10 AMAZING FACTS ABOUT
If you think you know all there is about this Caribbean Coast, you better think again. We've rounded up 10 things you didn't know about Cancun, Mexico so you can discover what lies beyond the palm-dotted beaches, turquoise seas and all inclusive hotels!
If you’re travelling with kids, check out our guide on everything you need to know about family holidays in Cancun.
1. THE SAND WON'T BURN YOUR FEET
If you thought Cancun's beaches couldn't get any better, they just did. The 14 miles of shimmering white sands found in this stunning city are actually made of crushed coral, meaning it will naturally feel cool underneath bare feet - despite however hot the weather! Even more reason to enjoy family holidays on the Caribbean Coast.
January is a great time to visit Cancun, with temps averaging at a comfortable 23ºC and highs of a toasty 27ºC - perfect for lazy days on the beach and exploring the iconic sights.
2. ONLY 3 PEOPLE USED TO LIVE HERE
Believe it or not, but 50 years ago there were just three – yes three - people living in Cancun. But how could this be possible we hear you cry? Well, let us explain. In January 1970 the only three people living in Cancun were the caretakers of a coconut plantation. Back then it wasn’t a bustling international resort, but like many places in Mexico underdeveloped and free of tourists. Today, this all-round resort hosts over a whopping 700,000 residents due to its rapid development. Unsurprisingly, it's also one of the best-value long haul holiday destinations, so waste no time with our cracking deals on full board luxury hotels - or why not go exclusive with our Cancun, all inclusive deals?
3. THERE'S AN ENTIRE CANCUN UNDERWATER MUSEUM
Thanks to the hands of eco-sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor, you'll find a series of breathtaking underwater statues located between Cancun and Isla Mujeres. This underwater museum of contemporary art (MUSA) consists of over 500 life-size sculptures, making it one of the largest, and most incredible, underwater artificial art attractions in the world. Want a closer look? Hop on a glass bottom boat excursion, or dive a little deeper and snorkel or scuba through the Museum, sighting works including The Silent Evolution, Man On Fire, The Gardener of Hope and more.
Better still, you can experience this famous landmark without spending a fortune, thanks to our selection cheap Cancun hotels available!
4. MAYA BARRIER REEF IS THE SECOND LARGEST IN THE WORLD
Second only to Australia’s famous Great Barrier Reef, the Maya Barrier Reef is one of Cancun’s major draws, full of kaleidoscopic marine life, swaying corals and crystal clear turquoise waters to swim and snorkel in. If you want to go snorkelling or scuba diving, Cancun is a great pick - with plenty of schools on hand to help you achieve your PADI!
5. IT HAS THE LONGEST UNDERWATER CAVE IN THE WORLD
Cancun is best known for its snorkelling and diving opportunities and while most enthusiasts would be happy exploring the reef, the cenotes are even more sensational. These cenotes (which make up miles upon miles of caves and caverns) are freshwater underground sinkholes – the largest of which is known as Ox Bel Ha, which at 134 miles, makes it the longest underwater cave in the world! You can explore them for yourself if you’re an avid diver, while some areas are fine for snorkelling or just surface swimming in too.
6. THE TIME IN CANCUN DIFFERS BY A HOUR EVERY 6 MONTHS
You know when we put our clocks either forward or back twice a year? Well in Cancun, and in fact the whole state Cancun sits in, they don’t do this, which means the time difference between Cancun and places that observe daylight savings differs by an hour every six months. An important fact to remember when working out what time you may land or return home, as depending on the time of year you could be an hour early or late!
7. THERE ARE RUINS LITERALLY ON YOUR DOORSTEP
We’ve all heard of the prolific Mayan ruins that are dotted around the Yucatan Peninsula and further into Mexico, including the renowned Chichen Itza and Tulum. But, what if we told you that you could find some ruins within walking distance of your Cancun resort? El Rey is located a short walk from the Hilton Club, while Yamil Lu’um can be found next to the Sheraton Cancun Resort & Towers. You don’t need to even book a day trip to see these ancient beauties in the Riviera Maya, Mexico!
If you want to explore further, check out our guide to 15 things to do in Cancun.
8. THE HOTEL ZONE PROTECTS TURTLE EGGS
If you're staying in the Hotel Zone and happen to be a huge turtle fan (who isn't?), you're in luck! Each May, thousands of turtles return to their original home to lay eggs on the beaches of Cancun, and their nests are located right in the heart of the Hotel Zone. Thankfully, the hotel owners, employees and even visitors on their summer holidays contribute to ensuring that the eggs are protected and safe from harm. Areas of Cancun beach are also closed to tourists so that the Turtles can go about their business in peace. Don’t worry though, there’s more than enough soft sand to share!
9. CANCUN IS SPLIT INTO 2 ZONES
Cancun is split into two main zones. These zones are the hotel zone and downtown Cancun, known as El Centro. The hotel zone is where you will spend most of your time as a tourist, seeing as this is where most of the hotels, resorts and tourist attractions are. The locals tend to stick to the downtown area and features markets, shops, bars, and restaurants. There is also a small residential area. As a tourist we recommend you spend your time in tourist zone as this caters to your every need. Downtown Cancun is not as safe but you can explore the area as long as you take precautions and have your wits about you.
10. THERE MAY NOT HAVE BEEN A CANCUN BEACH AT ALL
When Hurricane Wilma hit Cancun in 2005, she wrecked eight miles of its beautiful beaches. Imagine, Cancun without a beach? Thankfully, over $70million was plunged into a restoration project, which dredged up more than 1billion gallons of beautiful white sand from the sea bed, ensuring that sunbathers and sandcastle-builders were united once more.