sian Ka’an” means “gate of heaven.” ✨
6. Playa Gaviota Azul
The soothing ocean waves of the easy-to-access Playa Gaviota Azul make a perfect, centrally located photo spot. This little beach gem is located at the end of the bay and features breathtakingly clear, turquoise waters and gorgeous sprawling sand. If you prefer locations that are as easily accessible as they are beautiful, this is the beach for you. ✨
7. Chichen Itza
Hear us out 👂 While 120 miles away from Cancun isn’t exactly a walk down the road, Chichen Itza is a popular day trip from the city due to its historical importance and beauty. These Mayan ruins are one of the New 7 Wonders of the World, and the famous El Castillo pyramid dominates the center of the complex. As Mexico’s most-visited archaeological site, it’s worth the drive out to step foot in this ancient Mayan city. 🚗
8. Downtown Cancun
Don’t forget to pack more than just swimsuits for your trip! 👙 While beaches and all-inclusive resorts are unsurprisingly the main draw for many visitors, there’s more to the city than just the “Zona Hotelera.” A multitude of bars, restaurants and a lively, social vibe are what makes this part of Cancun special. Mingle with the locals at Parque Las Palapas or enjoy an authentic Mexican market experience at Market 28. Downtown Cancun’s recently upgraded Avenida Tulum offers wide pathways perfect for an evening stroll. 🌴
While Cancun has so much to offer on its own, we recommend taking a day trip to Tulum for breathtaking views in a laid-back atmosphere. Incredible cenotes just down the road, breathtaking beaches for snorkeling, and some of the best beaches in Quintana Roo make a day trip to Tulum a must-do on your Mexican vacation. Despite its rising popularity, it still retains its boho, sleepy fishing town roots. 🐟
Another popular Mexican destination and easy full day-trip from Cancun, the heart of the Riviera Maya is known for its wide array of restaurants, entertainment and nightlife. Playa del Carmen is smaller than Cancun, while still packing plenty of charm and, of course, activities! There are lots of incredible archaeological sites scattered between Playa del Carmen, Tulum, and Cancun for visitors to explore. After all, a trip to this beautiful country wouldn’t be complete without exploring some of Mexico’s deep history and culture … and tacos! 🌮