woman in tulum mexico | is tulum safe for travelers

Is Tulum Safe in 2022: Ultimate Guide to Tulum Travel Safety


Wondering, how safe is tulum mexico?

That’s great! As someone who’s traveled solo all over Mexico, I believe that keeping your personal safety as a top priority is the best way to stay safe while traveling to Tulum, Mexico — or anywhere. Now, let’s examine the Is Tulum safe? question.

The bohemian beachfront pueblo of Tulum is one of the most popular and best beach towns in Mexico. It is located in the famed Yucatan Peninsula, about two hours south of Cancun, and sits right on the Caribbean Sea.

While Mexico is portrayed as a totally unsafe country in the mainstream U.S. media, know that millions visit each year — with most coming from the U.S. and Canada. If Mexico were as unsafe as it’s portrayed, people would just stop coming, wouldn’t they!?

Well, they aren’t, so that might tell you something. According to Mexico Secretary of Tourism statistics, an astounding 35 million international travelers visited Mexico from just January to August 2021. Even with all the sinister news reports, millions still flock to Mexico.

As a large country, looking at Mexico travel safety and Tulum travel safety are two different things, so let’s bring our focus down to Tulum itself. In this article you’re going to discover everything you need to know about Tulum travel safety, so let’s get to it.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Is Tulum Safe Right Now?

follow that dream tulum sign
The famous Follow The Dream sign in Tulum Mexico. (Photo: Alex Azabache via Unsplash)

For the most part, Tulum is considered safe for the majority of visitors, with the biggest threats usually hurricanes, hangovers, sunburns and mosquitoes. However, no place on Earth is 100% safe, and it would be untrue to paint Tulum among the safest places to travel in Mexico.

In Tulum, you’ll want to pay extra attention to your valuables and never leave anything unattended. With such a big party scene, you’ll also want to watch your alcohol intake, never take a drink from a stranger and never leave your drink unattended with strangers.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Crime in Tulum

As with most tourist towns in the world, petty theft isn’t uncommon in Tulum. This isn’t a huge problem, and if you don’t leave your valuables unattended and stay aware of your surroundings, you likely won’t be a victim of petty crimes in Tulum.

is tulum safe to travel to | tulum safety statistics
How safe is Tulum Mexico? Have a look at these Tulum crime rates and crime statistics for more info. (Photo: Numbeo, Tulum Quintana Roo Mexico)
Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Shootings in Tulum

In recent years, there have been a few reports of shootings in Tulum Mexico. As with most violence in Mexico, it mostly has direct ties to the cartels, though there was one incident where tourists died from stray bullets.

In late-2021, two tourists visiting from the U.S. (Jennifer Henzold and Anjali Ryot) were hit by stray bullets in one of the Tulum bars, and tragically died. While I can’t say definitely this won’t happen again, I can say it’s a rare occurrence — and largely related to the cartels.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Drugs & Cartels in Tulum

The Mexican drug cartels cast such a dark shadow on an otherwise amazing country. As I live in Mexico, I know first-hand what a meta topic this is, and will try to navigate it carefully. What I do know is not buying drugs in Tulum is the best way to avoid and not support the cartels.

I have lived in a few places in Mexico, including four months spent in Tulum and nearby Playa del Carmen. I have never been approached to buy drugs as much as I have in these two cities. There is definitely a cartel presence, as these are two of the biggest Mexico party towns.

With a simple no gracias, I was always left alone. In places where I was approached by multiple people in a row, I took it upon myself to find another place to hang out. This is the best advice I can offer — avoid anything related to the cartel to stay as safe as possible in Tulum.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Is Tulum safe for solo travelers?

Wondering, Is it safe to travel to Tulum Mexico for solo travelers? For most, it will be, but you’ll want to check out these tips for traveling alone so you’re best prepared with safety strategies.

Mexico gets a bad wrap in the mainstream media, and perhaps you’ve been warned not to go solo, but make sure you consider the source. As you probably know, the news has a habit of reporting the doom and gloom side of life because that’s what sells.

