Where Is The Best Place To Stay In Tulum?
Once a sleepy fishing town on the Quintana Roo coast, Tulum over the years has metamorphosed into a boho chic, vibing beach town attracting travelers from all around the world. Only one and a half hour drive away from Cancún, you will soon begin to see why everyone comes directly to Tulum.
One of the most important aspects to think about before travelling is deciding where to stay. There are so many factors to consider, especially when you are moving to a new place and staying long-term. In this post we break Tulum down into four of the best areas to stay in and share some of the top things to do in each place and above all, our favorite places to eat around Tulum.
All across this 15-kilometer stretch of jungle coastal road, you have an abundance of beachfront hotels. Here you will find international hotel brands neighboring eco-lodges and bungalows, as well as beach cabins and treehouses.
This part of Tulum is mostly catered towards those on vacation. If you enjoy passing your day on the beach and floating in the turquoise water, it’s the ideal choice. At night, follow the glittering fairy lights and they will be sure to guide you to seafood and cocktails or tempt you into boutique shops. If you are a stylish traveller who seeks high-end and luxurious experiences, Tulum Beach is certainly the best place for you to stay.
Things to do in Tulum Beach
Sian Ka’an is the largest protected area in the Caribbean coast of Mexico. You can snorkel along the Mesoamerican Reef, spotting dolphins, turtles and other marine life in this UNESCO World Heritage Site. To avoid disappointment, we would recommend you make a reservation to visit in advance.
Hidden behind the dense jungle and beyond the public beach are the Tulum Mayan ruins. This small city hangs precariously over the Caribbean Sea and during the final decades of the Mayan civilisation it was a trading port for turquoise and jade before the Spanish came in the 1520s. It’s best to visit the Tulum ruins in the early morning (opening at 8am) to beat both the hordes of tourists and the soaring sun.
Places to eat in Tulum Beach
The amount of places to eat and drink in Tulum Beach is endless. Here are some of our favorites:
Breakfast: Raw Love
If you haven’t heard of Raw Love, you will have surely seen it on your cycle down the beach road. An impressive wooden structure opens a pathway to the mystical Ahau Tulum Resort where this gluten-free cafe is located. Get a health boost with their healing shots, sip on a coconut latte or try the popular açai bowls.
Lunch: Posada Margherita
Lunch can be an all-day event here at Posada Margherita. Once you find the perfectly positioned bed on the beach, order from their rustic Italian menu.
Sunset cocktails: Mezzanine Hotel Tulum
One of the best views on Tulum Beach for sunset and their mezcal cocktails are dangerously moreish.
Dinner: Kin Toh at Azulik
Out of this world design and architecture make Azulik a must visit when staying in Tulum Beach. Not to mention their delicious menu and exquisite desserts.
Aldea Zama is a new development project in Tulum. Stylish penthouses wrapped around tropical trees offer the perfect sanctuary. It is located between Tulum Beach and Tulum Town and right on the edge of the nature preserve.
This eco-village is one of the best places to stay in Tulum, especially if you are looking to live and work here. It’s the ideal location for the blesiure traveler — where business meets leisure. Aldea Zama is home to a community of remote workers who search for a “home” environment, whilst also having culture and local experiences available. As a result, it’s a fantastic place for networking with other residents.
Where to stay in Aldea Zama
Casai’s luxury Getaways in Tulum are all located in this up and coming, trendy neighborhood. Each villa and penthouse are equipped with the fastest wifi available, comfortable work stations, private pools, beach club access and unique designs. Read this post to see our seven vacation rentals available in Aldea Zama.
Places to eat in Aldea Zama
As this village continues to grow, new places to eat and drink are always popping up!
Now you can enjoy everyone’s favorite matcha shack in Aldea Zama. Choose from breakfast bowls, mango tango kombucha and of course matcha lattes.
A simple fire pit under the Mayan sky, Safari has some of the best tacos in town. Most of the cooking takes place in a genuine 1971 Airstream ‘Safari’ trailer, which gives the restaurant its name.
This wine bar in Mexico City has brought its wine and tapas collection over to Tulum. Saturday nights are the best time to visit for live music events.
If you enjoy being in the midst of all the excitement and be around to see what’s going on, then Tulum Town is the best area for you. You can expect live music drawing in a crowd at Batey’s Bar; a new mezcalería inviting you to their launch party; to brave yet captivating street performers. There is an overwhelming amount of restaurants and bars to choose from in Tulum Town. Therefore, it’s worthwhile staying here long-term to be able to enjoy the plethora of options available.
Staying in Tulum Town means it is easier for you to visit the sacred cenotes nearby. You can organise a tour or alternatively hire a car for the day and go a little further afield to explore the lesser-known cenotes, such as: Kaan Luum, Calavera and Samulá.
Places to eat in Tulum Town
As mentioned above, there is a bountiful number of eateries in Tulum Town. Here are some of our favorites:
Breakfast: Burrito Amor
The name gives the menu away! These burritos are delightful and packed full of goodness. Go for the large option for a filling breakfast and try the coconut tortilla, you won’t regret it.
Lunch: Co.Con Amor
A healthy lunch spot hidden away from the main road. The menu is ginormous, mainly full of teas, healthy shots, and big bowls. If you have room left for desert, the vegan brownies are divine.
Two options for dinner as it’s a challenge to only pick one. Tres Galeones is a candlelit restaurant with hammocks and fishing nets adorning the walls. The tacos and burritos here are worth trying, as well as the cocktails. On the other hand, Kay Nah has a spectacular seafood selection. Their grilled octopus and rib eye steak are the stars of the menu.
Drinks: Batey Bar
Whatever day of the week, you will find live music at Batey Bar with crowds spilling onto the streets, especially at the weekend. Their mojitos pack a punch and look out for the bartender who hacks at sugar cane with a machete inside a VW vocho.
One extra: Cetli
If you have a car or are happy to take a taxi, Cetli Restaurant is only 15 minutes away from Tulum Town. This charming, Mexican-style house is home to a beautiful gourmet restaurant. Their menu is mainly focused around Yucatan dishes, bathed in flavorsome sauces. They also have an artisan crafts store.
Just 10 minutes from Tulum Town is La Veleta. This village takes you completely out of the Tulum vibe and it is where people live rather than visit. As a result this has created a wonderful, small-knit community where everyone knows each other and baristas have your morning coffee ready for when you cycle past. There are numerous coffee spots, all with great wifi — making it one of the best places in Tulum to stay as a digital nomad.
Things to do in La Veleta
Holistika: This is a yogis paradise. The design and architecture of this jungle retreat is phenomenal. Take a yoga class in a colourful shala, or take part in a sound healing inside a glittering dome. There is also a pool you can lounge around, as well as a treehouse to escape to.