Depending on where you stay in Tulum, your beach experience will either be rough and rocky or smooth and sandy. (Either way, expect seaweed as a frequent uninvited guest.) Oyster reporters stayed at resorts all along Tulum’s Caribbean coastline to find the ones with the most gorgeous and hospitable beachside settings. We slept in breezy cabanas, dozed under shady beach palapas, selected our fish at open-air restaurants, and taste-tested mezcals at thatch-roofed beach bars. See our picks for the best beachfront hotels in Tulum.
This eight-room boutique hotel's beach area is small, but it's lovely and sufficient enough for the low number of guests. You can reach the beach by walking toward the mangroves at the back of the hotel, past the outdoor shower, and down a few wooden steps. While all beaches in Tulum are public, there is less traffic at this one, where thatch-roofed palapa umbrellas and high-quality, thick-cushioned loungers are available for guests. There's also a private dining table for two nestled in the mangroves available for romantic dinners (by request).
The stretch of beach in front of this popular adult-only hotel is one of the best in the Hotel Zone -- it's wide, clean, and uncrowded. Guests in Deluxe Rooms get one reserved queen-size sunbed, while guests in Superior Deluxe Rooms get two. (The hotel may replace these, as guests complain that they are uncomfortable -- they're flat, and don't have enough pillows for guests to prop themselves up.) One section of the beach is reserved for adjacent Ziggy's restaurant, which has a relationship with but is separate from the hotel. Room rates include free breakfast -- with fresh juices, smoothies, and eggs -- which can be had at the restaurant itself, or delivered to the rooms, the pool, or the beach. Ziggy's is also a performance venue where locals hang out at night.
Dreams Tulum is an all-inclusive mega-resort on the Caribbean coastline, a short drive away from some of Mexico's best Mayan ruins. The main pool is massive and overlooks the ocean, but the beach itself is one of the most tranquil in the area. The hotel's size means that the wait for a seat at dinner can be long, and the overall ambience may seem more impersonal than intimate.
La Zebra is a laid-back beach resort in the heart of Tulum. All 15 of the spacious, contemporary rooms have epic views of the Mexican Caribbean, as does the palapa-covered restaurant and bar. La Zebra lacks a pool or a spa, but its wide beach with tranquil, turquoise water is the main attraction for its relaxed, bohemian clientele.
This 18-bungalow hotel is located on the beautiful white-sand beach in Tulum, surrounded by jungle. It's about a 15-minute walk from Tulum's Mayan ruins and a 15-minute drive from Tulum town. The wide, sandy beach is gorgeous, and cushioned double daybeds topped by umbrellas are available for relaxing on the sand. There is no pool or spa, but an array of activities are available on-site or nearby, including yoga, bicycling, fishing, diving, snorkeling, and windsurfing. The open-air restaurant is directly on the beach, with rustic wood furniture and a high thatched roof and ceiling fans overhead. The casual space focuses on fresh ingredients -- especially fish. There's also a beach bar with wooden swings in lieu of bar stools.
The highlight at this eco-chic property is the beautiful white-sand beach, equipped with quality cushioned loungers with bamboo coverings for shade. Almost all of the 26 rooms have beachfront access and views, but the entry-level Bali Huts really are little more than huts with beds (and no AC). There are daily yoga and windsurfing classes on the beach, plus bike rentals and two attached restaurants. Pets can roam freely.
The eco-friendly, mostly solar-powered Nueva Vida de Ramiro sits on one of the largest beach strips (for a boutique property) in the area -- sugar-soft sand and turquoise water lie right behind the hotel. There is plenty of space for guests to experience the beach without feeling as if they're on top of one another. The hotel provides loungers, beach beds (some hanging in open-air huts), and umbrellas. There are also beach showers, a lifeguard on duty during the day, and, as with other beachfront properties, hordes of seaweed. Oceanfront rooms have their own private access paths to the beach, and the lush mangroves and thick palm trees provide plenty of privacy.