If you know any solo female travelers, especially those who done solo travel in Mexico, consider asking them. The best information on solo female travel will come from women who have done it, and for those who have, they’ll likely encourage you to go.

As someone who’s traveled solo all over Mexico, I consider Tulum safe for solo travel in Mexico. I know I am just one voice in this conversation, so check out this first-hand account from Claudia, who has also done solo travel in Tulum.

Tulum attracts all kinds of travelers, from backpackers and families, to luxury and solo travelers. It is considered safe for solo travel in Mexico because there are just so many solo travelers there so it’s easy to meet others, especially if you’re staying in one of the best Tulum hostels.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Is Tulum safe at night?

batey bar tulum mexico
Batey Bar in is one of the best Tulum bars for mojitos and live music.

Tulum is a pretty small town, so walking alone at night isn’t considered too dangerous. However, always listen to your intuition, meaning that if it feels safer to take a taxi ride instead of walking, do that. While there’s no Uber in Tulum, taxis operate all day and night.

One quick Tulum Mexico safety tip is that the Tulum Beach Road is not well lit. If you’re staying on the beach, or plan to spend a lot of time there at night, many people bring a head lamp to help them see, or you can use your phone flashlight as long as it’s charged.

Is Tulum safer than Cancun?

Many want to compare Tulum to Cancun, or wonder Is Tulum safer than Cabo? There’s really no way to give a definitive answer to these questions. These are all top Mexico destinations, and all have their share of good and bad points; they are safe for most visitors, though not all.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Tulum Travel Advisories for Mexico

The Ven a la Luz (Come Into the Light) sculpture at the Ahau Tulum Resort and Raw Love Cafe.

For any official travel advisories for Tulum, you can check the U.S. State Department website here. Keep in mind they evaluate state by state, and not city by city, so it’s not always easy to get an accurate picture of the situation in Tulum itself.

Tulum Travel Tips: Check The Yucatan Times and Riviera Maya News for coverage of current Tulum news in English. You’ll get updated info and maybe even some Tulum safety tips.

As someone who lives in Mexico I know there are safe places in Mexico, and unsafe places. Top Mexico travel destinations, like Tulum, are mostly safe. Tourism is such a huge part of Mexico’s economy, so the government makes sure it stays that way so visitors keep coming back.

This is not to say that bad things don’t happen in Tulum; they do. However, isolated incidents happen everywhere — even your hometown. The way to stay safe in Tulum is to use common sense, listen to your intuition, stay aware of yourself and surroundings and don’t buy drugs.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Tourist Scams in Tulum

There aren’t a ton of things you need to be aware of while traveling to Tulum Mexico, but there are some common tourist scams in Tulum Mexico to be aware of. These things aren’t exactly the norm, but you’ll want to be aware of them for the sake of staying safe in Tulum.

Tulum ATM Scams

A lot of places in Tulum are cash only, so you’ll need to use ATMs in Tulum. They are located all over town, but the safest ATMs in Tulum are located inside of banks, and not just on the street. For safety, I recommend the ATMs in Tulum Town rather than the ones on the beach.

Police Corruption in Tulum

In Facebook groups for digital nomads and expats in Tulum, like Tulum Digital Nomads, you’ll see posts about corruption by police officers in Tulum. It’s not that all cops in Mexico are corrupt, but there are some out there who ruin it for the good ones.

For the most part, police will only approach you if you’re breaking any laws. One of the best ways to attract police attention is by being drunk and acting rowdy in public, so you don’t want to do that. If you have a rental car, be sure to obey all Mexico driving laws.

Robberies in Tulum

While not incredibly common, robberies and theft in Tulum can happen. When packing for Tulum Mexico, you’ll want to leave all valuables at home. Also, only carry a small amount of cash on you; $1,000 pesos ($50USD) should be more than enough for the day.

Wondering, What to Wear in Tulum? In Tulum, anything goes, from boho casual to high fashion. As it’s quite hot, think flowy sundresses and sun hats, sandals and sunglasses, and of course, bathing suits and sarongs. ▶︎ Head here for a Mexico outfits guide.

