10 Best Cancun Boat Tours You Must Do in 2023

Planning a trip to Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and interested in booking a Cancun boat tour? You’ve come to the right place!

Home to miles of white sand beaches, crystal clear waters, and warm weather year-round, it’s the best place to enjoy a relaxing boat ride.

Cancun itself may be best known for its lively nightlife and party reputation, but it’s also a haven for those seeking downtime on the beach or in the water.

In fact, the weather makes Cancun an ideal location to enjoy charter fishing, glass bottom boats, catamarans, and even pirate-themed cruises!

Whether you’re looking to snorkel, view wildlife, or sip cocktails while gliding through mangrove forests, Cancun has no shortage of amazing boat tours.

Read my comprehensive guide below to learn everything you need to know about the best Cancun boat tours!

10 Best Cancun Boat Tours You Must Do in 2023
Photo from Canva

Best Cancun Boat Tours

1. Riviera Maya Luxury Sunset Sailing with Light Dinner and Open Bar

4.5⭐ 177 Reviews

If you’re looking to book an all-inclusive boat tour, this one is for you. This two-hour sunset sail will take you down the coastline of the Riviera Maya on a luxury catamaran.

Enjoy cocktails at the open bar,  and savor snacks provided by a professional crew and captain.

The tour includes pick up and drop off from most hotels in Cancun. This excursion is one of the best Cancun private tours for solo travelers and couples.

Do it! So worth it
It was so much fun. Just watching the beautiful sunset, non stop drinks, a yummy snack and fun group of people. The crew was amazing

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Sasha_M, Feb 2023

👉 Book Your Luxury Sunset Sailing Cruise on VIATOR

2. Catamaran Cruise to Isla Mujeres with Open Bar

4⭐ 1,483 Reviews

If you want to spend some serious time out on the water, look no further. This full-day catamaran cruise to Isla Mujeres from Cancun is the ultimate way to unwind.

Take in the views of the Caribbean Sea while you enjoy an open bar. You’ll dock at a private beach club for a delicious buffet lunch and have plenty of time to snorkel, swim, and shop.

You can upgrade your sail package to include hotel pick up and drop off from most properties in Cancun.

Great experience!
Great experience, kids had a great time! Crew members made sure you were safe and you enjoyed yourself

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Katie_C, Feb 2023

👉 Book Your Catamaran Isla Mujeres Tour on VIATOR

Isla Mujeres Catamaran tour
BOOK YOUR TOUR HERE – photo from Canva

3. Adult-Only Party Cruise from Cancun to Isla Mujeres

3.5⭐ 167 Reviews

Looking to leave the kids behind? This exhilarating 7-hour sail to Isla Mujeres from Cancun features an open bar and live entertainment.

You’ll take in the sights of the Caribbean’s crystal clear waters, and feel the island beat under your feet to set the party mood.

You’ll then stop to snorkel at a reef full of marine life, and have plenty of free time to shop and swim once you reach Isla Mujeres.

This party cruise includes unlimited drinks and a large buffet lunch with plenty of protein and veggies to keep you going.

Incredible Experience
We had a blast! Great crew, fun music, swimming, snorkeling, dancing and lunch on the beach! Drinks were available with ease and good quality. We had an unforgettable day on the MAR and met amazing people all out to have a fun day in the Caribbean ☀️

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Raina_P, Nov 2022

👉 Book Your Cancun to Isla Mujeres Party Cruise on VIATOR

4. Group Snorkelling Tour: Whale Shark Tour in Cancun and Riviera Maya

4.5⭐ 588 Reviews

Wildlife lovers, rejoice! On this 7-hour excursion with an expert guide, you’ll snorkel and swim with Mexican whale sharks.

In addition to getting up close and personal with the world’s largest fish, keep an eye out for dolphins, manta rays, and sea turtles.

A complimentary lunch, as well as hotel pick up and drop off, are included from Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, and Tulum.

A blessed day swimming with gentle giants
Swimming with the whale sharks and having not one show up but there was 5!!! Wow!!! To top it all off it wasn’t a busy day with many tours. Can’t wait to do It again. A blessed day.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ traveler_o, Aug 2022

👉 Book Your Whale Sharks Snorkeling Tour on VIATOR

woman swimming with whale sharks
BOOK YOUR TOUR HERE – photo from Canva

5. Isla Mujeres Catamaran Tour with Snorkelling, Open Bar, and Lunch Buffet

Explore the beautiful island of Isla Mujeres on this full-day tour from Cancun! Step aboard a stunning catamaran and head to the island of white sand and turquoise water.

