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Five Things You Didn’t Know You Could Do in Cancun

Despite its reputation as a high-traffic beach destination, Cancun continues to surprise me with its natural and cultural gems and its constant innovation. Here are some of my favorite activities in and around Cancun that may not be common knowledge among travelers to the area.

  1. Birdwatch at Holbox Island. A birder’s paradise where white pelicans, pink flamingos, cormorants, and frigate birds are a common and amazing sight.
  2. Visit El Rey Ruins. Unlike the larger, more popular Mayan sites like Chichen Itza and Tulum, you won’t find throngs of tourists at these tiny ruins overlooking the Nichupte lagoon. And it’s well worth the $3 entrance fee to climb the small pyramid.
  3. Help conservationists relocate sea turtle eggs. A great activity for kids, who can help transport the eggs into a safer location during hatching season from August to November.
  4. Visit an underwater sculpture garden. This monumental underwater museum called MUSA (Museo Subacuático de Arte) was formed in 2009 in the waters surrounding Cancun, Isla Mujeres and Punta Nizuc and consists of over 450 permanent life-size sculptures, each made from specialized materials that promote coral life. The Cancun Marine Park is one of the most visited stretches of water in the world with over 750,000 visitors each year, placing immense pressure on its resources. The location of the sculptures promotes the recovery of the natural reefs as it relieves pressure on them by drawing visitors away.
  5. Swim with whale sharks. The gentle giants of the ocean, whale sharks are the largest fish in the world, measuring up to 40 feet. They’re usually found around the islands of Holbox and Contoy from May until September, and especially in July and August. August 30th has now been formally designated as the Mexican Day of the Whale Shark. At Traterra we can arrange all the details for you to partake in this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

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