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10 Things to Know BEFORE Booking an ATV Tour in Cancun

10 Things to Know BEFORE Booking an ATV Tour in Cancun

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Cancun isn’t just about partying and lounging on the gorgeous beaches – there are actually a ton of adrenaline-pumping activities to enjoy here, including ATV tours. 

That’s right – it’s the perfect place to hop on board an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and leave the Cancun resorts behind as you race through the jungle. I’ve been on a few ATV tours in Cancun now and it’s so much fun and you don’t need any experience to do it! 

What makes ATVing among the best tours in Cancun is that they usually include additional activities like ziplining, cenote swims, and even tequila tastings, so you really make the most of your day. 

However, riding ATVs can be a risky activity so it’s really important that you book the right tour with a reputable operator. I’ll take you through everything you need to know before you book your ATV tour in Cancun so that you can ride with confidence. 

Our Top Choice for an ATV Tour in Cancun

If you’re ready to get on an ATV tour right now and don’t have time to read the entire blog, we have you covered! This specific ATV tour is our personal pick for a fun-filled day. It includes a 30-minute ATV ride through the Yucatan jungle and all the best extras including ziplining, swimming in an emerald green cenote, and a tequila tasting. Transportation from Cancun is included too and all for only $65 USD. So what are you waiting for, book a spot on this popular ATV tour before it fills up

1. When is the best time to go ATVing in Cancun?

Bailey on an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
Bailey gets a little crazy on an ATV!

You can ATV in Cancun all year round, in the morning or the afternoon. It’s one of the best activities to do in Mexico no matter when you visit!

However, I do think it’s best to go in the morning during the hottest time of year, which is from December to April. It can get really hot in the afternoon, so it’s nice to get out earlier and avoid the heat. 

Hurricane season is from June to October, and although this might not sound like the best time to go, I actually think that it is! The weather is humid and the trails are wet so you get really muddy, and it’s just so much fun. 

2. What to expect on an ATV tour in Cancun? 

People ride an ATV through a puddle on a tour in Cancun, Mexico
Be prepared to get dirty!

Almost all of the ATV tours in Cancun take you to an eco-adventure park where they provide a combination of ATVing, ziplining, swimming in cenotes, and tequila tasting. Obviously, the tequila tasting comes last because alcohol and ATVs do not mix well! 

The experience lasts around 4 hours, and you often start with ziplining, although saying that, one tour that we did started us on the ATV instead. Either way, those will be your first two activities. 

The downside to doing so many activities on these tours is that you actually only get around 30 minutes of ATVing. This doesn’t sound like a lot, and for some people it may not be, but we found that it actually was enough time because we got so hot on the ATVs! 

The good thing about getting so sweaty on the ATVs is that it makes the subsequent cenote swim SO much better. The water feels incredibly refreshing! 

And then last but not least, you do the tequila tasting. This always comes last because the tour operators don’t want you drinking and driving or swimming! If your tour includes lunch, it will be at the very end of the tour after the tequila tasting. Usually, the lunch consists of tacos – yum! 

3. Do you need to book an ATV tour in Cancun in advance? 

Daniel and Bailey take a selfie while ATVing in Cancun
This tour was more of an ATV buggy, but we still loved it!

Yes, you should. ATV tours are really popular and the best tours book up in advance. All of the tours I’ve listed below are the top-rated ones in Cancun, so they book up first. 

You will be able to book less popular tours with less notice, but they’re less popular for a reason! 

Besides, with an activity like ATVing, you really do want to go with a reputable provider like Viator who takes your safety seriously. So yes, book in advance!

Related Read: Another tour you’ll want to book in advance is a Cancun Catamaran Cruise to Isla Mujeres! You get to sail to an island paradise, so it’s like a mini-vacation during your vacation.

4. Why book on Viator?

Viator ATV tour cancelation 1
Viators’ free cancelation is a lifesaver on trips!

Booking on Viator gives you free changes or cancellations on all of the ATV tours I mention in this blog up to 24 hours beforehand. It’s nice to be able to book in advance, but still have that extra flexibility in case your travel plans change.

