Gay Vacations in Cancun, Mexico

Aerial view of beachfront in Cancun, Mexico
Cancun, Mexico (Rios Szalay/Photodisc/Getty)

Cancun Gay and Lesbian Travel Tips

  • Be careful when taking taxis. Taxis are a necessity, since the gay scene is in downtown Cancun, 15 minutes from the Hotel Zone where everyone stays. But taxi rip-offs are common, so agree on a fare before you get into a cab. If you’re unsure, ask your hotel what the price should be.
  • Don’t rent a car. Police love to stop you for random "violations" to extract money from your wallet, and you probably won’t need a car in Cancun anyway. If you want to visit ruins on a day trip, your hotel can hook you up with a tour.
  • Look for low-season deals. Low season in Cancun is from May to mid-December, not counting a mini high season in June and July, when Mexican and European travelers head to Cancun. Keep in mind, though, that hurricane season overlaps this period.

Although Puerto Vallarta, Mexico City, and Acapulco are thought of as the holy trinity for gay travelers to Mexico, Cancun actually has a thriving LGBT scene that’s overshadowed by its ultra-straight, spring break image. Some say it will be Mexico's No. 1 gay tourist hot spot very soon. Cancun has many things other larger Mexican cities don’t: gay-owned beachfront hotels, gay beaches (namely Playa Delfines at southern end of the Hotel Zone), a hopping queer nightclub scene, and two major gay and lesbian party events. The Cancun International Gay Festival in May and the Cancun Mayan Riviera Gay Fall Festival in November have booming beach parties along with raves in the downtown LGBT clubs.

Criticized by some as concrete, soulless, and far from the real Mexico, touristy Cancun can nevertheless offer a fun- and sun-filled vacation, with 14 miles of perfect beaches and luxury mega-hotels. It’s Mexico made easy: English is widely spoken, roads are well-paved, the city feels clean and manicured, and familiar brand names are prevalent for dining, shopping, and nightclubbing. And the real Mexico—especially the famous Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and Tulum—is just a short day trip away. Cancun also has a couple of decent museums. The Museo Arqueologico de Cancun has relics from archaeological sites around the Yucatan, and Museo de Arte Popular Mexicano is filled with masks, native costumes, religious artifacts, musical instruments, Mexican toys, and other art.

Published: 17 Jul 2008 | Last Updated: 17 Aug 2012
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

Best Hotels in Cancun


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