Riviera Maya comes to life after dinner every night with an entirely different scene, from fantastic bars and cocktail lounges to live entertainment, spectacular sunsets, and so much more. Here you can hop on a charter boat to take in the glorious colors of the sinking sun over the horizon with a glass of champagne in hand. You can see astounding feats of acrobatics at one of the most unique and interesting circus shows in the world. You can take on a local bar crawl. You can even head for a themed casino or amusement park.

    From romantic experiences to family fun, Riviera Maya has it all. Check out some of the best things to do after dinner in this region.


    Mandala Beach Club

    Hang out at one of the region's best beach clubs

    Mandala Beach Club is one of the most popular beach clubs in all of Cancun, with fantastic craft cocktails, a jacuzzi, several swimming pools, and a full tropical vibe. You can get toes in the sand and relax on the seashore or chill in the hot tub with a bottle of wine and your best friends. This is a club where the party only starts after dinner and goes well into the early hours. You'll enjoy great music and dancing. If you want to grab dinner before the party, you can do that as well at the on-site restaurants.

    They also offer weekly bikini contests and pool parties for even more fun. It's about an hour from central Riviera Maya.

    Location: Km. 9.5, Blvd. Kukulcan, Zona Hotelera, 77500 Cancún, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Wednesday–Monday from 11 am to 6 pm, Tuesday from 11 am to 6 pm, 8 pm to 1 am

    Phone: +52 998 883 3333


    Parque Los Fundadores

    Hit a public park with family fun activities

    Parque Los Fundadores, or "Founding Fathers Park," is a public space in Playa del Carmen offering a wide range of fun activities from historic buildings to dancers, sculpture, and adventure. Restaurants, bars, and shops surround the park. It also offers a nearby beach that hosts festivals all the time, whether it's a bikini contest or a traditional Mayan dance competition. You might see sand sculptures on the shore or check out an acrobat show with performers sailing around a pole nearly 100 feet high. Live music acts sometimes play the bandstand.

    If you're looking for family-friendly activities, a kids' playground is on-site. It's just about 20 minutes north of central Riviera Maya.

    Location: Av Benito Juárez, Centro, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: 24/7


    photo by dronepicr (CC BY 2.0) modified


    Sunset cruise

    Take a romantic trip on the Gulf

    A Sunset cruise is one of the most romantic experiences you can have as you watch the brilliant colors of the sun sinking beneath the horizon on the water. You'll enjoy live music or DJs, champagne, and spectacular views that just beg to be photographed for your Instagram feed. There's nothing like being out on the ocean with the bright lights of the shoreline behind you and the brilliant red, yellow, pink, and orange of the Gulf of Mexico in front of you. This is a great way to experience a romantic adventure you'll never forget.

    The best part about a sunset cruise is that they're available all up and down Riviera Maya. Just find one near you and go!


    Teatro Vidanta "Cirque du Soleil JOYÀ"

    See a stunning family-friendly circus performance

    The Teatro Vidanta is the home of the Cirque du Soleil Joyá, a resident show offering a custom experience against a custom jungle backdrop with a fairy-tale story. The tale is centered around a character whose life has been devoted to protecting the Yucatan ecology and environment and includes acrobats, trapeze, hand balancing, trampoline stunts, aerial straps, and many other options, as well as a few rotating acts. It's renowned for its music and visuals and the included upscale dining experience.

    Joyá is a family-friendly experience that's as educational as it is wondrous. It's in Cancun, about 30 minutes from central Riviera Maya.

    Location: Carretera Federal, Cancun - Chetumal Km 48, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Tuesday–Saturday from 11 am to 9 pm (closed Sunday–Monday)

    Phone: +52 800 247 7837


    Fives Rooftop

    Party on an outdoor terrace with fantastic views

    Fives Rooftop is a rooftop bar along Playa del Carmen that offers a lively nightlife experience with stunning views of the downtown skyline, great music, and craft cocktails. The bar has an infinity pool lined with a bar, and the local DJ amps up luxe vibes with the latest hit dance tunes so you can party the night away under the open sky. It's part of the Fives Downtown Hotel and seeks to bring just a touch of glamor to the Caribbean coast just steps away from the Fifth Avenue district.