You’ll spend the day relaxing on the beach and snorkeling in the protected waters of a marine park.

Before sailing back to Cancun, you’ll have access to an open bar and a buffet feast for lunch.

The tour includes complimentary hotel pickup and drop-off from most properties in Cancun.

👉 Book Your Isla Mujeres Catamaran Tour on VIATOR

6. Jungle Tour Adventure: Speed Boat Tour and Snorkelling (Shared Speed Boat)

4.5⭐ 976 Reviews

Want to experience something a bit more adventurous? Head to the Cancun jungle on a 2-passenger speedboat!

This adrenaline-pumping excursion will take you around Nichupte Lagoon with an expert guide. Once there, you’ll slow down the speed to take in the sights of the Punta Nizuc coral reef and plenty of colorful marine life. 

Several departure times are available to best suit your schedule, and snorkel gear and bottled water are also included.

Once in a life time experience
This is an amazing experience!! At first, it’s a bit scary because you have to get use to changing gears. Also, the turn are a bit scary as well. Nevertheless, the guide person is so wonderful, amazing and understanding that he makes you feel comfortable. What’s great is that the guide has patience with you in the event you are struggling or need help.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Jennifer_R, Feb 2023

👉 Book Your Jungle Tour Adventure on VIATOR

7. Cancun: Captain Hook Show and Dinner for the Family

Ahoy, ye mates! Climb abroad an 18th Century Spanish Galleon replica to experience a pirate show full of surprises, fun games, and delicious food.

Experience what it was like to be a pirate sailing the Mexican Caribbean while you enjoy an open bar with alcoholic beverages throughout the journey.

To enhance the experience, you’ll take in beautiful views of the Yucatan Peninsula as you sail along the hotel zone coastline.

Family-friendly games and non-alcoholic drinks are available for children 2 years old and above.

👉 Book Your Captain Hook Show and Dinner on VIATOR

Best Places to Visit on a Cancun Boat Tour

Isla Mujeres

Popular for its white sand beaches and sparkling turquoise waters, visiting Isla Mujeres off the coast of Cancun is a must.

One of the most beautiful areas of the Yucatan Peninsula, the island can only be accessed by boat.

Once there, you’ll find so many things to do and see including snorkeling, shopping, eating, or swimming with whale sharks.

Isla Mujeres is brimming with wildlife including dolphins, fish, sea turtles, manatees, and even sharks.

On land, enjoy a food tour with local tacos and margaritas or people-watch in the Town Square.

Riviera Maya

Akumal beach, Riviera Maya
Akumal beach, Riviera Maya – photo from Canva

The coastline from Cancun to Tulum, known as the Riviera Maya, is one of the most scenic destinations in North America.

It’s full of gorgeous cenotes, centuries-old ruins, upscale restaurants, hotels, and resorts.

Exploring the cities along the Riviera Maya by car is special, but viewing the coastline from the water is truly unforgettable.

Book a private catamaran from Cancun or check out other Cancun boat rentals to experience the magic on your vacation.


It’s not a trip to Cancun without a visit to Cozumel by boat. Cozumel is surrounded by beautiful reefs and bright turquoise waters that are perfect for snorkeling, scuba diving, or swimming.

In fact, the waters surrounding Cozumel are world-famous for prime scuba diving conditions.

The nearby Mesoamerican reef system is the second-largest reef system in the world and is home to extensive coral and marine life.

Research Cancun private boat tours to Cozumel for the best options.

Sandy beach on Cozumel island
Sandy Beach on Cozumel Island – photo from Canva

Nichupté Lagoon

On the east coast of Cancun is Nichupte Lagoon, a natural reserve and mangrove ecosystem.

The lagoon is made up of seven lakes that separate the hotel zone and downtown Cancun.

While swimming in the lagoon is forbidden, it’s a great place to cruise on a boat to view different animal species or take in a beautiful sunset.

You’ll likely witness birds, fish, crocodiles, and other reptiles.

Different types of boat tours in Cancun

1. Party Boat Cancun (Hip Hop Session, All-White Night)

If you’re looking for more adult-only experiences, Cancun will not disappoint.

Dance the day away on a hip-hop cruise along the Mexican coastline with a professional DJ.

As top R&B and hip-hop tunes play, you’ll enjoy an open bar, snacks, and champagne.

