Playa del Carmen is located on the Yucatan peninsula, in the state of Quintana Roo. Regarded as the second most important tourist destination in Mexico after Cancun, Playa (as it is commonly known) was once a small fishing village, and today has become one of the fastest growing cities in all of Mexico. Unlike other destinations in the Riviera Maya, the city has always been quite and authentically Mexican, without an over proliferation of night clubs or big shopping malls.
As the center of the Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen is the favorite place for visitors and many expatriates who see in this destination and ideal and relaxed lifestyle surrounded by white sand beaches and turquoise waters, which continue to stay warm throughout the year, all of this in a multinational, multi-ethnic and artistic environment.
The foreign community living here is diverse, and the European presence is especially strong. If you wish to come and live here, you will meet an exciting blend of nationalities, cultures and languages. Although Playa has undergone a faster development pace than any other place in Mexico in the last decade, local authorities have been careful to maintain the characteristics and rustic atmosphere that are so attractive for its visitors. Local authorities restrict the proliferation of large and medium scale businesses, which have to stay miles away from the city.
Playa del Carmen is the main ferry port connecting the Yucatan peninsula with the island of Cozumel, one of the best places in the world for diving. It also has land routes which will take you to the Cancun airport in less than an hour, as well as to another international airport in Cozumel. With the growth of communication channels being developed in the area, the Riviera Maya will very soon become one of the best connected regions in all of Mexico.
How easy is it to settle down?
The cost of living in “Playa” is lower than in other destinations in major cities such as Los Cabos, however, everything depends upon the lifestyle you want to lead. Real estate prices have remained accessible in this city, especially when compared to the United States or Europe. The extra cost you might have to pay in a place such as Playa del Carmen in regard to a destination is directly proportional to the convenience of living in a place completely isolated from the world, but with every product imaginable at your fingertips. There are large department stores, where expatriates are able to find products from the farthest corners of the world.
In Mexico, public health is funded by the government through the country’s National Health Service called IMSS, if you are looking for a more personalized service with the quality standards of the United States, there are private clinics which are perfect for taking care of everyday ailments that would normally be taken care of by a primary physician.
If you are a retiree, Playa del Carmen offers a tropical paradise, somewhat bohemian, artistic and sophisticated, where all of these features contribute to the personality of a unique and beautiful place for your retirement.
What recreational activities are offered?
One of the quintessential holiday destinations, Playa del Carmen is ideal for strolls along the beach while enjoying the sunrise or sunset, going to a spa, going shopping and generally enjoying the city’s relaxed lifestyle. The peak tourist season is from November to March, during the remaining months you will be able to calmly enjoy the beautiful beaches, which will by then be solitary and quiet.
In Playa del Carmen you can enjoy a lifestyle based on sports such as tennis and golf. You can also go diving and snorkeling in the unparalleled settings of Cozumel Island. You can also go sports fishing, sea kayaking, and participate in many other activities offered by the city’s numerous sports clubs.
If you want to relax, you can also choose taking yoga classes; or dance classes for salsa and other rhythms, or even take Spanish classes. You can learn about the ancient cultures that inhabited the region through nearby archaeological sites such as Coba, Tulum, Chichen Itza.