To be honest, booking direct is a massive pain in Mexico. Often, operators avoid giving refunds, even if they promise to on their website. It’s also much more hassle to change your tour date. Booking with Viator is just so much easier and it doesn’t cost extra. We use them whenever we can!

5. Do you need a license to drive an ATV in Cancun? 

Two people ride an ATV around a corner in Mexico
You don’t need a license but knowing how to drive is a good idea.

No, you don’t need a driver’s license to take an ATV tour. You do, however, need to be over the age of 16 to drive the ATV yourself, and you can only ride alone if you’re over 18. 

Kids as young as four can join the tour, and 16 and 17-year-olds can drive the ATV, but they still need to be accompanied by an adult. However, no license is required because this is nothing like driving a car!

Related Read: You will need a license if you’re planning to rent a car in Cancun though! It’s a fantastic option if you want to plan a few day trips around Cancun.

6. What are the best ATV tours in Cancun?

1. ATV Tour, Ziplines, and Cenote Swim with Lunch and Transport

Daniel and Bailey ride an ATV in Mexico
It’s so much fun!
Bailey swims in a cenote near Cancun, Mexico
The water is crystal clear!

This ATV tour begins with an ATV ride through the jungle with lots of climbs and descents, so you get a big adrenaline rush as you tackle the terrain. Then, you cool off with a swim in a cenote, which you can either jump into or get in more gently via a ladder.

After the swimming, it’s onto the zipline course for another race through the jungle, albeit an aerial one this time. You get really great views from up here and it’s a lot of fun! 

Then the tour wraps up with a delicious Mayan lunch of tacos followed by a tequila tasting. This was such a great way to end the tour with our group after a day of bonding over the adventures we went on!

The tour costs $65 USD per adult for a double ATV or $95 USD each if you want to ride solo. This price includes hotel pickup and drop-off. If you want to rent a locker to store your valuables, you’ll need to pay an extra $5 USD on the day. 

If you’re after an ATV tour that also includes some fun extras, book this ATV, ziplining, and cenote tour online here!

2. ATV Jungle Adventure with Ziplines, Cenote, and Tequila Tasting

Bailey and Bailey sit on an ATV in Mexico
When isn’t it a good time to go ATVing!
Tasting Tequila in Tulum, Mexico on a guided tour
We got a little tipsy!

We found this next tour to be well-deserving of the title Jungle Adventure! This highly-rated ATV Jungle Adventure tour starts with a ride through the dense jungle as you carve up several different trails. Keep an eye out for animals like iguanas and spider monkeys – although we were moving pretty fast so I didn’t spot any this time!

Then, it’s time to see the jungle from a different perspective as you zoom along three different ziplines! After all that excitement, we were ready to cool off and luckily that’s in the plans as the tour heads to a cenote along the famous Ruta de los Cenotes. The water was this crystal-clear, emerald green shade and felt amazing for a quick swim. The cenote is quite rocky though, so bring some water shoes along with you or some cash to rent a pair on the day.

Finally, the tour ends with a tequila tasting to toast all the day’s adventures!  

You can choose to begin this ATV tour at either 9:30 am or 1:30 pm, and it lasts for around 4 hours. Personally, we always opt for the morning tour because the heat of the day hasn’t set in yet and then we still have lots of our day left for more activities (or relaxing on a beach!).

We like this specific tour because the guides are really friendly and knowledgeable, so it’s also a good chance to learn a bit more about the local flora and fauna (and tequila!).

The tour costs $65 USD per adult or $54 USD per child and includes all of your transport. You can rent a locker on the day for $5 USD and there will also be photos of your experiences available to purchase afterward, although these are usually pretty expensive. 

To guarantee your spot on this popular Cancun ATV tour, make sure you book in advance online!

3. Extreme Adventure Eco Park ATV Tour

ATV buggy drives through the forest in Cancun
Exploring the jungle!

This offroading tour is incredibly well-rated because it’s so organized and a ton of fun. Plus, instead of an ATV, this tour has you driving (or riding in) an RZR buggy!

After trying out several ATV tours in Cancun, we had a blast taking a spin through the jungle in a buggy. It’s easier to share the excitement with whoever you’re with (hopefully they are a good driver!) and it definitely feels more stable and has a roll cage surrounding you for extra safety.

