14 of the best family hotels in Mexico

White sands and warm Caribbean ocean have made Cancun on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula one of the most popular tourist hotspots on the planet. But there’s far more to the country than the Hotel Zone in Cancun and the wider Riviera Maya. Incredibly friendly (and a relatively safe destination), Mexico is a land of contrasts, with gleaming modern hotels alongside the remains of Mayan, Aztec and other ancient civilisations.

From Baja California down to Oaxaca on the Pacific side and right along the Caribbean coastline, there’s a dazzling selection of accommodation options, from designer boutiques to giant resorts. Inland, tourists can find sprawling red rock canyons and verdant jungles, while Mexico City is one of the most underrated global capitals. The country’s hospitality and food are world class, with many hotels and resorts presenting activities and tours that families can enjoy together, or for kids to take on while parents sip a poolside tequila or two. 

Main photo: Sunscape Akumel Beach Resort, Quintana Roo (British Airways Holidays)

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1. One&Only Mandarina, Nayarit

Best for coastal views 
Nature rules at this secluded sanctuary on the Riviera Nayarit. Treetop and cliffside villas, each with their own plunge pool, look out over the rugged Pacific coast, with more sea views at the open-air restaurants, including Carao from Enrique Olvera of Mexico City’s renowned Pujol. The KidsOnly club, designed by Oscar-winning art director Brigitte Broch (Moulin Rouge!, Romeo + Juliet), has a 42,000 sq ft jungle playground with treehouses, climbing walls, and nature trails. Families can swim at two beaches, take jungle hikes or horse rides, or just drink in magnificent views from the swimming pools. 

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price £££ 

NIZUC Resort & Spa (Expedia)

2. NIZUC Resort & Spa, Cancun

Best for chilled vibe
Cancun’s Hotel Zone isn’t the most soulful place but there’s a feeling of calm across this 29-acre oceanfront resort. With sleek, Asian-influenced style, an Espa-branded spa and its own private beach, it’s a place where you can take it easy, helped along by the fact that kids will always be well fed; NIZUC’s six restaurants, including Ramona (Mexican), Ni (Peruvian), and Terra Nostra (Mediterranean, including wood-fired pizza), are exceptional. As well as Winik’s Kids’ Club, there’s a separate Teens’ Lounge, and paddleboarding, snorkelling and sea kayaking available at the beach. 

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y 
Price £££

Best hotels in Cancun

Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico City, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico (Expedia)

3. Gran Hotel Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico City

Best for Mexico City’s historic centre 
The art nouveau interior and stained glass ceiling might look familiar — this is the hotel James Bond (Daniel Craig) rode in an old-school lift in Spectre’s opening Day of the Dead sequence. (Timothy Dalton’s Bond also met Q here in Licence To Kill.) Aside from a bit of Bond-age, the reason to stay at this grand hotel is the central location. Balcony rooms and fifth floor La Terraza Restaurant look over the Zocalo, the main plaza that’s the beating heart of the city, with the Metropolitan Cathedral, museums, galleries, and ancient Templo Mayor pyramid within walking distance. 

Kids’ club N
Pool N
Price £

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4. Hotel Esencia, Tulum

Best for private beach 
Originally built for a wealthy duchess, this whitewashed luxury hotel’s suites and villas are surrounded by jungle in a self-contained 30-acre estate, a world apart from the crowds of Playa del Carmen and Tulum. Guests can bask in peace on private Xpu-Ha beach, one of the Caribbean coast’s finest, and meet sea turtles while snorkelling or scuba-diving. Several rooms and suites are interconnecting, and the enormous garden cottages are spot-on for families, with their own pool, multimedia room, bar and chef. Kids are welcome at daily sunrise yoga sessions.  

Kids’ club N
Pool Y
Price £££

Best hotels in Tulum

Zadun, Baja California Sur, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Zadun (Booking.com)

5. Zadun, San Jose del Cabo

Best for not lifting a finger
Set on sloping dunes, minutes from downtown San Jose del Cabo, this Ritz-Carlton Reserve’s stylish rooms, suites and villas mainly come with their own plunge pool and Sea of Cortez views. There’s a 27-hole golf course, as well as four swimming pools and an outdoorsy Ambassadors of the Environment family program created by Jean-Michel Cousteau, including turtle-tracking and birdwatching. Service is impeccable, not least at the three restaurants — El Barrio (Mexican), Humo (open fire), Equil (seafood)  — and every room and suite has its own private attendant, or Tosoani (dream watcher). 

Kids’ club Y 
Pool Y
Price £££

Occidental at Xcaret Destination, Quintana Roo, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Occidental at Xcaret Destination (Tui)

6. Occidental at Xcaret Destination, Cancun

Best for theme parks
Ready to fly through rings of fire? Six miles south of lively Playa del Carmen, this all-inclusive hotel has a man-made cove and private beach, seven swimming pools and 11 restaurants. Children can take part in daily activities, including snorkelling and hiking. Best of all, the hotel is close to seven popular adventure parks nearby (Xcaret, Xplor, Xplor Fuego and more), which contain Mayan ruins, underground caverns, jungle trails, ziplining (including ziplining at night through a torch-lit course), snorkelling, river rafting and plenty more to fill active days. Book an Unlimited Xcaret Xperience package for unlimited access.  

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price £££ 

Best things to do in Cancun

Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas, Baja California Sur, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos (Booking.com)

7. Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas

Best for active holidays
Tempting as it might be to kick back at this luxury resort in Costa Palmas on the East Cape of Los Cabos, where there’s an Oasis spa, five restaurants, and an 18-hole golf course, this is also a fine spot for active types. The hotel provides four swimming pools, two miles of swimmable beach, and a bunch of beach activities, including volleyball, wake-surfing, and jet-skiing, while the kids’ club has arts, crafts, and outdoor activities, from basketball to pickleball. The Adventure Concierge team also arrange days out, including hikes, ATV tours, whale-watching and scuba.

