White-sand beaches, turquoise Caribbean waters, palm-tree lined shores…the region’s natural beauty is unmatched. And the tourism-oriented development, which started in Cancún in the 1970s, makes this a modern, clean, and safe area to visit.
It’s a center for watersports—scuba diving and snorkeling at the Mesoamerican Reef just offshore is a major draw. But if you’re more into relaxing in a lounger at a beach bar…with cold drinks on hand at a moment’s notice, you can have that too.
Of course, it’s not just a center for tourism. Thousands of expats, from the U.S., Canada, Latin America, and Europe have settled on the Riviera Maya, drawn by many of the same benefits as tourists but also others that make long-term living comfortable. The cost of living is low—a couple could live comfortably on $2,000 a month. The healthcare here is world-class and low cost. And Mexican residence visas are easy to qualify and apply for.
You’ll find plenty of beach towns and seaside villages, from over-the-top and bustling to low-key and quiet. And thanks to a warm climate year-round, you can be active and outdoors any time you want, day or night.
The “big three” most well-known towns when it comes to the Riviera Maya are Cancún (famed for its hotel zone packed with all-inclusive resorts), Playa del Carmen (it’s sophisticated downtown packed with dining, shopping, and entertainment is a favorite), and the bohemian, barefoot flair of Tulúm.
But there are also smaller, mostly residential communities that are quieter…and definitely worth a visit, including Paamul, Soliman Bay, and Akumal. Then there is Puerto Morelos, a fishing village that has become a favorite of snowbirds, especially those from Canada.
Plus, there are plenty of real estate options, from ultra-luxury to budget, and everything in between. It’s possible to find a two-bedroom condo in the heart of Playa del Carmen for $135,000, while an on-the-beach one-bedroom condo in Akumal’s Half Moon Bay might set you back $120,000.
Wherever you choose to live on this stretch of coast, you can bet you’ll have fun in the sun.
Get Your Free Mexico Report Here:
Learn more about Mexico and other countries in our daily postcard e-letter. Simply enter your email address below and we’ll send you a free special report – Why Millions of Americans Are Moving to Mexico.
This special guide covers real estate, retirement and more in Mexico and is yours free when you sign up for our postcards below.