Unlike Playa del Carmen, 22 mi/35 km to the south, Puerto Morelos, Mexico, has retained much of its charm and tranquil village atmosphere. It's the starting point of the Riviera Maya, which runs 125 mi/200 km south along the coast. A playground dominates the main square, and fishing launches still line the town beach.
This could all change, though, as increasing numbers of Canadian and American retirees move to the area. Developers have built several large hotels and a marina along the empty white-sand beaches that stretch south of town. Puerto Morelos has a good selection of small hotels and restaurants, as well as an unremarkable handicraft market and a used-book store with titles in English.
For the time being, it remains one of the most pleasant towns on the Riviera Maya and is relatively deserted in the off-season.
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