How To Find Wellness in Tulum

Your Luxury Guide to Spas, Yoga, and Outdoor Adventure

By Sam Murray

The age of the all-partying Mexican vacation is over. Well, it certainly is for me, anyway!

Nowadays, the only shots you’ll see me doing are immune-boosting energy drinks (organic, of course) and the only clubs you’ll find me in have a spa. Thankfully, as a Mexico travel writer, I’m blessed with the opportunity to explore a country that takes its health and fitness seriously, and there’s perhaps no better spot in the whole country for a wellness vacation than Tulum.

Beam of light at Mexican cenote and woman bathing at spa

Why? Firstly, it is intensely beautiful. That makes it pretty easy to unwind when you’ve got the Caribbean Sea in front of you and the rustling jungle behind.

Secondly, this very spiritual area boasts ancient ruins and mystical cenotes, both of which make for exceptional day trips. And finally, its year-round good weather makes outdoor activities a delight, no matter when you choose to visit.

A beach shack on a white sand beach set against a blue sky with a few clouds

So, if wellness in Tulum sounds like your ideal vacation, take my advice and try out some of these activities!

Take a Yoga Class by the Caribbean Sea

My creaking bones and achy muscles constantly need a bit of TLC; this is why yoga has become an essential part of my working week. Tulum is a mecca for yogis (including many Hollywood A-listers), so you won’t be short of places to go. Personally, I recommend Jashita, an eco-friendly boutique hotel that’s a great place to get your flex on.

2 students and instructor at oceanfront yoga class

This gorgeous hotel boasts a beautiful, minimalist yoga studio overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Their highly-trained staff offer private lessons as well as daily group sessions at 9 am—the perfect way to start your day.

Enjoy a Maya Spa Treatment

Feeling healthy is not just about how far you can run or how many reps you can do—it’s also about taking relaxation seriously. To that end, Jashita’s Caoba Spa is the perfect choice.

Woman in white towel at Mexican spa

Most of the therapies on offer have been inspired by the traditions and materials of Tulum; for example, their Mukul Massage begins with a Maya purification in which your body is cleansed using copal resin and a special mixture of herbs. More medicinal herbs are then steamed to help you detoxify, release muscle tension, and strengthen the joints. Finally, the therapist will apply a shiatsu massage to bring balance to your body. How could you not feel re-energized after that?

Eat Wholesome Food Made From Local Ingredients

Taking care of yourself is also about watching what goes into your body, which is why hotel Ahau’s restaurant is the place to go in Tulum. Well-being is at the very heart of every one of their dishes, and key to that is the freshness of their produce. Ahau’s Mexican-Caribbean inspired plates are created using native ingredients collected by the local Maya residents, and all their food is freshly prepared on site.

Plates of Mexican food on rustic table

For an extra energy boost, head to their rustic eatery, Raw Love Café. From this beach-side palapa, you can pick up colorful snacks and drinks, all created from raw ingredients. There’s plenty to choose from including acai bowls, healing shots, and juice detox programs—I especially love their probiotic ginger beer.

Fruits, vegetables' nd a purple drink on rustic white table

Reconnect With Nature in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve

There’s nothing quite as good for my physical and mental well-being as an adventure in the wild. In Tulum, my go-to is the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest protected area in the Mexican Caribbean.

Boat moving through water at Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve

It is home to some of the most astonishing creatures on the planet. From just the big cat family alone, you might spot puma, ocelot, jaguar, or jaguarundi. There are also monkeys, manatees, turtles, and much more. I highly recommend taking a private guide with you—not only will they be able to point out the hidden critters, but they know how to keep you safe, an essential part of any health and wellness trip!

Person walking on boardwalk surrounded by trees
Photo credit: Secretaria de Turismo de Quintana Roo

Sian Ka’an is huge, so to see these natural beauties you’ll ideally want to hike, swim, and boat to cover decent ground. Estimates put the reserve at around 2,038 miles2 (about 985,000 football fields), which is more than enough space to work up a sweat.

Dive Into Tulum’s Healing Cenotes

I couldn’t write a guide to wellness in Tulum without mentioning cenotes, the area’s freshwater sinkholes connected by mystical underground rivers. These enigmatic quirks of nature were once revered by the Maya people for the water’s healing properties and were the sites of sacred rituals.

Woman floating on her back in blue waters of a Mexican cenote

Today it’s possible to explore their mysteries from under the surface, and two gorgeous spots to do so are Cenote Dos Ojos and El Gran Cenote. Hire a guide to take you there for snorkeling or scuba diving—you’ll be able to check out the incredible rock formations and burn some calories while you’re at it.

If you’re looking for some self-care and sun, Tulum is an ideal destination. I always feel like a better version of myself after a visit, and can’t wait to head back soon!

About the Author:

Sam Murray is a writer for award-winning Journey Mexico, a company that curates and operates bespoke luxury travel experiences across Mexico. After leaving his hometown of London in 2017, he arrived in Puerto Vallarta and instantly fell in love. Its cobblestone streets, road-side taquerias, and sweeping beaches convinced him to set up base. Tearing himself away from the magnetic pull of the Pacific Ocean, he has traveled across the country and found beauty and wonder in every destination. He now spends his working days (and much of his free time) sharing stories and travel tips on the country he now calls home.

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