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Cancun continues to be the No. 1 major getaway with regard to U.S. travel to foreign countries, with the help of economical airline tickets from the States, 14 miles of beachfronts, and carnival-style night life that transforms the Z-shaped islet off the Yucatan Peninsula into a 24-hour party scene for university students pretty much every Spring Break. But in case you think this former Mayan trading city is only a sloppy boozefest on the beach front, you haven’t experienced the real Cancun. 3 must-see spots intended for first-timers in Cancun: Sunshine, Fine sand, and Waves at Playa Tortugas and Playa Delfines The coastlines of Playa Tortugas and Playa Delfines deliver the full-spectrum of the Cancun beach scene: Playa Tortugas is a joyous party beach with calm, tranquil oceans along with bungalow restaurants/bars beneath the palms; Playa Delfines is without a doubt an escapist beach with white sand for tourists wishing to avoid the crowds (and possibly grab a couple of waves). Day Trip to the Mayan Ruins Integrated into the downtown area, the plaza ruins of El Ray help remind travelers of the city’s early history as a Mayan trading port and provide the urban layout a distinctively mythic look and feel (and a kitschy cache to bankroll tourist dollars). But for a much more immersive adventure, get a day trip drive into Riviera Maya to the beach front ruins of Tulum and the jungle temples of Coba (they’re significantly less crowded and even closer compared to Chichen Itza). Coco Bongo It would be a shame to leave Cancun without a look of the most explosive, amazing nightclub the party city has to offer. Coco Bongo is a temple of extravagance to outrageous proportions– a massive 1,800-person club with nightly trapeze acts, rock-star imitators, a rainbow blitz of wandering spotlights, and hundreds of partiers dancing to DJ-spun favorites on virtually any platform these people can climb up onto. Isla Mujeres This small island off the coast of Cancun is certainly a quiet escape from the madness of the mainland. The palm-shaded beaches are perfect for laying out under the sun right after an intimate meal at one of the island’s bistros, and the glowing blue water seems made for an afternoon swim. Dipping Into the Cenotes The rainforest of the Yucatan peninsula produces a distinct experience for tourists searching for adventure in the form of sunken cenotes– subterranean rivers and lakes which you may access by rappelling into caves. Underwater Museum of Art Sure, Cancun and the Riviera Maya offer a lot of offshore dive sites. However in the event that your tank skills are up to par, some of the coolest locations to scuba dive is the Underwater Museum of Art, built by British artist Jason de Caires Taylor, which, true to its name, is an underwater museum of sculptures laid out at the bottom of the ocean. New to scuba? Don’t worry. Scuba Cancun are able to set you up with a beginner’s scuba diving session then a museum dive for $80.

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Photo credit: lengliz_mourad via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

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