Xcaret Park

Xcaret Park (Spanish: el parque Xcaret; Spanish pronunciation: [el ˈpaɾke ʃkaˈɾet]) is a privately owned and operated theme park, resort and self-described ecotourism development located in the Riviera Maya, a portion of the Caribbean coastline of Mexico's state of Quintana Roo. It is part of Xcaret Experiencias Group which also owns the Xplor Park, Xel-Ha Park, and Xenses Park; as well as the Xichen, Xenotes, Xavage and Xoximilco tours and activities. It is situated approximately 75 kilometres (47 mi) south of Cancún, and 6.5 kilometres (4 mi) south of the nearest large settlement Playa del Carmen along Highway 307. It is named after the nearby archaeological site Xcaret, a settlement constructed by the pre-Columbian Maya some of whose structures lie within the boundaries of the park's 81 hectares (200 acres) of land holdings.[1]

Parque Xcaret
Xcaret Eco Park
LocationKilometer Marker 282 Chetumal-Puerto Juárez Highway, Municipality of Solidaridad, Rivera Maya, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Coordinates20°34′41″N 87°07′09″W
Area81 ha (200 acres)
WebsiteXcaret Eco Park

From 2010 to 2015, Xcaret Experiencias has been recognized as one of The Best Mexican Companies (Las Mejores Empresas Mexicanas), a recognition promoted by Banamex, Deloitte México and Tecnológico de Monterrey.[2]


The Ecological Park is built in the same area as the archaeological site and has the same name, Xcaret.

The land was originally purchased by a group of Mexican entrepreneurs, led by architect Miguel Quintana Pali. 5 hectares of the land was purchased in 1984.

When he began to clear the land, he started uncovering cenotes, sinkholes formed by collapsed cave ceilings weakened by 3 million years of erosion from underground rivers running through them and flowing into the sea.[5] He saw the potential for tourism and formulated the idea of an Ecological Park open to the public, and soon joined forces with Oscar, Marcos and Carlos Constandse, achieving this goal in December 1990.

At the same time, contact was established with the National Institute of Anthropology and History (Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia) with the objective of rebuilding the remnants of the Mayan pyramids and buildings that were found in the area. The park’s administration subsidized all the operation and the INAH put in charge a team of specialists.


The nature-based attractions of the park include a river that goes through the Mayan village, a subterranean concrete sluice in which people can swim and snorkel with a life vest. Near the inlet there are recreational activities at the beach, snorkeling, Sea Trek and Snuba in the nearby reefs, or swimming with dolphins. The park also has a coral reef aquarium turtle nesting site. Next to the inlet there’s an area for manatees. The park also has a bird pavilion, butterfly pavilion, bat cave, orchids and bromeliad greenhouse, an island of jaguars, and a deer shelter, among others.

The cultural attractions include an open church, replica of a Mayan village with real artisans at work, a Mexican cemetery, a museum, an equestrian show, Mesoamerican ball game, an open theater with performances of pre-Hispanic dances, Papantla flying men and the Gran Tlachco (theater with a six thousand people capacity) where the Mesoamerican ball game is represented, as well as the meeting of two worlds, the Mayan and the Spanish, and the presentation of several Mexican folklore dances. Other demonstrations of Mexican traditions include Day of the Dead celebration and the "Travesía Sagrada Maya" (Mayan Sacred Crossing), an annual rite when Mayans would cross the sea from Xcaret and Playa del Carmen to Cozumel to pay homage to the lunar goddess Ix Chel. The modern version is a re-creation of this rite done in late May to early June.[6]

The park also has a Temascal and Spa, has 11 restaurants, dressing rooms, souvenirs and handicrafts stores, as well as an adjacent all-inclusive resort hotel.


Xcaret has different performances throughout the day in different areas of the park. The Charreria show is located outside of La Cocina Restaurant, and which has performances by Charros, Adelitas and a parade of Aztec Horses. The Duration of this show is 20 minutes and it is subject to park operations and seasonal requirements. The Papantla Flyers ritual ceremony is located outside of Xcaret Plus facilities. This show is 25 minutes long and it is shown four times a day. Pre-Hispanic performances take place in The Mayan Village and it is 25 minutes long. The Xcaret México Espectacular show is the biggest show in the park. It is 2 hours long and more than 300 artist performed on this show. This Show is located in the Gran Tlachco Theater and it is the last show of the day.


The park is described in the travel guide book Lonely Planet Mexico as a 'precious spot once open to all' now a 'Disneyfied ecopark' with much of the landscape changed using 'dynamite, jackhammers or other terra-forming techniques'.[7]

See also


  1. "Xcaret Eco Park: Nature theme park, Riviera Maya, Mexico". LocoGringo. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  2. "Empresas Reconocidas - Las Mejores Empresas Mexicanas". Mejoresempresasmexicanas.com. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  3. "Playa del Carmen Activities - Playa del Carmen Blog". Playadelcarmen.com. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  4. "Xcaret Park - Top 5 Tips for the Xcaret Eco Park Tour". Playadelcarmen.com. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  5. "Playa del Carmen Activities - Playa del Carmen Blog". Playadelcarmen.com. Retrieved 2016-03-28.
  6. Hinojosa, Beatriz (April 2008). "Travesía Sagrada Maya". Mexico Desconocida. 374: 8.
  7. Lonely Planet Yucatán. Lonely Planet Publications. 2003. p. 125. ISBN 978-1-74059-456-1.

Further reading

Clavé, Salvador Anton (2007). The Global Theme Park Industry. Andrew Clarke (trans.). Wallingford, UK: CABI. ISBN 978-1-84593-208-4. OCLC 70921404.
Fedick, Scott (2003). "In Search of the Maya Forest". In Candace Slater (ed.). In Search of the Rain Forest. New ecologies for the twenty-first century series. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. pp. 133–166. ISBN 978-0-8223-3205-3. OCLC 52821109.
Lück, Michael, ed. (2008). The Encyclopedia of Tourism and Recreation in Marine Environments. Wallingford, UK: CABI. ISBN 978-1-84593-350-0. OCLC 152560388.
Mowforth, Martin; Clive Charlton; Ian Munt (2008). Tourism and Responsibility: Perspectives from Latin America and the Caribbean (1st hbk ed.). London and New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-42364-9. OCLC 123136460.
Simon, Joel (1997). Endangered Mexico: An Environment on the Edge. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books. ISBN 978-0-87156-351-4. OCLC 35559240.
Slater, Candace (2003). "In Search of the Rain Forest". In Candace Slater (ed.). In Search of the Rain Forest. New ecologies for the twenty-first century series. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. pp. 3–40. ISBN 978-0-8223-3205-3. OCLC 52821109.
Walker, Cameron (2005). "Archaeological tourism: looking for answers along Mexico's Maya Riviera". In Tim Wallace (ed.). Tourism and Applied Anthropologists: Linking Theory and Practice. NAPA Bulletin, no. 23. Arlington, VA: National Association for the Practice of Anthropology. pp. 60–76. ISBN 978-1-931303-22-4. OCLC 61285198.

This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.