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Things to do in Cozumel

Things to do in  Cozumel

Welcome to Cozumel

With its inimitable mix of Mayan ruins, sophisticated beach clubs, and world-class snorkeling opportunities, it's easy to see why Cozumel is one of Mexico’s top destinations. Immensely popular with cruise ships, Cozumel Island (Isla Cozumel) caters to short-stay visitors with a variety of shore excursions. Chichen Itza, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the archaeological ruins at Tulum are doable on day trips, while shorter cruise excursions invite you to drive an ATV to the cenotes of Jade Caverns; explore Chankanaab Park (Parque Chankanaab) in a submarine; or sail at sunset near Playa Palancar, home to the biologically rich Palancar Reef. Outdoor adventurers can choose from horseback riding, scuba diving, dune buggy driving (which is a big hit with families), and more. All-inclusive day passes to Mr. Sancho’s Beach Club and Playa Mia Grand Beach offer access to luxurious facilities and the sublime beaches of the Caribbean. A private Jeep excursion lets you design your own itinerary, which can include anything from archaeological sites and national parks to shopping, snorkeling, and tequila tasting. What’s more, with Cancun, Tulum, and Playa del Carmen just a short boat ride away, the island of Cozumel is an ideal base for exploring the rest of the Yucatan and the Riviera Maya.

Top 10 attractions in Cozumel


Mr. Sancho's Beach Club Cozumel

Find everything you need for a relaxing and fun day at the beach with an all-inclusive day pass to Mr. Sanchos Beach Club Cozumel. Situated on a private, 1,500-foot-long stretch of white-sand beach, Mr. Sanchos has all the usual beach amenities like umbrellas and lounge chairs, as well as an infinity pool and an Aqua Park with inflatable climbing structures and water trampolines. Day passes include all you can eat and drink from the restaurant and bar, and there are abundant activities available for an additional fee, including parasiling, ATV tours, massages and horseback riding.More

Chankanaab Adventure Beach Park

Relaxed Chankanaab Park - or Parque Chankanaab - is a lovely and laid-back "eco archaeological park," just south of the town of Cozumel. There are several attractions on dry land, including faux Mayan ruins, pleasant gardens, dolphin and sea lion shows, and good seafood. The main attraction, however, is the wildlife rich undersea park, which you can explore with rented snorkel equipment. They also offer regular diving (you must have PADI certification) and the Sea Trek Adventure, like a resort dive with a breathing helmet but no certification necessary. You could also swim in a tank with dolphins, manatees and sea lions for an extra fee.More

Palancar Reef

The star attraction of the Cozumel Reefs National Park - or Parque Nacional Arrecifes de Cozumel - not to mention Jacques Cousteau's television show, which quite literally put Cozumel on the map - is Palancar Reef. Actually composed of 4 separate coral reefs, it is home to sea turtles, rays, nurse sharks, barracudas, moray eels, lobsters, crabs, and a keleidescope of colorful fish. Boats leaving from Playa Palancar take snorkelers out to the shallowest parts of the reef, about 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) from shore. Scuba divers, however, have several world-famous spots to explore. The Palancar Caves are probably the most famous attraction, with huge brain corals and swim-through tunnels. Palancar Horseshoe is another massive formation of huge corals, some partially damaged in 2005 by Hurricane Wilma. Less experienced divers can visit Palancar Gardens, a shallower spot with mellow currents.More

Columbia Reef

Columbia Reef is famous for its complex architecture of caves, arches, and coral spires. Here you can find schools of snapper, barracudas, sea turtles, scorpion fish, and even the rare passing nurse shark. With both shallow coral gardens and deep ocean-floor caverns, the reef is accessible to snorkelers and scuba divers alike.More


A small beach town between Playa del Carmen and Tulum on the Yucatan Peninsula, Akumal is known for its wide, white sandy beach. Meaning “land of turtles” in the Mayan language, Akumal to this day remains one of the most popular places in the area to spot sea turtles in their natural habitat. It’s also known as one of the most peaceful spots in the Riviera Maya with its clear waters, shallow bays and secluded beaches that attract visitors seeking a more private experience. From town there are three local dive shops that will take you snorkeling or scuba diving out on the nearby reef, and there are also some clearly marked private beaches and several palm trees that provide refuge from the sun. While here, be sure to check out Half Moon Bay (famous for turtle sightings) and Laguna Yaiku, a protected snorkeling area.More

