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Hotel Zone Hotels and Apartments

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Cancun has developed rapidly as one of the top Caribbean holiday resorts. The Hotel Zone is a long sandy strip of land separated from the mainland by a swampy lagoon. At over 13 miles in length the Hotel Zone is a holiday paradise with soft white sand and crystal clear sea plus views across the Caribbean. The big chain hotels are well represented along the coast with many offering superb all-inclusive packages. The Hotel Zone is sensibly split into blocks approximately one kilometre in length with each zone referred to by its kilometre number. This will help when choosing a hotel and also when trying to navigate to it!

Spring Break crowd

The northern end of the Hotel Zone is perhaps the most popular, particularly with the Spring Break crowd. The big clubs and large resort hotels are situated between kilometres 8 and 10. The resort becomes progressively quieter as you head south towards Punta Nizuc and Cancun Airport. The Nichupte Lagoon provides a natural backdrop to the glitz and glamour of the strip. The mangrove swamps can be explored by boat.

Explore Chichen Itza

Away from the beach the Yucatan Peninsula is waiting to be discovered. There are seemingly endless ways to enjoy the ocean, both above and below the waves. For history lovers, the peninsula was home to Mayan civilisation prior to the 16th century. The incredible Chichen Itza is a perfect reminder of their impact and architectural ambition.

Things to do in Hotel Zone

On the beach in Hotel Zone

Depending on where you choose to stay you will have a wide choice of beaches to spend your days on. Some of the beaches are private and owned by the large resort hotels lining the coast. The public beaches are often busy in the peak months but you will not struggle to find a bit more space if you need it. There are over 13 miles of pristine sand to choose from. The beaches in the north are popular with families as they offer calmer conditions in part due to the protective barrier the Isla Mujeres forms off the coast. Further south, beyond kilometre 8, the beaches open up and the Caribbean rolls in unchecked. This makes for exciting surf to frolic in.

Top Tip:

Playa Delfines at kilometre 18 is a nice quiet beach if you want some solitude. The beautiful turquoise ocean and crashing waves are spectacular.

Eat and drink in Hotel Zone

The large resort hotels provide 24 hour entertainment as well as restaurants and bars. For a life outside your hotel, the area between kilometres 8 and 12 is where you will find the majority of the local restaurants, cafes and bars. This is the heart of Spring Break territory so beware and time your visit carefully to avoid the excesses of US University downtime. This period lasts from mid-February through to early April. For an escape from the Hotel Zone, take a short ride into Downtown Cancun. You will find more authentic Mexican restaurants and bars along Avenida Yaxchillan plus markets offering good local street food.

Hotel Zone nightlife

Cancun is a notorious party destination, particularly for Spring Breakers. This doesn’t mean the resort is a no go zone for family holidays or a quiet break. The popular clubs including Coco Bongo and Senor Frogs are all within the same zone around kilometre 9. Outside Spring Break the area is less chaotic but you will still be guaranteed a lively night particularly in peak season between December and May. The large hotels offer their own entertainment day and night but the large clubs are worth a visit with world famous DJs, live music and amazing light shows.

Top Tip:

Try ‘The City’, a huge and popular club in the heart of the Hotel Zone. They have incredible acrobatic displays while the music plays and the drinks flow.

Shopping in Hotel Zone

Cancun and the Hotel Zone in particular, is a shopper’s paradise. There are several large and glamourous plazas lined with exclusive stores and places to grab a drink or snack as you browse. The most popular are La Isla, Kakulcan and Caracol. For a more authentic shopping experience it may be worth heading downtown and visiting the delights of Parque las Palapas, home to regular markets as well as live entertainment and delicious food.

Things to see in Hotel Zone

The peninsula is ready to be explored. There are organised self-drive jeep safaris which enable you to head inland and discover the lovingly restored Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza. Alternatively you can take a water based tour of the mangrove swamps of the Nichupte Lagoon before heading out to sea for a snorkel on the surrounding coral reef. The captivating island of Mujeres is a short boat trip away and is a lovely laid back place to spend a day. Golfers don’t need to head far for a round with a par 3 course set behind the Hotel Zone and an 18 hole course down towards the airport.

