Mexico: Bicycling & Beaches
7-Day Inn Trip
Welcome to Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. As the region’s tourism industry has flourished since the 1970s, infrastructure improvements have made this corner of Mexico even more accessible for bicycle travelers. You’ll feel welcome and safe as you discover archeological wonders, explore the colonial architecture, indulge in fresh, authentic cuisine and savor the natural beauty of beaches and cenotes.
Flat cycling on paved roads that can be rough in spots. Leisurely to moderate level.
6 nights lodging, 6 breakfasts, 5 picnic lunches, 5 dinners, snacks, rental hybrid bike, entrance fees to the ruins and cenotes, guided tours of Chichén Itzá, Coba, Tulum and Valladolid, use of snorkeling equipment, detailed cycling maps, van support, luggage transfer, transfers to and from the airport, and trained bilingual guides.
Hybrid bicycle is included.
Fly in and out of Cancun, Mexico.
DAY 1: Take a break from winter and join us in Mexico! You’ll feel the welcoming warmth the second you step off the plane. Then take a complimentary shuttle to our starting hotel, where orientation and dinner begin at 6pm. If you arrive early, go for a swim in the pool or soak in the whirlpool surrounded by palm trees and songbirds. 0 miles.
DAY 2: After breakfast, we will drive to the small village of Dzitas, where our Yucatan cycling begins. We pedal an easy distance to arrive at Chichén Itzá, the ancient Mayan city whose architectural remains fascinate more than 2 million visitors each year.
This UNESCO World Heritage Site continues to be a place of archeological and anthropological discoveries, yielding clues about a diverse society that was ahead of its time in astronomy, mathematics, calendar and art. We’ll see the 98-foot-tall pyramid that flashes serpent-like shadows on the spring and fall equinoxes and transforms the soundwaves of a human hand clap into a bird on our guided walking tour. After dark, we’ll watch a light and sound show, a mesmerizing interplay between the ancient and modern that just happens to coincide with a full moon on this tour! 15 miles.
DAY 3: After our Mayaland breakfast, we’ll drive back to Dzitas and begin cycling to the colonial city of Valladolid, stopping along the way in a small village for a picnic lunch. We’ll stay right on the central square and have time before dinner for a guided walking tour of this colorful town.
We’ll view the murals at the city hall that depict the struggles between the Mayan natives and European conquistadors through the centuries. We'll walk the cobblestone Friars Street, a lane lined with colonial-era row houses awash in bougainvillea and now home to many chic shops. We'll be sure to stop at Chocolate Maya, a small chocolate museum, factory and store all in one. Then it's dinner in our hotel's courtyard before a good night's sleep. 37 miles.
DAY 4: One of the most unusual natural features of the Yucatan Peninsula is its cenotes, or sink holes, created when surface limestone collapses to expose crystal clear ground water beneath. There are some 6,000 cenotes in the Yucatan, and like snowflakes, each is completely unique and beautiful. This morning, we’ll pedal to one of the most striking subterranean cenotes in all of the Yucatan, Cenote Tankach-Ha. Get ready for a refreshing swim!
Our next stop is lunch and a guided tour of the Coba ruins where you can climb the 137’ pyramid for an unforgettable view of the surrounding jungle. The site was once a city of 50,000 people. Too tired to walk back to the entrance? Take a tuk-tuk. Too tired to visit the ruins at all? Try the zipline over the lagoon. Or shop for Mayan textiles and gifts at the nearby stalls.
Our tour van will transport us the rest of the way to our beachside resort at Tulum, gateway to the Riviera Maya. You're on your own for dinner, but the choices are plentiful, from humble taco stands to trendy 5-star hipster havens where you might clink your jungle-smoked mezcal margarita with a celebrity's. 43 miles.
DAY 5: After an early breakfast, we’ll take a gentle ride along the beach road to the Tulum ruins, one of the rare ancient Yucatan cities built on a cliff overlooking the coast. Once called Zama, or City of Dawn, it thrived as a trading hub for jade and turquoise from the 13th to 15th centuries. During our guided tour, you'll learn about how the people used to live here.
Then we hop on the bikes again for a few miles to Cenote Encantado, a little-known swimming hole that will prove to you how different each cenote can be. Encantado is more like a small lake surrounded by tamarind trees, so enjoy the skies and soak in the sunshine. After lunch at a casual taqueria, we'll drive to Playa del Carmen, one of the fastest growing cities in the country, with a pedestrian street full of boutiques and plenty of beach access. 11 miles.
DAY 6: Mexico’s largest island, Cozumel, is ours to ride today after a quick ferry ride across the strait. Cozumel is famous for its coral reef which Jacques Cousteau declared the most spectacular scuba diving place in the world. The island is sparsely populated with the exception of its one main town. Cycling with the sight and sound of the Caribbean’s rhythmic waves at our side, we’ll circle the island and have plenty of opportunities to stop for a “beach moment.” We’ll celebrate the week with our final dinner back in Playa Del Carmen. 40 miles.
DAY 7: After breakfast, we’ll shuttle to the Cancun airport, arriving by 10:30am for your trip home. Adios!