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livtotrvl Jan 28th, 2013 07:57 AM

Hawaii in Mexico? Cancun, Playa Del Carmen or Riviera Maya with kids?
We are planning a vacation for this summer with our 2 boys (2 and 12). We go to Hawaii practically every year because that's about the only place my husband wants to go. I convinced him to consider Cancun this year so he told me to look into it. After doing some research I'm thinking we might prefer Playa Del Carmen or Riviera Maya. Cancun seems a bit too partyish for us. We would like to stay in a nice 4-5 star beach resort with kids activities, water sports and somewhere near shops and restaurants. Any suggestions or opinions?

schmerl Jan 28th, 2013 08:40 AM

You are right in thinking that most of Cancun does not have what you say you are looking for.
It would help to know your budget.
Do you want an all inclusive resort or a condo/hotel type place?
There a several all inclusive resorts in the Playacar community. They all have activities for the kids and the beach is great. It is only a five minute ride to the town of Playa del Carmen.
Look into the Iberostar Tucan/Quetzal (lots of monkeys, birds, etc...jungle type atmosphere) and Sandos Playacar.

suze Jan 28th, 2013 09:40 AM

I don't have specific suggestions (when I'm not going to Hawaii it's Puerto Vallarta for me), but I definitely think you're on the right track with Playa del Carmen and the Mayan Riviera. Tulum, Akumal, Isla Mujeres and Cozumel also worth looking at in that area.

zootsi Jan 28th, 2013 11:08 AM

I am in Akumal right now, our 8th year here. the Riviera Maya is th area from Cancun to Tulum, about 100 miles. there are literally hundreds of places to stay, from lavish all inclusive mega resorts, to tiny huts on the beach. we have never been to Cancun, the Mexican Miami Beach. perhaps the best town for a family is Akumal, which is quiet, with calm clear water. however, Playa is great if you want a livelier environment, and Tulum is good for miles of open beach. one thing to consider, it will be VERY hot in the summer months. Go to for tons of info on the whole area. we don't do the 5 star resort thing so I can't give any specifics on stay.

livtotrvl Jan 28th, 2013 12:09 PM

Thanks for the tips! We would consider an all-inclusive or resort. Probably not condo/timeshare as we like the services of a resort. Our budget is ideally under $3000 6 nights. The Iberostar sounds interesting. We usually prefer large resorts over boutique type hotels since there is more to do. My older son would love Tulum and Xcaret but with the little one a nice water play area or beach would be great. Will focus on the Playa area.

emd3 Jan 28th, 2013 06:16 PM

Be aware that it is extremely hot and humid in the summers anywhere in Cancun, the riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen, and further south. It is nice in the water, but you will be sweating and very hot outside the water. Very uncomfortably hot. If you can handle it, great, but just go into it realizing that.

rickhowe Feb 16th, 2013 06:10 AM

We've done Hawaii in the late spring. On the Big Island my son (who was 12) snowboarded on Mauna Kea and surfed on the Waikoloa side ON THE SAME DAY!!! Great fun. But for the money (and travel time) we prefer Playa del Carmen. Lots and LOTS to do, great restaurants (and shops) in the town of Playa del Carmen. We stay at a condo hotel on the beach, about one block from Fifth Ave (where all the restaurants are). We're not all-inclusive types - we like to choose where we eat. Lots of details on activities at Playa, too much to post here. email me: [email protected]

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