Don’t worry about missing out on any of the extras with this tour either! It follows the usual format of a ride, followed by the zipline course and the cenote swim, and finally the tequila tasting. However, you also get a bonus music show while you enjoy your tequila tasting and snacks, which is really fun and ends the tour on a high note! 

The guides are also super friendly and encouraging, which is really great for nervous travelers. If you’re traveling with kids, we think that this would be a great tour to choose. Just note that kids need to be at least 15 years old to join.

The tour costs $109 USD per person. You can choose a morning or afternoon option as well with the tour lasting approximately four hours. For a fun offroading adventure, book a spot on this buggy tour in Cancun here

4. ATV Adventure, Interactive Bridges, Ziplines, Cenote, and Lunch

Daniel and Bailey on an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
Ready to go!
Bailey swims in a Cenote on a tour in Mexico
Cenotes are the perfect place to cool off after ATVing!

This ATV tour sets itself apart with some of the cool extras and inclusions that other tours don’t offer. Plus, the ATV ride through the jungle is 50 minutes long rather than the standard 30 minutes. The extra time is nice as you’ll have the hang of driving around the jungle and can take in the experience more!

We really like all the inclusions on this tour too. You get three ziplines, three interactive bridges to cross, and then you get to enjoy a traditional Mayan dance show alongside your tequila tasting. Did I mention lunch?! I never turn down tacos in Cancun and the Mayan lunch of pork tacos on this tour is an awesome addition.

The tour costs just a bit more than a standard ATV tour at $75 USD per person for a shared ATV or $92 USD for a single ATV. However, it’s really not THAT much more (about $10 USD) and this also includes a locker which other tours tend to charge $5 USD for. Overall you get more bang for your buck!

You can choose to do this tour in the morning or the afternoon, and it includes all of your transport from Cancun. For an ATV tour with an all-inclusive feel, check availability and book your spot here

5. ATV Combo tour (45 minutes of ATVing)

Daniel and Bailey take a selfie on an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
Selfies first!

For a bit more of a choose-your-own-adventure activity, this ATV adventure tour is my pick! This tour is a bit different from the others because instead of the cenote and ziplining, you instead combine your ATV ride with either a waverunner or a speedboat!

A waverunner is a bit like a jet ski, but they’re considered to be safer and easier to operate. They’re a lot of fun to ride, and where better to do it than the Caribbean Sea? And of course, speedboats are a blast if you haven’t had enough racing through Mexico at top speed yet!

You begin this tour with the ATV ride, which lasts for 45 minutes, which is longer than most other tours. It heads through jungle trails before finishing at some small sand dunes. Then, you spend another 45 minutes on a waverunner or a speedboat before enjoying snacks and free soft drinks on a quiet stretch of beach.

The tour costs $150 USD per person, regardless of whether you choose the speedboat or waverunner for your aquatic activity. The price does increase by $40 USD if you want a single ATV versus a double though. We think it’s a really great one to choose if you’re the kind of person who loves adventurous activities (like us!), so make sure to book this tour online with Viator if that’s you!

Why We Book Tours with Viator

Viator is a trusted online booking system for tours around the world! We almost always book our tours using Viator for a couple of reasons:

  • Free cancellation on most tours – Most of the tours on Viator allow you to cancel and get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance. This is handy in case plans change, or if booking an outdoor activity, the weather forecast is looking grim.
  • Reserve now and pay later – You can secure your spot on some of the most popular tours well in advance and not pay until closer to the day of the tour.
  • Pay in your chosen currency – Avoid costly international transaction fees by choosing to pay in your home currency.
  • Peace of mind – When booking with tour operators you find in person on the street or in small booking offices, you are often promised one thing and given another. This online platform holds tour operators accountable with a written description of inclusions as well as the opportunity for customers to leave reviews.

Check out the Viator website here! Or, read our complete Viator review to learn more about what we think about Viator.

7. What is the best ATV tour for beginners in Cancun? 

Riding an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
The wet season is the fun season for ATVing!

We think that this offroading tour is the best for beginners because you get to be in an ATV buggy instead of a standard ATV. The additional stability and roll cage provides some extra safety to help ease any nerves you might have. Plus, it’s a 2-seater, so you’ll have a friend by your side!

