With two weeks in the Yucatán, you can hop between the peninsula's lush landscapes and ancient ruins on a fast-paced highlights tour or hire a rental car and zip between cenotes, colonial cities, and white-sand beaches on an ultimate road trip. Travelers looking to discover a bit of mainland Mexico can include San Cristóbal and Palenque in their itinerary. At the same time, beach lovers can dedicate half their trip to the pristine shorelines and waters of Cozumel and Playa del Carmen.

Itinerary #1: Best of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula: Cities, Culture & Coast

Delight in a sampling of the Yucatán Peninsula's finest landscapes and historic wonders on this two-week highlights tour. Perfect for those visiting the region for the first time and eager to do and see a bit of everything, you'll journey through Valladolid, Isla Holbox, Mérida, Campeche, and Bacalar before ending your trip in Tulum. Highlights include exploring the ancient archaeological sites of Chichén Itzá and Calakmul, snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters near Cabo Catoche, and sailing on Laguna Bacalar. 

See the turquoise waters of Laguna Bacalar by sailboat
See the turquoise waters of Laguna Bacalar by sailboat
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cancún, Transfer to Valladolid, Afternoon Walking Tour Valladolid
Day 2 Explore Chichén Itzá, Cenote Swimming in Yokdzonot Valladolid
Day 3 Ría Lagartos Boat Tour, Transfer to Isla Holbox  Holbox
Day 4 Holbox Speedboat Tour, Snorkeling in Cuevones Holbox
Day 5 Transfer to Mérida, Gastronomy Museum Mérida
Day 6 Walking Tour of Merida, Optional Activities Mérida
Day 7 Transfer to Campeche, Fortress City Walking Tour Campeche
Day 8 Transfer to Calakmul via Edzná Archaeological Site Calakmul
Day 9 Tour the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve Calakmul
Day 10 Transfer to Bacalar, Private Sail on Laguna Bacalar Bacalar
Day 11 Lagoon Sailing Tour, Optional Activities in Bacalar Bacalar
Day 12 Transfer to Tulum, Sample Local Gastronomy Tulum
Day 13 See the Tulum Archaeological Site  Tulum
Day 14 Transfer to Cancún, Depart  

Welcome to the Yucatán Peninsula! Your adventure begins with a transfer from Cancún to the colonial city of Valladolid, which will serve as your base for two nights. Spend your first evening admiring the city's architectural treasures on a guided walking tour, then embark on a day trip to the revered Chichén Itzá. Next, ferry to Isla Holbox, and while here, embark on a speed boat tour around Cabo Catoche and to a local reef perfect for snorkeling. Continue to Mérida the following day, where you'll delve into the city's cuisine during a cooking class, mezcal tour, and time to sample street food. 

Leaving Mérida, travel south to Campeche, where you'll contemplate the city's impeccably preserved fortifications for an afternoon. Nearby lies the lessor-visited archaeological site of Edzná, which you'll stop to explore on your way to Calakmul. Then, after a day of hiking through the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, you'll continue to Bacalar for a memorable catamaran experience and a lagoon sailing tour. Lastly, transfer to Tulum and end your trip in style, shopping along Tulum Beach Road, exploring the region's famed ruins, and sunbathing on Playa Ruinas. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Ultimate Yucatán Road Trip: History, Culture & Nature

Crafted for travelers who enjoy the freedom a rental car provides, this Yucatán road trip is all about discovering the history, culture, and natural beauty of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula, along with some hidden gems. Throughout, you'll roam the ruins of Chichén Itzá, experience village life along the Artisan Royal Road, and hike to secluded cenotes in Miguel Colorado. Then, top off your adventure with four days of beach hopping and snorkeling in Cozumel and Playa del Carmen.

  Campeche's fortified city was built to defend against frequent pirate raids in the 17th century
Swim in crystal clear waters surrounding Cozumel
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cancún, Drive to Valladolid, Afternoon Walking Tour Valladolid
Day 2 Explore Ek' Balam Archaeological Site, Ría Lagartos & Valladolid Valladolid
Day 3 Discover Chichén Itzá, & Yokdzonot Cenote, Drive to Mérida Mérida
Day 4 Mérida Walking Tour & City Exploration Mérida
Day 5 Drive to Campeche, Uxmal Archaeological Site & Chocolate Museum Campeche
Day 6 Cultural Road Trip, Optional Activities in Campeche Campeche
Day 7 Miguel Colorado Cenote, Drive to Calakmul Xpujil
Day 8 Visit Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, Drive to Bacalar, Explore San Felipe Fort Bacalar
Day 9 Sunrise Paddling Tour, Optional Activities in Bacalar Bacalar
Day 10 Ferry to Cozumel via Playa del Carmen, Snorkeling Experience Cozumel
Day 11 Free Day in Cozumel: Optional Activities Cozumel
Day 12 Ferry to Playa del Carmen, Cavern Dining Experience Playa del Carmen
Day 13 Nuevo Durango Gastronomy Workshop, Cenote Swimming Playa del Carmen
Day 14 Drive to Cancún, Depart  

