Visitors flock to Playa del Carmen for its beaches and its parties—and in Playa, there’s no need to choose between the two. For families, friends, couples, and solo travelers alike, there are plenty of things to do in Playa del Carmen. Here’s what to see and where to go in Playa, from splashing out on the beach to dancing through the night downtown.
Things to do in Playa del Carmen
Hit the Beach
If you follow the crowds from the center of town you’ll likely end up at Playa’s most plush spot, Mamitas Beach. Take a stroll down the shore, indulge in a beachside drink, or settle in for the day at one of Playa’s beach clubs.
For families, Mamita’s Beach Club is the way to go. The club opens at 9am and offers live music, reliably awesome service, an onsite restaurant, and a spa. Whether you rent an umbrella and chairs for the afternoon or opt for a king bed in their VIP section (both cost $200 pesos) you can expect to enjoy a luxurious afternoon here.
Next door at Coralina’s Daylight Club, Playa’s famous party scene kicks its day off at 11am and doesn’t call it quits until 7pm. Coralina’s is known for its live music and even livelier crowds, making it perfect for anyone and everyone looking to kick off their celebrations as early as possible.
The commercial heart of downtown Playa del Carmen, 5a Avenida—or “la Quinta”— is known for its shops and restaurants. Afternoons bring shoppers to the street, and nighttime sees it filled with music, lights, and partygoers. Some of the street’s most popular spots? Stop by La Vaquita Disco for a night of spring break-style dancing (with a cow theme), or Mojito Bar for Cuban music, bachata, and some seriously delicious mojitos (try the mango!)
La Quinta is lined with restaurants offering all kinds of international fare, and you’re bound to stumble on something great if you’re wandering down this thoroughfare. Need a push in the right direction? Try Yo Amo Tacos. With some of the best tacos in town, a convenient location (at the corner of 5a Avenida and Avenida Constituyentes), and hours from 9am to 1am, it’s a great place to stop and refuel at any time of day.
Hitting the clubs is near the top of most travelers’ lists of things to do in Playa del Carmen. Mamitas Beach kicks off the party, but 12th Street is where it’s at for dancing well into the night.
Make your way to the corner of 12th Street and 1st Avenue to choose from some of Playa’s most popular clubs. On the southwest corner, you’ll find Mandala, a plush Indian-inspired club (with a $10-20 cover charge, depending on the day.) Looking to avoid paying a cover? Cross the street to Diabolito Cha Cha Cha, a restaurant/bar with a killer menu and no cover charge. And for a slightly more laidback vibe, hop next door to Abolengo, a modern cantina—or “bartina”—serving tapas and cocktails until 5am.
Last but not least: the famous Coco Bongo. At $65-75 a ticket, Coco Bongo offers one of the most unique attractions in Playa del Carmen, complete with acrobats, music, confetti, and an open bar for domestic drinks. Expect an unforgettable night—it’s more of a performance than a dance club—and opt for the $140 Gold Member ticket to have a guaranteed table for the night.