So you decided to celebrate the holidays at the beach this year. You look forward to spending some uninterrupted, quality time with those who are most important to you. However, just because you’re in a different country, doesn’t mean you have to forego the festivities.
We’ve put together a list of current events happening in Playa del Carmen during the week of Christmas. We hope the information provided will give you some ideas for fun, while seeing some areas of the city you might not have thought about visiting. But our biggest wish is that these activities will help to keep you in the spirit of the season!
Taste a Marquesita at Plaza 28 de Julio(15th Avenue between Calle 8 & 10)
This city center plaza is the location of the Municipal building where residents and visitors often gather to celebrate special events. During this time of year, the park is adorned with deep, red poinsettias and is lit up with Christmas displays including a giant tree and a manger scene. Within the open courtyard at the entrance of the Palacio Municipal building is a massive, detailed mural depicting aspects of the ancient Mayan culture as well as native animals.
Throughout the park are food carts selling authentic nibbles like Marquesitas. This thin, rolled, crispy wafer-like crepe is filled with your choice of nutella or cajeta (a toffee syrup) and sometimes sprinkled with grated cheese. It is a sweet, Yucatecan treat that you can savor while strolling through the park and taking in the festive sights and sounds.
Say ‘Hi’ to Santa at Playacar Center
Located within Playacar on the south end of the city across from the hotel zone, this shopping plaza hosts many free events. On December 22nd and 23rd, grab an ice cream, check out the artisan shops and get a photo with the jolly old man in the red suit! Santa will be on-site from 7pm – 9pm.
Christmas Celebration at El Pueblito in Mayakoba
(Along the 307 Hwy 10 minutes north of Playa del Carmen)
On December 22 from 6pm – 11pm, the charming, little Mexican village within the gates of Mayakoba, will host a holiday event. Taste Christmas cuisine prepared by renowned chefs from the prestigious Mayakoba resorts. For drinks, mezcals, tequilas, wines and craft beers will be available and live music will set the festive mood.
The admission price is $100 pesos ($5USD) and the drinks are $50 pesos ($2.50US) each. If you feel inclined, you can donate a toy to the collection for disadvantaged children in nearby communities.
Hot Chocolate and People Watching at Quinta Alegria Mall(5th Avenue and Constituyentes)
Every night, the Quinta Alegria shopping center shines bright with its festive colors. Nearby stands a huge decorated tree and inside are brand name stores like Sanborns, Forever 21, Bebe, American Outfitters, and Aldo.
With ample outdoor seating at the Starbucks, this is a prime spot to take in some live entertainment scheduled almost every evening at this lively spot in the heart of the city. There are often artisan vendor booths set up as well in the center courtyard, which makes it convenient if you’d like to pick up some local, original products to take home as a souvenir.
Just around the corner from the mall, one block south on 5th Avenue, local artists set up shop along the cobblestone street. You can view the exhibit of striking paintings and photographs most evenings (except for Mondays).
The Jingle Run at Mayakoba
(Along the 307 Hwy, 10 minutes north of Playa del Carmen)
This event will make you feel good any way you look at it. It’s a 5km run through the scenic grounds of Mayakoba. The registration costs $100 pesos ($5USD), which will be donated to a local charity. Plus, after all of this exercise, you can treat yourself to an extra Lindt chocolate or helping of mashed potatoes without the guilt!
The run will take place on December 23 from 8am – 10am and all ages are welcome.
Christmas Day Buffet at Wah Wah (Calle 2 and the beach)
Every year, Wah Wah Beach Bar puts on a fantastic buffet of traditional holiday favorites. Enjoy turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, fresh bread and delicious, buttered, local chayote (in the squash family).
The holiday buffet will be on the 25th from 4pm – 7pm and the cost is $300 pesos ($15USD) per person.
Casa Sofia Christmas Eve Dinner
(Plaza Coba on Aviation Road near Playacar)
This popular eatery is serving an exquisite 4-course dinner, with your choice of cream soup, crustacean ravioli or pansotti, stuffed turkey or fillet of salmon and dessert. The price is $590 pesos ($29.50USD) per person and includes a glass of wine. For more information or reservations, please visit their web page.
Imprevist Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Dinner(1st Avenue between Calle 14 and 16)
For two days, Imprevist is offering a stuffed turkey breast dinner with cranberry sauce, brussel sprouts, mashed potatoes and gravy for a cost of $17USD.
Reservations are recommended, as tables at this delightful, intimate eatery are some of the most sought-after in town. The festive dinner will be served from 6pm 11pm on December 24th and 25th.
Christmas Eve Dinner at La Casa del Agua
(Calle 2 and 5th Avenue)
We love the elegant setting at this fine dining establishment overlooking the vibrant 5th Avenue. On the 24th of December, La Casa del Agua has put together a special menu, which includes a welcome cocktail, salad, stuffed turkey dinner and dessert.
Choose from a list of over 300 select wines from 9 countries to accompany your holiday meal. The price is $550 pesos ($27.50USD) per person and reservations are recommended.
Christmas Eve Mass
If you’re interested in going to a Christmas Eve church service, there are three masses at the Catholic church on 15th Avenue and Calle 12 at 6pm, 8pm and 10pm on the 24th. At the chapel on south end of 5th Avenue at Benito Juarez, there are also three masses at 6pm, 7pm and 8pm on the evening of the 24th.
Stay In And Celebrate With Your Loved Ones
Opting to stay in to indulge in chocolates and a Christmas movie marathon might be just what a usually insanely busy family is looking for. The majority of Bric Vacation Rentals’ homes come with a fully equipped kitchen for preparing a holiday feast with all the fixings. An added bonus? Call our friendly ambassador team to have the fridge stocked with the items you’ll need and skip the lines at the grocery store!
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a joyful, prosperous New Year from the BRIC team!
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About the Author
Juanita grew up in a small town in the middle of Canada. Having experienced twenty years of ruggedly cold climate, she had seen enough snow to last her a lifetime. After moving to and working in Vancouver for thirteen years (where she was ecstatic to see the odd palm tree) she jumped at the opportunity to move with her husband and three children to Playa del Carmen. She calls it a ‘dreamy existence’ and cherishes year-round, backyard barbecues with friends, road trips and watching the sunrise over the Caribbean. She writes for Bric Vacation Rentals.