Friday, November 7, 2014

Destination: Riviera Maya!

This week we are thrilled to present a guest post by Amber Kingsley on beautiful Riviera Maya, Mexico! Amber is a writer who lives in Southern California when she's not exploring the world. After traveling extensively throughout North America, she hopes to see more of Europe and Asia in the near future. Happy reading!

Beyond Cancun

While a trip to a Cancun resort is a great relaxation option for parents, it might not be the exact type of getaway you want when the entire family is along. When it comes to traveling with your family, you may want a location that has a little more activity and a little less relaxation … but only a little less. After all, you still need some relaxation time.

You can maintain the feel of your favorite Cancun resort while adding to the activity level with a visit to the Riviera Maya. As shown by the attached infographic, this Mexican resort provides many of the same relaxing benefits of Cancun, while adding the option of exploring nearby historical ruins and enjoying water sports. (You don’t have to tell the kids that the historical ruins of this vacation spot might provide some educational benefits too.)

First, the Relaxing

The Riviera Maya has much of what you’d expect to find at a resort in the Cancun area, offering swimming, sailing, golf, and other resort amenities. The weather in this Mexican region is great as well.

The evenings provide a mixture of relaxation and shopping options in this area. Many areas offer live music, for example, including a local jazz festival called Playa Del Carmen. The most popular shops and restaurants are found in this area along Fifth Avenue.

Then the Exploring

Archaeological sites are found in the area of Riviera Maya, giving you a chance to explore. The entire family will get a good workout while visiting the sites, while still having the ability to return to relaxation mode at any time! Two sites you’ll be sure to want to visit when at the Riviera Maya include:
  • Tulum. This archaeological site was created in the 13th century, and it is likely the largest draw of any of the ruins in the area of Riviera Maya. Guided tours are available at this attraction, which may provide even more educational benefits. 
  • Xcaret. This site opened to the public in 1990, and it provides a combination of ruins to explore as well as natural attractions. The cave system found at Xcaret is 51 miles long with 28 different entrances, and a Guinness World Record was set in 2010 when a swimmer traveled 490 feet with one breath of air.
Finally, the Water Sports

If an archeological site doesn’t interest your family, Riviera Maya has additional activities beyond exploration. Many of the activities in this area are centered on water sports, such as:
  • Sea life. The area has the world’s largest population of manatees, numbering about 1,500. You’ll also have the option of seeing dolphins, turtles, and a large variety of tropical fish.
  • Snorkeling. The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System is available for snorkelers and scuba divers to find some amazing natural formations. This reef is 600 miles long. 
  • Fishing. Numerous types of fishing are available in the area, including deep-sea fishing with a charter boat. You even can find tour guides who can help you learn how to perform another type of fishing, such as sport fishing. Visit the area during May and June for the best fishing.

Even if you’re traveling without the entire family, Riviera Maya can provide a nice change-up to Cancun. No matter what type of activity you want to enjoy – even if it’s an educational type of activity – this area has it!

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