Tulum Car Rental Scams

If you’re renting a car in Tulum, make sure to take photos of the entire car, including the interior, in case there are any disputes when you return it. Head here for more information on common Mexico car rental scams.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Covid-19 Safety in Tulum Mexico

The world will never be the same post-Coronavirus, but hopefully the worst has passed. For a deep dive into this topic, check out Is Tulum Open for Travel Right Now?, which is updated every month or so to reflect any changes in Tulum during Covid.

For official information, check the CDC website and U.S. State Department website. There’s also the Mexico traffic light map, called Semáforo Epidemiológico, to inform the public about the Coronavirus numbers in each Mexican state; for Tulum, check Quintana Roo State.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Safety in Tulum: 10 Tulum Travel Tips for Mexico

☀️ The sun is incredibly strong in Tulum, so make sure you packing one of these best sunscreens for Mexico.

Millions of visitors travel to Tulum each year to soak up the rays on the best Tulum beaches, sip matcha smoothies, swim in the Tulum cenotes, visit the Tulum Mayan Ruins, attend yoga classes and holistic healing workshops, and much more.

Before I go too far and make Tulum sound like some kind of travel utopia, I’ll stop here and say there are some things to be aware of. While in Tulum, you’ll want to keep safety as your top priority by following the 10 tips below in this Tulum safety guide.

1. Stay Hydrated

Most people don’t associate hydration with safety, but the better hydrated you are, the more clear you are mentally. If you’re hydrated, you’re making great decisions and able to stay alert and aware of yourself, your valuables and your surroundings at all times.

water bottles

💧 Can you drink the water in Tulum?

Unfiltered tap water in Tulum is not safe to drink, but you do need to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water. These reusable Water-To-Go Bottles have a three-stage filter that makes Tulum water safe to drink, so you don’t get sick in Mexico.

2. Brush up on your Spanish

It’s always a good idea to brush up on your Spanish before traveling to Mexico, just in case. Download the free Duolingo App and get in a little practice before your Tulum vacation, so you’re comfortable with everyday basics and casual niceties.

3. Carry Cash at all times

Not all businesses in Tulum take credit cards, especially mom and pop shops, so make sure you always have pesos on you. If you’re going to be taking taxis and buying street tacos, you’ll definitely have to pay for those in cash.

4. But don’t carry too much cash

For most travelers, $1,000 pesos a day ($50USD) should suffice. One of my best Tulum tips is to use your credit card whenever possible, but in places you can’t, then pay with cash. Always try to reserve your cash, so you don’t have to keep going to the ATM in Tulum.

5. Leave valuables at home

Between the piña coladas on the beach by day, and the mojitos at the Tulum bars by night, it’s very easy to lose things. Also, anything with a very prominent designer label and any high end electronic gadgets can draw a lot of unwanted attention to you.

6. Go easy on the drinks

While I won’t tell anyone to go to Tulum and stay sober if that’s not what you want, I will say to go easy. Safety always goes way down when there’s a lot of booze involved, but again, I’m not here to lecture anyone.

Planning to party hardy? Liquid IV hydration multiplier is a game changer in the fight against hangovers! With more than 84,000 Amazon reviews, you know it works.

7. Never accept drinks from strangers

To reiterate: Never take drinks from strangers in Tulum (or anywhere), and this even applies to cute strangers. Also, don’t leave your drink unattended with a stranger, so if you’re headed to the restroom, you’ll want to take your drink with you for safety’s sake.

8. Stay in the best neighborhoods in Tulum

Tulum is a small town, but it’s expanding quickly. The more established areas of Tulum, like Tulum Beach, Aldea Zama and Tulum Town are popular areas with great Tulum hotels, Airbnbs and hostels. Most other Tulum neighborhoods are remote, and aren’t always well-lit at night.

9. Don’t buy drugs in Tulum

I can’t stress enough that you’ll want to avoid the Mexico cartels at all costs. Besides not supporting the cartels directly, buying drugs in Tulum can obviously land you in jail in a foreign country — and do you want to spend part of your vacation in Tulum in jail?!

