You might think you know Cancun – 14 miles of pristine white beaches shaped like a number "7" crystalline waters and sultry nights sipping on the perfect margarita, right? Well, you're both right and wrong. If this is your idea of what Cancun is all about, read on. There's so much more.
The history of Cancun dates back to 1967 when the Mexican government, recognizing the importance of tourism to the country’s economic future, began a detailed search to pinpoint ideal sites for tourism development. Resting on the northeast corner of the Yucatan Peninsula in the state of Quintana Roo (keen-tah-nah-ROW), Cancun was a part of the ancient Mayan civilization and is still considered the gateway to El Mundo Maya (the Mayan World).
Cancun has the distinction of being the one Caribbean destination with the infrastructure, modern amenities (spruced up in 2006) and service philosophy to rival leisure destinations worldwide. Unlike many other parts of the Caribbean and Mexico, Cancun was built for tourism, and continues to meet the needs of its over 3.3 million annual visitors. Cancun delivers to travelers the best of many worlds: the Caribbean and Mexico; modern and ancient; action packed and laid back. Cancun is unequaled in its ability to offer cultural treasures, natural beauty, infinite activities and North American-style conveniences.
Due to its near perfect weather, natural beauty and easy accessibility from North American gateways, Cancun emerged as the government’s top candidate. What was once a remote and tiny fishing village of just 12 families was cultivated into the ideal Mexican vacation spot. It capitalized on, without compromising, the region’s natural resources. The landscape of Cancun encourages the growth of many exotic flowers, such as flamboyances (named for the dazzling orange-red splash they make lining sidewalks and plazas) and fascinating fauna, like the prehistoric-looking iguanas.
If you are a sports enthusiast, Cancun will not disappoint. It boasts great five golf courses, incredible coral reefs for snorkeling and scuba diving, sport-fishing and jungle tours. And if lying on a white-sand beach with the clear blue Caribbean lapping at your suntanned toes is what you long for, then Cancun delivers. Some of the most beautiful beaches in the world are in and around Cancún making it Latin American’s most important leisure destination.