When the boat anchors, you’ll have the chance to snorkel or stay on the boat to party until the sun sets.

👉 Book Your Hip-Hop Boat Party on VIATOR

If you prefer the nightlife, party the night away aboard the All White Rockstar boat.

Departing from Cancun you’ll set sail on the Caribbean with epic views of Cancun at night.

Enjoy live DJs, champagne showers, and an all-you-can-drink open bar. The one rule?

You must be dressed in white from head to toe.

👉 Book Your Rockstar Boat Party on VIATOR

2. Sunset Cruise Cancun (Isla Mujeres, Private Sunset Cruise)

For a more relaxing evening, join this five-hour cruise to Isla Mujeres from Cancun or Playa del Carmen.

You’ll take in a gorgeous sunset while learning about the island’s history and its most famous monuments.

Before heading back to the marina, you’ll enjoy some beach time paired with live music from a saxophonist.

👉 Book Your Isla Mujeres Sunset Cruise on VIATOR

Isla Mujeres sunset cruise on catamaran
BOOK YOUR TOUR HERE – photo from Canva

A shorter but more luxurious option is to charter a private, stylish 38-foot yacht. You and up to four guests will be served beverages as you take in the views of the surrounding beach and jungle landscapes.

This two-hour sail does not include alcoholic beverages or docking fees.

👉 Book Your Private Sunset Cruise on VIATOR

3. Cancun Catamaran Tours (Puerto Morelos, Private Isla Mujeres Tour)

Catamaran cruises are a fun and comfortable way to take to the seas. On this four-hour cruise to Puerto Morelos, you’ll enjoy unlimited drinks and beautiful views of the coastline.

You’ll gain access to a secret sander where you can swim or try your hand at stand-up paddle boarding.

Before heading back to Cancun, you’ll savor a delicious lunch and have plenty of time to relax.

This small group tour is family-friendly and includes towels, paddle boards, showers, and pickup and drop-off from most hotels.

👉 Book Your Puerto Morelos Cruise on VIATOR

If you prefer a more private experience, this half-day sail from Cancun is the perfect option.

With your own private catamaran, you can have your captain take you to Isla Mujeres or other destinations around the bay.

You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy snorkeling at the coral reef, lounging on the beach, or relaxing on the catamaran’s deck.

The boat can accommodate up to nine people and includes unlimited drinks and the use of snorkel equipment.

👉 Book Your Private Half-Day Cruise on VIATOR

4. Yacht Tour Cancun (Sport Yacht Charter)

5⭐ 11 Reviews

To revel in the ultimate lap of luxury, book this relaxing yacht charter. On this four-hour private cruise, you’ll savor cocktails on its lavish sun deck and admire stunning views of the Caribbean.

Once on Isla Mujeres, you can snorkel the awe-inspiring reef of El Meco and paddle board at Playa Notre.

It’s been named one of the most beautiful beaches in the world!

You and up to 13 other guests can personalize your first-class service including which beverages and delicacies are served throughout the cruise.

Absolutely amazing experience!
A group of 9 of us – 3 families and 3 kids. We had an absolutely amazing time – the crew are brilliant. Nothing is too much trouble. The boat is great and the stop at Isla Mujeres is beautiful. They organised our transfers and food/alcohol which made it perfect! My daughter left a pair of sunnies in the taxi and they were kind enough to drop them back to us the next day. I genuinely coops t recommend this trip more.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Jodie_H, Feb 2023

👉 Book Your Sport Yach Charter on VIATOR

Sailing boat in the Caribbean
BOOK YOUR TOUR HERE – photo from Canva

5. Cancun Dinner Cruise (Columbus)

5⭐ 4 Reviews

One of the most romantic dinner cruises in Cancun is aboard the Spanish-style galleon ship, Columbus.

Enjoy complimentary fine wine, light sax music, and an indulgent meal of surf’ n’ turf or lobster under candlelight.

Feel the warm breeze as you sail past the Nichupte Lagoon and take in a vibrant sunset to end a perfect evening.

This cruise lasts two and a half hours and does not include docking fees.

👉 Book Your Romantic Dinner Cruise on VIATOR

6. Glass Bottom Boat Tours Cancun (Cancun Underwater Museum of Art)

4⭐ 6 Reviews

Even if you’re a non-swimmer, you’re sure to love this underwater glass-bottom boat tour!