10. Be extra careful at night in Tulum

As with most places, most crimes in Tulum occur at night. Besides being extra careful at the bars in Tulum, you’ll also want to be extra careful when walking alone at night. If you’re staying in a more isolated area, take a taxi home at night instead of walking.

Keep in mind that Tulum Beach is not well lit at night. If you’re staying on the beach, or plan to spend a lot of time there at night, many people bring a head lamp to help them see, or you can use your phone flashlight as long as it’s charged.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Where to Stay in Tulum? (Best Tulum Neighborhoods)

The bungalows at Papaya Playa Project, one of the best beach hotels in Tulum. (Photo: Jônatas Tinoco via Unsplash)
Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Tulum Beach

Tulum Beach is the part of Tulum you’ve seen on Instagram, TikTok and YouTube. This is where all the Tulum beach houses and bungalows, boho shops, large art sculptures, beach cafes, Tulum Mayan Ruins, eco-chic Tulum hotels, and of course, the beaches, are located.

If you want to stay on Tulum Beach, you’ll be in the middle of all the action, and within walking or biking distance of anything you need. With this convenience comes higher price tags, and this is the most expensive area of town to stay in.

Tulum Town (Downtown Tulum)

Tulum Town (AKA Tulum Pueblo or Tulum Downtown) has more of a locals’ feel to it than the beach.

For those who have a smaller budget, you’ll want to stay in Tulum Town as you’ll find the best cheap hotels in Tulum here. Besides the hotels, everything costs less in downtown compared to the beach, including restaurants, bars, shops and even ATM fees.

Tulum Town, though it’s not as Instagrammable as Tulum Beach, shows a more authentic side of Tulum. This is where many Tulum locals live here, staying downtown often costs half as much as staying on the beach.

Aldea Zama Tulum

Aldea Zama is located between Tulum Town and Tulum Beach, about one mile from both. The accommodations in Aldea Zama are quite nice, especially Hotel Holistika Tulum and Hotel Tiki Tiki Tulum, so don’t be afraid to stay off-beach to save some money.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

What are the best things to do in Tulum?

tulum ruins on the beach in mexico

Visit Tulum Ruins

The Tulum Mayan Ruins are one of the must see Tulum sites. While it’s not a very big archaeological site, it is located right on Tulum Beach, so many do make the time to see it. At only about $85 pesos ($4.50USD) to get in, it’s one of the best cheap things to do in Tulum.

Hit the Tulum Beaches

Tulum on the bright blue Caribbean Sea, Tulum has some of the best beaches in Mexico. There are free beaches in Tulum, like Playa Paraiso, Playa Pescadores and Playa Santa Fe, and beaches you have to access through one of the Tulum beach clubs.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Enjoy the Tulum Beach Clubs

If you want to check out some of the best beach clubs in Tulum, know that most of them have a minimum spend of $100-150USD. This means you pay $100-150 to enter, then that amount is used to cover your food and drink tab, and you can use their facilities for the day.

If this price tag is high for you, just pack a cooler, grab a towel and head to one of the free beaches instead. To enjoy the fancier amenities in Tulum, head to the best Tulum beach clubs — Casa Malca, Papaya Playa Project, Nomade Tulum and La Zebra Tulum.

Swim in the Tulum Cenotes

woman swimming in cenote calavera, cenote in tulum mexico
Cenote Calavera is one of the cenotes in Tulum. (Photo: Mathilde Langevin via Unsplash)

No visit to Tulum is complete without swimming in the best Tulum cenotes (pronounced sen-no-tays). Cenotes are swimmable sinkholes with freshwater that flows from a river located underneath the Yucatan Peninsula — the longest underground river on Earth, Sac Actun.

There are about 6,000 cenotes in the Yucatan, and some of the best cenotes in Mexico are just minutes from Downtown Tulum. Located on Highway 109 just north of downtown, there’s Cenote Calavera, Gran Cenote, Cenote Car Wash and Cenote Zacil-Ha.

