Investing in the Yucatan Peninsula: Beyond Riviera Maya
As an investor or an individual who is looking for a vacation – part-time – permanent home in Mexico, the most likely destination that pops into their mind is the Riviera Maya. With all its exciting amenities and worldwide popularity makes it a standout when looking to purchase a property in Mexico. But what if the gorgeous weather, fabulous beaches and inviting culture isn’t everything you’re looking for? Or maybe it is but in another town? You might want to add a bit of a laidback environment or be a little more off the beaten path as well. There are so many beautiful destinations beyond Riviera Maya to explore. Here are several to consider.
Here is a town that borders a clear, turquoise colored – freshwater lagoon that carries its namesake Laguna de Bacalar. Just 38 minutes – 24 miles to the northwest of Chetumal is the small and very traditional town of Bacalar. It is known for its relaxing vibe and friendly atmosphere. Its history includes Caribbean pirates, 18th-century colonial churches, and Fort San Felipe. You can spend the day snorkeling or scuba diving in the Blue Cenote. Afterward, spend the afternoon shopping in one of the local stores. When the evening settles in, enjoy an authentic homemade dinner at one of the many restaurants.
Real Estate notes Not a lot of condos/homes readily available for purchase currently. There are plenty of inland and waterside lots for sale. Great for building your dream home.
This seaside community is straight east of Bacalar. Mahahual and its Mayan culture is the center of the Costa Maya region. If you are looking for a destination that has plenty of water activities, then this is a place you need to explore. This small fishing village has a coral reef – Banco Chinchorro that lies just off its white sand beaches and offers excellent snorkeling and diving. With its new pier, Mahahual has become a popular port-of-call for cruise ships. This quaint community offers several bars, restaurants, and boutique shops. Mahahual promotes a relaxed living environment but at the same time, offers lots of daily activities.
Real Estate notes: There is a supply of condos for sale on and close to the beach. There is also plenty of waterfront lots for sale as well.
It is a thriving city that hugs the border of Belize. Chetumal has been labeled the undiscovered Gem of Quintana Roo. That’s quite a compliment considering that QR has cities such as Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Tulum. This border town is a mecca of business for Mexicans and Belizeans alike. Outside its booming economy are numerous archeological sites, and unlike other well-known ruins, these attractions aren’t overrun with massive crowds. This city proudly claims the rights to having a comprehensive museum featuring an extensive exhibit that outlines the Mayan history. It also has a Cultural Center of Fine Arts and the Payo Obispo Zoo – there are not many zoos in this part of the region.
With a larger city comes more things to do. There is a modern mall, a movie theater that has English speaking movies, and plenty of homegrown cantinas and restaurants. It even has its own Planetario Yook Ol Kaab (Planetarium Auditorium). Chetumal is relatively close to Bacalar and at the same time, has plenty of powder white sand beaches to enjoy. An advantage Chetumal has is that not many cities in Quintana Roo border another country. Belize’s Santa Elena – Corozal Zone is a vital element to Chetumal’s popularity and economic success. You can enjoy two cultures that are just miles apart.
Real Estate notes: There are a variety of properties for sale. Market prices vary depending on what part of the city you want to be in.
This vibrant city is the heart of the peninsula and all it encompasses. The governing capital of Yucatan state possesses so many historical and cultural events. There are plenty of interesting sites which include cathedrals, homes, government buildings, and Mayan ruins. Merida has lots of inner-city parks that tell stories of the past. It also has an extensive fine and cultural arts community that includes art galleries, public statues, modern art museum, and the Teatro Peon Contreras Theatre (Operas & music). Where ever you look you will find an artistic environment that was developed by multiple levels of cultural influence.
There is always something going on in Merida and its surrounding neighborhoods. Street bazaars, open-air markets, and curbside entertainment of all kinds – day, noon and night. The streets are lined with restaurants that serve a multitude of cuisines prepared by some of the world’s most exceptional culinary professionals. Merida has plenty of shopping opportunities that extend from boutiques with handmade crafts to the new Merida Harbor Mall – considered the largest in Mexico. Last but not least, Merida has a world presence in holistic and modern medicine. There is no lack of doctors and hospitals in Merida.
Real Estate notes: Merida has multiple levels of real estate opportunities. The market is growing in all directions. But there are still good buys to be found.
This bedroom community lies 40 minutes northwest of Merida and reaps many benefits of having the capital of the Yucatan as a neighbor. Progreso is an important port that resides on the top side of the Yucatan Peninsula on the of the Gulf of Mexico. This laidback city has so much to offer. It has plenty of fabulous restaurants, all types of stores, open markets, and other needed amenities. Progreso’s infrastructure is robust and easily supports its residents. During the season, Progreso is a popular cruise ship port-of-call. It has an active Malecon along its white sand beaches, and the Caribbean fed gulf. Progreso holds tightly to its heritage of being a fishing village. This family-oriented community is a hidden secret soon to be discovered.
Real Estate notes: Progreso has very reasonable property prices, but they won’t stay that way for long. Here is an opportunity to own beachfront property at an affordable investment.
This small and very traditional village will one day be a haven for people looking for a small-town atmosphere. San Crisanto is a diamond in the rough with so much potential. Being just over 31 miles east of Progresso and approximately 38 miles from Merida makes it centrally located. San Crisanto sits on miles of beautiful coastline with unspoiled mangrove jungles to its backside. Start your day by walking along the beach and then relax on your patio doing whatever you like. There are several restaurants (bar & grills), two small grocery stores, and a smaller shopping mall to satisfy your immediate needs. If you want to escape the touristy environment but be close enough to a major city, San Crisanto should top your list.
Real Estate notes: Property is at bargain basement prices. There are a few ready-made condos available, as well as plenty of vacant lots to build on.
When you consider purchasing real estate/property in the Yucatan Peninsula, don’t just direct your attention to one specific area. Do your due diligence and broaden your horizon by researching other similar regions beyond Riviera Maya that meet or exceed your criteria. Wherever you decide to invest, you can’t go wrong with choosing the Yucatan Peninsula. Its easy accessibility, low cost of living, exceptional real estate market, and inviting culture leads to a no brainer decision.
Remember, at Top Mexico Real Estate … we make it happen!