Trendy boho-chic decor, upscale rooms, and beachfront drinking and dining define this hip, adult-only hotel in the Hotel Zone. Behind the small infinity pool is the beach, a sunny stretch of white sand dotted with beanbag chairs, dove-gray loungers, and shaded daybeds. This area also doubles as a public beach club with drink service, though the daybeds and the pool are reserved for hotel guests only. Two bars have full mezcal selections, and the restaurant offers water views, updated Mexican food, and an adjacent raw bar and barbecue area where diners choose their fish (caught fresh each day from local fishermen) right before it gets tossed on the grill. At night, the outdoor areas become alive with live music, a fire pit, and weekend DJs.
The Rosa Del Viento is a 45-room beachfront property with a bohemian rustic vibe and traditional, thatch-roofed white stucco buildings amid tropical vegetation. Just beyond the hotel is a long stretch of clean, palm-lined beach. Most of the activity occurs here and at the beachside restaurant and bar, where free breakfast is served daily. There’s indoor and outdoor seating and an outdoor barbecue area with fish cookouts on weekends. The Rosa del Viento is located on the far southern section of the Tulum Hotel Zone, almost as far south as you can get before arriving at the ecological park, about a 30-minute drive from the main drag in Tulum and the famous beachfront Mayan ruins.
Cabanas Tulum is a stylish 16-room beachfront boutique that maximizes its small size and even give guests a few unexpected extras. The hotel partners with nearby Ziggy's (two doors down) for free beach club access and sunbeds. But guests can also plop down right on Cabanas Tulum's own lovely beach, a quiet stretch of soft sand with loungers and a swing set. Since the restaurant, bar, and beach club are all off-site, there's little noise around the rooms or even down at the beach -- and no overlying mood music playing. Just the sounds of leaves rustling in the breeze and the constant beat of crashing ocean waves.
The 29-room Diamante K is a compact beach-chic resort with lots of boutique style. The hotel has a distinctly rustic, earth-friendly look, and all buildings on the grounds are constructed with wood from the surrounding forests. This says nothing of the towering old-growth palm trees that dot the grounds everywhere, or the stunning little beach. Set between rock outcroppings, the beach feels private and lagoon-like, and it's free of beach vendors or noise. The white sand is set with hammocks and lounge chairs, and in the morning, yoga classes are led here (additional cost). The open-air restaurant picks up breezes from the sea and serves well-liked Mexican food. There’s a small lounge and bar just out front, with plenty of seating looking out over the ocean.
The upscale, 24-room Ana y Jose Charming Hotel and Spa is in Tulum's beachfront Hotel Zone, about a 15-minute drive from downtown Tulum, and within walking distance of plenty of dining and shopping down the beach road. On Any y Jose's well-maintained beach, seaweed is removed daily, lounge chairs are shielded by shaded huts, and covered daybeds are provided for those who book higher-end rooms. (Guests in standard suites get lounge chairs.) All of the treatments available at the on-site spa, including reiki and reflexology, can be administered on a bed on the beach.
With its focus on sustainable energy and local art, Zamas stays true to the culture of Tulum. The owners work hard to do eco-tourism right -- which means cleaning the beach in the most natural, noninvasive way possible. They pile the seaweed and allow it to bake in the sun; this is best for the environment, but it can create a rotten smell. The white crescent of sandy beach is appropriate for swimming, but watch out for beach coral. All 18 room, as well as the beachfront American/Mexican restaurant, occupy airy palapa and cabanas. The on-site dive shop, Mexi Divers, offers equipment rental and certifications.
This adult-only, clothing-optional beachfront establishment has 10 separate villas situated between rocky shoreline and lush forest. The buildings were constructed from natural materials found on the beach and surrounding forest, including palm fronds and bamboo. The resort provides lounge chairs and hammocks on the beach (which is mostly rocky), which guests can use for free. A beachfront bar serves breakfast, drinks, and smoothies made from fresh, local ingredients, but menu selections can get pricey. The on-site Maya Spa has open-air treatment rooms on the water, as well as Temazcal, a traditional detoxifying steam bath. Daily on-site yoga classes are offered, and private instruction can be arranged, for additional fees.
