Water temperatures tend to be warmer in Cancun compared to Puerto Vallarta. Cancun is close to some incredible cenotes (deep-water natural wells), which is one of the best reasons to visit the Riviera Maya. Mexico's Puerto Vallarta and Cancun are located on opposite coasts, but both are famous beach destinations that cater to tourists looking for sun and sand. Because both locations are so popular for all-inclusive resorts, water activities, and the Mexican vibe, trying to decide between the two can be a little tricky.
We break down Puerto Vallarta and Cancun, so you can decide which Mexico vacation is right for you. Read our 11 tips that every traveler should know before visiting Cancun. Cancun is located on the northeastern coast of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, in the Caribbean Sea, making it a short trip or for Midwesterners, a rare direct flight for those on the Great Plains and the East Coast. There are many flights that fly directly to Cancun from the main U.S.
UU. Cities in all 48 continental states, making it a popular choice for long weekends and spring break. Once you're in Cancun, taxis are plentiful and usually offer a fixed rate in the city center (although always clarify the fare with the driver). Local buses are also frequent and the most common way to get around economically.
Cancun's beaches have long attracted American tourists, who flock to the south in search of the area's stretches of white sand that stretch deep into the turquoise Caribbean Sea. It's postcard-worthy, and the waves are crystal clear and warm, contributing to its current title as Mexico's most popular tourist area, with more than 3 million annual visitors. You'll most likely spend most of your time on the beach here, so it might be worth paying a little extra for a beachfront hotel. Most tourists tend to stay at their resort, but beaches like Chac Mool and Playa Delfines are fun to explore if you want to leave the property.
While Cancun is famous for its white sand beaches, it's the golden stretches of sand in Banderas Bay that have attracted beach lovers to Puerto Vallarta for decades. Surfers love taking their boards to the Pacific waves of Puerto Vallarta just as much as tourists love to splash on them, and it's one of the best places in the country to dive (you can rent equipment from one of the shops along the beach). The bay is also a popular spot from December to March for whale watching and from May to October for sea turtles looking for a place to nest. Quintana Roo, where Cancun is located, also has a level two warning due to crimes; however, there are no travel restrictions for the U.S.
Government employees to tourist areas in the area, including Cancun. As a reference, many other countries also share a level two warning for a variety of reasons, including France, Italy, Costa Rica and the Bahamas. Cancun's history dates back to its past as home to the Mayan people, and a trip here should include time spent learning about its history in museums and archaeological parks, such as Chichén Itzá. The last few years saw the rise of Cancun in the mid-twentieth century as a city developed by the national government for tourists.
To this end, the Cancun Hotel Zone has more than 100 properties and is generally where tourists stay. Expect all-inclusive options from chains, as well as ultra-luxurious and budget-friendly options. While there are many properties that don't cater to the spring break crowd as much, such as the luxurious Hyatt Zilara Cancun or the Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun, there are also many that do, so do your research before booking your stay to make sure you're prepared for the vacation environment you want. Travelers heading to Cancun tend to opt for all-inclusive stays located right on the beach, without having to think about costs or make daily decisions about where to eat, after all, it's great for disconnecting.
One of the best places to stay is the Hyatt Zilara Cancun, where you can sunbathe on the sparkling white sand beach, relax in the free-form infinity pool, sample cocktails at the hotel's five bars, or take a dip in the bathroom. Plus, with six restaurants offering international dishes, you'll have plenty of options for your meals. Hyatt Zilara Cancun Prices. When it comes to pricing, in general, the Puerto Vallarta area is going to be a little cheaper than Cancun and the Riviera Maya.
And if you're looking for authentic Mexican cuisine, Puerto Vallarta is the best place to do it after Mexico City itself. In short, the difference between Puerto Vallarta and Cancun comes down to the type of experience they offer. An additional element to note is that the sunsets are incredibly impressive in the Puerto Vallarta area. But for those who prefer to try different culinary options, there are plenty of restaurants in Cancun to choose from.
If you prefer to choose a vacation package and have everything included and planned for you, Cancun and the coast of Mexico's Riviera Maya are the best fit for you. Puerto Vallarta is best for travelers who want to immerse themselves in a more authentic part of Mexico while also having the option of staying at an all-inclusive resort or staying in the heart of the city on a vacation rental or Airbnb. The vibrant nightlife is one of the reasons you can walk to Puerto Vallarta day and night, something you couldn't do in Cancun unless you're visiting a shopping mall. She created this site to share everything she knows about Mexico after living in Cancun and the Yucatan Peninsula for 10 years and exploring the entire country for about 10 months and counting.
Even if you don't watch the sun set from the shore, you can incredibly see the majestic sun from a comfortable and cool hotel room in Puerto Vallarta. In short, Puerto Vallarta's security is minimal compared to the nearest major city, Guadalajara. In general, I tend to prefer the Puerto Vallarta side over the Cancun (Riviera Maya) side, for several reasons. I can tell you with confidence that both Cancun and Puerto Vallarta have a lot to offer when it comes to nightlife and food.
There are many areas to choose from when considering a vacation on Mexico's Pacific coast, specifically in the Puerto Vallarta area. In fact, Cancun is only 130 miles from Cuba, it is very close to the islands known for their tourist centers. Choosing between Puerto Vallarta and Mexico's Riviera Maya (where Cancun is located) for your vacation can be difficult. .