Travel Diary: Playa Del Carmen

Mexico is a place I don’t think I will ever get tired of visiting. I’ve been there more than a handful of times in my 27 years of life and I know there is still so much to see. This past week my husband and I spent time in Playa Del Carmen, Tulum and the Riviera Maya (Maroma Beach) and enjoyed every second of it.

We started our adventure in Playa Del Carmen where we rented a condo at Pueblito Escondido Luxury Condo Hotel right on the beach via Airbnb. Our two-bedroom condo had a full kitchen, dining room, living room and a spiral staircase that led to a private rooftop pool and outdoor dining area. Sounds pretty amazing, right? It was incredibly affordable. I highly recommend exploring options on Airbnb, especially if you are traveling with more than one person. We met up with one of my husband’s best friends (he actually performed our wedding ceremony in Israel!) so it was perfect for us. We had the amenities of a hotel but the space and comfort of a condo. Jetsetter and Priceline are also great sites to use when booking accommodations. The condo hotel we stayed at is currently 35% off on Jetsetter!

White off-the-shoulder top with striped shorts Rooftop Infinity Pool Playa Del Carmen Playa-Del-Carmen-Travel-Blog-6183 Vix Swimwear Navy Bikini

Our place was just a block away from the bustling 5th Avenue which is the main street in Playa Del Carmen. You will find restaurant after restaurant, street vendors, shops, and clubs. I couldn’t resist grabbing a cup or two of fresh mango and pineapple to enjoy while strolling through the town. It’s a nice and safe area to walk around and grab lunch, but I recommend going off this street for dinner. While Mexico is typically very affordable, the majority of nice restaurants on this street are overpriced and not the best quality. We made a point to talk to a few locals to see where they recommended eating. The first night we walked a few blocks to a little seafood joint called “Chiltepin“. Great seafood, tacos, cocktails, and service, for a very reasonable price. I think the three of us each had a main dish (i.e. tuna steak with rice, vegetables and salad), shared a couple of appetizers, and had a couple rounds of cocktails and got out of there under $60. We had the absolute SWEETEST waiter so that always makes a restaurant that much better.

Mango in a cup Playa Del Carmen Mermaid Statues Playa Del Carmen5th Avenue Restaurant Playa Del Carmen

After dinner we found “La Bodeguita del Medio“, a famous Cuban spot that originated in Havana and was a favorite spot of Ernest Hemingway’s. The sounds of the six-piece band were heard down the street and drew people in all night. The dance floor was packed with couples who truly knew how to dance. I love finding places like this that feel so authentic. There were pictures of famous Cubanos covering the walls along with plenty of Havana Club Rum and the signatures of guests from over the years. We made sure to sign our names after a few mojitos and a couple of dances…

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If Cuban music isn’t your thing (it should be), there are plenty of clubs and shows you can go to that are walking distance. Our second night in Playa we stopped at a few places but ultimately ended up at another Cuban spot with a 10-piece band. SO MUCH FUN!

The Caribbean Sea is like no other so spending the majority of your day at the beach is a must. Whether you are looking for a party on the beach or wanting to read a book under an umbrella, you have plenty of options. We rented chairs right next to the Mahekal Beach Resort (right next door to our condo hotel) for the equivalent of $5 and had a waiter bringing us drinks and food all day. Again, it was extremely affordable and the staff was wonderful!

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If you are planning on heading to Playa Del Carmen anytime soon, feel free to reach out to me directly at with any specific questions you have. I am happy to try to help! And if you know anyone traveling to Playa Del Carmen, please share this post with them!


Stay tuned for my travel diaries covering Tulum and our stay at Secrets Maroma Beach and in case you missed it, check out my first DIY where I made a pair of pompom gladiator sandals for a fraction of the retail price!

Thank you for reading!


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  1. Marie Sierra
    Thursday, May 19, 2016 / 10:33 pm

    Natalie, you are just too cute! Glad you enjoyed your trip!

    • Natalie
      Friday, May 20, 2016 / 9:37 am

      Thanks, Marie!! We had the best time!!

  2. Thursday, June 23, 2016 / 10:49 am

    Im seriously going to take this trip and book that same condo. LOL

    I know Mexico has been on my list recently. That or Greece for a trip next year.

    • Natalie
      Thursday, June 23, 2016 / 1:17 pm

      Lol do it!! It was a perfect location for Playa. I went to Rhodes a few years ago (did a post on that one too!) and loved it but would really like to see the entire country!

  3. Paige
    Sunday, August 14, 2016 / 11:21 pm

    Hey Natalie! I was wondering if you could give me the link for the Airbnb place you stayed at! My fiance and I are thinking about going to Mexico for our honeymoon and your pics are gorgeous!

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