Straight off the airplane in Cancún, you'll pick up your rental car, hit the road to Valladolid, and treat your travel legs to a walking tour. Take full advantage of having a car over the following days, first during a day trip to the archaeological site of Ek' Balam, followed by a drive to Chichén Itzá and onward to Mérida. The next day, explore Mérida's Plaza Grande and other city highlights before continuing to Campeche. With a two-night stay here, there's plenty of time to roam Uxmal's archaeological sites, embark on an Artisan Royal Road adventure, and visit the village of Miguel Colorado

Soon, you'll find yourself exploring the jungle-surrounded archaeological wonder of Calakmul and continuing the road trip to Bacalar. Two days here will soar by as you tour the 18th-century Fort San Felipe, rise early for a sunrise paddle tour, and visit the archaeological site of Chacchoben. However, the best is yet to come for ocean lovers, with the rest of your adventure split between Cozumel and Playa del Carmen. Snorkel among vibrant coral reefs, sunbathe on soft sand beaches, dine in a storied cavern, and swim in Cenote Esmeralda before catching your onward flight. Learn more

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Itinerary #3: Mexico's Natural & Archaeological Wonders: Chiapas to the Yucatán

Experience the best of the Yucatán and delve into the must-see wonders of mainland Mexico on this well-rounded tour. Starting in Chiapas' San Cristóbal, you'll experience Sumidero Canyon's vertical walls, chase waterfalls in Palenque, and discover lesser-known archaeological wonders. Then, continue to the Yucatán Peninsula and travel from Campeche to Isla Holbox, with stops to take in the natural wonders and historic ruins near Mérida and Valladolid.

 Admire several waterfalls within Sumidero Canyon
Admire several waterfalls within Sumidero Canyon
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Walking Tour San Cristóbal
Day 2 Half-Day Tour of Sumidero Canyon & Chiapa de Corzo, Free Afternoon San Cristóbal
Day 3 Drive to Palenque via the Agua Azul & Misol Ha Waterfalls Palenque
Day 4 Discover the Palenque Archeological Site & Roberto Barrios Waterfalls Palenque
Day 5 Drive to Campeche via Cenote Azul Campeche
Day 6 Cultural Road Trip, Optional Activities in Campeche Campeche
Day 7 Drive to Mérida via the Uxmal Archaeological Site, Chocolate Museum Tour Mérida
Day 8 Mérida Walking Tour, City Exploration Mérida
Day 9 Drive to Valladolid via Chichén Itzá, Cenote Swimming at Yodkzonot Valladolid
Day 10 Boat Ride in the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve Valladolid
Day 11 Visit the Ek' Balam Archaeological Site, Swim at Cenote Xcanche Valladolid
Day 12 Transfer to Isla Holbox, Bioluminescent Kayak Tour  Isla Holbox
Day 13 Speedboat Tour, Snorkeling in Cuevones Isla Holbox
Day 14 Drive to Cancún, Depart  

Before traveling to the Yucatán Peninsula, your trip starts in the state of Chiapas with two days in San Cristóbal, meandering into open-air marketplaces and boating beneath rock walls towering over the Grijalva River. You'll then visit lesser-known archaeological wonders and spend time unwinding by the Roberto Barrios waterfalls while based in Palenque. Afterward, transfer to the walled city of Campeche and learn about the region's cuisine and crafts during an Artisan Royal Road excursion. Continuing east, you'll find yourself in Mérida next, checking out the Plaza Grande, Municipal Palace, and the Spanish City Gates.

Just over the halfway mark of your adventure, you'll spend a day touring Chichén Itzá and swimming in Yokdzonot's sacred cenotes en route to colorful Valladolid. A three-day stay in this inviting Spanish-colonial city gives you ample time to visit the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, spend an afternoon touring Ek' Balam, and swim in Cenote Xcanche. Then, transfer to Isla Holbox, where you'll settle in for a quick but idyllic two-day stay. Embark on a unique evening kayak excursion, speed boat to Cabo Catoche, and swim among colorful fish in Cuevones before transferring to Cancún for your departure. Learn more

Itinerary #4: Off-the-Beaten-Path Yucatán: Yaxunah, Mérida, Valladolid & Uxmal

Slow the pace down and enjoy days filled with exploration on this off-the-beaten-path itinerary. Perfect for those seeking an immersive trip into the Yucatán Peninsula's remote communities and historical wonders, you'll learn the art of hammock weaving in Yaxunah, visit the jungle village of Yalcobá, and tour the storied Hacienda Mucuyché. You'll also delight in uninterrupted time in nature while diving in a cenote, boating through the Celestún Biosphere Reserve, and touring the remote community of Muná.

