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Tulum's beaches are among the most gorgeous on the coast, soft white sand, small coves, and plenty of clear aquamarine sea for swimming, kite-surfing, kayaking, and snorkeling. In the past, humble cabaña hotels and campgrounds dotted the coastline. Today, at least 30 small hotels claim any available space and a confounding collection of signs lines the narrow road. The drive can be confusing for first-timers trying to dodge bicyclists, pedestrians, and delivery trucks. The beach's popularity has driven prices into the stratosphere, and you'll have a hard time finding a room for less than $100 per night in high season. Several hotels now have A/C, 24-hour electricity, Wi-Fi, and freshwater pools, and old favorites like Ana y Jose have grown into full-scale resorts.

There's still a rustic feel to Tulum's beach area, though, and many beach hotels don't accept credit cards (though there's now an ATM on the beach road). Most use generators for electricity and rely on trucks to deliver fresh water. With the under-$100-a-night room on the beach approaching extinction, budget travelers are better off staying in town and making day trips to the beach. The good news is that the town's supply of comfortable and increasingly sophisticated hotels has been steadily growing.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.