Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

Tips, stories, and questions about travel-related topics
Post Reply
Message
Author
adam landa
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 843
Joined: April 27th, 2010, 9:15 am

Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#1 Post by adam landa » January 21st, 2019, 3:13 pm

We can now fly nonstop to Cancun from Nashville...thinking about a summer trip. Prior posts are a bit dated so looking for recent experience and insight.

Due to member status, we will almost certainly look to stay at a Marriott property...the JW looks appealing. Traveling with a teenager and a younger child...really just need a good pool, beach, food options, Internet access and perhaps a fun activity or two. No plans to rent a car, though open to it if highly suggested for some reason.

Any and all input appreciated. Thank you in advance.

User avatar
Anton D
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 26731
Joined: October 17th, 2013, 11:25 am
Location: Chico, CA

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#2 Post by Anton D » January 21st, 2019, 3:16 pm

Yea!

Para-sailing, lagoon water skiing, side trips to Tulum and Xel Ha, Chichen Itza, lots of restaurants, and probably other kids to meet and hang and play with!
Anton Dotson

User avatar
Mark Y
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 6675
Joined: May 1st, 2009, 11:19 am
Location: Bellevue, WA

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#3 Post by Mark Y » January 21st, 2019, 3:54 pm

rent a car.. take max insurance..
easy to drive, and more flexible. Trip to chichen and tulum well worth it (and easy by car). with a car it's also easy to drive to various restaurants etc..

Great place for family.. the beaches are nice.. the food is decent..
Y.e.

johngonzales
Posts: 7239
Joined: June 19th, 2009, 6:07 pm
Location: City of Angels

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#4 Post by johngonzales » January 21st, 2019, 4:09 pm

Mark Y wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 3:54 pm
rent a car.. take max insurance..
easy to drive, and more flexible. Trip to chichen and tulum well worth it (and easy by car). with a car it's also easy to drive to various restaurants etc..

Great place for family.. the beaches are nice.. the food is decent..
Yep.

I’ve been to almost all the main beach spots in Mex., most multiple times. Huatulco is the remainder on my list. I think a trip to Cancun is well worth it. Especially for those East with easier access. It can be touristy in the Hotel Zone. But the beach is nice and the hotels are nice. There are also various activities around there like jet ski, parasail, etc. But the plus is the venturing out. First off got to the town itself. There is parking or it’s even easier by bus. There one finds a more authentic experience. Shops that aren’t chains, and independent restaurants. The eating, aside from maybe real high-end, is better in town as far as quality and esp. price.

Then be sure to travel to see Tulum and Chechen Itza. Also consider Xcaret, Xelha, and a boat trip over to Isla Mujeres. That stuff is unique beyond just another resort beach. As Mark said, the driving is easy. Playa Del Carmen is also a good visit town not far.

Barry L i p t o n
Posts: 2668
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 8:59 pm

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#5 Post by Barry L i p t o n » January 21st, 2019, 4:30 pm

I would have thought the Maya Riviera would be a more family oriented spot. Only been toCancun once but it seemed like spring break compared to Cozumel.

User avatar
Mark Y
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 6675
Joined: May 1st, 2009, 11:19 am
Location: Bellevue, WA

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#6 Post by Mark Y » January 21st, 2019, 4:40 pm

Barry L i p t o n wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 4:30 pm
I would have thought the Maya Riviera would be a more family oriented spot. Only been toCancun once but it seemed like spring break compared to Cozumel.
yup, definitely avoid during spring break... and if you don't go during spring break.. it won't feel like spring break ;)
Y.e.

User avatar
George Hejna
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5058
Joined: April 21st, 2009, 3:36 pm
Location: Batavia, IL

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#7 Post by George Hejna » January 21st, 2019, 4:44 pm

I agree with Barry to a certain extent. It depends on what you want. I don't think that member status is enough of a reason to stay in a big hotel on the tourist zone in Cancun unless that is what you like. The RC is nice but it IMO is not Mexico. Go south, rent a house on the beach there are tons of them. The beaches are great, lots of good snorkeling. Works great for a family. Driving is no big deal. You will hear all these "horror stories" but they are BS for the most part.

You see most of the posts involve taking trips outside of Cancun. There is a reason for that. :)

George

adam landa
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 843
Joined: April 27th, 2010, 9:15 am

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#8 Post by adam landa » January 21st, 2019, 5:30 pm

Reading numerous posts on travel sites that better than 50/50 chance a rental car gets stopped for a shakedown...sucks.

Any firsthand rental car experience? Better to rent at property than airport?

Barry L i p t o n
Posts: 2668
Joined: November 8th, 2009, 8:59 pm

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#9 Post by Barry L i p t o n » January 21st, 2019, 5:46 pm

Not sure if Playa del Carmen is more family than Cancun, but there is a Marriott there.

Cancun felt like spring break when I was there which was not during spring break (compared to Cozumel which was much more family and diver oriented). When I had to leave at dawn to catch my flight home, plenty of young revelers just returning from their night out.

ETA - I've never actually been to a spring break place over spring break, so I'm sure I'm overstating it. But more 24/7 hard drinking there than Cozumel for sure.

Siun o'Connell
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3724
Joined: June 4th, 2012, 9:02 am

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#10 Post by Siun o'Connell » January 21st, 2019, 7:09 pm

Was at the Iberostar Grand outside Playa del Carmen this fall - loved the hotel but found the town so over touristed it was impossible. I would not plan a separate trip there personally though Ican't wait to go back to the Grand.

