Visit Puerto Morelos

Puerto Morelos A to Z

Useful Information

 

 Distances | Electricity | Language | Weather | Time | Transportation | Documentation  

Plants & Wildlife | Phones | Tips

 

 

Attractions 
Puerto Morelos is a nature lover’s paradise. The great Maya reef is located 500 m off the shore and offers exceptional diving and snorkeling. The mangroves in back of the town are home to hundreds of species of birds and a variety of wildlife. You can get up close and personal with some of the local animals at Crococun and find out more about the flowers and plants in the region at the nearby Dr. Alfredo Barrera Marín Botanical Garden. Snorkeling (note: link to Almost Heavens tours) tours and scuba diving tours are offered by a number of outfits in town as well as tours to the jungles  you can explore the local cenotes.

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Business Hours
Many of the stores maintain the traditional Mexican hours: open from 10 am to 1, closed for lunch and siesta and re-opened from 5 until 9 pm. Puerto Morelos is home to many artists and artisans who sell their work in the stores. On the weekends there is an open-air market called a tianguis where you can buy art and crafts directly from the makers.

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Weather 
Because it’s on the water’s edge, Puerto Morelos gets those ocean breezes and is always a few degrees cooler than the bigger cities like Cancun and Playa del Carmen. The hottest time of year is from end of April until mid-May. It heats up again in July and August with temperatures as high as 34°C (110° F). September to the end of November is the rainy season with late afternoon downpours. Hurricane season officially starts in June, lasting to the end of November but the strongest winds are in the autumn months. From December until the end of April the average temperature is between 22-32° C (71-89°F) with occasional cold spells that drop the temperature to a chilly 18° C (65° F). Puerto enjoys 258 sunny days per year.  Average daily maximum and minimum temperatures: 
Season Temperature
January-March 68-86°F (20-30°C)
April-June 71-89°F (22-32°C)
July-September 75-91°F (24-33°C)
October-December 68-87°F (20-31°C)

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Currency  
The official currency is the Mexican peso. The rate of exchange against the US and Canadian dollar fluctuates daily. Most of the stores will accept American dollars.  See Mexican Money on Visit Cancun.com.

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Documentation  
American and Canadian visitors can enter Mexico with a valid passport or with a birth certificate accompanied by photo ID. Travelers from other countries may need a visa. Minors traveling alone or with one parent need notarized consent from the other parent. In addition, visitors must carry a Mexican Tourist Permit, which is issued free of charge upon arrival. Tourist Permits issued in Quintana Roo are good for only 30 days and if you plan to stay longer you will have to visit the Immigration Office to apply for an extension (about $15 per person). If you lose your Tourist Permit, you can obtain a copy or permission to leave the country from the Immigration office located in downtown Cancun or Playa del Carmen. Departure Tax is approximately US $17 (before you leave home check with your travel agent or airline to see if the departure tax has been included in your ticket price). Children under two are exempt.

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Distance from Puerto Morelos 

To Cancun

To Puerto Juarez

To Punta Sam

To Playa del Carmen 

To Puerto Aventuras 

To Akumal 

To Tulum

To Xcaret 

To Xel-Há 

To Xpu-Há

To Punta Allen 

To Valladolid

To Chichén Itzá 

To Merida Top

36 km

43 km

48 km

32 km

62 km

69 km

95 km

36 km

86 km

65 km

146 km

195 km

225 km

332 km

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Electricity  
The electricity standard is 110 volt AC, the same as in the US and Canada. Most of the hotels do not have three prong outlets so bring an adaptor. Brownouts and blackouts are not uncommon in the town, particularly after a heavy rainstorm. Just go with the flow, light a candle and the electricity will soon return.

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Health
Puerto has a local clinic, Central de Salud, located on the main street, opposite the high school. The doctor speaks a little English, and the hours will be posted in the window, which are usually 8 AM to 1 PM and 4 PM to 9 PM.  If the clinic is closed the doctor will post an emergency number. There is also another doctor up in the colonia at the taxi office. Hours vary. There is a pharmacy located in town and two at the highway.

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Language
Not many of the locals speak English in Puerto Morelos. Spanish and Maya are the two official languages. However, there is a large English speaking population so there will be someone around who can translate for you. If you learn the basics in Spanish (please, thank you, good day) you will receive a warm welcome from the locals.

