Mexico : Bike, culture & nature on the Yucatán Peninsula

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Bike holidays in southern Mexico

The Yucatán Peninsula is one of the greatest highlights in Mexico. A firework of sights awaits us on this leisurely bike culture tour. We get to know the historical background of the Mayan civilization, with its grandiose cultural sites Chichén Itzá, Uxmal and Tulum. An exotic flora and fauna awaits us in the tropical rainforest and in the national parks. A special natural wonder are the “cenotes”, holes and caves created by collapsed cave ceilings, in which you can swim wonderfully. The colonial cities of Mérida and Valladolid set architectural highlights. Our bike routes in the hinterland give us fascinating insights into the life of the local population. Of course we enjoy the advantages of the Caribbean with the wonderful white sandy beaches and have a good time.

Highlights

  • Enchanting Caribbean beaches
  • Bathing fun in cenotes
  • Fascinating animal and plant world
  • Magnificent colonial architecture
  • Ancient Mayan cultural sites

Travel Program

We travel to Cancún and move into the rooms of our hotel complex in Playa del Carmen.

Overnight: Hotel with pool near the beach in Playa del Carmen

The Punta Venado Bike Park is located on the Caribbean coast, just south of Playa del Carmen. The various routes through the jungle, from easy nature trails to difficult single trails, are ideal for testing our bikes. Afterwards we enjoy the turquoise blue sea of ​​the Caribbean in the Beach Club. In the evening we stroll through the busy pedestrian zone of Quinta Avenida in Playa del Carmen. The active nightlife here certainly doesn’t make everyone return to their hotel room at the same time.

Bike route: 20 km
Accommodation: Hotel with pool near the beach in Playa del Carmen

From the hotel we walk to the speedboat dock to Cozumel. In about 45 minutes we get to the island of the swallows, world-famous for its crystal-clear waters, tropical climate and easy-going way of life. With a length of 64 km and a width of 16 km, Cozumel is the largest island in Mexico. The capital San Miguel, with its 75,000 inhabitants, is the only city on the island. Our bike tour takes us around the southern part of Cozumel on a “Ciclopista” specially created for cyclists. Sporty bikers can cycle to Punta Sur, where with a bit of luck we will see crocodiles in the mangrove lagoons. At the lighthouse we enjoy the magnificent view over the Caribbean coastal landscape. In a beach club we have the opportunity to relax, swim, snorkel and dive, at the world-famous Palancar coral reef, which was already praised for its beauty by the legendary French diver Jacques Cousteau. In the afternoon we return to San Miguel with the bikes and take the boat to Playa del Carmen.

Bike route: 40/70 km
Accommodation: Hotel with pool near the beach in Playa del Carmen

The escort bus takes us inland to the Punta Laguna Nature Reserve, where numerous adventurous activities await us. On a walk through the jungle, we are sure to be greeted by a horde of spider monkeys from the treetops. We cross the deep blue lagoon in a canoe, and if you want, you can dash across the lagoon along a steel cable – pure adrenaline. We cycle on a lonely road through dense vegetation to the old Mayan city of Cobá. On jungle paths we visit the ruins built between two lagoons. The various temple complexes are connected by ancient paved roads, so-called sacbes. The longest sacbe is over 100 kilometers long. Outstanding in Cobá is the Yucatán’s tallest pyramid, Nohoch Mul, with a height of 42 meters.

Bike route: 20 km
Overnight stay: Colonial hotel with pool in Valladolid

Today we visit the fascinating archaeological site of Ek Balam, where excavations are still ongoing. The most impressive is the Acropolis with a base length of 160 meters. A massive pyramid with very well-preserved frescoes and depictions of gods made of stucco is built on top of it. We ride our bikes to the beautiful Cenote X-Canche, where we enjoy a refreshing swim in a unique natural underground lake. We eat local delicacies with a Mayan family and get to know the simple life of the local people. Local Mayan communities have established a challenging bike route here. We make our way through the dense vegetation on winding jungle trails and single trails, a real biking pleasure. Alternatively, the next village can also be reached on a paved road.

