Location: Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Easy breezy. Oh I wished I could say that about the weather in Playa del Carmen because it was muy caliente! While it was tough getting out of the comforts of our resort, especially when the ocean breeze cooled us off nicely from the scorching sun, a day or two in the resort was enough to start craving some local culture, even if that meant perusing streets of cheesy souvenirs. So we hopped into a taxi and spent one late afternoon in Avenida 5. If this is your first time in Playa del Carmen, Avenida 5 has become a destination on its own right and one can easily spend a whole day here. What I adore about it is that the main street is pedestrian only so you can browse leisurely without having to worry about cars. Here you will find everything, from restaurants and bars to high and low end shopping, and of course souvenir shops, Avenida 5 is not a stop to be missed. Although it has been losing its authentic Mexican flare with a plethora of chain stores throughout, I still very much enjoyed my afternoon there. I can't remember exactly where we ate, but the food was fresh and delicious and of course there are plentiful of restaurants to choose from. If you ended up staying after sunset perhaps for dinner like we did, I think you'll even find Avenida 5 surprisingly romantic. So, if your heading to Playa del Carmen on your next vacation, make sure to visit Avenida 5.
1. You'll find a lot of hagglers. If your not interested, just say thank you. I've noticed that the local vendors are pretty polite and will pretty much will leave you alone. If you are interested, always bargain and never pay for the asking price.
2. We decided on taking a cab. Only get on a marked taxis and know first hand what the going rate or fixed rate is. You'll also be glad to know that the taxis are pretty new, clean, air-conditioned and marked.
3. While you should always err on the safe side, I believe Avenida 5 is pretty safe. There are a lot of locals and tourists alike visiting.
4. While we didn't stay in Avenida 5, they are plenty of accommodations there. If you are looking for something posh, the Thompson Playa del Carmen is there and looked luxe. It is not on the beach and will require a short walk.
5. The word playa means beach. Plan and dress properly if this is something you would like to do after perusing in Avenida 5 ( just keep walking and it will take you to the beach). It is humid and hot there so keep this is mind.
I hope this helps and if you have been and would like to add to this, please do so. Again thank you for reading!