 

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Location

Puerto Morelos is the first town located along Highway 307, 36 kilometers south of Cancun and 20 kilometers south of the Cancun International Airport. The actual town is located 2 kilometers off the highway (turn left at the first stoplight on Highway 307). There are two separate parts to Puerto Morelos: the actual city located by the water and the relatively new “colonia” (neighborhood) located north of the highway. Most of the rental units and hotels are located in the city.

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Mail  
There is a small mailbox on the wall beside La Pirata restaurant in the main square. Stamps are sold at the pharmacy. You can receive mail address to you c/o Don Chevo, Puerto Morelos, Quintana Roo, 77580, Mexico. Mail is picked at Don Chevo’s house on Avenue Nino Heroes (ask any of the locals to point you in the right direction) unless you make arrangements for him to deliver it to your residence. There is a $1.00 charge for picking up letters or having them delivered. The mail in Mexico is extremely slow and can take up to six weeks for delivery.  

E-mail can be done at the computer store or travel agency opposite the church. Prices are higher than what you would normally pay in Cancun or Playa del Carmen.

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Money  
There are two exchange booths on the main square and another at the highway. They offer competitive rates. There is one ATM machine at the highway beside the pharmacy opposite the cash station. There are no banks in Puerto.

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Nightlife  
At night, Puerto lives up to its affectionate nickname of Muerto Morelos (Dead Morelos). Puerto has no late night discos, clubs or bars and that’s the way locals prefer it. Nighttime activity here is dining at one of the local restaurants, meeting people in the square or visiting friends at home. That’s not to say that Puerto doesn’t party. There are monthly dances held with live bands that last until the wee hours and almost all major holidays are celebrated with some kind of fiesta such as the Carnival’s five-day non-stop party.

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Plants and Wildlife  
Puerto Morelos harbors a remarkable biodiversity, nestled between the mangroves and the coral reefs just offshore. You can expect to discover hundreds of bird and animal species along with 1200 different kinds of plants species including 150 different varieties of orchids. In the water expect to see 2,500 marine species including 500 hundred species of multicolored tropical fish.  

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Population  
The combined population totals around 2,000.

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Time  
Puerto Morelos follows Eastern Standard Time and practices daylight savings time. The International 24 hour clock is often used. See the following chart for a quick calculation:  13:00 = 1 PM, 14:00 = 2 PM, 15:00 = 3 PM, 16:00 = 4 PM, 17:00 = 5 PM, 18:00 = 6 PM, 19:00 = 7 PM, 20:00 = 8 PM, 21:00 = 9 PM, 22:00 = 10 PM, 23:00 = 11 PM, 24:00 = 12 Midnight.

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Tips and Taxes 
Gratuities are not included in the restaurant bill. Usually 15% to 20 % is the standard tip. Do remember that most of the wait staff lives off their tips, as salaries in Mexico are quite low. Many of the stores will not charge IVA (value added tax) if you pay cash.

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Telephones
Puerto Morelos has a number of telephones located throughout the town that use electronic telephone cards. The cards, called LADATEL, are sold at the local pharmacy in blocks of $3, 5, 10 and 20 ($30, 50, 100 and 200 pesos). This is the cheapest way to call home, as long distance charges in Mexico are still prohibitive. To call Puerto Morelos from the US or Canada dial 011 (int'l access code) + 52 (Mexico's country code) + 987 (Puerto’s area code) + the local number. To call Canada and the US from Puerto dial 00 + 1 + area code + local number.  To dial local calls dial 87 + the local number. There is also a Larga Distancia Office located beside Bruno’s restaurant.

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Transportation
 Buses to Cancun stop at the southern bus stop located on Highway 307 by the taxi stand. Buses to Playa del Carmen stop on the northern side of Highway 307, next to the pharmacy. To travel to northern destinations you must transfer buses in Cancun; Playa del Carmen is the transfer point for southern points. One-way trips to Cancun or Playa del Carmen cost approximately $1.20. There are no buses from the highway into the village or vice a versa. You must take a taxi to reach the village. Prices start at $2.00. The village is small enough that you can walk to most places but the taxis also service the village. Some of the hotels and agencies in town rent bicycles by the day or by the hour. Car rentals are best arranged from the airport or from one of the rental agencies in Cancun.

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