Cozumel offers a variety of beachfront adventures to more than 2 million visitors every year. So before you cruise, ferry or jet to this idyllic island, consider the percentage of your beach vacation to include snorkeling, dabbling in Caribbean shops, drinking & dining in restaurants and poolside or beachside sunbathing.
Some beaches take you to great diving spots. Some have snorkeling, water toys, pools, and a host of other activities. The eastern coast of Cozumel is largely rocky and unprotected — making it less popular than the western coast. But there are hidden spots for travelers who like the quiet roar of waves. There is only one main road that runs along the eastern shore of the island, so take your time traversing this section of Cozumel’s coastline.
Playa Chen Rio
With a protected area for swimming and snorkeling that stays relatively shallow, Playa Chen Rio offers a fun experience for both novice as well as advanced ocean swimmers. Large rocks break up the surf, and lush vegetation around the cove make for a picturesque getaway.
For fans of soft white sand and crystal blue waters, Playa Bonita is unlike most beaches that you’ll find on the eastern coast. It is often considered one of the most romantic beaches in Cozumel. Gentle waves make it a relaxing destination for swimming and kayaking. Another highlight is a small Mayan ruin at this beach for travelers more interested in history than sunbathing. This remote beach on Cozumel’s eastern side is blessed with pristine white sand and clear azure water. Playa Bonita is never crowded and history buffs enjoy the small ruin.
Playa Corona is a well-known dive spot. Though it’s a small stretch of sand, many visitors admire the underwater scenery. After watering, chill under the shade of one of beach huts. Less a beach than a launch pad, Playa Corona is a skinny stretch of sand that offers world-class snorkeling opportunities. Located on Cozumel’s more developed western coast, people flock to the beach so they can explore its crystal clear waters. Just off the shore you’ll find the southern section of Chankanaab reef, an area teeming with marine life.
Playa Uva Sur
For a more high-end Cozumel beach experience, head to Playa Uva Sur. You can spend all afternoon lounging on plush sunbeds, or paddling around in the clear-bottomed kayaks available for rent.
This luxurious beach offers powdery sand and warm Caribbean waters. Stretching 3,500 feet on the western coast of the island, Playa Palancar amenities include beach umbrellas for rent and comfortable dining area where you can buy cold drinks and fish tacos.
This is a great place to watch sunsets. Dzul Ha reef, which is close enough to access from the shore without the need of a boat. Bursting with exotic fish and plants, the reef is one of the best places for snorkeling in Cozumel. The beach backs onto the Money Bar on the western shore of the island. When planning transportation here, remember that the beach is pronounced ‘Zool-Ha’.
Situated on the west side of the island, Chen Rio is surrounded by a sea of flora and fauna. It gets crowded on weekends as locals and others from the mainland come for sunrays and lunch at the fancy seafood restaurant.