We found the guides on this tour to be super friendly and accommodating. They’re used to helping nervous travelers and they make you feel really safe. You can take the ride at your own pace, and you can choose to go in the morning or the afternoon. This is nice because the heat can be overwhelming when you’re already nervous!

8. Are Cancun ATV tours safe?

Yes, you’re in control and you get to choose how fast or slow you go. The guides know what they’re doing and will give you clear instructions before you go so you know exactly what to do. 

Helmets are provided and the tour companies have to follow strict safety rules in Cancun, and all of the ones we’ve mentioned in this blog post are very well-rated.

There are no exposed areas with big drop-offs in the eco-park so you don’t need to worry about that, either. The course is safe and hundreds (if not thousands) of tourists tackle it every day! 

Related Read: For a safe way to get from the Cancun Airport to the Hotel Zone before your tour, make sure to check out the best Cancun Airport shuttles!

9. What should you wear on a Cancun ATV tour?

Two people sit on an ATV ready to start the tour
Shoes are a must!

Comfortable enclosed shoes 

You should wear comfy, sturdy, closed-toe shoes on an ATV tour. You need shoes that have decent stability and grip for maneuvering the ATV, and to protect your feet from all the debris and dirt.

A decent pair of sneakers should be fine, but forget about flip-flops or sandals. If you’re going on an ATV tour during hurricane season you might want to consider walking or hiking shoes with waterproofing, as it gets very muddy and wet at this time of year! 

Sunglasses 

There are two reasons why you need to wear sunglasses on a Cancun ATV tour. The first is to protect your eyes from the sun, and the second is to protect them from dust, dirt, bugs, and anything else that may be kicked up during the ATV ride. 

Goggles are available but this is often for an extra fee, but if you just wear sunglasses you should be fine. Just make sure they fit you well and don’t slip so that they’ll stay on your face throughout!

Buff or mask 

A buff or a face mask is a must on an ATV ride because you don’t want to breathe in dust, dirt, and debris. It gives you an extra layer of protection and will basically make your ride much more enjoyable. You don’t want to be constantly coughing and spluttering throughout your adventure. 

Clothes you don’t mind getting dirty

You really don’t want to wear a brand-new, all-white outfit on an ATV tour. No matter how hard you try, by the end of the tour, you’re going to be sweaty, dusty, and quite possibly covered in mud. Wear something that you don’t mind getting dirty! 

10. Is ATVing in Cancun worth it?

Daniel rides an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
Yes, it is!

Yes, I’ve done it four times now and it’s so much fun. I absolutely love it and will definitely go again in the future. The tours are such great value for money – seriously, how can you go wrong with an adrenaline-pumping jungle adventure for under $70 USD?

Related Read: If you’d prefer a change of scenery, but still want to see it in style, there are fantastic ATV tours in Tulum to try!

Other Activities to do While You’re in Cancun

Bailey and Daniel look at a Sting Ray at the MUSA dive site in Cancun
A stingray at MUSA!
Bailey looks out the window of the Cancun Scenic Tower in Cancun, Mexico
The view is amazing!

Now that you’ve added an ATV tour to your Cancun itinerary, it’s time to find more fun activities! I’ve been coming here since I was a kid and I never get tired of visiting. There are so many things to do in Cancun, that will make for an amazing vacay. So if you’re looking for even more ideas, check out some of my favorites below!

  • Cancun Scenic Tower – As if Cancun wasn’t scenic enough, there’s another way to enjoy the views! The Cancun Scenic Tower gives you amazing views of the Caribbean and the sprawling Cancun area below! The entire viewing deck lifts up, so you won’t even need to climb any stairs.
  • Eat, eat eat! – Calories don’t count on vacation, right? The restaurants in Cancun deliver on amazing food – especially the Mexican restaurants of course. Mextreme has the best tacos and I always order the Aztec soup! If you want to try a bunch of different dishes in an evening – this taco and beer food tour will take you to five popular spots for a fun night you’ll want to arrive hungry for!

