If you’re looking for the life and soul of Playa Del Carmen, you can do a lot worse than by exploring the sights, the smells and the sounds of 5th Avenue. With a pedestrian route running parallel to the beach, this really is the place to find the action. Restaurants, shops and bars line 5th Avenue, making it one of the more popular parts of Playa Del Carmen for tourists and locals. Expect hustle and bustle as well as a lovely atmosphere. Whether you’re staying nearby or within the confines of an all inclusive resort, 5th Avenue is certainly worth an excursion or two. Street performers and street food make this a street that is simply not to be missed.
Where to start?
5th Avenue runs all the way through Playa Del Carmen before continuing out of the town centre. A great many of the attractions along 5th Avenue are congregated along the South side, and so this is perhaps the perfect place to start. Brace yourself though, and make sure you have on some decent footwear, as what lies ahead is 22 blocks of non stop shopping and eating opportunities. It can be useful to break down your visits to 5th Avenue into smaller chunks and spread it out over a few days, as the sheer number of retailers and vendors can be a little overwhelming at times.
Parque Fundadores on 5th Avenue
Somewhat of a hidden gem along 5th Avenue is one of the original areas of Playa Del Carmen, called Parque Fundadores. This has developed over the yours, especially after periods of tourist boom, into one of the most exciting parts of 5th Avenue, packed full of an array of different tourist attractions. You can expect to see a recently refurbished children’s’ play area, as well as excellent disability access down to the beach, something which isn’t commonplace in this part of the world. In terms of street performers, you won’t be disappointed, as Mayan dancers set the place alight in the evening, after the papantla dancers have had their moment in the sun during the day time. There is something for everyone here, including a beautiful little church that is a picture postcard image in a picture postcard location.
There really is something to suit everyone along 5th Avenue, just as there is something for every budget. A number of high end shops are congregated together, where stylish and wealthy locals like to spend their money, but there are also spots which cater specifically for the tourist trade. Everyone has been on holiday and picked up some tacky souvenirs, either for themselves or as a hilarious gift for family members. 5th avenue won’t disappoint in this area, and you will find everything to suit your eclectic tastes as you wander along the stall lined streets. The cost of shopping in Playa Del Carmen is pretty variable, but as long as you’re prepared to put the miles in, you’ll be able to find exactly what you’re looking for and at a price that makes you smile.
As a rule, the majority of the restaurants along 5th Avenue are geared towards the tourist trade, as one might expect. Naturally, this usually means that prices can be a little inflated whilst the cuisine isn’t necessarily representative of the true Mexico. There are of course Mexican restaurants, but there are many other options available if you know where to look and when to look there. If you’re looking for a more authentic local experience, you may need to wander just a little further outside of Playa Del Carmen, as this is where you will be able to find lower prices and more importantly, better quality meals. It can be very exciting to sit and people watch at one of the many restaurants along 5th Avenue, but a few restaurants just off the beaten track might be able to tempt you away from the life and soul, even if just for an hour or two.
Restaurants Worth A Visit
La Fisheria is a seafood restaurant which is incredibly popular with the locals. The menu is based on the ideas of a very famous Mexican chef, meaning that it has become a little commercialised. This said, the seafood you can get here is second to none. What makes this restaurant extra special is that as well as being authentic, it is situated right on 5th Avenue. Cub de Cerveza is a place for beer lovers to meet and drink, given that it is home to the best selection of craft beers and many lesser known Mexican beers too. With a small dining menu, you can find the perfect side dishes to go with those late afternoon beers. 500 Gramos Grill is another little gem of a restaurant along 5th Avenue itself, with the perfect combination of price and quality. Expect meat and pasta dishes, perfect for lining the stomach ahead of a night on the tequila! Chez Celine and De Local are other options towards the farther extents of 5th Avenue. A bakery and a pizza place respectively, they offer something a little different if you’re tired of the same old dish.
Playa Del Carmen
Whether you’ve visited a hundred times or are a first time visitor to this place, there will always be something for everyone along 5th Avenue in Playa Del Carmen. Indeed, even those people who are returning visitors often remark how it always seems to be changing. You can walk down one street in the morning and then again at night without knowing, such is the contrast between night and day here. The vibrancy and the atmosphere make 5th Avenue a place that simply has to be explored. Let’s face it, if you’re visiting this sort of place, you’re looking for a blend of the tacky and touristy with the authentic and affordable. The good news is that this is exactly what you’ll find when exploring 5th Avenue. You might have to walk up and down a few times to get used to the place, but once you get a taste for it you’ll be absolutely sold.