Akumal Beach in Mexico

Akumal Beach in Mexico (iStockphoto)

What to do in Akumal

“Rediscovered” in 1958 by Pablo Bush Romero, a Mexican writer, historian, and world wanderer, Akumal was just a beach ringed on one side by lush palms and on the other by water more colorful than the Blue Man Group—set between Playa del Carmen and Tulum on the Caribbean Sea. An advocate for underwater exploration, Romero established the land as a sanctum for divers. He still owns a big chunk of the island; the rest is largely private, meaning large developments are few. Today, it’s low-key but luxurious, spread out along two bays, Akumal and Half Moon. And if you aren’t yet swimming with the fishes, you’re likely on your way to, as the reticent town still caters to the crowd Romero set out to please in the 50s.