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Last updated: 13 November, 2022
Expert travel writer: Alex Robinson

Sunset over the ocean? It’s hard to find on the Mayan Riviera. All the rooms on the mainland face East. But not on Isla Mujeres.

The Izla sits over one of the island’s semi-private white-sand beaches, poised for sunset: sinking orange over the turquoise sea and distant Cancún from the balcony-jacuzzi-baths, the al fresco restaurant or the adults-only rooftop infinity pool.

Rooms sit in a blocky horseshoe of concrete that looks very Miami Beach. Interiors are clean and sparse – in wood laminate, white palettes and wall-high glass. And as it’s all about the views consider splashing out the 25% extra for an upgrade from the tiny standard deluxes to a spacious Superior Ocean front – with that Jacuzzi on the balcony.

Surrounding area

The hotel sits over a tiny white-sand beach in front of a long, mangrove-line lagoon. It’s a serene setting, but there’s little on the doorstep. Alternative restaurants, bars and beaches are a minimum fifteen-minute golf cart ride away.

Fringed with reefs at its southern end and tapering to a long, sandy beach at its northern, Isla Mujeres island is a popular day trip destination and a low-key, relaxed alternative Riviera Maya base to Cancun, 30 minutes across the water.

The island is tranquil and tiny – just five miles long and less than half a mile wide. There are no proper roads: streets are tiny and most transport is by golf cart or bike. There is good snorkelling in the glassy-clear tranquil sea – over reefs and submerged art in the MUSA Underwater Museum, and strings of boutiquey hotels.

Isla Mujeres is a boat ride away from the mainland – one on hand, that makes it a little more challenging for active sightseeing, but on the other, it keeps you removed from the crowds.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers*
Beach: Onsite
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
Parking: Nearby (free)
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Gran Cenote

Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Lily-covered, glassy-clear and filled with terrapins and tropical fish, this cenote near Tulum is easy to reach and fabulous to swim in. Big caverns make for spectacular cave diving.

Best for ages: 6+ | £7

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Overview >

Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

Cancun Museum of Underwater Art

Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo, Mexico[14 miles]

British artist Jason Decaires Taylor’s underwater art gallery feels like a latter-day Atlantis – with statues covered with wispy sea weeds and baby coral, fish swimming all around sitting on the sand in vodka-clear water off Isla Mujeres.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

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Overview >

El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club

Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Designed by Greg Norman, the course weaves its way through dense jungle, beautiful stretches of white sand and mangrove forests, with cenotes – natural sink holes – providing natural hazards.

Best for ages: 13+ | £125

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Overview >


Akumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico

A simple nature-based theme park with a safari-park zoo, a cenote for swimming, a spectacular cave and a rainforest canopy zip-line adventure.

Best for ages: 4+ | £30

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Overview >

Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay

Mayan Riviera


Talc-white beaches, reefs teeming with life, ruined temples in misty rainforests – the Riviera Maya offers a family or romantic beach holiday with a dash of Indian Jones adventure.

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Overview >