Trendy beach resorts with all the amenities can be lots of fun. But if you sometimes miss the romance of Caribbean beaches as they used to be—remote and wild, just you and the white sand and surf—then Xamach Dos, in Mexico’s Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, is for you.
The Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve lies just south of Tulúm, Mexico, at the southern end of the popular Riviera Maya. At 1.3 million acres, the reserve is the largest protected area in Mexico’s Caribbean, filled with a wide variety of flora, fauna…and some of the most beautiful beaches along this coast.
Because they’re in the reserve these beaches remain largely undeveloped. But a few already-existing small hotels have been grandfathered in. One of these is Xamach Dos.
I discovered Xamach Dos earlier this year while exploring the Caribbean coast with a college friend.
We’d taken the sandpacked road through the Biosphere, intending to drive to its southern end, Punta Allen. But Xamach Dos’s enticing sign (it advertised “cold beer”—nearly irresistible on a warm and dusty afternoon) stopped us short.
We found an oasis of half-a-dozen cabañas ($80 – $150 a night), a huge open-air restaurant palapa surrounded by hanging hammocks, and a blissfully peaceful beach.
The barrier reef is just a few hundred yards offshore here, and Xamach Dos keeps a couple of kayaks for paddling out to it.
We had the beach totally to ourselves for our afternoon swim. Ditto the hammocks for our afternoon snooze. Then we returned the next day with our luggage to make our stay official…
This is a casual, no-shirt/no-shoes kind of place, perfect for decompressing from city life. You’ll quickly reduce your wardrobe to just a bathing suit and flip-flops, with maybe a tee shirt for those after-sun hours. But it really is away from it all—about an hour’s drive, in good weather, from Tulúm. So if you like nightlife, take note that you won’t find it here (unless you count stargazing).
Editor’s Note: Read more about Mexico here.