These are some of the most popular cenotes in Tulum, but they aren’t the only ones. To see the hidden Tulum cenotes, you’ll need the knowledge of a local. If you don’t know anyone in Tulum, book some of these best Tulum cenotes tours, and have a local guide show you around.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Photograph the Instagram worthy Tulum sites

bohemian azulik hotel in tulum
Azulik Tulum Resort is one of the most Instagram worthy hotels in Tulum. (Photo: Austin Distel via Unsplash)

When it comes to Mexico Instagram worthy destinations, Tulum is among the best. No visit to Tulum is complete without seeing some of the places, art and sites that put this town on the map, like these best Tulum photo spots ⤵

  • Follow That Dream Sign: This street sign is located just outside of the Lolita Lolita shop on the Tulum Beach Road.
  • Azulik Hotel: The original Tulum Instagram worthy hotel, Azulik Tulum has great photo ops all over the place, including at the SFER IK Museum next door.
  • Matcha Mama Tulum: A small cafe with swings next to the I Love Tulum So Matcha surfboard sign. There are two locations, but the Tulum Beach one is best for photos.
  • Ven a la Luz: The iconic wooden sculpture of the wooden man serves as the entrance to Ahau Tulum Resort and Raw Love Tulum Cafe. This is the most iconic spot in Tulum, so get there early to avoid a long line for photos.
  • CoCo Tulum: Beachfront bar with famous white swings in Tulum, at the CoCo Tulum Beach Resort.
  • Casa Malca Tulum: Once owned by Pablo Escobar, Casa Malca Resort is where you’ll find the hanging couch and wedding dress drapes.
Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

What are the best restaurants in Tulum?

woman eating a burrito doing tulum solo travel
🌯 Looking for the best burritos in Tulum? Head to Burrito Amor Tulum in downtown. (Photo: Dusan Jovic via Unsplash)

Tulum has everything from high end dining on the beach, to $1USD street tacos in Downtown, and plenty of options in-between. For the true Tulum experience, you should experience a nice mix of both styles — but definitely don’t miss the 🌮 best tacos in Tulum at Taqueria Honorio.

Best Cheap Eats in Tulum ($-$$)

For the best street tacos in Tulum, head to Taqueria Honorio and Antojitos La Chiapaneca, both located in Downtown. There’s also Burrito Amor in Downtown, for when you want to switch it up from tacos to burritos, and El Camello Jr. with inexpensive, fresh seafood.

Best Tulum Restaurants ($$$-$$$$)

For foodies, head to Arca Tulum, led by Mexican/American Chef Jose Luis Hinostroza. Before Arca, he worked at Noma in Denmark, which is often regarded as the best restaurant in the world, according to the prestigious 50 Best list.

If you can’t get a reservation at Arca, try Hartwood Tulum, Casa Jaguar and Gitano Tulum. 🥂Looking for a fun night out? Book a reservation at Casa Jaguar Tulum, one of the best things to do in Tulum at night (especially Friday nights), for food, cocktails and fun.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Tulum Mexico Travel: Frequently Asked Questions

Laguna Kaan Luum is one of the best Tulum hidden gems, and a great addition to any Tulum itinerary.
Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Where is Tulum Mexico located?

Wondering, What state is Tulum in? Tulum is located in Quintana Roo State. This is one of the three states in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, along with Yucatan State and Campeche State. Of the three, Quintana Roo is the most visited, and Campeche is the least.

Quintana Roo is a long, thin state, stretching the entire length of coastline along the Caribbean Sea. Because of this, you may also hear this part of the Yucatan Peninsula called the Mexican Caribbean, where so many popular Mexico beach towns are located.

Quintana Roo has some of the most beautiful beaches in Mexico, including Playa Maroma which has the best overwater bungalows in Mexico. Also in the state, you’ll find Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, Holbox Island, Puerto Morelos and Laguna Bacalar.

Tulum Map

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

What’s the closest Tulum Airport?

