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Sometimes the best and most productive thing we can do is take a much-needed vacation. Mexico is one of the favorite holiday destinations due to its spectacular beaches, year-round warm weather, and rich culture. If like many people, you decide to head to Cancun, you will not want to miss taking a trip to Isla Mujeres. There are many fun activities to do in Isla Mujeres, like diving with whale sharks, snorkeling, eating delicious food, and drinking frozen margaritas!
Isla Mujeres translates to the “Island of Women” and is named after the Mayan Goddess Ixchel, the goddess of happiness and fertility.
The island sits off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, directly across the water from Cancun. It has a relaxed atmosphere, beautiful turquoise waters, and a fantastic north beach.
How To Get There & Ferry Times
The distance from Cancun to Isla Mujeres is 13 kilometers (8 miles). The ferry to Isla Mujeres from Cancun takes approximately 30 minutes. It is a wonderful getaway from the busy centers on the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula.
You can go to Isla Mujeres by passenger ferry ––which is very comfy––from Cancun. Ultramar’s passenger ferry service runs daily from Puerto Juarez. You can also go to Gran Puerto Cancun to take the ferry.
Once you get there, here’s your guide on what to do in Isla Mujeres:
Go Scuba Diving
Isla Mujeres is an island paradise with some of the best spots to scuba dive in the entire Caribbean. You will be able to enjoy incredible caves, beautiful landscapes, and stunning marine life such as turtles, eels, groupers, all kinds of fish, and numerous corals.
There are many areas to dive suitable for all types of experience, from beginners to experts. If you love diving, a unique experience is the Sleeping Shark Cave, where you can see a large number of all kinds of reef sharks at the bottom of the ocean.
Visit MUSA (Underwater Museum of Art in Isla Mujeres)
If you love snorkeling or diving, and you want to have a unique experience, you must visit the MUSA (the Underwater Museum of Art) and enjoy more than 500 sculptures by the creator Jason deCaires Taylor. You have several options to explore it, you can dive or swim, you choose!
MUSA was created to encourage visitors to visit another area around Isla Mujeres to reduce pressure on the nearby reef.
The underwater park has several purposes, such as being a tourist attraction. But it is also used as artificial reefs to help encourage the growth of corals and help with the recovery of marine life.
Swim with Whale Sharks
Speaking of diving or snorkeling, another great activity you can do is swim with whale sharks. June to September is the best time to go to Mexico and see these beautiful creatures.
Whale sharks can reach an enormous length of 14 meters and weigh around 15 tons! But don’t be afraid, they are gentle giants who only feed on plankton and small fish.
Several tours offer breakfast, lunch, snorkeling gear, swimming with whale sharks, and some time to snorkel around the reefs.
You must keep a distance of 2 meters from the sharks as they are endangered, and it is forbidden to get any closer.
Take A Snorkeling Tour
It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner and haven’t done much snorkeling in the past or you live at the bottom of the ocean, Isla Mujeres has a tour for you! For example, El Farito is shallow and perfect for beginners to see schools of colorful fish, it is located in the north of the island.
Now, if you are looking for something more advanced, you can go to Los Machones. It has a depth of 35 to 40 feet and is quite an experience. There are many places to snorkel, like Garrafon Natural Reef Park.
Rent A Golf Cart
Yes, you read that right! Just imagine this, you are touring the island on a golf cart with your friends, family, or partner, observing the beautiful scenery, and understand how beautiful life is!
There are many golf cart rental agencies available around the ferry port. Costs are roughly $ 45-55 per day for a two-seater, or if you want to rent it for a week, you’ll pay between $ 270 and $ 375. The longer the rental, the cheaper the rate. But remember, you need a valid driver’s license to rent a golf cart.
Visit Punta Sur
At the southern tip of Isla Mujeres is Punta Sur, a magical place to visit the Mayan ruins of the temple of Ixchel or admire the impressive views. Punta Sur is the perfect place to stop and enjoy the landscape.
Walking through Punta Sur is very relaxing. The sea views are incredible, and you can see the hotels in Cancun on the horizon.
Have a snack or some food at any of the restaurants located at the entrance. The views while you eat are some of the best on Isla Mujeres!
If you are looking for a peaceful and quiet place to relax and drink at sunset in Punta Sur, Garrafon de Castilla is located next to the Garrafon Reef Park. For $5, you will have access to lounge chairs, showers, changing rooms, and snorkeling equipment.
Explore Playa Norte
Playa Norte is the main beach on Isla Mujeres and has been named one of the best beaches in the Caribbean. The water is peaceful and shallow, making it an excellent place for families who want to enjoy a relaxed day swimming.
The stunning beach is located at the northwest end of Isla Mujeres; it’s a 10-minute walk from the ferry dock. It is a beautiful stretch of white-sand beach dotted with bars and restaurants.
The beach has more visitors in the afternoon, especially during the high season. But without a doubt, it is worth going to see! You’ll love relaxing on the white sand beaches while the palm trees sway and provide shade, swimming in the warm blue waters of Playa Norte, and taking in the breathtaking views.
There you go! Our favorite things to do in Isla Mujeres, but if you want to make your trip unforgettable, Garza Blanca Resort & Spa Cancun is a great all-inclusive resort where you will have an incredible experience, and it is only approximately 40 minutes from Isla Mujeres by ferry!