Featuring over 50 family-friendly natural and cultural attractions Xcaret Park is one of the best attractions in the Mayan Riviera.
Our full-day visit to Xcaret Park was a highlight of our month in the Yucatan Peninsula and our kids, aged 2 & 4, loved every minute of it. If you are planning a visit to Xcaret Park with kids, here are our top 15 tips to make your visit easier and more rewarding:
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How to Save Money at Xcaret
Xcaret is the best theme park in the Yucatan Peninsula, so it’s not a surprise that it’s a bit pricey, with basic Xcaret tickets starting at $98.99 USD. Thankfully, there are some easy ways to save some money:
Save Time and Money at Xcaret
Buying your Xcaret tickets online is fast & easy and the earlier you buy, the more money you save:
- Save 15% if you buy 21+ days in advance
- Save 10% if you buy between 7-20 days in advance
- Kids between 5-11 are 50% off
- Children 4 and under are free
Make Xcaret an All-Inclusive Experience
The Xcaret Plus ticket package saves you money on food, drink and equipment rentals. It includes a buffet meal & beer, unlimited non-alcoholic drinks, snorkel equipment rentals, a locker and use of the Area Plus facilities.
Get an Extra day at Xcaret Free
Xcaret Park offers a great deal for HSBC credit card holders. If you use your HSBC card to buy your admission tickets, you will get a second day for free.
Save Your Pesos by Bundling Your Purchases
Bundling your tickets for all the Xcaret parks and/or Mayan ruin sites you plan to visit is a great way to save some cash. Buy any two experiences online and save 20%, while 3 or more experiences will save you 25%.
Here are a few Xcaret ticket packages we recommend:
Xel-ha is a kid-friendly, water-themed eco-park not far from Tulum. We visited both parks and had a great time at each. If you plan on visiting both parks, buy an Xcaret / Xel-ha package and save $48 USD per person.
You can’t visit Cancun without seeing one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Chichén Itzá is is a must-see while in the Yucatan Peninsula. Buying an Xcaret / Chichén Itzá package will save you $59USD per person.
Swimming with dolphins is an experience many families have on their bucket lists! Bundle your Delphinus dolphin swim experience with your Xcaret park admission and save $36USD.
There is virtually no limit to the parks, cenotes and archaeological sites you can bundle. Book online and you’ll save between 20 – 25%.
XCARET PARK EQUIPMENT RENTALS
Xcaret has all the equipment your family needs for a fun day at the park. You can rent single or double strollers, towels, snorkel equipment and lockers. The stroller rental service is located very near the main entrance and is open from 8:30 am until the park’s closing.
If you are going to use a stroller and want to plan your day ahead of time, this Xcaret map shows the wheelchair accessible routes through the park. Anywhere a wheelchair can go, so can a stroller.
XCARET UNDERGROUND RIVER
You may be wondering if you need to bring a towel to Xcaret or where to put your stuff while you swim the underground river. No need to worry – the good folks at Xcaret have made it super easy.
Here’s how it works:
Getting changed: Standard ticket holders can get changed in the shower room near the main entrance to the park. You’ll need to walk a few minutes to the entrance of the river.
If you don’t feel like walking that far carrying your stuff with a bathing suit on, you can upgrade to an Xcaret Plus ticket which allows you to use the Plus Area change room right outside the entrance of the underground river.
Your stuff: At the entrance to the river, you put all of your personal belongings into a large duffel bag. They zip up and lock your bag and then give you the only key.They transport your bag to the far end of the river where you can pick it up.
Swimming Gear: You pick up your complimentary & mandatory life jackets at the beginning of the river and you drop them off at the end. They have life jackets for every age, including babies.
As for towels, if you bought a basic ticket you will need to bring your own towel or rent one for a small fee. Towels are included in the Xcaret Plus package.
