Wondering how to get to Tulum? The town may not have its own airport, but it’s still incredibly easy to get to the coastal oasis.
With Cancun International Airport just 90 minutes away by car, and plenty of transport options to ferry you between the two, getting to Tulum could not be more simple.
That means you’re just 120km away from white sand, turquoise water, and gorgeous views. Ahhh, bliss.
But exactly how do you get to Tulum? Don’t fret – we’ve taken the stress out of planning your transfer. Allow us to explain exactly how you travel between Cancun and Tulum, along with a few other options if you’re coming from Playa del Carmen or Cozumel.
How to Get to Tulum
Wondering how to get to Tulum from the US or UK (or most other countries)? The best airport for Tulum is Cancun International Airport.
How to Get To Tulum From Cancun
The next step is getting to Tulum itself. When it comes to traveling from Cancun International Airport to Tulum, you’ve got five main options…
Looking to arrive in Tulum in total comfort and style? Your best bet is to book yourself a private transfer that whisks you directly from the airport to the front of your hotel.
No need to spend an hour on the side of the curb, sweaty and stressed because your Spanish skills are lacking and you don’t know how to ask if a bus is on its way… we’ve all been there, right?
When you book a private vehicle in advance, it can work out cheaper than a regular taxi – at the same time providing you with a whole lotta luxury to kick your trip off just right.
This is the best option if you’re on a romantic trip or don’t fancy renting a car in Mexico.
Renting a Car
If you’re looking to explore Tulum’s surrounding areas during your trip, the best way to get to Tulum from Cancun is by renting a car.
Not only does this give you the freedom to travel whenever and wherever you want, but it means you’re not stranded for an hour and relying on public transport after your flight.
Simply pick up the keys and head off to begin your vacation.
There are plenty of car hire companies that operate in Tulum, though Europcar is among the most popular.
Generally, you’re looking to pay around $250-$300 dollars per week for rental – this seems steep at first but if you’re going to be traveling a lot during your vacation it often works out a lot cheaper, especially if there’s a group of you.
One of the more comfortable ways to get from Cancun International Airport to Tulum is via a taxi.
There are hundreds of taxis waiting to transfer you from Cancun to Tulum, though we recommend booking your taxi in advance from a reputable company to get the best deal.
In fact, regular taxis are not allowed inside the airport space. The taxis at Cancun airport pay a fee so that they can operate – and will charge horrifically high prices if you don’t organize your transport in advance.
It’ll cost you around $60-$70 and take around 90 minutes to get to the town.
One of the easiest ways to travel between Cancun International Airport and Tulum is via a bus – don’t worry, this one is modern AF and decked out with A/C. The route takes you through Cancun, Puerto Morelos, Playa del Carmen, and Tulum, before continuing then on towards Merida.
To Tulum, buses run frequently between 10:55am and 9:45pm daily, costing around $15 for a one-way trip and departing from Terminals 2, 3, and 4. This makes it a lot cheaper (and easier) than flagging down a taxi or renting your own car.
It does, however, mean you need to figure out how you get from the bus station in Tulum (located in Centro) to your hotel.
If you’re already in the center of Cancun, head to the ADO bus station between Tulum Avenue and Uxmal Avenue where buses depart sporadically throughout the day. View the full timetable here.
If you’re really looking to save some cash, consider taking a Colectivo from Cancun Airport to Tulum. But, hang on, what even is a Colectivo? Think of them as public minivan taxis where you can hop on and get from A to B for a ridiculously cheap price.
Now, it’s safe to say that these Colectivos are far from glamorous (perhaps don’t opt for one if you’re spending your honeymoon in Tulum), but they are reliable.
You’ll need to take two Colectivos if you’re traveling from Tulum to Cancun: One from Cancun to Playa del Carmen, followed by another from Playa Carmen to Tulum.
In terms of timetables, they depart when they are full and run very regularly every day. You can travel from Cancun to Tulum for as little as $4 in just over two hours.
How to Get To Tulum From Playa del Carmen
If you’re traveling to Tulum from the nearby coastal town of Playa del Carmen, the easiest way is to go by ADO Bus.
The bus station in Playa del Carmen is on 5th Avenue and Benito Juarez, with vehicles departing fairly frequently throughout the day.
Though, if you’re looking to travel very late at night or early in the morning, it is often simpler to book a taxi in advance to avoid having to wait around.
You can check the full bus schedule here – tickets cost around $66 pesos for a one-way ticket (which is approximately $3 for the hour journey).
As we’ve already mentioned, if you’re looking to save some cash then hopping on a Colectivo is the cheapest way to travel between towns and cities in Mexico.
If you’re departing from Playa del Carmen, head towards Calle 2 between 15th and 20th Avenue, where the minivans will leave multiple times a day once full between 5am and 11pm.
This will only cost you around $2 for the journey.
How to Get from Cozumel to Tulum
Spending a few days on the island of Cozumel before continuing your Mexican vacation in Tulum? Whilst there aren’t any direct ways of transferring to Tulum, it’s fairly simple to travel between the two.
First of all, you’ll need to take the ferry to Playa del Carmen – this takes around 45 minutes and costs $7. Or you can splurge on the luxury option and get there in half the time for $10.
From Playa del Carmen, you’ll just need to pick one of the options from above to get to Tulum. The entire journey takes approximately 2 hours, depending on how long you’re left waiting for a bus or Colectivo to depart.
Getting to Tulum, Mexico: Practical Tips
The closest main airport to Tulum is Cancun International Airport, just 90 minutes away by car. Though, if you’re traveling during peak tourist season (November-April), expect heavy traffic and a longer transfer time.
If you’re looking to get to Tulum from Cancun, we strongly recommend that you hire a car – it’s relatively cheap and gives you the opportunity to travel straight to your destination.