See the ancient pyramids, scuba the world’s second-largest coral reef, hike through the jungle and play on the beach
On Mexico’s southeast coast of the Caribbean, the Riviera Maya is known for its picturesque soft-sand beaches, Mayan ruins scattered throughout the dense Yucatan jungle and some of the planet’s best reef and deep scuba diving along the enormous Mesoamerican Reef. Stay and play on our luxe resort property, shop and dine in chic Playa del Carmen nearby, or head out for exciting cultural and sightseeing adventures.
The Riviera Maya is one of the most sought-after places in the world, boasting a huge range of high-adrenalin outdoor adventures on land and in the sea, vibrant, fascinating culture, distinctive food, drink, shopping and sightseeing. Plan well in advance so that you can check off everything on your vacation to-do list and enjoy an experience that’s wonderfully unforgettable. Take a look at our list of the area’s top attractions and hidden treasures, customized by our knowledgeable concierge team. And visit the Maritur office just off the Fairmont Mayakoba main lobby for assistance booking excursions, tours, activities and airport transfers.
beach & watersports
Set between tropical jungle and ocean, our resort is right on the Mexican Caribbean. Take out one of our (non-motorized) kayaks and paddleboards, complimentary for guests, to spot sea turtles and puffer fish in the clear turquoise water. Or go on a guided catamaran tour. Ready to learn something new? We also offer guests customized reef snorkeling, sailing, windsurfing, boogie boarding and kitesurfing lessons for an additional fee. Please see our concierge for details or get in touch with Royal Service. (All watersports activities are weather-dependent and guests, or guardians, must sign a waiver to take part.) Off the resort, swim with green sea turtles or dolphins in Playa del Carmen, go snorkeling, jet ski for miles along the coast or scuba dive among electric rays, stony corals and giant sponges.
Shop, dine, gallery-hop and stroll the palm-lined beach promenade in the stylish town of Playa del Carmen. Visit the acclaimed nature park Xcaret Wildlife Reserve or catch the sunlit ferry to the island of Cozumel for diving, snorkeling, Mayan ruins or an afternoon at a cliffside café. Some of the most well-preserved coastal Mayan ruins are at Tulum, once a thriving port city, about an hour’s drive from the resort. Explore the ancient Mayan city of Coba on the Yucatan Peninsula or see what’s considered the pinnacle of Mayan civilization: the once bustling city of Chichén-Itzá, its pyramids and central Castillo (castle), the imposing Mesoamerican step pyramid known as the Temple of Kukulcan — and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Maritur, next to the hotel lobby, can arrange your destination tours.
Tours & Classes
Connect with the nature all around us. Take a bird-watching boat tour along the resort’s fresh-water canals with an experienced Mayan guide. Join marine biologists who are restoring the area’s endangered coral reef, the second largest on Earth! Or venture out on a moonlit night kayak paddle. If you like to cook, or just to eat, sign up for a culinary class. Learn the ins and outs of the traditional and contemporary Mexican kitchen with our pro chefs, or even how to prepare edible bugs gourmet-style. Get into local spirits with a private mezcal, tequila or craft beer tasting.
Colorful, creative and flavorful, the Mexican kitchen is celebrated around the world. In fact, UNESCO declared our cuisine an “intangible cultural heritage of humanity.” Sample the very best at the source. Take a seat at 10 different dining venues at the resort, from casual beach- and jungle-side to sophisticated fine dining, flirty fusion and timeless traditional. Sample the exotic delicacies of the Yucatan and savor popular recipes featuring fresh-caught seafood, local produce and resort-grown herbs.Learn More
Pick up some original souvenirs or gourmet goodies, or shop Riviera Maya haute couture. Retail therapy in exclusive Playa del Carmen is easygoing since it’s a pedestrian-only main street strip, the 22-block 5th Avenue. Peruse goods from all over Mexico at market stalls, boutiques and designer malls, plus name brands like Lacoste, Zara and Harley Davidson, then refuel at a café or outdoor lounge. Over in Cancún’s marina, about an hour drive from Fairmont Mayakoba, the popular La Isla Shopping Mall is a pretty outdoor center set around canals with 120 specialty shops, along with dozens of carts and kiosks.Learn More
In addition to all the watersports, on the resort you can cycle the property or walk our extensive network of nature trails, looking out for some 240 bird, mammal and reptile species, including macaws, geckos, iguanas, spider monkeys, agoutis and coatis. Play tennis, take a pro lesson, try archery or yoga on the beach. Drop off the children at the kids’ club or day camp, and hone your skills at a tennis or golf clinic. Play 18 championship holes at the El Camaleón Golf Course, unique in the world for its setting — and sinkholes, or cenotes, usually found in caves and filled with fresh water, and considered sacred by the Mayans. Join our social runner’s group, pro-led stretching sessions, a soccer tournament or beach volleyball game. Off the resort, continue your cenote exploration or get a thrill ziplining over the jungle. Go on a kayaking excursion or underwater river expedition.Learn More