As mentioned, Tulum is in Quintana Roo, the same state as Cancun Mexico. In fact, Tulum is located about 1.5 hours south of Cancun by car or bus. Since there is no airport in Tulum, you’ll have to fly into Cancun International Airport (code: CUN). ▶︎ Search for Cancun flights now ✈️

This is great because, as one of the busiest airports in Mexico, there are many direct flight options from most major cities in the U.S., Canada and Europe. It’s very easy to get from Cancun to Tulum, and so many travelers make this journey each day.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

How do I get from Cancun to Tulum?

cancun to tulum

Cancun to Tulum Shuttle

The best way to get to Tulum from Cancun is via private shuttle with Cancun Airport Transportation. They will pick you up at the Cancun Airport door, and drive you right to your accommodation in Tulum. ▶︎ Book the round trip shuttle and save $10.

Cancun Car Rental

Cancun Airport car rentals range from $25USD per day if you only take the basic insurance, to about $40USD per day if you opt for full coverage. Note: You are legally required to have Mexican car insurance, and your U.S. policy doesn’t work in Mexico.

Find Your Rental Car

I recommend and personally use Discover Cars whenever I’m renting a car in Mexico. They have the best rates, and also sell full coverage insurance for about $10USD per day — the cheapest I’ve have found. ▶︎ Book your Tulum rental car now

ADO Bus to Tulum

ADO is the largest Mexico bus company, with a fleet of comfy buses that have reclining seats, AC and outlets to charge your gadgets. You can take the ADO bus from Cancun to Tulum for about $20USD each way, though it does take 3-4 hours versus 1.5 hours by car.

Note: The ADO website is not user-friendly and they don’t take U.S. credit cards. For booking Tulum ADO bus tickets, I recommend using BusBud. ▶︎ Book your tickets now

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

How do I get around in Tulum Mexico?

Tulum is a small town, and only about five miles from one end to the other. It is divided into two general areas, Tulum Town (AKA Downtown Tulum or Tulum Pueblo), and Tulum Beach. In between these two areas, there’s Aldea Zama, one of the best places to stay in Tulum.

Though Tulum beach is located only about 2-3 miles from Tulum Town, it is very hot and very humid for the majority of the year. In short, Tulum isn’t very walkable, so you’ll want to take a cab to get around or rent a bike if you’re travelling to Tulum on a budget.

Renting a bike in Tulum

Many visitors, even those not on a strict budget, rent a bike in Tulum as an eco-friendly, inexpensive, fun way to explore. Tulum bike rentals cost about $10USD per day, and you can get one from a number of bike rental shops downtown with just your passport.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Is there Uber in Tulum?

You may have noticed Uber was not on that list of ways to get around in Tulum. Well, that’s because there’s no Uber in Tulum, nor anywhere in Quintana Roo, Mexico. This is also why you can’t take Uber from Cancun to Tulum, and why I recommend this private shuttle.

Should I rent a car in Tulum?

woman leaning on a red convertible sports car and holding her license and the key | renting a car in mexico
When renting a car in Mexico, I highly recommend Discover Cars, the company I always use.

If you’re just staying in Tulum itself, and not planning to go on any Tulum day trips, skip the car rental. As Tulum gets more and more popular, the traffic has been getting worse and worse, which is another reason biking is so popular.

If you do want a car, Cancun Airport has many more options than Tulum itself. Since you have to drive from Cancun to Tulum anyway, Cancun is the best place to rent one for Tulum. When I rent a car in Mexico, I always use Discover Cars, and highly recommend them.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

What’s the best time to visit Tulum Mexico?

Weather-wise, the best time to travel to Tulum is from November to April, during the dry season when you get mild temperatures are low humidity. As Tulum sits right on the Caribbean Sea, it is susceptible to hurricanes, and Atlantic Hurricane Season runs June 1 to November 30.

Average Tulum Weather

tulum weather in mexico | is tulum safe

You can use the chart above to get an idea of the annual temperatures in Tulum. You should always check the Tulum forecast before your trip, but remember to add about 5-10°F to all temperatures to account for the Tulum humidity.

  • Tulum busy season (high season): December to March
  • Tulum slow season (low season): May to October
  • Tulum shoulder season: October to November and April to May
  • Tulum dry season: November to April
  • Tulum rainy season: May to October
  • Tulum Hurricane Season: June 1 to November 30
Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Are there mosquitoes in Tulum?

