Xpu-ha beach has always been my favorite beach in the Riviera Maya, back in the days when it was only a deserted wild stretch of white sand and now with all the beach clubs and hotel- it never loses its charm. I am going to tell you all about it in this post.
In 2005 or so I was working in Playa del Carmen as a tour rep and Xpuha beach used to be my secret place where to unwind after a stressful week dealing with demanding clients.
Xpu-ha Beach was my cure. It was beautiful, unspoiled, and had only one little shack where they made the best guacamole on earth.
Fast forward 14 years and Xpu-ha is still indeed one of the best beaches in the Riviera Maya and even though they have developed more beach clubs and it is more crowded, it still preserves its charm and beauty.
Tucked between the busy Playa del Carmen and the trendy Tulum, this corner of paradise offers peace and tranquillity on soft white sand and the soothing calm of the turquoise Caribbean sea. And no worry about the Xpu-ha beach clubs, you will find your stretch of paradise.
The beach stretches out for about 2 miles, with lots of deserted areas where to enjoy a bit of solitude, if you wish.
If you like some mingling, you can find a couple of beach clubs and watersport centers to enjoy kitesurfing, paddle-board and windsurf.
If you wish to spend the night in Xpu-ha beach you can do so, as there are a few amazing hotels where to splurge and completely relax.
Where is Xpu-ha beach
From the Carretera Federal, at about 30 km from Tulum and the same distance from Playa del Carmen, you will find 2 entrances but I would recommend entering where you see the sign La Playa (see picture below). At the entrance, you will be asked if you are going to eat at the restaurant or only access the beach. I would choose the latter so that you are free to eat wherever you want. In this case, you will pay 50 MXN per person ( 2 USD)
Getting to Xpu-ha beach by car
I always suggest to rent a car and drive around because you have the freedom to visit on your own terms, without having the pressure of the tight schedules that groups normally have. I love to drive around a place and find new corners to discover, for as long as I want. And going to Xpu-Ha beach by car is definitely easier.
Also you have the freedom to stop by one of the amazing cenotes of the Riviera Maya, such as Cenote Cristalino or Cenote Azul, my two favorite, located right opposite to Xpu-ha entrance (on the other side of the Carretera Federal)
If you are new to driving in Mexico, I have written a useful post with tips and interesting information that might be useful as there are a couple of things you need to know and need to be careful about.
Driving Distance to Xpu Ha:
- Cancun Airport: 50 miles / 1 hour
- Cancun Hotel Zone: 62 miles / 1 hour 20 minutes
- Playa del Carmen: 17 miles / 24 minutes
- Tulum: 23 miles / 31 minutes
- Merida: 195 miles/ 3 hour 20 minutes
Getting to Xpu-ha beach by Taxi
There is always the good old taxi, if you don’t want to drive but you want to stay comfortable. They might charge you around 1000 pesos return, but it’s always better to ask first and agree on the pick up time. Always pay at the end of each ride, and ask the driver number, just in case.
Getting to Xpu-ha beach by Colectivo
If you don’t have a car, you can take the Colectivo for about 30 MXN, either from Playa del Carmen or from Tulum. Just ask the driver to top at Xpu-ha entrance. If you come from Playa del Carmen you will need to cross the road. Be careful.
It would be an amazing idea to spend a few nights at one of the stunning hotels in Xpu-ha beach. But be aware you will never want to leave.
THE ESENCIA – a pluri-awarded Small Hotel of the World brand, offers a true luxury experience, not only for the stunning beach location but especially for the uniqueness of the layout and exceptional service. It was previously the private home of an Italian duchess and under the new owners, it has been transformed into a modern elegant sophisticated hotel with high-end facilities and decorations and yet embedding its own history. The exceptional service also is a huge added value, taking your luxury experience to another level.
Serenity Glamping – for those who love adventure and comfort. Surrounded by a lush soothing jungle at a few steps from the beach
Catalonia Royal Tulum Beach Resort and Spa – All inclusive adult only luxury property.
As you can see there are many ways to enjoy the beautiful Xpu-ha, it is really up to you. One tip: if you are like me and don’t particularly enjoy the crowd, you should pick any day from Monday through Friday and leave the weekend for something else.
Enjoy voyager and let me know how it goes and I would love to hear your story!
For further reading
- Book your transfers between destinations on the trusted booking platform Bookaway
- Store your bags in the main cities and walk around freely hands and weight free with Bounce
- Check if you need a visa and get help processing it with iVisa
- Never ever leave without
travel insurance. Get complete coverage from World Nomads or long term insurance from Safety Wing
- I find all of my flights on Skyscanner, Kiwi.com, Google flights, Scott’s Cheap Flights, and always remember to compare
- Book your daily tours locally to support local businesses, or if you don’t find any reliable company, or you prefer to book in advance, check out GetYourGuide or Viator. Some of their tours are refundable up to 24h in advance.
- I rent my long and mid-term apartments on VRBO
- Book hotels with Booking.com or Hotels.com
- Compare car rental prices at Auto Europe, Discover Car Rentals
- Check out my travel planning guide if you are planning your trip and feeling overwhelmed