Step off the beaten path and into the Mexican Caribbean jungle, hidden away between Playa del Carmen and Cancún. A 150-acre wonderland of native and exotic wildlife, Dr. Alfredo Barrera Marín Botanical Gardens in Riviera Maya welcomes lucky visitors to a special mix of 250+ indigenous animal species – including spider monkeys, parrots, toucans, lizards, and wild deer – traditional Mayan customs, centuries-old ruins, and rare plants so gorgeous you won’t believe your eyes.
A Fantasyland of Flora
Quite possibly the largest botanical garden in all of Mexico, you’ll see things here you may never see again. A rainbow of wild orchids welcomes visitors with otherworldly shapes and colors, quite like the mystical cactus and succulent forest. Then there’s the collection of Mayan medicinal herbs, offering a fascinating glimpse into the sacred beliefs of the nation’s early civilizations.
Breathtaking Views & Mayan Traditions
With four kilometers of gorgeous trails, you can experience all the gardens have to offer in a way that best fits your interests. A few things you won’t want to miss, though, are the scenic “tree house” and tower hikes, atop which you’ll enjoy magnificent views of the surrounding jungle and Caribbean Sea. Of course, everything Mayan is a must-see as well, including traditional “palapa” housing, ruins dating back to 1400 AD, and a popular Chiclero Camp that demonstrates how they used to make chewing gum from local chicozapote trees.