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price £££

Is it safe for tourists to travel to Tulum and Cancun?

Rosewood Mayakoba, Quintana Roo, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Rosewood Mayakoba (Expedia)

8. Rosewood Mayakoba, Cancun

Best for multi-generational stays
At the Mayakoba complex, between Cancun and Playa del Carmen, you’ll find lush jungle, lagoons and waves crashing on white sand. Here, the Rosewood has elegant, interconnecting suites, each with a private plunge pool, for up to eight people, including Beachfront Studio Suites where guests can step right out onto the sand, good for large families and multi-generational groups. Service, including private butlers, is thoughtful and personalised. The boat tour of the waterways is highly recommended to see iguanas, turtles, crocodiles and colourful birds. Families will also enjoy La Ceiba Garden & Kitchen’s alfresco dining. 

Kid’s club
Pool
Prices £££ 

Best beaches in Tulum and Cancun

9. Hotel Rodavento, Valle de Bravo 

Best for forest fun
One for nature-loving families, Hotel Rodavento has private treehouse casitas within a 55-acre forest near Valle de Bravo, one of Mexico’s “Magic Towns”, a couple of hours outside Mexico City. The daily kids’ club organises outdoor adventures, including mountain biking, abseiling, climbing, archery, SUP and fishing, with the restaurant’s chef on-hand to cook your catch. There are two tranquil outdoor swimming pools, one for families. Further afield, the concierge can arrange sailing expeditions on Lake Avandaro, paragliding or hikes such as the trail to Bridal Veil waterfall. 

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price ££ 

Hotel Mirador, Chihuahua, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Hotel Mirador (Booking.com)

10. Hotel Mirador, Chihuahua

Best for canyon views and adventures
Like an eagle’s nest, only pinker, this design hotel is perched high above the spectacular Copper Canyon in the northern state of Chihuahua, close to Chepe station on the Chihuahua al Pacifico railroad, one of the world’s greatest rail journeys. Each room has a wooden-beamed ceiling, a fireplace and a terrace looking out onto colourful cliffs and the Sierra Madre, with more canyon views from the Mexican restaurant and Eagle’s Nest bar. Adventurous families should head to nearby Copper Canyon Adventure Park for the cable car and zipline course.

Kids’ club N
Pool N
Price £ 

Grand Velas Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Grand Velas Riviera Maya (British Airways Holidays)

11. Grand Velas Riviera Maya, Cancun

Best for culinary journeys 
One of the Riviera Maya’s top all-inclusives, this enclosed luxury resort occupies 206 acres of jungle, mangrove and white sand, with smart, spacious suites and the family-friendly main pool looking out onto the Caribbean. Foodie families will relish working their way around eight restaurants, from French to pan-Asian. Fine dining restaurant Cocina de Autor serves original creations with Mexican ingredients like cactus and poblano chilli, while Azul has a seafood-rich buffet and ocean views. Another standout is Frida, dedicated to the artist/national hero, serving classic Mexican dishes alongside vegan tacos. 

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price £££

Hotel Maya Bell, Chiapas, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Hotel Maya Bell (Booking.com)

12. Hotel Maya Bell, Chiapas

Best for monkey magic 
A welcoming hotel in Chiapas with colourful gardens and an atmospheric, tropical jungle setting, especially in the misty mornings, this is the closest place to stay to the Mayan ruins of Palenque — less famous than Chichen Itza but a similarly impressive step back in time. The hotel’s swimming pool is surrounded by trees, with vocal howler monkeys providing an evocative soundtrack. Guests can experience a traditional Mayan temazcal in the sweat lodge, and arrange day trips to local waterfalls, wildlife and birdwatching tours, or visits to more remote Yaxchilan and Bonampak ruins. 

Kids’ club N
Pool
Price £ 

Sunscape Akumel Beach Resort, Quintana Roo, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Sunscape Akumel Beach Resort (British Airways Holidays)

13. Sunscape Akumel Beach Resort, Tulum

Best for Jurassic worlds
This fun, four-star, all-inclusive in Akumel, one of the Riviera Maya’s less well-known resorts, has 11 swimming pools and an Explorer’s Club with arts and crafts, movie nights and sandcastle competitions. Teens, meanwhile, have access to video games, pool and football tables, and films. Recently added Rex Dino Land features water slides, sprinklers, a playground, a family game room with arcade games, and towering toothsome dinosaur models, including T-Rex. There are “living dinosaurs” in the ocean too; Akumel is one of the coast’s best spots to snorkel with green turtles. 

Kids’ club Y  
Pool Y
Price £

Villas Carrizalillo, Oaxaca, is one of the best family hotels in Mexico
Villas Carrizalillo (Booking.com)

14. Villas Carrizalillo, Oaxaca

Best for surf and sunsets
Down in Mexico’s south-west corner, minutes from Puerto Escondido, this clifftop boutique resort has just 12 villas, each looking over the beautiful bay of Playa Carrizalillo. Popular Zicatela beach, ten minutes away, is more suited to hardcore board-masters; but Carrizalillo’s gentler conditions suit surf lessons for all the family, including beginners. The hotel can arrange horse rides, Oaxacan cooking classes, and dolphin-watching trips. But every evening you’ll want to be back at your villa or Restaurante Espadin, which serves seafood-heavy Mexican dishes, to watch the sun go down over the Pacific. 

Kids’ club Y
Pool Y
Price £ 

Best hotels with swim-up rooms in Mexico

Best hotels in Mexico

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