Tour the back streets of Valladolid
Tour the back streets of the Yucatán's Valladolid
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Mérida, Transfer to Yaxunah, Hammock-Weaving Workshop Yaxunah
Day 2 Tour a Sustainable Corn Milpa, Swim at Lol-Ha Cenote Yaxunah
Day 3 Transfer to Valladolid, Take a Historic Walking Tour Valladolid
Day 4 Visit Ek' Balam Archaeological Site, Culture & Cusine in the Local Community Valladolid
Day 5 Explore Yalcobá's Culture & Nature Valladolid
Day 6 Discover Chichén Itzá & Yokdzonot Cenote, Transfer to Mérida Mérida
Day 7 Mérida Street Food Tour Mérida
Day 8 Cenote Diving Excursion, Optional Activities in Mérida Mérida
Day 9 Cenote Swimming, Tour Hacienda Mucuyché Mérida
Day 10 Boat Ride in Celestún Biosphere Reserve Mérida
Day 11 Transfer to Uxmal, Discover Uxmal Archaeological Site Uxmal
Day 12 Jícara Engraving Workshop, Eco-Tour in the Mun Ha Community Uxmal
Day 13 Transfer to Mérida via Izamal, the "Yellow City of the Yucatán" Mérida
Day 14 Depart Mérida  

Upon landing in Mérida, you'll immediately leave the city behind and transfer to Yaxunah. Here, you'll learn the art of hammock weaving at Káabal Kuxtal, tour a sustainable corn milpa, and swim in the unspoiled Lol-Ha Cenote before continuing to Valladolid. Three nights based in this historically rich city allows plenty of time to explore its highlights and hidden gems, including the ancient city of Ek' Balam, the jungle community of Yalcobá, and the iconic Chichén Itzá. However, soon, you'll return to Mérida and settle into your five-day stay during an indulgent street food tour in the Centro Histórico

There's no shortage of excitement over the following days, with thrilling activities on your agenda, like a half-day cenote diving adventure, a tour of Hacienda Mucuyché, and a boat ride in Celestún Biosphere Reserve. Then, continue to Uxmal and dive into the city's ancient wonders during a tour of the Pyramid of the Magician. Spend the next day in the jungle community of Muná, learning about traditional nature conservation techniques before again returning to Mérida. With your trip winding down, you'll find just enough time to explore the colonial town of Izamel and enjoy a celebratory last dinner. Learn more

Itinerary #5: Mexico's Natural Beauty & Ancient Marvels in the Yucatán

Split your time between Yucatán's impressive ruins and pristine waters on this self-drive adventure. Crafted especially for travelers eager for a culturally enriching trip while still having a week to snorkel, scuba, and relax, you'll spend three or more days each in Valladolid, Bacalar, Cozumel, and Playa del Carmen. Highlights include a visit to Chichén Itzá, a sailing adventure on Laguna Bacalar, two days devoted to exploring the underwater world of Cozumel Marine Park, and a serene boat trip through Ka'an Biosphere Reserve.

Enjoy swims in cenotes, the Caribbean Sea, and Lake Bacalar during this active road trip
Refresh the senses with a swim in Yucatán's Laguna Bacalar, near the Mexico-Belize border
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cancún, Drive to Valladolid, Walking Tour Valladolid
Day 2 Visit Chichén Itzá & Yokdzonot Cenote, Free Time in Valladolid Valladolid
Day 3 Visit the Ek' Balam Archaeological Site & Ría Lagartos Reserve Valladolid
Day 4 Bike Tour in Cobá, Visit the Nuevo Durango Community, Drive to Bacalar Bacalar
Day 5 Sailing Adventure on Laguna Bacalar  Bacalar
Day 6 Snorkeling Adventure in Mahahual Bacalar
Day 7 Drive to Playa del Carmen, Ferry to Cozumel, Beer Tasting Cozumel
Day 8 Tour a Sustainable Pearl Farm, Speed Snorkeling Cozumel
Day 9 Boating & Snorkeling Adventure in Cozumel Marine Park Cozumel
Day 10 Scuba Diving Adventure in Cozumel Cozumel
Day 11 Ferry to Playa del Carmen, Cavern Dining Experience Playa del Carmen
Day 12 Ancient Canal Experience in the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve Playa del Carmen
Day 13 Swim Underground at Río Secreto Playa del Carmen
Day 14 Drive to Cancún, Depart  

The first few days of your adventure are all about discovering the Yucatán Peninsula's ancient ruins and archaeological sites, and Valladolid is the perfect base to do this. A three-night stay ensures plenty of time to visit the renowned Chichén Itzá, tour Ek' Balam, boat through the Ría Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, and bike along ancient ruin-lined pathways in Cobá. Afterward, transfer to Bacalar for a unique sailing adventure and detour to Mahahual to snorkel among its crystalline waters filled with marine life. Then, with the beach calling, you'll transfer to Cozumel and settle in for a four-night stay. 

First, in Cozumel, you'll head to Cervecería Punta Sur for a beer-tasting experience. Spend the following days ticking off ocean-based activities, including a snorkeling excursion within an oyster hatchery, a boating trip into Cozumel Marine Park, and a scuba diving adventure. Afterward, ferry back to Playa del Carmen for your final three nights. Kick off your stay with a delightful dinner in a storied cavern, then head to the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve for a walking and boating tour before rounding off your adventure swimming through the underground river system of Río Secreto. Learn more

More Great 2-Week Mexico Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Mexico? Check out these other two-week Mexico itineraries, with outdoor adventures, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights.


Map of 2 Weeks in the Yucatán - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 2 Weeks in the Yucatán - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas