Cruises in Playa del Carmen

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Playa del Carmen, located in the Riviera Maya area of Mexico, is a popular year-round destination for cruise ship passengers. Playa del Carmen cruises are available on many of the major cruise lines and offer a number of excursions to showcase the best sights in the area.

Cruise Lines

When searching for Playa del Carmen cruises, you may find that only Celebrity Cruises, Cruise West and MSC Italian Cruises include Playa del Carmen on their itineraries. Carnival Cruise Line visits Playa del Carmen via Calica, which is just 3 miles away, on 5-night cruises from Mobile.

Playa del Carmen is also easily accessible by taxi or ferry from 2 other popular Western Caribbean cruise ports--Cozumel and Costa Maya. These ports are visited by most major cruise lines, including Carnival, Celebrity, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean. Ships depart on 5- to 7-night cruises sailing from Fort Lauderdale, Galveston, Miami, New Orleans, Port Canaveral and Tampa.


The two biggest attractions in Playa del Carmen are the Tulum Mayan ruins and the Xcaret ecological park. Tulum, one of the most-visited historical sites in the Yucatan, is believed to have served as a defense against invasion as well as a place of worship for the ancient Mayans. The main temple is located on a cliff along the coast, with the Caribbean Sea providing a beautiful background. If possible, you should reserve a Tulum excursion before your cruise, as it is a very popular trip and therefore likely to sell out.

The Xcaret eco-park has been referred to as Mexico's version of Disney. Inside the park there is a wide variety of activities to enjoy, including an interactive swim with peaceful sharks, a raft tour down Paradise River to see some of the area's tropical plants and animals and a snorkel tour of the underground rivers where you can see ancient caves, rock formations and fossils. Admission to Xcaret is $99.00 for adults and $49.50 for children, if you decide to find your own way there. Prices may vary if booking a trip to Xcaret as an excursion through the cruise line.

Other popular activities to enjoy in Playa del Carmen include snorkeling and scuba diving, whether from a dive boat or at the Xel-Ha water park; swimming with dolphins; horseback riding along the beach; sport fishing for marlin, sailfish and mahi mahi; and of course relaxing on the "Playa," which is Spanish for beach.

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