Bike route: 25/40 km
Overnight stay: Colonial hotel with pool in Valladolid

We continue our bike tour on a low-traffic road. We pass small towns with the plazas and local churches characteristic of Mexico, where the comfortable life of the community takes place. The best thing to do is let yourself be infected by the timeless rhythm of life, sit down on a shady bench and quickly get into conversation with the locals, even with minimal knowledge of Spanish. In the afternoon we reach one of the top highlights in all of Mexico: the Mayan city of Chichén Itzá. Further developed by the influence of the Toltecs from central Mexico, the Mayan culture is expressed in all its splendor at Chichén Itzá. With a height of 30 meters, El Castillo is probably the most impressive building. We continue to the largest ball court in the Yucatán. Then we walk in the shade of the trees to the sacrificial fountain “El Caracol”, which is reminiscent of a snail shell and was discovered and drawn in 1842 by the researcher Frederick Catherwood. The observatory was used by the Mayas, among other things, to observe Venus and its orbit. After visiting the ruins, we end the day at the hotel’s own pool.

Bike route: 53 km
Overnight stay: Hotel with pool near the ruins of Chichén Itzá

With the accompanying bus we get to the north coast of the Yucatán Peninsula. Here we take a lively boat tour in the Gulf of Mexico to the Bocas de Dzilam Nature Reserve. Finally, we reach the outflow of an underground cenote, where fresh water gushes into the sea at high pressure, like a natural whirlpool. We try to swim against the current – great swimming fun! After returning to the port, we saddle up our steel steeds and cycle straight along the sea to the port of Telchac Puerto, a Mayan village. With a bit of luck we can see pink flamingos in the salt pans along the way. After a delicious lunch, transfer to Izamal, the city of three cultures. Here we visit the extensive Franciscan convent.

Bike route: 40 km
Accommodation: Bungalows in a pretty park in Izamal

We cycle on pleasant country and natural roads, mostly surrounded by many butterflies, to the small settlement of Aké. Here is a henequen factory where agave leaves are processed into ropes, mats, etc. with machines imported from Europe that are over 100 years old. The green gold of the Yucatán! We feel transported back to a bygone era. At the Yucateca village of Cuzamá we board a horse-drawn cart called a “Truk” which is pulled on rails through the extensive agave plantations. At the cenotes we can enjoy a refreshing swim in an underground cave in the crystal clear water. We spend the evening in Mérida, the regional center, with nice cafes and bars.

Bike route: 35 km
Overnight stay: good city hotel in Mérida

In the morning we will have a leisurely breakfast and then visit the most beautiful buildings of Mérida, such as the huge cathedral, the Palacio Municipal and the Casa de Montejo with the portal decorated with figures. The influence of Spain and France can be felt throughout the city. For example, the Champs-Elysées served as a model for the boulevard Paseo de Montejo. Afternoon transfer to the fishing village of Celestún on the Gulf of Mexico. Today’s hotel is located directly on a spacious sandy beach on the Gulf of Mexico.

Overnight: simple hotel in Celestún

We take an exciting boat ride in the lagoon of the nature reserve, home to numerous pink flamingos and other waterfowl. Even crocodiles can be seen here with a bit of luck. With the bikes we enjoy the ride on a dirt road, through extensive mangrove swamps to Mexico’s highest lighthouse: El Palmar. In the evening we let ourselves be spoiled in a fish restaurant.

Bike route: 40/55 km
Overnight stay: simple hotel in Celestún

Today we marvel at a historic hacienda where rich Spanish landowners used to live. Animals were kept and agaves were grown on the feudal estate. In the Cocoa Museum we can learn a lot from cultivation to the production of the end product chocolate. Even the natives of Mexico knew how to process the cocoa plant. The crushed beans were prepared with water but without sweeteners as a bitter drink and were reserved exclusively for the nobility. Then we visit another absolute highlight in Mexico: the Mayan city of Uxmal. We dive into the history of the late classic Maya era. Here we experience the Puuc style in one of the most interesting ruins in the world. The name Uxmal means «the thrice built». Created about 600-950 AD, the meaning of many buildings could not be fully deciphered to this day. The complex has developed over different construction phases and impresses its visitors with beautifully decorated facades, huge terraces and squares, columns and archways.