Yes — Tulum is a tropical beach jungle, and the mosquitoes can be vicious year-round, so pack some eco-friendly bug spray and these anti-mosquito bracelets. There’s also this great reef-safe sunscreen from Badger that has SPF 30 and also repels mosquitoes.

Is Tulum Safe for Visitors

Is Tulum expensive?

fishing boats in the blue water of the Caribbean Sea in Puerto Morelos, one of the Best Mexican Beach Towns
Puerto Morelos, located near Cancun, offers a nice, and cheap, alternative to Tulum.

Expensive is a relative term, so this answer depends. When compared to most of Mexico, it is, though budget travel in Tulum is totally possible. If you’re comparing Tulum to other top destinations, like Cancun, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas, Tulum is about average.

If you’re looking for budget-friendly Mexico beach towns, some great options include Sayulita, El Cuyo and Zihuatanejo. There’s also Lake Bacalar, AKA the “Maldives of Mexico,” which is actually a lagoon but it looks like a beach.

Is Tulum worth visiting?

This depends on your travel style, as Tulum isn’t for everyone. If you love experiencing all the top destinations in a country, then Tulum is certainly one of those. For travelers who want a chill and relaxing beach vacation, stay in nearby Akumal and just visit Tulum.

If you understand what you’re signing up for — higher price tags by Mexican standards, large crowds and a big party scene — you’ll enjoy Tulum. If you want the Tulum vibes, but not the crowds, nearby Isla Holbox Island is a great alternative.

Is Tulum Mexico Safe

Final Thoughts: Is Tulum Safe for Travelers?

You may have noticed there was never a yes or no answer to the Is Tulum safe to travel to? question. The reality is there is crime in Tulum, and there’s also cartel presence, but most visitors travel to Tulum and have a great trip.

The minority of visitors have a negative experience in Tulum, but those are the voices you hear over the people who loved Tulum. Personally, as someone who’s been to Tulum, I think it’s as safe as much of Mexico, but with Tulum’s popularity has come a rise in crime and violence.

As mentioned, these are mostly isolated incidents. Now, if you’re a victim of said isolated incidents, that term has a different meaning to someone like me, who visited Tulum without incident and just got to enjoy this pueblo magico (Mexico magic town).

In short, Is Tulum safe for tourists? has no definitive answer. It’s safe for the majority of visitors, but not all visitors. When visiting, exercise caution, use common sense, follow the same general travel precautions you would when visiting most places, and know the odds are in your favor.

Mexico Travel Planning Guide

🚑 Should I buy Mexico travel insurance? 100% YES! — With basic coverage averaging just $5-10USD per day, enjoy peace of mind with a plan from World Nomads, the biggest name in travel insurance. (Read more)

💧Can you drink the water in Mexico? No — You’ll want to buy a Water-To-Go Bottle, which filters your drinking water so you don’t get sick from drinking water in Mexico, and helps keep you hydrated while traveling Mexico. (Read more)

🚙💨 Is it safe to rent a car in Mexico? Yes — Renting a car in Mexico is one of the best ways to see the country! I always rent with Discover Cars, which checks both international companies and local Mexican companies, so you get the best rates. (Read more)

📲 Will my phone work in Mexico? Maybe — It depends on your company, so check with your provider. If you don’t have free Mexico service, buy a Telcel SIM Card. As Mexico’s largest carrier, Telcel has the best coverage of any Mexico SIM Cards. (Read more)

🏩 What’s the best way to book my Mexico accommodation? For Mexico hotels and hostels, Booking is the best site. If you’re considering a Mexico Airbnb, don’t forget to also check VRBO, which is often cheaper than Airbnb!

🧳 What do I pack for Mexico? Head to the Ultimate Mexico Packing List + FREE Checklist Download to get all the info you need on packing for Mexico.

✈️ What’s the best site to buy Mexico flights? For finding cheap Mexico flights, I recommend Skyscanner.

🎫 Do I need a visa for Mexico? Likely Not — U.S., Canadian and most European Passport holders don’t need a visa for Mexico; but check here to see if you do need a Mexico travel visa. The majority of travelers will receive a 180-Day FMM Tourist Visa upon arrival.