The perfect activity for families and young kids, you can discover Caribbean marine life at the Punta Nizuc reef, Cancun Underwater Museum of Art, and the Nichupte Lagoon.

Without getting wet, watch colorful fish, fascinating plants, different corals and sunken sculptures float by.

Snacks and refreshments are offered on board, and free-flowing beer is available for adults of the legal drinking age.

Hotel pickup and drop off and reef preservation fees are not included.

Clear boat fun
This was a great experience our tour guys was the bomb.com The view was beautiful and our photographer did a great job.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ chiquita_w, Sep 2022

👉 Book Your Glass Bottom Boat Tour on VIATOR

Underwater sculptures in MUSA Cancun

7. Pirate Cruise Cancun (Captain Hook Show)

4⭐ 1,266 Reviews

Take a three-hour pirate cruise and step into the world of swashbuckling on a Spanish galleon ship!

During the cruise, you’ll enjoy a gourmet dinner as you hear old pirate tales, dance, and watch a live-action battle.

The experience includes an open bar, air-conditioned indoor seating, and an open-air dance floor and deck.

A unique experience with amazing staff
Hard working staff, they all went above and beyond to make sure everyone had a great time. It was funny and action packed, and had a lot of dancing at the end

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Paige_F, Feb 2023

👉 Book Your 3-hour Private Cruise on VIATOR

8. Family-Friendly Boat Tours Cancun (Whale Shark Tour and Snorkelling)

Fulfill your dream of swimming with Mexican whale sharks on this full-day group snorkeling tour from Playa del Carmen.

Alongside an expert guide, you’ll swim with the world’s largest fish and perhaps even dolphins, manta rays, and sea turtles.

Savor a local lunch on the boat as you take in the views of Playa Norte. Complimentary hotel pickup and drop off are included from most Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, and Tulum hotels.

👉 Book this family-friendly whale shark boat tour on VIATOR

Should you go on a private boat tour or on a group tour?

Isla Mujeres boats on the beach
Photo from Canva

Choosing to go on a private or group boat tour is completely up to you! If you’re looking for a more personalized experience and one-on-one time with an expert guide, a private tour might be your best option.

If you prefer to meet other travelers or are traveling with family or a large group, you may enjoy a small group tour.

Either way, there are so many Cancun excursions to choose from that you are bound to have a great time.

Boat rentals in Cancun (46ft private yacht, 48ft premium yacht)

Live out your dreams of having your own private yacht without breaking the bank. Sail on the sleek and stylish Sea Ray yacht for a short trip to Cancun Bay or a longer trip to Isla Mujeres.

Enjoy snorkeling stops with provided equipment, along with unlimited water and Coca-Cola products.

Sails can accommodate up to 15 passengers and does not include alcoholic beverages or dock fees.

If the first option is sold out, don’t worry. There is another similar option for the same price but with a larger yacht!

You can choose between several different options for tour length (2, 4, or 6 hours) according to your group’s needs.

You can go snorkeling, sunbathe, or simply take in the views. It’s perfect for bachelor or bachelorette parties and small groups and includes snorkeling equipment and non-alcoholic beverages.

Gratuities, alcoholic beverages, and dock fees are not included.

👉 Book Your 46ft or 48ft Private Yacht on VIATOR

Boat rides in Cancun FAQ

Playa Del Carmen catamaran sailing
Playa del Carmen – photo from Canva

What’s the best month for a Cancun Boat Tour?

The weather in the Yucatan Peninsula is great year-round, but the best time to take a Cancun boat tour is during the dry season (November to April).

This is before the start of the Atlantic Hurricane season, meaning heavy rainfall and storms are rare.

Aside from some short bursts of rain due to its subtropical climate, the weather in Cancun during these months is mostly sunny.

It’s the perfect time to soak up the sun and cool off with a refreshing swim or snorkel.

Plus, there’s less likelihood of bad weather ruining your day on the water.

How long do Cancun boat trips take? 

This depends on the tour company and the type of excursions your particular boat tour takes you on.

Some sunset tours with an open bar last only two hours, while more extensive boat tours that include lunch or stops at multiple sites last 5-7 hours.

Make sure you know the details of the tour prior to booking, including activities and complimentary services.

Regardless of the length of the tour, it’s usually smart to bring sunscreen and some bottled water, especially if neither is complimentary.

How much does a boat trip cost in Cancun? 

The cost also depends on the tour company, the length of the boat trip, and the amenities that are included.

