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Unabashedly commercial, Cancun is one of North America’s most popular resort destinations. With an ideal mix of relaxed, Caribbean beach life and intense after-hours partying, the resorts and hotels of Cancun are as suitable for families as they are for students on spring break.
The Cancun Hotel Zone, as it’s officially called, was born out of a quiet area known only to fishermen. Before the 1970s, locals would have laughed at the prospects of Cancun as a world-class resort destination. The first nine hotels in Cancun were financed by the Mexican government, but investors soon followed with millions of their own dollars. Today’s resorts are modern and extravagant, with the kind of service and facilities expected of the big-name industry leaders that line the beach.
This ‘hotel zone’ is essentially the Cancun Downtown district. It’s filled with seafood restaurants, shopping complexes and great bars and dance clubs. Getting around by taxi is inexpensive, and tourists will only need to look into rental cars or buses if they are planning an off-resort excursion. Tours booked through resorts usually include transportation.
Activities in Cancun usually involve a beach chair and a cocktail, though there are plenty of more elaborate options available. Traditional bull fights, similar to those seen in Mexico City, are staged in Cancun. Not for the squeamish, these exciting affairs offer fascinating insight into the culture of the Yucatan Peninsula.
Cancun International Airport is about five miles south of the major Cancun hotels district. It is busiest between the months of December and April, when North Americans are yearning for the warmth of the tropics. Getting to the resorts is easy thanks to the availability of shuttle buses and hotel pick-ups.

For more information on hotels and landmarks in the different areas of Cancun, click on the interactive Cancun map on the left-hand side of the page.