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Cancun or Los Cabos?

October 24, 2013

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Winter is here, but we can always find summer somewhere else.

As the days get shorter and the nights get cooler, the realization that summer has ended dawns on us. With that comes the pleasant anticipation of a winter vacation. But not to alpine mountain resorts or lofty ski slopes! Instead, we look forward to going some place warm. Any place warm! Hopefully somewhere tropical, with azure skies, turquoise seas and white sand beaches. What could bring more joy than forgetting about heavy jackets, woolen scarves and boots for a few days? Bring on the flip-flops!

We’ve traveled to the Hawaiian islands of Maui, Oahu and Kauai, the Bahamas, Miami & Key West in previous years during winter. This year we wanted to go somewhere different. Having never been to Mexico, two places in particular were on my must-visit list. Any guesses? Of course, Cancun and Los Cabos! Both are touted as touristy and full of resorts, but we don’t mind that once in a while. Especially since we love exploring places off-the-beaten-path and getting to know the locals.

Since we could visit only one of the two places, I did some research on where to go.

Which is better for swimming & snorkeling?

I was already leaning towards Cancun because any place in the Caribbean has got to be gorgeous. As it turns out, my assumption is correct. Los Cabos is in the Pacific, and the waters are choppier and harder to swim/snorkel in compared to Cancun’s Caribbean beaches. We absolutely adore swimming and snorkeling. One of the things I want to learn in 2013 is scuba diving, although this year is going by so fast I have no idea when I’ll take classes and master the art of scuba. So Cancun seemed like the perfect destination after reading that Los Cabos would be murkier, choppier and colder than the Caribbean.

Which is easier to travel to?

Los Cabos is a short flight from the West Coast while Cancun is a couple stops longer. But from the East Coast, Cancun is a stone’s throw away, especially with direct flights from Miami. This is an important factor to consider if short on time, so that we don’t spend too many days in transit.

Things to do?

The more I read about what one can do in Cancun, the more convinced I was that it would be a great introduction to Mexico. We love places with a variety of things to do. Kicking back at the hotel pool sipping drinks and relaxing the whole day has never been for us. Los Cabos also offers a lot of options, but for a more relaxed itinerary. Golfing, spas, gorgeous beaches (where you can’t always swim), and a less crowded scene makes for a great vacation. But Cancun offers all this and so much more!

Things to do in Cancun:

1. Visit the Chichen Itza pyramid and Mayan Ruins (Day trip)

2.  Jump/Swim/Snorkel in Cenotes (naturally occuring sinkholes filled with freshwater and marine life)

3. Visit Tulum ruins (Day trip)

4. Isla Mujeres (Day trip to a delightful island off of the Yucatan peninsula)

5. Gorgeous Caribbean beaches for swimming, snorkeling and scuba diving – azure skies above and aquamarine water all around! Need I say more?

6. Scuba dive to see Cancun’s Underwater Sculpture Museum (World’s largest underwater museum near Isla Mujeres. Unique and different!)

7. Day trip to Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve (a natural Mayan preserve on the Yucatan peninsula)

8. Hop over to Merida (capital of the Yucatan a mere 3 hour drive away) for a day or two

9. Stay in top notch resorts in the Zona Hotelera (Hotel Zone), where there are endless shopping malls and plenty of “downtown” city vibes for those who like it that way

10. This goes without saying – RELAXING – at an all-inclusive resort by the infinity pool, watching the glorious sun set over the aquamarine Caribbean while sipping on a mojito.

So we chose Cancun for now! We’ll definitely be making more trips to Mexico in the future and it will be Los Cabos the next time around. Then I’ll have more notes to compare and contrast the two.

What is your favorite destination in Mexico and why? Tell us in the comments!

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From → Itineraries, Mexico

One Comment
  1. Best of Cancun is diving in underwater caves, you can see many underwater beauties.
    I’m diving whenever I can, I really like.
    – Genove

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