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White beaches and Mayan ruins in Cancún

Looking to discover a vibrant city full of contradictions? Book a flight to Cancún, which lies among some of the most beautiful beaches of the Mexican coast. From luxury hotels and Michelin-starred restaurants, to colourful street art and markets full of local delicacies, Cancún combines the best of both worlds. The city consists of the Zona Hotelera (Hotel Zone), where resorts provide an international vibe, and Cancún Centro (the city centre), where local life takes place. Add to this the beautiful Mayan temples and their fascinating history, and it’s obvious why this is the perfect place for an unforgettable holiday.

Water fun in the Zona Hotelera

With 19km of heavenly beaches, this is the place for holidaymakers looking for sun, sea and sand. Magnificent hotels and resorts line the water's edge, as do the best nightclubs with the world's greatest DJs. Sports enthusiasts can enjoy diving, kayaking and kiteboarding here. This area is also home to the Museo Subacuático de Arte (Underwater Museum of Art), which features a collection of life-size sculptures at the bottom of the sea. A visit to the cenotes is also an amazing experience. Those who snorkel, swim or walk through these mystical underground freshwater caves – with emerald pools replete with fish and turtles – feel like they’re in a dream world. The Mayans saw cenotes as entrances to the underworld and considered them to be sacred places.

Local life

At Mercado 23, a market full of fresh classic Mexican cuisine in Cancún Centro, locals haggle over the price of their purchases. Try cochinita pibil (pork roasted in banana leaves) or panuchos (tortillas filled with black beans). At the nearby Mercado 28, browse the stalls and look for souvenirs, such as traditional clothes and handmade pottery. The Museo Maya de Cancún (Mayan Museum of Cancún) is a must-see for those who want to understand the culture and history of this paradise resort. The permanent exhibition brings the story of the ancient Mayans to life through more than 400 everyday and religious objects and artefacts. It's the perfect preparation for visiting the archaeological sites in and around Cancún.

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