Top 5 Jungle Adventures in the Riviera Maya
Rated by many the best off-road 4/4 adventure in the region, the Hummer jungle tour is entertaining and exciting for singles, couples, the whole family. Visit sites only a Hummer could reach for scenery that is spectacular and diverse. Swim in a cenote, visit a zoo and some ancient Maya ruins and wrap up with lunch on a gorgeous beach. Go for it and see a side of Cancun you’d never imagine exists.
This is a super idea but not all rappel adventures are created equal. In some tours, you’re basically lowered into the cenote like a rescue victim; on others, you actually rappel yourself down which is way more fun. This tour offers a true rappel plus snorkeling in the cenote followed by further exploration of the cave system replete with hard hats, head lights and knee pads. Good deal.
This highly innovative and thoughtful tour is a distinct departure from the usual fare, and the reason it’s been picked up by the clever folks at UNIKGO (www.unikgo.com ). As their slogan says, ‘think outside the box’ and this tour is the result of that kind of thinking. You’ll be taken into the interior,deep within the Sian Kaan Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that encompasses 969,000 hectares of pristine jungle, ancient Maya archaeological sites, indigenous communities, mangrove forests, natural wetlands, savannas, coastal bays and beaches. Some 103 species of mammal and 336 species of bird call the reserve home. Your Maya guide talks about life on the peninsula as fishermen, subsistence farmers and harvesters of the resin used in chewing gum. You’re shown how the sapodilla trees are climbed and lanced for collection of the gum, and how the resin is prepared for distribution. Lunch is hosted by a local Mayan family, in their home. Free time for birding and swimming. A great way to spend the day. Operated by a joint venture between the folks managing the reserve and the locals who live within it, as a means of providing them additional income. Check out UNIKGO’s Mayan Chewing Gum Adventure and Float Tour or go to www.siankaantours.org .
There are more mountain bike aficionados in the region than you’d expect which explains the creation of Punta Venado Mountain Bike Park. Bring your vehicle or rent theirs and get ready t for everything from smooth single track circuits to rugged wild trails. Tour companies have responded with a wealth of options that pair mountain biking with a variety of activities principally zip lining and cenote swimming. Great fun. Good exercise. Takes you into the real Yucatan.
Swim in an Underground River and Zip Line Through the Jungle
Cenotes are natural sinkholes where the surface rock has given away to the water table below. These naturally occurring phenomena are all over the region and make for great swimming holes but they also provide access to cave systems, allowing you to navigate an underground river through a world of stalactites and stalagmites. Some cenotes have been fitted with zip lines and many outfits have zip line parks, a visit to which is included in their tours. Look around, there’s so much out there; you’ll easily find a package tailored to your preferences, pocketbook and level of fitness.