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To escape the frantic beat of Cancún's nightlife and beaches, head to Isla Mujeres (or the Island of Women). There is little to do on this small, 4-mile island just a 20-minute ferry ride from Cancun, but travelers like it that way.
Despite the island's sleepy reputation, it hosts a few sites worth checking out. Recent visitors suggested renting a golf cart and driving to Punta Sur, located on the island's southern tip. Home to an ancient temple honoring the Mayan moon goddess, the landscape is surrounded by steep cliffs and spectacular bay views – in fact, this is where the rising sun first greets Mexico. This area is also where you'll find Garrafon Reef Park, which offers a variety of activities against the scenic backdrop of Punta Sur, including a swimming pool, a zip line, kayaking and snorkeling.
Isla Mujeres also remains popular for its sea turtles, and you can glimpse the creatures at the local tortugranja, or turtle farm. Visit between August and October, and you just might get to witness the baby turtles hatching. You can reach the farm by taxi from Isla Mujeres' downtown. If you're just looking to relax on the sand, head to Playa del Norte, regarded among travelers as a beautiful, pristine beach.
You can reach Isla Mujeres by ferry from several different terminals in the Hotel Zone, including Playa Tortugas and Playa Caracol, as well as Cancun center. You can learn more about the ferry service in our Getting Around Cancún section.
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