When we first looked at going to Tulum I couldn’t believe how beautiful it appeared, yet I couldn’t seem to find much info out there on whether it was child friendly or not… So I’ve done a round up of some of the things we did, places we ate and visited and what our kids seemed to love most about Tulum.
From the UK it’s not a short flight at all, but I think still do-able with young kids… (can get direct flights to Cancun in 10-11 hours) We chose a night flight with hopes that our kids would sleep for most of it, which amazingly they did!
We got gifted these Jet kids bed boxes before we left which were honestly a lifesaver!! It meant that they could lie down flat and really get comfortable! They also loved riding on them through the airport and they have great storage inside too! Would def recommend for long flights with kids!
When you arrive at Cancun airport it’s about a 90min drive to Tulum – we decided to hire a big car for the duration as we stayed a bit out and also knew we wanted to explore a bit… It’s quite spread out, so if you are planning on going with children I would definitely recommend hiring a car, but do note on the beach strip parking can sometimes be a bit annoying. But If you are going just adults it’s super easy to get around on bikes and then you don’t have the parking issue. Alsooo, if you choose to stay on the beach strip getting bikes with kids seats on the back would be a great option too!
Places to stay
I’ve put a few options down for different budgets… These were some of my faves that are child friendly that I came across when searching.
Where to eat:
The menu is organic and completely grain free!! They make their toast out of plantain and coconut flour and their smoothies are INSANE!! They also have divine fresh salads, unbelievably delicious paleo pancakes and make their own organic grass fed broths from scratch. This place was HEAVEN to me! It meant that the girls could choose whatever they wanted from the menu and I had complete peace of mind knowing that they were only eating the best quality ingredients possible!
We went here one evening when the girls were so tired they were a bit delirious so we just made the most of it, gave them some screens and enjoyed…
This place has such a cute and unique menu and a really chilled vibe.
If you only order one thing here though… You MUST try the fried avocado…
Such a cute, low key, unpretentious Middle Eastern restaurant! We really enjoyed the food here and loved the simplicity of the place! Would definitely recommend.
If you get a villa and fancy eating at home and prepping your own meals we found a fab organic supermarket called Gypsea Market which has loads of fresh produce and healthy options
I normally LOVE shopping in foreign supermarkets for some reason, but unfortunately the main ones in Tulum are rather disappointing… The produce wasn’t that fresh and they were just a bit random!!
Oh, they also have their own “Deliveroo” in Tulum which is called Tomato so if like us, you are shattered with jet lag and a day on the beach with kids we gave this a shout a few nights! Has some really good options on there!
Fave places to hang
We really wanted a beach holiday where we could all really relax and the girls could play in the sea and build sand castles. Which this place was perfect for! The beds here were our fave – You really feel like you are getting your own private part of heaven! We LOVED the fact they had cold-pressed juices here and a delicious menu to match! With the added bonus of a super stylish pool in the shade for the kiddies – We would definitely come back here the next time we visit Tulum!
As I mentioned earlier – this place had my fave restaurant and on top of that it was in the loveliest setting right on the beach!
We chose to hire beds here a few days of our trip and it was just great! The staff were super friendly, they had a basket of beach toys for the girls to play with and adequate shade for those afternoon naps… if I had to choose only one place to go back to – it would probably be here…
Okay so… If you want to encapsulate interior heaven on a beach – this is the place. They have a wind chime jungle as you walk in, a very special outdoor yoga space, a gorgeous restaurant, a swimming pool just off the beach shaded by trees and beds all along the coast with crochet hangings and tribal features everywhere. If you want a chilled out, child friendly vibe which is also a treat for adult eyes and soul, you must visit Nomade!
A wellness centre like you’ve NEVER seen before! Holistika is like a magical wonderland in the middle of the jungle. This place is very special and a welcoming break from the intense sun of the beaches. We loved wandering round the grounds here with the girls – it’s winding paths are shaded by the most beautiful dense rainforest greens and everywhere you look there are little spiritual notices to remind you to be present and grateful. We loved this place! They have great smoothie bowls too… oh, and if you get the chance they have a timetable of yoga class dreams!
There are LOTS of other beach clubs and hotels along the strip but a few of them don’t let sprogs in… The main ones that caught our eyes were – Azulik, be Tulum and Habitas. One day we will return child free and get to experience these places… one day…
Because we were with two toddlers we had to be quite selective with which cenote we visited… We would’ve loved to go to more (and probably will next time when Sufi is a bit older) but we chose to go to Gran Cenote this time round and it was such a cool experience! One thing I WILL say though is I would recommend getting there as SOON as it opens to avoid the crowds!! We got there super early, but unfortunately it wasn’t quite early enough and a massive coach load of tourists arrived at the same time as us and it really dampened the experience… it just didn’t feel that magical when you are literally surrounded in the water… So, yeah – get there EARLY!! Like even before it opens if I’m honest!!
(We chose to go and drive down the longest dirt track ever on the day when everything was closed and there ended up being a huge storm) soooo can’t give you our personal experience on that I’m afraid… But I’ve heard it’s VERY beautiful with loads of amazing wildlife to see!
Now an absolute MUST while in Tulum is visiting Xel Ha – I must admit that I didn’t really look into this place before we went to visit, Natalie had read about it and I just went along. OH. MY. GOODNESS. Was I pleasantly surprised!! This place was INCREDIBLE!!
So you buy an all inclusive ticket for like $80 and this includes entry, all your food and drink (yes, that includes alcohol) and snorkel, life jacket and flipper hire etc. There was SO much to do for both adults and kids! Even little Tara (who is one) loved the little boat rides! We went snorkelling, Zip wired, cliff jumping, floated along through amazing rivers on inflatables, the boys went down the craziest outdoor water slide I’ve ever seen, there was such a good kids area for the littles with a great pool and play area. There are loads of places to choose to eat – note all buffet style and what you would imagine at an all inclusive theme park – but when you are having that much fun we literally didn’t care!! I wished we had done two days at this place instead of one as it was definitely our best day we had in Tulum!
If we went back…
Isla Mujeres – unfortunately there were storms forecast on the days we planned to visit, but it looks incredible and would definitely try and visit if we went back
Don’t expect an all singing all dancing all inclusive family friendly vibe when you visit Tulum. We’ve been to those kind of resorts and yes they are fantastic for entertaining kids, but it’s also nice to slow things down for them a bit sometimes and just be. And that’s what we found in Tulum! On numerous occasions I witnessed the girls just sat at the waters edge looking out to the sea and just being, I didn’t have a clue what they were thinking, but they seemed so content. And to me that’s what holidays should be about, just getting to slow down and witness the natural beauty that’s around you without the distractions of normal every day life…