Cancun Culture: Old and New
Cancun holidays have a reputation worldwide for being party-party-party for students, but spring break is only two weeks a year, and Cancun has a huge amount of culture to offer the more discerning holidaymakers too!
Old meets new
Although the area has been settled for thousands of years, the Mexican government only began to develop Cancun as a holiday resort from the late 1960s. It’s therefore full of modern amenities and is
built for tourism, but the history of the area provides a unique mixture of modern and ancient, all in one place.
The Mayan civilisation spanned more than 3000 years, and at its peak had one of the most culturally advanced societies in the world. Archaeological evidence of their existence can be found throughout Mexico, including Cancun.
There are Mayan Ruin tours leaving from Cancun all the time, however if you’d like to explore the area yourself, head to El Rey, Chichen Itza, Tulum and Coba. There’s also a Maya Museum recently opened in the city.
Old Town Cancun
Cancun’s Old Town, also known as El Centro or ‘downtown’, is separate from the more developed Hotel Zone, and contains the heart of the city. Visit the local flea markets like Mercado 28, where you can buy just about anything, have your keys cut or your computer repaired, or get a tattoo, all under one roof!
Other great old town destinations are Tulum Avenue, El Parque de Las Palapas, and Avenida Yaxchilan, for a true experience of the area, with bars, restaurants and shops buzzing with life.
Ecological theme parks
Cancun is an eco-friendly city, with many ecological theme parks for the environmentally concerned traveller. Visit Xplor, an underground world of natural caves. Or if you’re more into flora and fauna, visit Xcaret. It’s 2.5 miles out of Cancun and provides activities based around Mexico’s natural history.
No trip to Cancun would be complete without taking part in a water-based activity. If you’re enticed by scuba diving or snorkelling, consider Cancun’s Underwater Museum, an installation of over 460 breath taking life size sculptures submerged under water alongside corals and marine life.
Cancun is the ideal destination for travellers looking for a mixture of ancient and modern, and with huge amounts of history in the area, you’ll certainly find what you’re looking for.