With nearby reefs featuring sea animals in all colors of the rainbow and diverse beaches, Playa del Carmen has become one of the most sought-out cities for visitors on the Yucatán Peninsula. Protected from the brunt of sea storms by nearby island Cozumel, Playa del Carmen is a great place to strut your stuff in the evening sun, and an excellent base for exploration of the Mayan Riviera, Quintana Roo, and beyond. Rent a car today to make your travel convenient and comfortable.
April and May are by far the most comfortable months to visit Playa, before summer weather gets piping hot, the beaches get full, and most of the cruise passengers arrive.
Over 60 indigenous languages are spoken throughout Mexico, but the de facto national language of Mexico is Spanish. About half of the residents of Quintana Roo also speak Mayan and other indigenous languages. While English is not necessarily widely spoken in rural Mexico, most of the people who are involved with tourism will have good command of the language. Learning some words in Spanish before you arrive is recommended, particularly because police and tollbooth officers are unlikely to speak English, and road signs are consistently in Spanish.
Playa del Carmen is located in the Eastern Standard time zone, UTC-5.
The currency in Mexico is the peso, and is most easily received via currency exchange from American dollars or via ATMs, which are plentiful throughout Acapulco. Credit cards are accepted at most hotels and some restaurants and shops, though Mexico is still very much a cash culture, and you should plan to have cash on hand for the remainder of your transactions.
Most visitors arrive to the Yucatán Peninsula via air at the Cancún International Airport. Located 55 kilometers north of Playa, this is a great place to pick up your rental car. There is also an excellent selection of rental car services available in Playa directly, particularly along the roads that run parallel to the beach in city center.
From theme parks to Mayan ruins to beautiful beaches, there is a lot to see near Playa del Carmen. Don’t make the mistake of settling for a hotel resort vacation, but make your way out into the countryside. Head, for example, 65 kilometers south to Tulum to check out the Mayan ruins before you visit the area’s beautiful beaches.
Travellers arriving in Mexico from many Western European countries, Chile, Argentina, the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand can enter the country without a visa. They will purchase a tourist card valid for 90 days (though you can extend this to 180 days for an extra fee). All other visitors are required to apply for a visa before they arrive.
Unlike in other regions of Mexico, driving a car in and around Playa is fairly comfortable. The city is built along a grid, and Highway 307, which parallels the Quintana Roo coastline, is in fairly good shape. Automobile hire is truly an excellent way to make the most of your visit to this site of world heritage and scintillating tourist adventures.
If you are planning any cross-country trips, you can expect to be stopped at military checkpoints, where military personnel will ask for your driver’s license and insurance documents and search your car; they are primarily looking for weapons and drugs.