    This is the place for a lively and upscale evening of music and drinks. It's about 25 minutes drive to the south of the central Riviera Maya.

    Location: 10 Avenida Nte., Centro, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Daily from 7 am to 11 pm

    Phone: +52 984 206 5514



    Visit a theme park dedicated to Mexican heritage

    Xoximilco is a theme park offering rides, games, and family fun, all dedicated to the traditions of one of Mexico's most important UNESCO World Heritage sites. Here you'll enjoy the sense of a genuine Mexican carnival with music, dance, snacks, and games. You can ride a colorful gondola through charming natural vistas and enjoy the flavors and scents of the country's culinary history. An open bar is on-site for the parents, and you'll experience a variety of live musical acts. Xoximilco showcases a fun, vibrant, and authentic expression of all things Mexico.

    The attraction is located in downtown Cancún. It's only about an hour north of central Riviera Maya.

    Location: Chetumal Km. 282, Juárez, 77580 Puerto Morelos, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Monday–Staurday from 7.15 am to midnight

    Phone: +52 998 883 3143


    Playacrawl tours

    Try a custom personalized bar craw

    Playacrawl Tours are among the top nightlife activities in Playa del Carmen, winning awards for offering customized party experiences across the city. On these tours, you create a truly personalized experience to hit the bars along the beach that are the most likely to appeal directly to your needs. Experiences can be set for individual travelers, couples on a romantic getaway, groups of friends, or any other type or size group.

    You'll move from bar to bar in a fun and safe way and experience DJs, live music, craft cocktails, great beer, and all the Playa del Carmen culture you can manage. Best of all, it's only 20 minutes north of central Riviera Maya.

    Open: Daily from 10 am to midnight

    Phone: +52 984 165 0699


    Dubai Palace Casino

    Enjoy the full gaming and entertainment experience

    Dubai Palace Casino offers you the chance to get your game on in Cancun while taking in live entertainment, good food, and a fantastic beer selection. Not everyone thinks about casinos and gambling when they come to Riviera Maya, but Dubai Palace offers all the fun of Vegas in the tropical paradise of the Gulf shores. You can lounge at the bar and just enjoy the casino culture, catch a live show, or you can hit the slots or the tables to play blackjack, craps, three-card poker, or roulette.

    If gaming is your thing, or you just want to enjoy a full-featured entertainment experience, this is a good option. It's just over an hour from central Riviera Maya.

    Location: Avenida Tulum Mz.1 Lote2 Sm8, Centro, 77500 Cancún, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Daily from 8 am to 11 pm

    Phone: +52 998 802 1966


    Coco Bongo

    Experience a wild and unusual nightlife party

    Coco Bongo is one of the biggest spots for nightlife in Cancun, offering acrobats, live music, celebrity impersonators, multimedia presentations, conga lines, and a never-ending party. The club doesn't have a dance floor and isn't your traditional DJ-fronted club. This one offers endless antics and unique performances. It's more like a live show than a nightclub. It's open late night well into the early hours of the morning, and the cover charge is steep, but most people say it's an experience they'll never forget.

    Congo Bongo is one of the more unusual and unique nightlife experiences around. It's in Cancun, just over an hour from the center of Riviera Maya.

    Location: Calle 12 Norte, esquina con Av. 10 Norte, Col. Centro, Gonzalo Guerrero, 77710 Playa del Carmen, Q.R., Mexico

    Open: Tuesday–Sunday from 9 pm to 2 am (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +52 984 803 5939


    Calle 12, Playa del Carmen

    Check out the hip epicenter of nightlife

    Calle 12, Playa del Carmen is a street lined with bars, nightclubs, restaurants, and entertainment that is one of the major hubs of local Riviera Maya nightlife. The party here picks up late at night and keeps going into the wee hours, and it's ground zero for the lively and somewhat wild nightlife in the area. It's the home of clubs like Coco Maya, Coco Bongo, La Vaquita, and Mandala, and others.

    If you plan to dance the night away in the hippest scene, this is the place to crawl, but the party doesn't start till at least 11 pm. It's all about 25 minutes north of central Riviera Maya.


    photo by Sean and Lauren (CC BY 2.0) modified

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