User avatar
Mark Y
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 6675
Joined: May 1st, 2009, 11:19 am
Location: Bellevue, WA

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#11 Post by Mark Y » January 21st, 2019, 8:13 pm

adam landa wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 5:30 pm
Reading numerous posts on travel sites that better than 50/50 chance a rental car gets stopped for a shakedown...sucks.

Any firsthand rental car experience? Better to rent at property than airport?
rented in cancun once and in cabo once.. so far so lucky i guess..
drive within speed limit.. and carry some small money in a separate wallet just in case?
Y.e.

User avatar
George Hejna
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5058
Joined: April 21st, 2009, 3:36 pm
Location: Batavia, IL

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#12 Post by George Hejna » January 22nd, 2019, 6:37 am

adam landa wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 5:30 pm
Reading numerous posts on travel sites that better than 50/50 chance a rental car gets stopped for a shakedown...sucks.

Any firsthand rental car experience? Better to rent at property than airport?
In 4+ trips driving up and down the coast, never been stopped never even seen someone get stopped. The rental companies give you a sheet that tells you what to do if you are harassed. You can actually hand it to the police. I wouldn't worry about it for a second.

George

User avatar
RyanC
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3182
Joined: June 2nd, 2009, 4:20 pm
Location: Houston, TX

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#13 Post by RyanC » January 22nd, 2019, 6:59 am

Very different than Cancun proper--and perhaps different than what you're looking for--but last summer we took our kids (younger than yours) to Rosewood Mayakoba in Riviera Maya and had an absolutely sensational time. Not cheap but a bargain compared to high-end US places. It's a top-notch operation in every respect and super easy to get to from Cancun airport.
C@ughey

User avatar
e chin
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 2696
Joined: November 19th, 2010, 2:23 pm
Location: The Bay Area

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#14 Post by e chin » January 22nd, 2019, 10:08 pm

If you choose not to stay in Cancun any of the resorts on the Rivera would be nice. I've stayed at the Vidanta (checkout redweek.com and sometimes VRBO for listings)a couple of times and while it is a timeshare it does have nice amenities as well as a Cirque du Soleil show on site. We have never rented a vehicle, but only while on Cozmel as the taxi fares aren't outrageous. One stop worth going to since you have a little one is this water park in Xcaret. Very family oriented and many things to see and do. Enjoy!
Ed

“if you're comfortable with your passions and opinions, you shouldn't feel the need to convince other people that they're wrong” Tim Fish

User avatar
c fu
Moderator
<dfn>Moderator</dfn>
Posts: 29906
Joined: January 27th, 2009, 1:26 pm
Location: Pasadena

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#15 Post by c fu » January 24th, 2019, 5:11 pm

Mark Y wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 4:40 pm
Barry L i p t o n wrote:
January 21st, 2019, 4:30 pm
I would have thought the Maya Riviera would be a more family oriented spot. Only been toCancun once but it seemed like spring break compared to Cozumel.
yup, definitely avoid during spring break... and if you don't go during spring break.. it won't feel like spring break ;)
i went during Spring Break for a bachelor party a couple years ago. It was pretty fun. [snort.gif] [snort.gif] [snort.gif]
Ch@rlie F|_|
"Roulot is Roulot"©

Instagram: @clayfu.wine

User avatar
Josh Grossman
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 475
Joined: August 30th, 2017, 11:26 am

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#16 Post by Josh Grossman » January 24th, 2019, 5:19 pm

Tulum is close and better for everything except getting plastered.

johngonzales
Posts: 7239
Joined: June 19th, 2009, 6:07 pm
Location: City of Angels

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#17 Post by johngonzales » January 24th, 2019, 5:34 pm

Josh Grossman wrote:
January 24th, 2019, 5:19 pm
Tulum is close and better for everything except getting plastered.
Eating?

I can definitely see staying elsewhere out of the hotel zone, like in a house. It depends upon the family. Some like resort amenities. I am into exploring and like house-renting or small properties. But there is some ease to being at resort, some related to being in a foreign country.

User avatar
George Hejna
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5058
Joined: April 21st, 2009, 3:36 pm
Location: Batavia, IL

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#18 Post by George Hejna » January 25th, 2019, 6:52 am

johngonzales wrote:
January 24th, 2019, 5:34 pm
Josh Grossman wrote:
January 24th, 2019, 5:19 pm
Tulum is close and better for everything except getting plastered.
Eating?

I can definitely see staying elsewhere out of the hotel zone, like in a house. It depends upon the family. Some like resort amenities. I am into exploring and like house-renting or small properties. But there is some ease to being at resort, some related to being in a foreign country.
It is not difficult to find houses with some staff. It is not cost prohibitive IMO either. We stayed for many years in a house with a wonderful couple Marta and Luis. They took good care of us, doing things that can be very helpful like fixing a flat tire on our rental, grocery shopping etc.

George

User avatar
Jay $$ Winton
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 2589
Joined: June 1st, 2009, 5:21 pm
Location: University Park, MD/Rehoboth Beach, DE

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#19 Post by Jay $$ Winton » January 25th, 2019, 7:06 am

We stayed at the Westin last month and enjoyed it. Well situated with several restaurants nearby as well as a grocery and liquor store. So perfect for a family.
Immaturity-my life, not my wine.

Ron Erickson
Posts: 4216
Joined: April 26th, 2010, 4:18 pm

Re: Cancun as a family vacation - yea or nay?

#20 Post by Ron Erickson » January 25th, 2019, 8:54 am

Not a Marriott, but the privately owned stretch of property that the Barcelo has in Akumal is probably the best beach in Mexico, period. There is little undertow, so snorkeling is perfect for all ages.

Post Reply

Return to “Travel Forum”