While Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Isla Mujeres attract the lion’s share of visitors to Mexico’s Caribbean coast, Tulum is arguably the most attractive stop on the Riviera Maya. A small town set near the Mayan ruins from which it takes its name, Tulum is home to miles and miles of immaculate beaches. Since Tulum is also home to some of the most expensive beach resorts in Mexico, we’ve also taken care to include options that cater to every budget. We selected the best based on factors such as aesthetics and design, location and, of course, price. Here’s what we found:
If glamping is your thing, then Habitas is your place to be in Tulum. Each “suite” is in fact a wide-body canvas tent that opens up to a very Instagram-worthy view of the Caribbean. Don’t worry, there’s plenty of hot water in the outdoor showers, and the hotel staff are available 24/7. But the real appeal of this unique beach eco-hotel is the feeling of privacy and serenity you get from the comfort of your ‘palapa’ (an open-sided dwelling with a thatched roof made of dried palm leaves). If you feel like socializing, there’s a beach bar and restaurant onsite as well as a common area set in the shade of a modern glass and steel ‘treehouse’.
This boutique beach hotel sets the bar for a tropical paradise. Located between the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve and Tulum National Park, Encantada is a secluded space. While all beaches in Tulum are public, Encantada’s is uncrowded and free from walking sellers. The beach is just a short walk along private, well-maintained paths through the mangroves. The treehouse suites float above the jungle floor on wooden beams that bring the balconies up through the palm tree canopy and provide some extra shade, privacy and a picturesque frame for views of the beach, the palapas and the crystal-blue-green water beyond.
Rustic, natural furnishings and elegant modern design have tied the knot at The Beach Tulum. The suites come with pools, deckchairs, hammocks, and a private pathway to the beach. When high tide comes in, the waves practically break at your feet. If you feel like getting above it all, there’s a rooftop Jacuzzi suite that offers stunning stargazing and breathtaking sunrise views. The Beach Tulum is an adults-only hotel, and the peace, quiet and privacy can’t be beat, but there are plenty of common areas as well. The main pool meanders through the grounds behind the onsite bar and restaurant, criss-crossed by wooden footbridges and shaded by towering palm trees and immaculately-manicured greenery. After a complimentary yoga class, schedule a spa treatment at the hotel’s Naj Naay Spa.
An ecohotel that many veteran travelers call their home away from home, Posada del Sol is located within the grounds of the Parque Nacional and just steps away from the beach. The stucco walls and natural wood frames make each suite feel uniquely cozy and charming. The second-floor master suites offer some incredible views of the turquoise ocean from the balconies. The private beach area features wooden decks and comfy beach chairs for relaxing.
Literally a stone’s throw away from the beach, the terraces open up either to up-close views of the Caribbean or to the hotel’s lovingly maintained grounds. Shady palapas, sunny deckchairs and lots of sunny hammocks offer plenty of places to relax. Bikes are available for rent if you’d like to ride into the city, but this corner of Tulum just south of the Parque Nacional has many shops along the seaside road to the front of the hotel. Enjoy a truly exceptional breakfast from the comfort of your beachside palapa and take in a cocktail at the beach bar before exploring this pristine part of Tulum.
Las Palmas Maya is an affordable beach hotel that’s family, pet and eco-friendly. Nearly 75% of Las Palmas’ electricity comes from solar power; however, there’s also a generator onsite in case of a cloudy day. Room options include deluxe cabanas, treetop suites, and ground floor garden suites. The atmosphere is very quiet as there are only 6 rooms available at any time, which makes it perfect for a romantic getaway that doesn’t break the bank. Located on the coastal road between Parque Nacional Tulum and the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, Las Palmas enjoys one of the most tranquil and uncrowded sections of the beach, but is still just a short bike ride from the bars, shops and restaurants of downtown Tulum.
Set on a beautiful stretch of beach surrounded by jungle, Rosa del Viento is set a little away from downtown Tulum, but the upside is that the beach is private and uncrowded with lots of palapas and beachchairs and hammocks to relax in. The suites feature garden and ocean views from private balconies, high ceilings and spacious marbled bathrooms. The complimentary breakfast consistently gets rave reviews, and there are massage therapists on hand if you’d like an indulgent backrub on the beach.