We recommend renting flippers. We cheaped out and didn’t rent snorkel gear, which was a big mistake! Our kids don’t swim on their own, so we had to swim while pulling them along. The river itself doesn’t have much of a current, so to swim alongside a toddler was a big effort. I’d have killed to have had a pair of flippers! Snorkel equipment rentals are $11USD or are free with the Xcaret Plus package.
The River: Floating down the entire length of the river takes roughly an hour, so if you don’t think your kids will be interested that long, you can get out at several spots along the way (we didn’t finish the whole thing).
If you leave the river early you will need to walk to the end of the river to collect your duffel bag. If you feel you only want to be in the water a short time, it may make sense to rent a locker for your stuff near the beginning of the river instead.
Small kids: They made us sign a special waiver in order to bring our toddlers into the river as some small children find the water too cold. It may be worth stopping at the first exit to make sure your kids are handling the water temperature OK before continuing on.
XCARET FOOD AND BEVERAGE
Xcaret Park policy allows baby food to be brought in, but all other outside food and beverages are prohibited. For an extra $27USD (10-15% less if you book online), the Xcaret Plus package which entitles you to one buffet lunch, one beer and unlimited non-alcoholic beverages during your meal.
If you plan on eating a meal while at Xcaret, the Xcaret Plus package will likely save you money. There are 1-2 inexpensive restaurants which can be cheaper separately, but for most of the restaurants, the Xcaret Plus package will be cheaper than paying separately (especially with the 10-15% online discount).
If you are traveling with smaller kids, you may want to eat lunch a bit early, as we did. Most of the restaurants within Xcaret open at noon or later, but the following restaurants are open earlier:
- La Orquídea Coffee Shop opens at 8:30am. Located near the park entrance, you can enjoy a buffet Mexican breakfast or lunch. We ate here and were lucky enough to catch the tail end of their breakfast buffet for our lunch. We loved it! It was also quite affordable compared to the other restaurants we saw.
- El Manglar Restaurant opens at 11am. Located close to the Natural Pools, at the exit of the Underground Rivers, this seafood restaurant specializes in the food of the Mexican Pacific.
- La Península Restaurant opens at 11:30am. Located in the northern part of the Park, opposite to the Dolphin Swim area, this international buffet has a strong emphasis on seafood, including a sushi bar.
Xcaret Approved Sunscreen
To protect the natural balance of the water ecosystem within the park, Xcaret has a policy of requiring the use biodegradable sunscreen (containing titanium oxide and zinc oxide).
Please take this policy seriously as it is for the health of the sea life within the park. We have been to other water-based attractions that felt like we were swimming in a bathtub of coconut oil from all the sunscreen coming off the tourists. This cannot be good for the sea life!
We hardly noticed any mosquitoes during our visit, but we did end up with a few bites which is to be expected given that Xcaret is set in the jungle. We expected the mosquitoes to be way worse and were pleasantly surprised at their absence. It’s worthwhile to have some non-toxic bug spray in your bag just in case.
Tip: Save your water activities for the end of the day: This allows you to apply biodegradable sunscreen at the start of the day and not have to worry about reapplying until after the water activities. Plus it’s easier to deal with wet clothes at the end of the day when you are heading home vs. the beginning.
HOTEL XCARET MEXICO
If you want a really amazing Xcaret experience for the whole family, stay at the brand new, family-friendly Hotel Xcaret Mexico, where they literally redefine the term “all-inclusive”.
The Xcaret hotel All-Fun Inclusive program includes food and beverages, admission to all the Xcaret parks, transportation between the parks and an airport shuttle.
We had an incredible time at Xcaret Park. Check out our post, A Day of Amazing Family Fun at Beautiful Xcaret Mexico to see the fun your family can have too!
DON’T MISS: If you are currently in the Mayan Riviera or are planning a trip there, check out, Plan the Best Family Trip to the Mayan Riviera. It’s packed full of planning tips, exciting family activities and links to all of our Mayan Riviera blog posts. It’s sure to help make your family trip a memorable one!