Where to Stay in Cancun

the outdoor pools at the Grand Fiesta Americana in Puerto Vallarta
This adults-only resort is pure relaxation! Photo Credit: Grand Fiesta Americana

If you’re going to be taking an ATV tour in Cancun, then you’ll need a place to stay! Below are some of the best hotels (for every budget) in the Cancun Hotel Zone.

For budget travelers, the Selina Cancun Laguna Hotel Zone is a great choice. It has the typical hostel vibes which includes the woes of a shared living space, but overall I really enjoyed my stay. For the price (about $40 USD for a bunk or $100 USD for a private room) and fun atmosphere, you can’t go wrong! You can book this hostel on Hostelword or Booking.com.

If you prefer something a little nicer, I love the JW Marriott Cancun Resort. It’s not all-inclusive, which I enjoy because there are so many delicious restaurants in Cancun! The hotel is located right on the beach and has a huge pool. Rooms are typically $300-$500 USD depending on the time of year.

Of course, we all love a luxury all-inclusive stay and for that, I always book either the Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun or the Le Blanc Spa Resort Cancun Adults Only. Both are not cheap as rooms can range from $600 USD to upwards of $1,400 USD, but they are equally as luxurious with fantastic oceanfront locations, delicious food, quality alcohol, and more.

More of a luxury traveler? Learn about the absolute best resorts in Cancun!

Renting a Car in Mexico

Bailey and Daniel in a rental car in Mexico
Bailey had to drive at first because Daniel is used to driving on the other side!

Undoubtedly, one of the best ways to get around Mexico is in a rental car. 

I struggled to get around by bus and taxi for the longest time. But after renting a car in Cancun in 2023, I never looked back. It allowed me to explore the country without worrying about tours or taxis. It was why I fell in love with Mexico and eventually decided to live here periodically. 

I refuse to use local services whenever I rent a car in Mexico. The truth is they sometimes can’t be trusted or come with hidden fees (or costly insurance that doesn’t make sense.) There are even rental car scams! So instead, I use Discover Cars, the company most experienced travelers or ex-pats in Mexico recommend. 

The rates on Discover Cars are cheap, too, with the average rental costing around $25 USD per day. Full coverage insurance can be added for an extra $10 USD a day too. 

Driving in Mexico also only requires a driver’s license using the Roman alphabet. If yours uses another like Japan and China, you simply need an international driving permit. 

Insurance is required, but if you book with Discover Cars and get the full coverage, that’s all you need! Oh, and being over 18 is required, and if you’re over 25, your rental will be much cheaper! 

Don’t get Caught without Travel Insurance!

We never travel without travel insurance! We’ve had a few instances during our travels when one of us has ended up in the hospital, and travel insurance has saved us thousands of dollars over the years!

SafetyWing is our go-to insurance, we both have policies with them whenever we travel.

They offer travel medical insurance that’s super affordable (only $45 USD per 4 weeks!)The only thing to note is that the insurance must be purchased once you’ve left your home country – we typically buy it as soon as we land at the airport.  

We’ve personally used SafetyWing for many different trips, and we’ve been reimbursed for countless expenses when we’ve fallen ill. SafetyWing even covered our flights back to Canada in full when the pandemic first happened (when last-minute flights before the borders closed were super expensive!) While most travel insurance companies left people stranded, SafetyWing fully reimbursed us for our last-minute, pricey flights!

Also, because it is so affordable, there really is no excuse not to take out a policy. Check prices and get a quote online here with SafetyWing (you can even take out a policy if you’re already traveling!)

Thanks for reading!

Daniel and Bailey take a selfie while driving an ATV in Cancun, Mexico
Thanks for reading!

Riding an ATV (and a buggy!) through the jungle is one of my favorite memories in Cancun. While I’ve already been a few times, I have no doubt I’ll be driving an ATV here again soon. Who knows, we might even be on the same tour. Fellow adrenaline junkies unite!

I hope this guide has helped you find the perfect ATV tour in Cancun for your vacation! If you liked reading this blog, make sure to have a look at our other Mexico blogs before you leave including a few popular ones below:

4 BEST Isla Mujeres Tours from Cancun

12 BEST Places to go Scuba Diving in Mexico

Cancun Airport to Playa del Carmen – 9 Things you NEED to KNOW!

10 Things to KNOW Before Booking an ATV Tour in Playa del Carmen