When we planned our trip to Mexico, we knew we wanted to spend some time doing a road trip and then spend our last couple days at an all-inclusive. It is tough to compare all the hotels, but when we found Hacienda Tres Rios, it sounded like a nice eco-resort to visit, and the prices were more affordable than other hotels. The hotel is located in Playa del Carmen, just under an hour south of Cancun. We stayed there November 26-28.
We drove to Hacienda Tres Rios in our rental car, and there were plenty of signs along the main road to guide us there. We had to sign in at the main gate, where the guard looked up our name on the room list.
~ The Resort ~
We pulled up to the front and a valet took our car to a parking garage, and an attendant also took our luggage.
Tip: they don’t bring the luggage to your room until you ask for it, which can be confusing. We didn’t realize we had to call for our luggage until it hadn’t been delivered a couple hours later.
We went through a check-in process at the front desk, and then we were sat down with someone with concierge. While I appreciated the opportunity to go over things like activities we could do at the hotel, it was time consuming and also involved asking us if we wanted to go to a time share presentation. We had just arrived from a couple hours of driving and a swimming tour, so we were exhausted and hungry, so it would have been nice to postpone this part of checking in.
Our room was nice, with a small sitting area over by our balcony. We had plenty of room and there was a safe for our valuables. It was nice to have a spacious room to relax in on our vacation. Our balcony had a view of the jungle.
The resort is all very pretty, spread out through the jungle and mangroves.
~ Beach ~
One thing we knew about the resort before even booking our room: don’t go there for the beach. However, we had already spent a lot of time on the beach, and considering all the other water activities at this hotel and in the area, we were fine with that.
The beach was not great, and we never saw people swimming off the beach. You can see in the photo below that there is a dark algae along the water’s edge. This is an eco-resort, and they do not treat the water or try to remove the algae – it’s just part of the ecosystem. While we would have swam off the beach if it was nice, it wasn’t a big deal because there are so many other swimming opportunities on the property, not to mention all the swimming available off the resort property (e.g. cenotes, parks, lagoons, and beaches).
While we didn’t swim off the beach, we did a lot of walking on the beach, especially at sunset.
This is out on the tip of the jetty, looking back towards the beach and resort. You can see to the left where the shore is dark, and that’s where dark seaweed washes up. The beach itself is nice for walking around, lounging, playing volleyball, etc. To the right you can see a private beach area.
We happened to see this pelican hanging out along the jetty.
Where lagoon meets the beach, there is very pretty clear water. If you were to swim away from the beach, it takes you back towards the jungle and the cenote.
When we walked to the beach, we would see these huge iguanas sunning themselves. The kids enjoyed looking for iguanas when we visited the beach.
~ Pools ~
The kids had a blast swimming in the pools. There is an adults pool area, and this was the kids pool. One of the few disappointments that we had at the hotel is that the three jacuzzis were broken during our stay. However, the kids spent plenty of time at the pool, and it was nice to also be able to lounge around the pools and enjoy some drinks and snacks.
The pools weren’t open at night, but it was still nice to walk around the resort, enjoying the cooler evening temperatures and the beauty of the hotel grounds.
~ Tours, Cenotes, and Kayaking ~
We love exploring and wanted to check out everything the resort has to offer. You can sign up for snorkeling or kayaking, or just take the shuttle to the cenote. It is also walkable, and I would say it is about 1/2 mile from the lobby of the resort. After we finished our kayak tour, we walked around on the jungle paths a little while, and my 8 and 10 year old had no problem walking back to the resort. Tip: wear bug spray. Also, other guests warned us if you go when there has been a lot of rain, some of the boardwalk paths may end up covered with water, so wear shoes that can get wet.
The main cenote had crystal clear water for either swimming or kayaking. We did walk around the property to see other cenotes, but those are not swimmable.
You can take a snorkeling or kayaking tour, and both were very organized. My husband did the snorkeling tour and the rest of us did the kayak tour.
We had a lot of fun on the kayaking tour — maybe a little too much fun! (The kids turned it into a kayak derby!)
My husband also did a SCUBA trip, as there is a tour booth located near the beach. My 10 year old daughter actually did a SCUBA training in the pool one afternoon, and then the following day my husband went out on a tour. (My daughter did an amazing job on the training but didn’t feel ready to go out in the ocean.)
~ Kids Club ~
There is a Kid’s Club where you can leave your child, or you can take them to do particular activities. We stopped by to make some crafts, which was a nice, peaceful activity for the kids after many days of road-tripping, swimming, and hiking.
~ Food ~
The hotel is all-inclusive, so food and drinks are included, but we did tip at meals. The service was always great, with friendly hosts and very helpful waitstaff.
We mostly ate at the buffet, since we have two kids and needed the flexibility. The buffet was amazing, with different foods every day. We did also try out the pizza restaurant, which is an outdoor restaurant.
Everything we ate was great, from fruit to dinner to desserts. In addition to the buffet, there are several restaurants and also a cafe.
~ Overall ~
We had a great time at Hacienda Tres Rios. Our room was nice and spacious, and there are lots of amenities and things to do around the property. It was a nice place to visit and relax, not having to worry about where to eat or having to look for tours off the resort. The beach was not an issue for us, and we enjoyed many hours hanging out at the pool.
Visit Hacienda Tres Rios at
Our other Mexico reviews:
Our Mayan Riviera wedding
Aldea Zama condo rentals, Tulum
Avant Car Rental, Cancun
Cenotes Casa Tortuga, Tulum
Coba Ruins, Coba
Fiesta Americana Villas, Cancun
Muyil Ruins, Tulum
Hacienda Tres Rios, Playa del Carmen
Punta Laguna Nature Reserve, near Coba
Xcaret Park, Playa del Carmen and Tips for Visiting XCaret
Yal Ku Lagoon, Akumal
Zazil Kin Beach, Tulum
Disclaimer – this post is not sponsored.