Piedra Escondida, roughly translated, means "hidden stone." The name is fitting, as the nine-room resort is tucked between rock outcroppings on a stretch of private beach. This largely unplugged resort is composed of a cluster palapas -- ringed by palm and coconut trees -- that are only steps from the water. The beach itself features lounge chairs and hammocks shaded under cabanas, as well as wooden chairs and tables. While Piedra Escondida is within a few minutes' walk of many restaurants, shops, and bars, its spot between the cliffs creates a sense of escape from the Tulum Hotel Zone hubbub.
Mezzanine Hotel sits on the northern end of Tulum's Hotel Zone, between a rocky beachfront with turquoise water and the leafy, dense jungle. While there are a few neighbors, this part of the beach strip is (for now) much less crowded, with fewer hotels and pedestrians. The hotel itself is built high above the beach line, atop bright green mangroves, allowing not only for both stunning, uninterrupted vista points from the Mezzanine decks but also a private vibe on the beach. Even though Tulum’s beaches are public, the lack of sandy lounge space behind this boutique means day-trippers give it a pass -- leaving it to feel like a wild and private (if rocky) white-sand haven. At Mezzanine's authentic Thai restaurant, guests can dine indoors overlooking the ocean, on the open-air deck directly above the beach. Mezzanine's hip factor wouldn't be complete without its casual beachside cocktail bar, known for its two-for-one margarita happy hour. The bar is located next to the large open-air, ocean-facing deck, so the crafty cocktails come with a splash of sea views.
There are a few different beach experiences at El Pez, a chill 19-room spot with free breakfast, 24-hour electricity, an indoor/outdoor restaurant, a fantastic bar, and a small pool. Located along a rocky coastline, El Pez is naturally up against wild and rugged scenery, plump mangroves, and white-tipped waves, but it’s also got a super-soft private beach area starting in front of the Tulum Beach House and La Casa sections of the hotel. Here guests can be found sunbathing on loungers, sipping drinks under personal palapas, or walking the shoreline. But behind the restaurant and in front of the Sea View rooms, the beach is traded for grass, and loungers for benches facing out to sea. This area is raised, giving guests uninterrupted views of the ocean, fishing pelicans, and crashing waves. A third section of the beach lies just through the greenery, down a sandy path. Here, the northern section of the beach is accessible to the public and is basically just a sandy bank flanked on both sides by the sea, leading toward a large, climbable rock -- a popular photo-op. This sand bank is the best option for swimming, though throughout the area, the water is choppy.
Roaming around barefoot through the sandy garden grounds is the norm at Suenos Tulum. The ultra-laid-back spot at the southern end of Tulum's Hotel Zone has a small pool, a casual restaurant and bar, tons of hammocks, and 13 breezy beachside bungalows. The solar-powered hotel’s eco-friendly practices mean no electricity during the day and no air-conditioning or electrical outlets in the bungalows (there’s a charging station in the lobby), although all rooms have free Wi-Fi. Suenos Tulum’s beach area has lounge chairs and stretched tarps. It's not as rocky as the coastline farther north, and the waves are gentle enough to allow for dips in the sea, though the beach can still feel a little wild on windy days.
Full disclosure: the beach here is rocky and not ideal for swimming. But this hotel's beachfront location is nonetheless romantic, and its design ensures ocean views throughout. The outdoor infinity pool faces the beach Guests wanting to tan could set up shop on one of the hotel's lovely deck areas or head down to the beach, where there are covered sunbeds as well as a few seating areas, plus an exposed platform that gets more sun. While the rocky coastline here is beautiful, there's not much sand to speak of in high tide.