Overnight: Hotel with pool at the ruins of Uxmal

On today’s bike tour there are even a few meters of altitude to overcome. The route leads slightly up and down along the so-called Ruta Puuc through the typical landscape of Yucatán – through palm tree avenues. Later the land is used for agriculture again and we can watch the hard-working farmers at their daily work. Our destination for the day is the cave system of Loltun, with its huge caverns with ancient stalagmites and stalactites.

Bike route: 60 km, 300 m
ascent Overnight stay: Hotel with pool near the ruins of Uxmal

We have a longer return trip to the Caribbean coast near Tulum by bus. In the afternoon we visit Tulum, the only Mayan cultural site located directly by the sea. The most famous buildings are “El Castillo”, the “Temple of the Descending God”, the “Temple of the Wind” and the Fresco Temple. The inner city is surrounded by a city wall open to the sea, with watchtowers at the north-west and south-west corners. In our hotel we treat ourselves to a fine tequila and plunge into the wonderful waters of the Caribbean.

Transfer: Bus 5-6 hours
Overnight stay: beach hotel in Tulum

A worthy final stage awaits us today. We bike along the Caribbean coast on a palm-lined gravel road in Mexico’s largest nature reserve, Sian Ka’. The name comes from a local dialect and means “place where heaven was born”. The national park covers a total area of ​​5,280 km², consisting of tropical rainforest, wetlands, coastal and marine ecosystems. After the bike tour we have fun on the fine, white sandy beach of our hotel complex. In the evening we celebrate our farewell in an unforgettable ambience with excellent cuisine.

Bike route: 50 km
Overnight stay: beach hotel in Tulum

We enjoy another relaxing bathing day in Tulum. Hasta la vista México – from Cancún we start our journey home.

Included meals: B=breakfast; L=lunch; D=dinner

What's Included

Services included in the prices:

  • Flight taxes and fuel surcharges
  • Support vehicle and transfers
  • 12 nights in a hotel in a double room
  • 2 nights in simple accommodation in a double room
  • breakfast
  • Entrance fees and visits according to the programme
  • local English speaking tour guide
  • Bike Adventure Tours guide

Not included:

  • Transport your own bike
  • Meals and beverages not listed
  • tips for our local team
  • Flight Zurich–Cancun–Zurich
  • Cancellation and assistance insurance
  • Possibly small group surcharge
  • possibly ½ single room surcharge

Prices & Dates

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— JUL 2023 / — AUG 2023

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FROM/TO

PRICE (USD)

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— JUL 2023 / — AUG 2023

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FROM/TO

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— JUL 2023 / — AUG 2023

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» Additional dates available upon request
» Rates may vary from July 26th to 31th for the national holidays

Prices (per person):

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Deposit for reservations: — USD (– EUR) ✓ Full payment 40 days before. No refund if you cancel less than 30 days!

Places: 🟢 *Available
Trip-code: Number ►MEX-
Duration: 13 days
Participants: Minimal: 4 Maximal: 12
Members: We don’t have an open group to join – We can open a new group – Contact us!
Country / Location: Mexico
Mountain Guide: Eric Albino Lliuya
Other dates / additional info: Contact us!

3% early bird discount when booking 6 months prior to departure 2023

Legend Booking-information:
EZZ Single room supplement
🟢 On this trip, places are still available.
🟡 On this trip, only a few places left.
🔴 This trip is sold out / closed.

Eric Raul Albino Lliuya

Expert guide certified by AGOMP
General Sales Manager of Peru Expeditions

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