Paradise Reef (Paraíso Reef)

One of the most popular dives in all of Cozumel, Paradise Reef proudly lives up to its name by offering numerous coral heads, teeming schools of colorful fish, and some of the best visibility anywhere in the world. Divers that look closely will spot numerous species of larger sea life such as eels, rays and nurse shark in addition to smaller creatures such as seahorses, boxfish and the delicate pipefish. A great dive for those who are just entering into the world of scuba as well as advanced divers who want to add a little color to their dives, Paradise Reef is one of the best dive spots in Cozumel.More

Punta Sur Eco Beach Park (Faro Celerain Ecological Reserve)

Part of the Cozumel Reefs National Park (or Parque Nacional Arrecifes de Cozumel) Faro de Punta Celerain, also known as Punta Sur, Ecological Park offers some of the best diving and snorkeling around Cozumel. If you want to dive, go through one of the island's many dive operators. If you'd just like to snorkel, however, you can rent equipment and guides right here. In addition to the undersea attractions, Punta Sur has broad, beautiful beaches (the reef is well offshore, so you can splash around safely), great seafood, and shady hammocks. If you're up for a some terrestrial exploration, you could climb the Faro de Punta Celerain (Celerain Point Lighthouse), with great views, or visit the tiny Mayan shrine to Ixcel, the fertility goddess, known as Tumba de Caracol. Punta Sur also has interesting wetlands, a magnet for migratory birds in April and May, and home to lots of crocodiles year-round.More

El Cedral

El Cedral is a small village on the southwestern side of Cozumel and also the site of the oldest Mayan ruins on the island. Spanish explorers first discovered the site in 1518, when it was a center of Mayan life and commerce. It later became the island’s first official city in 1847, andtoday it is home to a small community of quaint houses and farms. Visitors can view the ruins alongside a small church and the village of El Cedral as it stands today. Most of the Mayan temple was torn down, but a small archway remains. Though it is just a fraction of the structure’s former glory, it is enough to visualize what daily life may have been like at the time of Mayan civilization. In late April, you can catch the annual Festival de El Cedral, celebrating local artists, music and traditions. Year-round there are vendors selling embroidered handicrafts and refreshments.More

Cozumel Reefs National Marine Park

Less than 1% of the Earth is covered in coral—yet these reefs are home to over 25% of the world’s total marine species. Unfortunately, despite their abundance of biodiversity, coral reefs across the globe are in a serious state of decline. That said, in places like the Cozumel Reefs National Marine Park off the island’s southern coast, the establishment of a protected coral reserve is helping the reef to thrive. In the warm waters off Cozumel’s coast, 26 different species of coral house 300 species of fish. Some fish, like the Splendid Toadfish, are endemic to the reefs of Cozumel—which means that the fish are only found here in these colorful castles in the sand. Hawksbill and green sea turtles are frequently spotted in the marine park’s 29,000 acres, which also encompasses mangrove forests and sandy sections of shoreline.More

San Gervasio Mayan Ruins

The Island of Cozumel was first incorporated into the Mayan Empire around 0 AD, and was apparently a thinly populated backwater, primarily important as a ceremonial island for women from the mainland. Although 24 archaeological sites have been identified, most are small and as yet unexcavated. The San Gervasio Ruins, dating to around 300 AD, are by far the largest and best developed for tourism, but still won't impress tourists hoping for the grand pyramids of the Mayan Imperial Cities. Adjust your expectations, however, and the sacred gardens of Ixcel, the Goddess of Fertility and Rainbows, are a serene escape. Most of the low, stone structures cluster around a central plaza, which archaeologists suspect was enhanced with wood and adobe building. The main temple, however, was probably the large Ka'na Na building, located close to the cenotes, or natural wells. There are several other intriguing ruins scattered throughout the jungle, all awaiting your personal interpretation.More

