Why Tulum Is the Ultimate Honeymoon Destination

This tropical paradise has something for every newlywed

Updated 03/02/17

Sean Cook Wedding Photography

Topping our list of must-visit honeymoon destinations for 2017 is Tulum, Mexico. This tropical paradise has something for every newlywed. Whether you're looking for a low-key escape or an activity-packed getaway, you'll find it here. Couples seeking adventure can explore the cenotes, ecoreserves, and Mayan ruins. Those in need of some R&R will find that a good book, beachfront hammock and ocean breeze are a rather blissful combination. And, of course, yoga and tranquil spa treatments are great ways to decompress—particularly after the stress of wedding planning.

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Where to Stay

<p>Sanará Hotel in Tulum, Mexico</p>

Courtesy of Sanará

Whether you prefer a rustic bungalow or a luxury suite, you'll find it here. For couples looking to unwind and connect to one another, there's no better place than Nest. This nine-room adults-only hotel has everything you would dream of for a quiet, romantic honeymoon (including impeccable service). The intimate property is decorated with local Mexican-made decor. And unlike many of the other beachfront hotels, the beach and facilities here are open to only guests, which means you'll always be able to get a prime palapa or hammock. And the daily happy hour, with free wine, beer, tequila, and mezcal, isn't bad either. Another top pick for destination weddings and honeymoons alike is Sanará. This luxury eco-boutique hotel is home to a stunning beachfront yoga studio, wellness center, and the Real Coconut (a haven of healthy food).

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Where to Eat

<p>Tulum, Mexico, Restaurants</p>

Sean Cook Photography

Whether you prefer authentic Mayan cuisine, top-notch tacos, fresh local seafood, or vegan fare, Tulum's restaurants serve up inspired dishes to satisfy every palate. The most famous and highly regarded local restaurant, Hartwood, is a must! But with (well deserved) acclaim comes long lines. Pro tip: It takes reservations a month in advance. For a healthy and more casual bite or beverage, stop by Fresco's at the Beach Tulum. After hydrating with one its signature agua frescas, you can indulge in some of the best cocktails, well, anywhere. Happy hour (4–6 p.m.) is two-for-one drinks! The spicy margarita (cucumber, mint, jalapeño, and tequila with a spicy salt rim) is a must-try. And if you're staying at the Beach Tulum, be sure to ask Barbie if she's doing a tequila or wine tasting that week.

You might be surprised to find world-class Italian cuisine in Mexico, but it exists at Posada Margherita. After entering through a secret garden pathway, you'll find yourself in one of the prettiest beachfront restaurants in Tulum or, err, anywhere. The perfect way to enjoy this laid-back atmosphere? Cozy up with your new hubby at one of the low-top tables and enjoy a glass (or a bottle) of rosé and house-made pasta.

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Where to Shop

<p>Tulum, Mexico, Shopping</p>

Courtesy of Mariel Hannah

In the mood to shop? Check out the local boutiques and hotel shops that run along the beach road. Pop into Josa Tulum for patterned caftans. La Troupe offers a wealth of locally made knits and leather goods. You'll find one-of-a-kind accessories galore at KM33. And if you're looking for authentic Mexican crafts and artwork to decorate your abode, Mixik is a must.

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What to Do

<p>Mayan Ruins</p>

Getty Images

Outdoorsy couples will love the endless activities. Take a day trip to the Coba ruins and climb the stairs to the top. Snorkel, scuba dive, or just go for a swim at one of the famed cenotes, like Gran Cenote, Dos Ojos, and Sac Actun. And, of course, a trip to this mecca of ecotourism wouldn't be complete without an excursion to the picturesque natural paradise that is the Sian Ka'an Biosphere. There are many ways to explore the crystal-clear waters. You can take a taxi, pay a small admission fee, and swim at your leisure. Or if yoga and paddle boarding are your thing, be sure to book SUP Tulum's Boga Yoga Floating Excursion. If you've rented a car and are itching to explore, take a drive to the Xel-Há water park, Akumal, or the Yucatan's most famous ruin, Chichén Itzá.

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Where to Relax

<p>Yäan Wellness Spa in Tulum, Mexico</p>

Courtesy of Yäan Wellness

Tulum is truly a paradise for zen seekers and those looking for some good old-fashioned relaxation. While it's less than two hours south of Cancun, it has a laid-back energy that feels unmistakably different. If you're into yoga, there's no better place. Beachfront hotels like Amansala and Sanará hold daily yoga classes with stunning views. Need an after-class pick-me-up? Visit Raw Love for dreamy smoothies. After you've soaked up some sun on the white-sand-fringed beaches, a couples spa treatment at Yäan Wellness or Mayan Clay Spa is the perfect way to spend an afternoon.

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