If you’ve got a family of little explorers in tow, then Cozumel, Mexico, is about to become your new favorite playground. Nestled in the heart of the Caribbean, this island paradise is not just for honeymooners and scuba junkies; it’s a haven for families looking to create unforgettable memories together. While there are plenty of activities to suit honeymooners and adventure-seekers, there are also several awesome activities for families with small children.
From turquoise waters teeming with colorful marine life to thrilling jungle adventures and mouth-watering taco feasts, Cozumel has it all. So, grab your sun hats, slather on the sunscreen, and get ready to embark on a family-friendly adventure like no other. We’re about to spill the beans on the absolute best things to do in Cozumel with your kids and trust me, your little ones are in for a tropical treat!
Table of Contents
Best Things to Do in Cozumel With Kids
Learn About Mayan Culture at Pueblo del Maiz
It’s hard to travel to Mexico with kids and pass up on a prime opportunity to learn about the indigenous peoples’ cultures. While Mexico is home to many indigenous groups, the most notable from the Caribbean coastal region were the Maya. Pueblo del Maiz is a local attraction in Cozumel that showcases some of the most notable aspects of Mayan culture in a way that is fun and digestible for kids and adults alike.
On a visit to Pueblo del Maiz, you can expect to play ancient ball games, watch live performances, create your own chocolate from raw cacao, and roll your own tamales. The staff is incredibly friendly, and they do a great job of bringing Mayan culture to life.
Pueblo del Maiz is located just a short 10-minute drive from the island’s main square. Entrance fees vary by season but are very affordable compared to some other attractions on this tourist-centric island. There is no need to make a reservation in advance.
Try Local Food in the Central Square
One of Mexico’s proudest international claims to fame is its cuisine. Mexican food can be found all over the world, but the best is served right on the streets in any Mexican City. Cozumel’s main street foods are representative of what you’d find in cities all across the states of Quintana Roo and Yucatan, which make up the Yucatan Peninsula.
Eating street food in Mexico is safe, so long as you take basic precautions. It’s best to only eat meat that is served warm, and you should avoid salads when possible. The best approach is to stick to fruits and vegetables that you peel, when possible, as any contaminants tend to be on the skin and not the fruit.
Some foods you won’t want to miss in Cozumel are esquites, churros, and tacos. Churros are fried dough covered in cinnamon sugar, and a good churro is life-changing. Esquites is essentially corn sliced off of the cob, stewed in broth and herbs, and served in a cup with a range of toppings including cheese, salsa, and cream.
For a special treat, ask the vendor to put the esquites in a bag of Doritos along with the toppings of your choice. Like a meatless walking taco, these “Dori-esquites” are a hidden secret of Mexican street food, and there are great vendors right in the central square of Cozumel.
Explore at Chankanaab Adventure Beach Park
Chankanaab Adventure Beach Park is one of the most popular venues on the entire island. This park is equipped with beach access with private cabanas, restaurants, a spa, and a great diving center. In addition to these, there are excursions that allow visitors to swim with manatees, sea lion performances, playgrounds, and more.
Entrance into the park is pricey by Mexican standards, but generally affordable by international standards. Adult tickets cost $26, while children’s tickets cost $19. All children under the age of 3 are admitted for free.
The park is located just a short drive away from the island’s main city center and the cruise port. Most guests that go to Chankanaab spend a half day or longer there, and you could easily spend a full day enjoying this park’s various amenities.
Have Fun at Playa Mia Grand Beach Park
While Chankanaab is a great place for adventure, Playa Mia Grand is one of the best places for pure fun and relaxation in Cozumel. This park is packed with great activities for children, from a 200-foot waterslide to pools to floating jungle gyms and more. Playa Mia Grand claims to have one of the biggest private beaches in all of Cozumel, and the water is immaculate.
For parents, the park also offers all-inclusive packages for drinks and food, as well as various spa packages. This place is a load of fun for the whole family, and tickets start at around $35 per person at the time of writing.
Playa Mia Grand is located just 20 minutes from the island’s main square. If you’re looking for a more relaxing day where your family can soak up the sun, you should check out Playa Mia Grand Beach Park.
Dive Underwater with the Atlantis Submarine Tour
If you’re looking for a dose of adventure but aren’t able to take your kids scuba diving, the Atlantis Submarine Tour might be a great option for you. This exciting tour takes you and your family 100 feet below the Caribbean Sea, where you get exclusive looks at some of the exotic marine life around the island. The submarine excursion is considered to be very safe, with a highly experienced crew available onboard at all times.
The submarine adventure is suitable for all kids above the age of four, but no kids younger than that are allowed onboard. Similarly, pregnant women may partake up to the 6th month of pregnancy.
The total time that you spend underwater on the tour is about 45 minutes, but there is additional time involved to get from the land to the submarine. In total, you can expect your experience to last about two hours, and the memories to last a lifetime.
Relax at Playa Chen Rio
Cozumel is known for having some of the best beaches in all of Mexico. As a Caribbean island several miles off the coast of the mainland, its beaches are raw, pure, and stunning.
The beaches on the west side of the island, which is the side facing the mainland, are the most crowded. This is where the majority of the beach clubs are, and it is the most developed area of the island.
The island’s east coast is a sight to behold, though. While the sound of raw, virgin beaches is boring to some families who prefer large waterparks, it is equally exciting to others. Playa Chen Rio is one of the best beaches in Mexico, and there’s a good chance you won’t even see anyone else there.
This area doesn’t get great cell phone reception and doesn’t have many amenities to offer, but the pure beauty of the nature is otherworldly. If you decide to spend a day at Playa Chen Rio, consider taking your own food and drinks so that you don’t need to leave early.
Additionally, if you don’t have your own car, ask your taxi driver if he’d be willing to come back and pick you up at a certain time. Sometimes, very few cabs pass through this area.
Learn About Chocolate at the Mayan Cacao Company
Did you know that chocolate is originally from Latin America? While some of the world’s best chocolate nowadays comes from places like Belgium, Switzerland, and the United States, the true origin of chocolate is in Mexico. Mayan people and other indigenous groups created chocolate thousands of years ago, and the practice was eventually brought back to Europe by explorers to the New World.
The Mayan Cacao Company offers sessions that teach visitors about the history of chocolate and show them how it has been made for thousands of years. Conveniently, the Mayan Cacao Company is located within Playa Mia Grand Beach Park, so you can visit it while enjoying all of the other amenities that the park has to offer. Beware that separate reservations are necessary, and you’ll have to book directly with the Mayan Cacao Company.
Looking for more to do, check out 13 Things to do in Cozumel!
Is Cozumel Safe to Visit With Kids?
Mexico gets a bad reputation for safety, but the reality is that most of the country is just as safe as the United States. Generally, Cozumel is a very safe destination to visit with kids, whether on a cruise or on your own itinerary. Mexico as a whole is a very family-friendly destination, and Cozumel is no different.
If you decide to visit Cozumel with your family, the biggest threat to your safety is the sun. As the island can get pretty hot, you’ll want to make sure you wear plenty of sunscreen and stay hydrated!
From massive adventure parks to intimate lessons about Mayan history, there are plenty of great things to do in Cozumel with kids. Cozumel is a wonderful place to explore with kids of all ages, and every family is bound to find something they enjoy. After all, who could say no to fifty-cent tacos and live music in the island’s main square?
Where to Stay in Cozumel?
Guest Bio: Greg is an avid traveler who believes that kids should get to tag along on every adventure. He is the owner of thepresentperspective.com, a family travel blog that writes destination guides to places all over the world.
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