We Recommend

El Fish Fritanga – Kilometre 12

This is the place to come for local Mexican food if you’re staying in the Hotel Zone. The back of the restaurant looks out over the lagoon and provides a stunning setting as the sun goes down. Great service, lovely fresh fish dishes and an amazing view. Perfect.

Congo Bar – Kilometre 9

The Congo Bar is a local institution. It is worth a visit to take in the amazing energy of the entertainment team. Great drinks offers and right in the heart of the Hotel Zone.

New Year’s Day

A great time to be in Cancun. Join in the celebrations as another year rolls in. You can expect parties, parades and amazing firework displays.

Fast Facts

  • Currency – Mexican Pesos
  • Time Zone – GMT - (6)
  • Travel Time – Cancun (CUN) - 11 hours (London)
  • Transfer Time – 30 minutes (Taxi)



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Hotel Zone Reviews

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10/10 Amazing

Monday, November 8, 2010


The Moon Palace is a 5 min drive from the airport but is about a 30 min drive from the other hotels. However the bus shuttles you to the other Palace resorts in the afternoon if you want to venture into Cancun itself. Its all made very easy for you. The Mall opposite the Beach Palace is great for shopping but the Flamingo Centre isn't great as its a bit pushy with lots of stalls rather than shops.

The best thing about my stay was ...

Shapping Mall

10/10 Amazing

Thursday, September 9, 2010


The Riu Cancun is right in the centre, literally 5 mins walk from the nightlife including coco bongos. Recommend the Captain Hook ship, quite expensive but well worth it, you have to make your own wat there, located near the Barcelo Costa Cancun. Would highly recommend you go to Coco Bongos on a week night as at the weekends it becomes extremely busy and overcrowded. Haggle with anyone if your buying something or going on a day trip somewhere, you will always get the price cheaper if you ask. Jungle tour was brill too, drive your own speedboat and go snorkelling with fish. Overall Cancun is just an amazing place, well worth the 11 hour plane journey!!

The best thing about my stay was ...

Everything is located along the one road

10/10 Amazing

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

You Will love to discover cancun

Lot to see,good restaurant, shopping and downtown dicover mexican Life...

The best thing about my stay was ...

Coule find everything you want.....and of course the océan.....

10/10 Amazing

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


A 10 minute bus ride away from centre of cancun, 5 mins from macdonalds to keep the kids happy,There are bars n eating places 10 mins away , but hey you dont need to go as plenty of variety in the hotel

The best thing about my stay was ...

everything close by

10/10 Amazing

Friday, April 27, 2012

Too many hotels but few good ones

We stayed in 4 hotels in this zone, and only the Sun Palace was really luxury and first class hotel, while the other 3 either the room was smelling to sewer or the food was 100% rubbish or the service was so bad that we checked out at 8:00 to leave them in order not to get angry and frustrated the whole day during our holiday. There is 1 nice shopping mall called la Isla which you can make shopping and take a Starbucks coffee with many restaurants around. There are some nice beaches but we stayed with the private hotel beach. There are some nice restaurants to eat distributed here and there, but you need a car to go there as they are not close from the hotels. If you need a Taxi, don't take it from the hotel as they will charge a double price, for example to go to the airport from the hotel it will cost you 15-20£ while we could get it for 8£ just 10 meter away from the hotel. We used buses to go to the shopping mall and the buses were clean and not full at all and it was costing 50p pp so that was really cheap.

The best thing about my stay was ...


8/10 Great

Monday, February 14, 2011

everything you could want on holiday

outer end of the strip so nice and quiet next to golf course and some very expensive properties, local supermarket, laundry and genuine hand made tacos and mexican food along with a very popular coffee and baguette shop.

The best thing about my stay was ...

on the back of a lagoon with lots of wildlife.

8/10 Great

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


cancun is what it is! party, party party, not much culture, but if you after that then its not that far away or hard to find. day trips to ruins are well worth it.

The best thing about my stay was ...

location, and the beaches are amazing, the colour of the water is unforgettable,

6/10 Good

Sunday, July 1, 2012

First time in Cancun

We normally go to Cozumel and I have to stay as far as the city, I still prefer Cozumel, but the resort we went to was outstanding and really had no need to ever leave.

The best thing about my stay was ...

Close to everythng -- Busses available every few minutes