Trip ideas

Best Beach Clubs in Cozumel

Best Beach Clubs in Cozumel

How to Spend 3 Days in Cozumel

How to Spend 3 Days in Cozumel

Jeep Adventures in Cozumel

Jeep Adventures in Cozumel

Top activities in Cozumel

Recent reviews from experiences in Cozumel

Amazing Experience
TSM, Dec 2020
Chankanaab Cozumel Scuba Diving
We were delighted to see that we were the only 2 people at our session.
Twin nephews first cruise/trip to Cozumel
Chankanaab Park Cozumel All inclusive Ultimate package
They were looking forward to snorkeling but all snorkeling activities were cancelled due to the water being too rough.
Great Day in Cozumel
MelandRyan, Feb 2020
Cozumel Coral Reef Snorkeling by Glass Bottom Boat with Guide
It was the right amount of time to see a few things and enjoy beautiful Cozumel!
Great experience!
YiY, Feb 2020
Private cozumel full day adventure
Our driver, Joseph, was very friendly and recommended great stops for us to visit.
spscholz7, Jan 2020
Mayan Jungle Jeep to Jade Cavern Cenote and Snorkel Adventure
Would recommend for anyone trying to see Cozumel in a day
Best experience in all of Cozumel!
JacqueBatcha, Jan 2020
Cozumel Farm To Table Experience!!!
We got to see a different side of Mexico, and Carlos and his father were the best hosts.
Great tour
Justin Libby A, Nov 2019
Private Jeep Excursion in Cozumel with Lunch and Snorkeling
Our guide Miguel showed us everything we wanted to see on the island.
Best part of my cruise
nlmcdaniel1, Oct 2019
Cozumel Coral Reef Snorkeling by Glass Bottom Boat with Guide
Thanks for taking out my family to see the beautiful waters of Cozumel.
Great Tour!
scarvw1, Jul 2019
Private Jeep Excursion in Cozumel with Lunch and Snorkeling
Rocky spoke fluent English.
Private 5 hour tour
Happiness49829280253, Apr 2019
Cozumel Shore Excursion: 5-Hour Sightseeing Tour with Private Driver
He took us to all the places we wanted to visit and more.
Great Excursion!
GrandTour66400692575, Apr 2019
E-bike West Coast Snorkeling Tour
We biked through the streets of Cozumel, got to jump into a spring, went snorkeling, and had an amazing lunch.
Great value
lediaa545, Dec 2018
Mr. Sanchos Beach Club All-Inclusive Day Pass
Will plan to visit again when in Cozumel.
Our crew was great, boat was as...
mike.kuntz, Mar 2018
40 ft Sea Ray
Best way to see Cozumel!
Jerry, our tour guide, was awesome...
Elizabeth P, Nov 2017
Cozumel Shore Excursion: 5-Hour Sightseeing Tour with Private Driver
This is a perfect excursion to see a lot, learn a lot and have a great time.
Tour guide from Cozumel downtown to...
John B, Feb 2018
Tulum Mayan Ruins Express from Cozumel
Ruins were amazing to see and learn about.
We had a blast, great way to see the...
Joseph S, Nov 2017
Cozumel Jeep and Snorkel Adventure Tour
We had a blast, great way to see the beauty of Cozumel.
Booking this excursion was very...
Ejah H, Oct 2016
Tulum Mayan Ruins Express from Cozumel
Our tour guide at Tulum was very informative and his English was very good.
As a travel Agent I like to find...
Kari, Apr 2016
Mr. Sanchos Beach Club All-Inclusive Day Pass
As a travel Agent I like to find great places for my Clients to visit.
Wonderfully fun and active...
Jennifer G, Mar 2015
Amazing Cozumel Race: Small-Group Tour and Scavenger Hunt
Loved to get to see real Cozumel
Loads of fun and Eduardo and Alfonso...
Gretchen F, Feb 2015
Amazing Cozumel Race: Small-Group Tour and Scavenger Hunt
A very fun activity, a different way to visit Cozumel!

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