Isla Mujeres Mexico Vacations | Things To Do
About eight miles off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in the Caribbean Sea, sits Isla Mujeres—Women Island. With clear waters and a view of the Cancun skyline to the west, the island got its name from the many goddesses revered by the Mayans, with Ixchel, the goddess of childbirth and medicine being the most sacred.
Her temple stood where the Hacienda Mundaca, Mundaca’s Plantation House, currently stands. Today the island paradise offers guests an array of activities and sites on land and in the sea.
Isla Mujeres is a tranquil retreat from its more active neighbor Cancun. Even though the vibe is calmer, there are tons of things to see and do while visiting. The most famous beach is Playa Norte and is considered one the best beaches in the country.
The sand is soft and white, and the water is a serene blue. It is the perfect spot to relax, soak in the sun’s rays, and forget about everything. For more secluded beaches that are still equipped with amenities, head over to the west side of the island for Play Paraiso, Playa Lancheros, and Playa Indios.
Water lovers can enjoy swimming with dolphins and whale sharks, the many coral reefs, snorkeling, and scuba diving. Visit the MUSA Underwater Sculpture Museum off the western coast and see an array of sculptures submerged beneath the gorgeous waters.
The museum was established to counteract climate change and its effect on the ocean and reefs. The sculptures were specially crafted to change as the ecology under the water thrives and grows. A work in progress where science and art come together, the museum hopes to have twelve galleries filled with art acting as artificial habitats for marine life in the next several years.
Guests can view some of the sculptures via glass bottom boat or for deeper exhibits by snorkeling.
The island is home to a large population of sea turtles, which are currently on the endangered list. Isla Mujeres now has a rehabilitation and breeding facility called Tortuga Granja to protect them, which is also open to the public to see these beautiful creatures. The facility includes an aquarium filled with an abundance of tropical fish, seahorses, and manta rays as well.
BOOK A VACATION RENTAL IN ISLA MUJERES
On the southern tip of the island, is Garrafon Park. The location boasts beautiful cliff views and access to the natural reefs below the water. You can also enjoy a variety of water activities if that is more your speed such as scuba diving and snorkeling. Another spot for snorkeling and water fun is Xel-Ha, an eco theme park with unlimited activities for the whole family. Also on the southern tip is Punta Sur.
The highest elevation in the Yucatan, Punta Sur also houses an ancient temple to the Mayan Moon Goddess. Explore the small village featuring stores, snacks, and a view of Mayan ruins.
Fresh seafood is a must have when visiting Isla Mujeres. Local cuisine offers a mixture of the cultural melting pot of the area. Diners will find Mexican, Yucatecan, Italian, Caribbean, Thai, Mayan, and even Hebrew and French restaurants throughout the area, particularly in El Central, where Hidalgo Street is the main thoroughfare for eating and entertainment.
Isla Mujeres’ residents are just as eclectic as its cuisine. From fisherman to artists, the area attracts those seeking a tropical, laidback paradise filled with culture, delicious food, and fun. Sunning yourself and relaxing all day are just as popular as golfing, bicycling, or hiking. Take a walk in Centro for the Sea Wall Murals or go shopping for unique treasures only found in Mexico.
If you are traveling to Mexico, make sure to head to Isla Mujeres to enjoy the tropical haven the island provides its residents and guests.