Getting Around Cancun
The best way to get around Cancún is the bus, which stops frequently along Boulevard Kukulcán and within the downtown area. One-way fares are a steal at 12 Mexican pesos (or around 60 cents), making a ride in a Cancún taxi seem exorbitant. However, you should splurge for a cab to get to and from the Cancún International Airport (CUN), located less than 15 miles from the Hotel Zone and 10 miles from downtown. In fact, you can book your taxi online and save by making advance reservations. There are car rental kiosks in the airport but driving yourself isn't recommended – the area's narrow roads and speedy traffic patterns can be intimidating.
Cancún has an excellent bus system that motors through the Hotel Zone on Boulevard Kukulcán as well as Avenida Tulum in the downtown area. Travelers often rely on routes R1 and R2, and they can flag down drivers along the strip; once inside the bus, you'll find the stop-request button located above the handrails. Cancún buses charge a flat rate of 12 pesos (roughly 60 cents) per ride. (Be sure to have Mexican currency on hand.) There are also regional buses ADO that take tourists to and from Chichén Itzá and nearby tourist towns like Tulum and Playa del Carmen. These buses leave from the downtown area at the intersection of Avenida Tulum and Uxmal.
Taxis aren't all that expensive, unless you compare it to the cost of taking the bus, but keep in mind that fares within the Hotel Zone are higher than those in other parts of Cancun. You should be able to see taxi rates posted at your hotel, but you should also be sure to negotiate the price with the driver before entering the cab. Uber also operates in Cancun.
You can drive in Cancún, but we wouldn't advise it. Speeding and tailgating are common, and the police have been known to pull over tourists at a high frequency. If having a car is your preference, you can rent one at the airport. Keep in mind, you'll also be asked to purchase a Collision Damage Waiver, which adds a daily fee onto your rental rate.
You'll have no trouble walking to the beach from your hotel (nearly all lodging in Cancún is located on the water). Walking is also an option along some parts of Boulevard Kukulcán, particularly if you're situated around the northern part of the strip (or the curve in Cancún's "7" shape). But most of the area is too spread out to explore on foot.
You should visit Isla Mujeres at least one day of your trip. To do so, you can hop a ferry from three piers in the Hotel Zone of Cancún, El Embarcadero, Playa Tortugas and Playa Caracol. Routes between Cancun and Isla Mujeres run every half hour. Times vary by departure point, but generally, service is provided from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fares from the Hotel Zone to the island cost $19 round-trip for adults and $14 round-trip for children. Check the website for more information about departure times and locations and to book tickets.
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