Some basic boat tours that only include the boat ride itself can cost between $50 and $70 USD per person.

More extensive boat tours that include transportation and lunch can cost between $70 and $150 per person.

A private boat or catamaran tour can cost anywhere from $150 for one hour to $1700 USD for an entire day.

catamaran sailing in the Caribbean
Catamaran sailing in the Caribbean – photo from Canva

How to book boat trips in Cancun?

If you want to book a boat trip, there are endless options! From charter fishing in Cancun to private Cancun boat rentals, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

The best way to plan a Cancun excursion is to research options and reviews on blogs (such as this one!) and book through certified tour providers such as Get Your Guide, Viator, or other reputable companies.

Tips for going on a Cancun boat tour

Know the type of experience you want prior to booking your boat tour. Read the reviews of people who have taken the tour, and pay attention to amenities that are included and ones that cost extra.

Finally, make sure you note the length of the tour to make sure you have enough time to relax and fully enjoy it!

Other Frequently Asked Questions When Traveling to Cancun

What are the best tours in Cancun?

Beyond the incredible boat tour options, there are plenty of other activities you can enjoy – both on land and at sea!

A few of the most popular tours in and around Cancun include half-day tours to Chichen Itza, full-day tours to the Tulum Archeological Site, and ATV jungle adventure and zip line tours.

If relaxation is what you crave, you can book a food and drink tour, or spend a day on the beach at Paradise Islands.

What are the best tours in Cancun for kids?

Other than the Captain Hook Show and Dinner, there are numerous other tours that offer plenty of Cancun fun for kids!

Isla Mujeres is a great spot to spend a day with kids. You can take the ferry over to enjoy a relaxing lunch, shop at the many boutique stores, or swim with dolphins and manatees.

You can also explore Xcaret to zip line, explore underground caverns, or drive amphibious vehicles through the jungle.

woman swimming in Xcaret Lagoon
Xcaret Lagoon, Mexico – photo from Canva

Visiting Ventura Park is also a great way to cool off with wave pools, waterslides, zip lines, and roller coasters.

What are the best day trips and excursions from Cancun?

Cancun is in close proximity to beautiful cenotes, idyllic islands, Mayan ruins, and stunning beaches.

This makes taking a day trip outside of the city by rental car or guided tour very convenient.

Some of the most popular destinations for day trips from Cancun include Isla Mujeres, Tulum, Playa Del Carmen, and Cozumel.

Many of these destinations include opportunities to swim in cenotes, explore historic ruins, or lounge on white sandy beaches.

A few lesser-known destinations that are also worth making a day trip to include Sian Ka’an, Akumal, Ek Balam, and Valladolid.

These destinations often have fewer crowds and offer plenty of authentic restaurants and eclectic beaches.

woman walking on the beach in Cancun
Photo from Canva

What are the best outdoor activities to do in Cancun?

If you’re a lover of the outdoors, Cancun is the place to be. From snorkeling and swimming to hiking and zip lining, there are endless ways to enjoy the natural beauty of the Yucatan Peninsula.

A few of the most popular outdoor activities include ATV rides, jungle zip-lining, cenote swims, and shipwreck snorkeling.

It doesn’t stop there, however.

Other outdoor activities that you shouldn’t pass up include parasailing, horseback riding, and speed boating.

If you want to relax, beach lounging, dining al fresco, or visiting a rooftop bar are all great choices.

What are the best indoor activities in Cancun during the rainy season?

There are many family-friendly indoor activities in Cancun that are perfect to enjoy on a hot or rainy day.

This includes shopping, upscale dining, food tours, live entertainment, and museums.

Some favorite indoor activities include the Interactive Aquarium at the Isla Vista Shopping Mall and the Museo Maya de Cancun.

The Interactive Aquarium is a great pastime for kids with touch tanks, fish tanks, and a dolphin habitat.

The Museo Maya de Cancun houses more than 400 pieces of important Mayan artifacts including sculptures, jewelry,

If all else fails, you can spend the day shopping around one of Cancun’s many malls and markets.

If you’re hungry, book a food tour to taste your way through the city with tacos and margaritas.

Final thoughts: Cancun boat tours

Booking a boat tour when in Cancun is an absolute must. Not only is it a way to enjoy different perspectives of the Yucatan Peninsula’s coastline, but it’s also safe, affordable, and fun!

With varying departure times, activities, and lengths of sails, you can find the tour that fits your schedule and interests perfectly.