Living in Mexico has played a big role during my 22 years of nonstop travel. On four separate occasions I’ve called Playa del Carmen home, spending anywhere from 4 – 12 months living in this pleasant town. The main appeal is the laid-back vibe, attractive beaches, excellent weather, great food options and diverse population of people from around the world.
Another major bonus is the ability to take incredible day trips and weekend getaways. Everything from Mayan ruins, underground caves, colorful towns like Valladolid, cultural cities such as Merida and Campeche and the islands of Cozumel, Isla Mujeres and Isla Holbox are all within easy reach. Sometimes though, after a long workweek, a group of friends and I simply want to escape and spend the weekend at a Cancun all-inclusive hotel on the idyllic white sand beaches of the hotel zone.
Luckily for us, that’s also very easy to accomplish and we make it happen every couple of months.
We rent a car, make the 1 hour drive north and usually check-in to a resort such as the Occidental Costa Cancún, one of our main go-to hotels. We book a couple of twin rooms with clear views of the Caribbean Sea and if we found the right deal (which are often listed on the resort’s website), the overall price hardly makes a dent. This is especially true considering that the Occidental Costa Cancún is a 4 star all inclusive resort, where all food and drinks are included.
During the days we lounge around, swimming in the massive pools and sitting on the beautiful beach, taking breaks to eat at one of the resort’s 4 restaurants. In the evening, we try to squeeze in an experience at their spa, which is usually a one hour massage, time in the hot tub and a quick trip to the gym for me. Later in the night, after dinner, we grab some drinks at one of the resort bars before heading out for Cancun’s famous nightlife, which is only minutes away.
I’ll admit that at this point in my life, I can only handle the nightlife for a couple of hours. Usually, I find myself back at the resort before long, hanging out with a couple of friends by the pool with the sea breeze and music to keep us company.
Such weekends almost always go smoothly and while we love life in Playa del Carmen, it still feels good to get away for a super comfortable, relaxing and affordable vacation to paradise every now and then.
On our last day, after spending a little extra time on the beach before we check-out, we head back to Playa del Carmen. Most of the time, we stop along the way, either for dinner in the quaint town of Puerto Morelos or for a quick swim at a stunning cenote.
Either way, by this point we’re feeling completely rejuvenated from our resort weekend, ready to get back to life in Playa del Carmen and, of course, already looking forward to our next Cancun getaway.
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I agree with your post. As locals in Playa del Carmen, sometimes staying in a beautiful all-inclusive resort during the weekend helps to avoid feeling burnout, mainly after a crazy busy work week. I’ve never stayed in Barceló Hotels, but I am well aware of their excellent reputation in the area. 🙂
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