With three days to discover Cozumel, go beyond the basics to see a side of the island many visitors overlook. After you take in perfect beaches, candy-colored reefs, and the party scene, ditch the crowds to ride jungle trails, fly through the treetops, and discover ancient Maya ruins. Here’s how.
El Mirador Lookout
Head to the lookout tower to watch giant waves crash against the rocky coast, soak up sun on a small sandy beach, explore sun-warmed tidal pools, or hike along the shore. Due to its remote location, El Mirador lookout is a good place to spot seabirds and other wildlife. Some Cozumel island tours—including private and wheelchair-accessible excursions—call on this wild lookout point, and often visit other local attractions such as tequila factories and flea markets.
Things to Know Before You Go
El Mirador lookout is not a swimming beach. Waves and currents here can be dangerous.
It’s a good idea to wear closed-toe shoes with sufficient traction for climbing on the rock formations.
This part of Cozumel is relatively undeveloped, so there aren’t many service areas nearby. Bring food, water, and other necessities with you.
Parking at the beach is free.
How to Get There
El Mirador lookout is located on the eastern side of Cozumel, in the Quintana Roo region of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. The beach lies roughly 20 miles (30 kilometers) southeast of San Miguel, the island’s main city. Taxis, rental cars, and scooters are popular ways to travel on the small island.
When to Get There
You can visit El Mirador year-round but it’s busiest from December through April, when the weather tends to be sunny and warm. There are fewer crowds during hurricane season (May through October), but be sure to check the weather for storms.
What to See Near El Mirador
Don’t-miss spots on Cozumel’s eastern side include Paradise Café, Chen Rio beach and restaurant, and Coconuts Bar & Grill—a restaurant with panoramic views of the rocky coastline. Punta Sur Eco Beach Park is a must-see wilderness spot on the island’s southern reaches—an area with expansive beaches, rich coral reefs, and wetlands home to crocodiles and migratory birds.
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- Cozumel Reefs National Marine Park
- Columbia Reef
- Paradise Reef (Paraíso Reef)
- Cozumel Cruise Port
- Tormentos Reef
- Santa Rosa Wall
- Palancar Reef
- Playa Palancar
- The Mayan Cacao Company
- Playa Mia Grand Beach Park
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- San Gervasio Mayan Ruins
- Punta Sur Eco Beach Park (Faro Celerain Ecological Reserve)