Our insider Steve Wright launched Cancuncare.com in 2002 to provide insider information for people living in Cancun. Here, he tells us what it is about Cancun that he loves – and you won’t get more of an expert opinion than this.
Where do you go to relax during the day in Cancun?
Our favourite beach is Playa Gaviotas, which is hidden away behind the Hard Rock Cafe in the heart of the party centre at Kilometre 9. It’s quite easy to miss but there is a small walk-through by the side of the Coco Bongo nightclub. The sand and ocean here are amazing, but the waves are often too big for kids to paddle so another of our favourite beaches is at Coco’s Beach Bar, which is located at Km 3. There’s a wide expanse of beach, a swimming pool and comfortable seating under the shade of coconut palms.
When not at the beach, we often like to explore Parque de las Palapas, which is a big market square downtown that often has bands and events. It’s a popular place for locals at weekends and there is always some amazing street vendor food that can be bought there such as churros which are a deep-fried doughnut type snack often served with honey, ice cream or cajeta – a caramel based topping.
What are your favourite after-dark hangouts in Cancun?
When we go out at night we usually venture to local places in the downtown area of Cancun. This is an area that few tourists visit, which is a shame because they are missing out on the tastes, sights and sounds of real Mexico. For authentic tacos and tortas, try El Tacolote downtown (Avenida Coba 19 – any taxi driver will know it and the bus passes close by).
For an upscale classy night out with somewhat of a British feel, we enjoy The Black Pub (Plaza Solare), which serves a wide range of domestic and imported beers and has a great live band that plays on Friday and Saturday nights.
We still occasionally hit the hotel zone nightclubs once in a while especially when friends and family are visiting, with our favourite nightspot being Coco Bongo for their fabulous night show – Las Vegas meets Cirque de Soleil in a stadium-sized venue.
What view can you not live without in Cancun?
The Cliff of the Dawn at the south end of the island, which is both Mexico’s most easterly point and the highest point in Qunitana Roo. They are truly spectacular cliffs speckled with iguanas, and a breathtaking view of the Caribbean.
What is it about Cancun that makes it such a unique destination?
There is something for everyone in Cancun. Whether you’re looking for wild nightlife, fun with the kids, a relaxing time, or a risqué adults-only experience there’s a whole host of hotels to suit every taste. Mexican hospitality is unlike anywhere else in the world I have visited and has to be experienced to believe it. With lush tropical jungle, powder white sand, blazing sunshine, the bluest ocean imaginable, huge eco-parks such as Xcaret and Xel Ha and of course, the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and Tulum, it’s difficult to appreciate how much there is in one place.