Opinion… Playa del Carmen is the best place in Mexico to live

Costa Maya - Mahahual - Caribbean

Ok…  this is a opinion piece, plain and simple.  Mexico is a huge country and there are many places that a foreigner could consider when planning to move to this great nation.  There are a lot of very personal factors that will play into your decision and we’re going to look into some of the key points I considered when making my move…

 

Narrowing it down….

Lets delve into some of the things I looked at when narrowing down the places I was considering.

  • Costa Maya - Mahahual - CaribbeanI absolutely LOVE the Caribbean Sea…  I really do.  From the time I first saw those impossible hues of blue contrasted against the cool white sand of the beaches, I was in love.  For me, there was no question – I’d been on the Pacific side of Mexico as well as some of the Gulf Coast around Veracruz and for me the Caribbean takes the top honors…..
  • Having narrowed it down to the Caribbean side, that made things a whole lot easier.  From Cancun to Tulum and on down to the Si’an Kaan and Mahahual, there are quite a few options still – but very manageable using a process of elimination.
  • Cancun - hotel zoneFirst option….   Cancun.  I’m past my frat boy party and spring break days so that eliminated Cancun for the most part.  Cancun is nearly a million people and is a constant party.  It sort of reminded me of Vegas in a way…  which was where I was living prior to moving here.  Not my scene and exactly what I was trying to get away from.
  • All the way south are the Si’an Kaan and Mahahual.  Beautiful but way too off the grid for me.  I need some sort of life in the city I choose and wanted the convenience of available services so these places were out automatically.  If I was looking to be alone and recharge, it might have been something to consider but I still have some life left in me, so…..
  • Sea turtle in AkumalPuerto Morelos, Puerto Aventuras, Akumal – let’s put it this way, Puerto Aventuras is known to locals as “Muerto Aventuras.”  Muerto in Spanish means death.  It’s sort of like God’s waiting room there without a whole bunch to do.  Great if you are a retiree who is looking for quiet and a little golf but once again, not my speed.  The other two are just slightly less exciting, although Akumal is home to several awesome attractions including swimming with sea turtles in the bay.  In addition to the sea turtles that live in the bay, there is a salt water lagoon there as well called Lagoon Ya’Kul.  Great snorkeling in ultra still clear water with plenty of tropical fish to check out.  Very cool to do….
  • Tulum Ruins - Mayan RuinsTulum was under careful consideration…  but Tulum is a weird place.  Very small but not quite as off the grid as some others I talked abut earlier.  A strange sort of town in that it attracts individuals who appear to be polar opposites…  a very spiritual place that attract people from very different backgrounds.  It is very, very popular with the affluent New Yorker trophy wives into yoga and escaping the concrete jungle to get in touch with the Earth, as well as a large contingent of hippy types and other alternate, off-the-grid lifestyle individuals who flock to this area in search of a peaceful life with nature.
  • Playa archPlaya del Carmen.  So that brings me to my final choice and the focal point of this article.  Playa del Carmen is in the heart of the Riviera Maya and is a happy medium between the big city craziness and the off the grid charm of Tulum.  Sitting at about 200,000 people, it has all the amenities of modern life without getting that big city feel.  You can find a party if that’s what you’re looking for bu at the same time, if you just need to relax, this is also the place.
  • There is a large expat community in Playa del Carmen and an astonishing amount of restaurants and food places, plus it’s only 40 mins from the airport.  There are several movie theaters that play new releases in English, great medical care facilities, great beaches, and a thriving economy.  Combine that with a bunch of really happy, laid back beach people and an endless amount of things to keep me occupied, and I found the place to hang my hat for a  while…