A Perfect 2-Day Itinerary for Playa del Carmen and Tulum

Explore the best of Mexico's coast with our 2-day itinerary for Playa del Carmen and Tulum. From beautiful beaches and vibrant streets to ancient ruins and eco-parks, this guide has everything you need for a perfect getaway. Plan your trip now!

A Perfect 2-Day Itinerary for Playa del Carmen and Tulum
Relax and unwind at Playa del Carmen's beautiful beaches. Photo by Alisa Matthews on Unsplash

If you're looking for a quick getaway to Mexico, Playa del Carmen and Tulum should be at the top of your list. Located in the state of Quintana Roo, these two destinations offer a perfect mix of history, nature, and modern amenities.

Day 1: Playa del Carmen

Start your trip by flying into Cancun International Airport and taking a 45-minute drive to Playa del Carmen. This coastal city is known for its beautiful beaches and Quinta Avenida, a pedestrian street lined with shops, restaurants, and bars.


Playa del Carmen boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in Mexico. The main beach, Playa del Carmen, is a long stretch of soft sand with crystal-clear water. It's perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and people-watching. If you're looking for something quieter, head to Playacar Beach, a secluded spot with calm waters and fewer crowds.

Quinta Avenida

Quinta Avenida is the heart of Playa del Carmen. This vibrant street is filled with art galleries, souvenir shops, and trendy cafes. You can spend hours strolling along the avenue, admiring the street performers, and enjoying a cup of coffee or a cold beer.


Cozumel is a Caribbean island located just off the coast of Playa del Carmen. You can take a 45-minute ferry ride from the pier on Quinta Avenida to reach this beautiful island. Cozumel is known for its coral reefs, which make it a popular destination for snorkeling and diving.

Xcaret and Xel-Ha

Xcaret and Xel-Ha are two eco-parks located just a short drive from Playa del Carmen. Xcaret is a natural park that features underground rivers, a butterfly pavilion, and a Mayan village. Xel-Ha is a water park that allows visitors to swim with dolphins, snorkel in natural coves, and relax on a lazy river.

Step back in time and explore the ancient ruins of Tulum.
Step back in time and explore the ancient ruins of Tulum. Photo by Darren Lawrence on Unsplash

Day 2: Tulum

On your second day, head south to Tulum, a beautiful coastal town known for its Mayan ruins and picturesque beaches.

Tulum Ruins

Tulum was once a walled city built by the Mayans. Today, you can visit the Tulum ruins, which are perched on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea. The ruins include a temple, a castle, and a lighthouse. It's a must-see for anyone interested in history and archaeology.


Tulum is famous for its beautiful beaches. Playa Paraiso is a wide stretch of white sand with turquoise water. It's perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and taking Instagram-worthy photos. Other beaches worth visiting include Playa Ruinas and Playa Santa Fe.

Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve

The Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located just south of Tulum. This vast reserve is home to hundreds of species of animals and plants, including jaguars, manatees, and crocodiles. You can take a guided tour of the reserve to learn more about its unique ecosystem.

Final Thoughts

Playa del Carmen and Tulum are two of the most beautiful destinations in Mexico. They offer a perfect blend of history, nature, and modern amenities. With this 2-day itinerary, you can experience the best of both worlds. Whether you're looking to relax on the beach or explore ancient ruins, these two destinations have something for everyone.