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Go all in on these all-inclusive vacations

Enjoy a stress-free getaway at these beloved tropical havens.

By John Garry | November 20, 2023

Unwind on a powdery beach, delight in local cultural celebrations or get rowdy at a nearby bar. If you're looking for a relaxing vacation at a tropical hot spot, head to one of these inclusive resorts in Mexico, where being yourself is never up for debate.

  • Beaches, boats and cenotes: Get your fill of vitamin D and sea

  • Cantinas and clubs: Kick back with a cocktail, see a show or dance the night away

  • Sunsets and romance: Connect and relax poolside or at the spa

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Lounge on the sandy southern expanse of Deadmen’s Beach (Playa de los Muertos) and you'll understand why this Pacific Coast city is a traveler's paradise. On one side of the shore sits the glittering Banderas Bay, dotted with postcard-perfect coves and crowned by the rugged Sierra Madre mountains. Traveling with kids? Hilton Vallarta Riviera All-Inclusive Resort is a great option for your stay as they have arts and craft stations, movie nights and more to appeal to little ones. Craving time alone together? Head to the adults-only Sky Bar. On the opposite side of the beach sits the Romantic Zone, the town's epicenter. During the day, you can amble around cobblestone streets to peruse quirky boutiques and art galleries. As night descends, bars and drag shows become the main attraction. Dance ’til dawn at CC Slaughters, chill on the patio at cantina-style Bar Los Amigos or sip margaritas at Mr. Flamingo as crowds buzz by on Lazaro Cardenas. Puerto Vallarta excites year-round, but the crowds are especially enthusiastic during New Year's Eve, late February's Carnaval and PV Pride in May. With temperate weather and little chance of rain, there's no better time to visit.

Cancun, Mexico

Cancun is best known as a party destination, but beyond the thump of all-night dancing and bar-hopping, there are miles of peaceful beaches where travelers can soak up the sun. For an afternoon of sun and sand, stretch out on the nearly private shores of Delfines Beach (Playa Delfines), also known as the city’s unofficial gay beach. Named for the Mayan god of rain, Chac Mool Beach (Playa Chac Mool), is a destination best suited for couples searching for solitude. When it's time to cool off, jump into the azure ocean. Prefer to unwind while enjoying unlimited drinks and desserts? Head to Hilton Cancun, an All-Inclusive Resort, where the beachfront fun includes an all-you-can-eat ice cream and churro shop, soothing ocean views from your suite and nightly entertainment. Speaking of nightly entertainment, most spots in Cancun cultivate a friendly, come-as-you-are attitude. Coco Bongo is a raucous club with Cirque du Soleil chutzpah, and The City Discotheque earns praise for being one of Latin America's largest nightclubs. Looking for the dance party of your life? Head to the 11:11 Club, where you’ll find high-energy vibes, go-go boys and packed crowds until sunrise.

Tulum, Mexico

For a vacation destination that promises more than you bargained for, consider Tulum. It doesn't matter if you're strolling the sugar-sand seashore, swimming in one of the Yucatan Peninsula's 6,000-plus cenotes or sipping mezcal under a thatched-roof palapa (an open-sided dwelling often found on Mexican beaches and deserts) — everyone is welcome in this traveler haven. Combine that open-armed atmosphere with a long list of things to do, and you have the ideal vacation destination. Day trips to nearby Mayan ruins — including Chichen Itza’s ancient pyramids — and the aforementioned 6000-plus cenotes will entice all your family and friends. Once your adventure is done, head back to Hilton Tulum Riviera Maya All-Inclusive Resort and relax with a movie night on the beach or embrace local flavors and culture at a Mexican night with food, mariachi, traditional fair games and live music.

Whether you’re lounging on the beach, dancing the night away in a club or exploring local history, one thing is certain: An all-inclusive vacation in Mexico promises good eats, good times and great vibes for all.

John Garry is a Brooklyn-based writer who waxes poetic about queer travel, urban adventures, and outdoor escapades for publications like Matador Network, Lonely Planet and Fodors.

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