Mexico Itinerary

This Mexico itinerary outlines our day-by-day travel journal in the Yucatan Peninsula during the month of February. It includes transportation, costs, highlights, and general tips which may come in handy if you’re planning to visit Mexico.

Mexico Itinerary

Day 1 – Cancun Airport to Isla Holbox

We flew into Cancun Airport and travelled directly to Isla Holbox. Our flight into Cancun was an early one which made it easier for us to head directly to the island. We arrived on Isla Holbox in the evening and explored the town, visited the market, and indulged in local street food. 

Getting from Cancun Airport to Isla Holbox

Travel time: 6 hours 

Travel cost: 634 MXN per person (approx. US$32)

Travel mode: Public buses + ferry (ADO bus)

Day 2 – Isla Holbox 

We booked a package tour to Yalahau lagoon, Isla Pasion and Isla Pajaros. We were also meant to visit Punto Mosquito (more on this here!)

Day 3 – Isla Holbox 

Spent the day on the beach at Playa Punta Cocos.

Day 4 – Isla Holbox to Merida 

Spent some time walking around the town of Isla Holbox, caught an afternoon ferry to Chiquila, and an evening bus to Merida (arrived at 21:30). 

Getting from Isla Holbox to Merida

Travel time: 5 hours (time zone change)

Travel cost: 708 MXN per person (approx. US$36)

Travel mode: ferry + public bus (ADO bus)

Day 5 – Merida & Uxmal 

Visited the insightful Mayan World Museum, then headed to the Uxmal ruins. Checked out Parque de Santiago, Parque de Santa Lucia and Plaza Grande in the evening.

Getting from Merida to Uxmal ruins

Travel time: 1.5 hours

Travel cost: 88 MXN per person (approx. US$4)

Travel mode: public bus (company called SUR)

Day 6 – Merida to Valladolid 

Caught a morning bus from Merida, arrived in Valladolid at 13:00, and headed straight to Cenote Suytun. Spent the evening in Parque Principal Francisco Cantón Rosado. 

Getting from Merida to Valladolid

Travel time: 3 hours

Travel cost: $18 per person

Travel mode: public bus (ADO bus)

Day 7 – Valladolid & Chichen Itza

Took the early colectivo from Valladolid to Chichen Itza (arrived at 07:50). We suggest visiting in the morning – the ruins are crowded in the afternoon.  

Getting from Valladolid to Chichen Itza

Travel time: 40 minutes

Travel cost: 40 MXN per person (approx. US$2)

Travel mode: colectivo (small van)

Day 8 – Valladolid to Bacalar 

Left Valladolid in the morning and arrived in Bacalar at 16:30. This was mostly a travel day – once we arrived in Bacalar, we checked out the town center and had dinner. 

Getting from Valladolid to Bacalar

Travel time: 6 hours

Travel cost: 456 MXN per person (approx. US$23)

Travel mode: public bus (ADO bus)

Day 9 – Bacalar 

Spent some time at Cenote Cocalitos and explored the town of Bacalar, including the fort of San Felipe. 

Day 10 – Bacalar 

Spent a good part of our day at Parque Nacional Maracuya swimming and taking in the beautiful colours of the laguna. 

Day 11 – Bacalar to Tulum

Spent the morning kayaking in the laguna and later departed Bacalar. Arrived in Tulum at 17:15. 

Getting from Bacalar to Tulum 

Travel time: 3 hours

Travel cost: 324 MXN per person (approx. US$17)

Travel mode: public bus (ADO bus)

Day 12 – Tulum 

3 scuba dives in Riviera Maya cenotes – 1 dive in ‘El Pit’ and 2 dives in ‘Dos Ojos’. 

Day 13 – Tulum 

Borrowed 2 bicycles from our hotel and rode them to the popular beaches Playa Los Palmas and Playa Paraiso. Took a short snorkeling tour and spotted some turtles and stingrays. Spent the evening in the center of Tulum. 

Day 14 – Tulum

Our last day in Tulum was quite laid-back – spent some more time in Tulum center, had breakfast, visited some shops, and relaxed by the hotel’s pool. 

Day 15 – Tulum to Playa del Carmen 

Left Tulum and arrived in Playa del Carmen at 14:30.  

Getting from Tulum to Playa del Carmen

Travel time: 1.5 hours

Travel cost: $7 

Travel mode: public bus (ADO bus)

Day 16 – Playa del Carmen

We spent the day relaxing on the beach and exploring the main street of Playa del Carmen. In retrospect, we would have preferred if we had departed Playa del Carmen on this day and gained an extra day in Cozumel

Day 17 – Playa del Carmen to Cozumel 

Caught an early ferry from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel, rented a scooter for the day and explored the entire island – Money bar, SkyReef, Bar Miami, El Mirador, Playa Chen Rio, Coconuts

Getting from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel

Travel time: 30 minutes 

Travel cost: 235 MXN per person (approx. US$12)

Travel mode: Ferry (Winjet)

Day 18 – Cozumel 

Scuba diving at 2 different sites, Palancar Rocks and Yucab Reef. Every single day we spent diving in Cozumel was incredible – we absolutely love this place! 

Day 19 – Cozumel 

Another 2 boat dives at 2 different sites: Palancar Gardens and Tormentos Reef. 

Day 21 – Cozumel to Cancun 

This was mostly a travel day – we departed Cozumel at 11:00 via ferry and caught the afternoon bus to Cancun from Playa Del Carmen.  

Getting from Cozumel to Cancun

Travel time: 30 mins (ferry) & 1 hour 45 mins (bus)

Travel cost: 315 MXN per person (includes ferry & bus) (approx. US$16)

Travel mode: ferry (Winjet) + bus (ADO)

Day 21 – Depart Cancun Airport 

Departed Mexico on an early flight from Cancun airport.

Getting from Cancun to Cancun Airport

Travel time: 25 minutes

Travel cost: 94 MXN per person (approx. US$5)

Travel mode: public bus (ADO)

Useful information and tips 


  • ADO buses are a cost effective means of getting around in the Yucatan peninsula. They’re also quite comfortable (especially when compared to other buses in Central America).
  • We recommend buying your ADO bus tickets a few days in advance, especially if you are sure of your departure times – some popular bus routes and times tend to be sold out.
  • You can buy physical bus tickets from any ADO kiosk or online via their mobile app (it’s in Spanish, but easy enough to follow).


  • Although most places accept US Dollars, we suggest carrying some local currency as well – you may find that it’s cheaper to pay using local currency in certain places. 


  • Buy a local sim card. As with most places, having a data connection makes getting around easier.
  • Book your dives in advance where possible! We don’t normally book much in advance, but this was one of those cases where not booking in advance could have really affected our plans. We were ultimately lucky to find a dive center with enough space to take us on (a good number of dive centers didn’t have space).


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