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All about Xcaret Park in Mexico

Updated: April 6, 2024

Main Category: Day Trips

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Author: Tobias

Xcaret is a water park with underground rivers and cenotes, at the Riviera Maya between Cancun and Tulum. Xcaret Park is about 300km away from Mérida. The journey by car takes about 3h 50min from the city center of Mérida and the place is most of the time bustling. The admission fee for foreign adults is about 1900MXN. Different prices may apply for residents or children.

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Address:

Xcaret Park, Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexiko

Website:

Category:

Trip

Phone:

+52 998 883 3143

Distance:

300km from Mérida

Travel Time:

3h 50min from Mérida

Admission:

Mex$ 1900

Price Level:

Very high

Since:

1990

Google Rating:

average rating is 4.8 out of 5, based on 104803 votes, Ratings

Opening Hours:

• Monday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Tuesday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Wednesday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Thursday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Friday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Saturday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM
• Sunday: 8:30 AM – 10:30 PM

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Xcaret Park

Xcaret Park is - like the great Xel-Há Park - a natural water park. The park was opened in 1990 and is located between Cancún and Tulum at Riviera Maya opposite from the island of Cozumel.


It is a fantastic water park with underground rivers and cenotes, where you can swim, right by the caribean sea. The name means "small cove" because the resort includes a cove on the Caribbean Sea. For this reason, previous residents used Xcaret (which was then called Polé) as a trading port.


Xcaret offers over 50 attractions in a huge area for the whole family. In the park you can visit the Coral Reef Aquarium and the Sea Turtle Center. You can learn more about the regional flora and fauna from the Yucatán Peninsula by visiting the Butterfly Garden or the Bird House.


There is also a long rainforest trail around the area. You will find for example manatees, giant tortoises, flamingos, monkeys, bats, jaguars, deer and tapirs in the park.


Swimming with dolphins at Xcaret Park
Swimming with dolphins

Maya Ruins of Polé


Incidentally, Xcaret Park is also home to what is probably one of the least visited (or least noticed) Mayan archaeological sites in Mexico, the ruins of Polé. Many people probably believe that these are not really ancient ruins.


Admission to the Xcaret Park includes access to the archaeological sites. These can also be visited separately by paying a fee of 75 pesos at the INAH stand at the entrance to the park. Included is a guided tour and access to other areas of the park is of course not permitted.


Maya Ruins of Polé at Xcaret Park
Maya Ruins of Polé

The world of archaeology


Some interesting figures about Mayan archaeological sites on the Yucatan Peninsula:


 
Figures about Mayan archaeological sites
Figures about Mayan archaeological sites
 

The evening show


Every evening from 7:00 pm, a two-hour show takes place in the Gran Tlachco Theater, which takes you through more than 500 years of Mexico's history and involves more than 300 artists with elaborate costumes from the respective periods.


The show takes you from the pre-Columbian era, the time of the conquest of Mexico, the colonial period, Mexico's first years as an independent country, the revolutionary years at the beginning of the 20th century to the present day.


The pre-Hispanic ritual ball game is one of the highlights of the show. A representation of the fireball game is also shown, which was played around 3,000 years ago.


The evening show
The evening show

Facilities


If required, the park will provide you with lockers, towels, wheelchairs, strollers and snorkel gear, although all of this is subject to a charge. There is free Wi-Fi at the Main Plaza, buffet restaurants, and Gran Tlachco Theatre.


If you need cash, there are ATMs located in the Main Plaza, at the park’s entrance. At the Main Plaza is also the largest souvenir store and there are 12 other stores at various locations in the park.

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