Tulum feels like a second home to me, I love the energy, natural beauty and the food…OMG, The food!!!
Tulum is only a two hour drive from Cancun (Your closest airport) and well worth spending that extra time travelling to be able to immerse yourself in the scene.
If you haven’t been, Do yourself a favour and book yourself a flight… pronto! If you have been, You know what I am talking about and are probably wishing you were back there right now.
So, Let me let you in on a few little secrets plus all my favourite places to stay in, eat at and explore around.
Where to Stay
There are two areas in Tulum, The beach and the township. If you want to experience Tulum at its best then you will want to be on or close as possible to the beach zone. If budget is most important, you will find the town has a lot more options, but please, stretch it if you can, I promise you it is worth the extra dollars.
Azulik – Wanting your accommodation with a WOW factor? Check out their wooden crafted villas with 360 degree views while reconnecting with yourself.
Be Tulum – Nestled between the white sand and lush jungle, You will not want to leave this native inspired design oasis.
Nomade – Right next door to Be Tulum you will find the chill beachfront paradise that is Nomade.
Air BNB – This site has a plethora of options but you will find most are a little further out in the residential zones. Make sure you read the location description before you book, most likely you will want a car. Haven’t used Air BNB before, Click HERE to get a free credit for your first booking.
Hostels – There are a lot and it all comes down to you – Do you want to party, chill or have a mix of both? Culture Trip sums up it well in this post.
Where to Eat
I may as well turn this post into a dedicated food blog because Tulum is overflowing with lush places to eat.
Raw Love – Located at Ahau Hotel, This place is a must for anyone that loves to fuel their body with fresh food. I still dream about the miso soup with avocado, smoothie bowls and salads. I always eat here as often as I can. Plus the tables and hammocks are all on the sand, No shoes required.
Posada Margherita – The best Italian, pasta made on site and a romantic beachfront setting.
Beach Club at Coco Tulum – Go for the all white setting on the beach with swings for your photo ops but stay for the cocktails and lunch… Another must!
Hartwood – All the cooking is done by open fire and they are completely off grid – Bookings open one month in advance… Make sure you book. They do take walk ins but don’t cry to me when you can’t get in.
Kitchen Table – If you love Hartwood, You will love Kitchen Table.
Arca – Casual, stylish and oh so Tulum!
Casa Banana – Urban rustic Argentine fare.
Mina – This is Casa Banana’s sister restaurant and they are passionate about showcasing South American comida.
La Zebra – Authentic mexican overlooking the Caribbean
Gitano – Go and sip their famous cocktails in the jungle amongst the sea of fairy lights and beautiful people.
Taquerias – My top three picks are Taqueria Honorio, Taqueria Don Beto and Taqueria El Arbolito.
Where to Explore
The beach – The sand here is white, the water crystal blue and its all fringed by a jungle backfrop. You will want to while away hours here.
Swim in Cenotes – There are so many nearby and thousands alone in the region. Anna Everywhere has a brilliant post on the top ones to visit.
Hire a bike – Everyone has a bike in Tulum and its one of the easiest and most eco friendly ways to get around.
Hire a car – To day trip out to some of the nearby cenotes, I recommend hiring a car. It is safe and easy to drive plus you have the bonus of being on your own schedule.
Eat your way around – By now, I think you’ve gathered that I love my food and Tulum is one of my favourite places in the world to eat. It would be criminal not to try as many places as you can. I would love to hear your favourites, Message me on Instagram.
Tulum Ruins – One of my favourite Mayan archaelogical sites perched on the cliffs overlooking the Caribbean. Get there as soon as it opens at 8am to avoid the crowds and heat, After 9am this place gets rammed with tourist buses. Take your bathers and climb the stairs down to one of the prettiest beaches you will ever see for a swim.
Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve – This UNESCO World Heritage listed site is a must visit to explore the coastal wetlands and lagoons while immersing yourself in nature and spotting wildlife. There are 23 Mayan archaelogical sites within the reserve too.
If you have any more questions, add them in the comments below, I would love to help answer them and wish you an incredible trip.
I’m going to Tulum in July with my kids! Can’t wait! Your pics look amazing!
Dana Brown says
Thanks Cidonie!!! So excited to see your pics from there in July!!! Take me back with you please x
Nicolas & karine says
Hi Dana, I follow you on insta…and love really like it. we travel yucatan in october with all my family (2 daughter 12 & 9) & a baby boy of 2 yo.
your pics are great and we can’t wait to go..
Between we re going to a very nice French region call ” la Dune du Pila” & Arcachon.
Dana Brown says
Hi Nicolas & Karine, Thank you so much for your beautiful comments and following me on Instagram… I really appreciate you!!! Please tag me in your posts when you go… I would LOVE to see what you get up to. Dana x
The Wanderlust Rose says
I’ll be in Cancun the whole month of March and was looking to do a daytrip to Tulum! I’m trying to decided if I should extend my trip and stay longer than a day though.
Awesome blog post!!
Dana Brown says
How exciting, Em!!! You should definitely spend more time down there – Have you read this blog of mine? It might help you decide xx
stephanie Northen says
Hello! Wondering your take on Tulum vs Playa Del Carmen with young kids. Looking for a vacation that meets everyone’s needs. We love the sound of Tulum and relaxing but have two rambunctious boys ages 2 and 5 that will want other playmates around… Deciding between Thompson Beach House and Be Tulum. Thank you!
Dana Brown says
I would lean towards Playa del Carmen with kids because there is more going on nearby and there will be more kids around. In saying that though, Tulum will still be beautiful if you get out and about in the days to keep them busy. If you’re more in love with the idea of Tulum, you could look at Dreams Tulum, they have a kids club (although the youngest one would need supervision). Feel free to email me if you’re needing more help in booking your holiday. Dana