The Mayan Riviera is a wonderful and wild place, with many beautiful ecological attractions. In Playa del Carmen and in many places in the Yucatan Peninsula, a movement is happening toward sustainable tourism – many tours embrace the culture and natural environment. The area builds tourism around the remarkable things that it has, rather than building tourism over these things.

Tourism in Playa del Carmen embraces Mayan culture and involves the people and their villages in it. In addition, tourism brings employment to the Mayas, instead of displacing them to make way for attractions. Here are some ecotours that Playa del Carmen offers:

Sian Kaan Biosphere

Sian Kaan is a wildlife paradise covering 1.6 million acres of natural environment. Its vast diversity of flora and fauna has made it to the list of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites. The Sian Kaan biosphere is home to more than 350 species of birds and more than 100 species of mammals, many of which are endemic to this area. Highlights of the tour include: taking a boat trip through the mangroves, swimming in the glass-like water of natural pool, visiting Cayo Culebras (an ecological heaven), and snorkeling on virgin coral reefs.

Rio Lagartos

Rio Lagartos is a wetland well-known for its natural beauty and its huge population of pink flamingos. It stretches over an enormous area of roughly 155 square miles. Rio Lagartos houses more than 375 species of birds and many other unique wildlife. A tour to this rich wetland takes you on a boat expedition and for a cleansing dip in the famous pink salt baths.

Ek Balam

Ek Balam is truly a treasure in the Riviera Maya. Your guide will educate you about the fascinating culture of the Mayas and also their legacy. Visit a Mayan Village and immerse with the local people and observe their ways of life. You will also surely enjoy home cooked dishes in an authentic restaurant that serves sea trout fillet, shrimp crepes, and grouper fillet with grilled or battered shrimp.

Isla Holbox

Isla Holbox is world famous around for i’s whale shark migration. Every summer, a huge population of such sharks visits the shimmering waters of Holbox to feed on the plankton. In fact, it is considered to be the world’s largest gathering of whale sharks. During your Isla Holbox tour, you will get to swim and snorkel side by side with the biggest fish in the world, giving you a truly memorable experience.