The Most Instagram-worthy Spots in Tulum

January 22, 2019

If you want a slice of heaven, pack your bags and head to Mexico. Drive 2 hours south and you’ll find yourself in Tulum, Mexico,  one of the most “Instagrammable” destinations in the world. I visited Tulum over the holiday break and can see why so many people race to get there. Everyone’s doing it for the ‘gram. I mean who doesn’t want a photo of themselves feeding a donkey on a tropical beach, or gazing out of a tree house resort into the tree tops of the Mayan Jungle? 

If you are a fellow blogger, photographer, or globetrotter looking for the perfect backdrop, Tulum is the destination.  Don’t stress about going out of your way to get a perfect shot, more than likely it will come to you. 

Below are some of Tulum’s top IG Worthy destinations you won’t want to miss on your next trip. 

Gitano

Gitano is the type of place you go to wind down after long day of sun bathing and swimming in the sea. You may come for the delicious food and cocktails but you will stay for the trendy decor, and laid back atmosphere. A Gitano is a great place to dine and stay for a light night party as the restaurant becomes a place to dance in the late evening hours. Be sure to grab a few pics at the entrance in front of the neon sign where the “I still love you” sign illuminates the wall. Whether your relaxing in the bohemian lounge in the candle light  or sitting outside on the lush patio, you’ll want to bring your camera and snap away. 

COCO Resort

We weren’t able to visit all the resorts since most of them charge a resort fee. But walking along the shore we stumbled upon CoCo, complete with swinging chairs by the bar, gorgeous covered cabanas, and the cutest hammocks. We grabbed a quick drink at the bar and sat on their seaside swings enjoying the view.

Aqua

A hotel worth visiting at the end of the Hotel Zone strip is Aqua Tulum. We were able to access their beach chairs and cabanas for free through our hotels partnership with them. We enjoyed multiple seaside breakfasts and hours napping under the straw huts. Plus theres a big piece of driftwood in the ocean that seems to be ‘gram worthy for those who walk by.

Matcha Mama

Matcha Mama

If you’ve read about the delicious food at Matcha Mama in Tulum, you just have to know how cute the shop is! The swings right in front of the order window, the giant surf board sign and the powder-soft sand between your toes lends some of the best photos (and food) around! Grab a smoothie bowl and get your Instagram ready!

Photography: Sophocles Blog

Casa Malaca – Pablo Escobar’s Estate

We met a couple at the beach who told us that Casa Malaca is a must see spot in Tulum, however it can be tricky to find because there are no signs, except for an ‘X’ that looks like a railroad crossing sign at the end of the hotel zone strip. I feel like that’s part of its appeal, but you may find yourself passing it a few times before finding it. If the giant front doors are open a little and you can see inside, look for massive potted plants. You’ve found the right place. Ask around and when you do find it go in and hang a left through some trees and the main building will be on your right. This is where you’ll find the hanging furniture, go in and snap a few photos while you learn about the history. If you look closely you’ll realize that the large curtain in the photo below is made from wedding dresses! 

Cenotes – Any of them

I don’t want to name many names here, because really all the Cenotes in Tulum are worth visiting. You can check out my guide on 7 Must Try Adventures in Tulum or the Locals Guide to Tulum Cenotes here. Be sure to ask your cab driver for their recommendations because they know the best local cenotes with less crowds.

Coba & Tulum Mayan Ruins

Google Tulum and this is where most of the pictures will be from. The beautiful coastal ruins pair up against the vibrant ocean waters. I regret that we did not have enough time to visit the Ruins, although it is on our itinerary for our next trip. Many locals gave us the recommendation to visit the inland Coba ruins (about 2 hours from Tulum),  it’s one of the 7 wonders of the world!

 

La Estancia Jujena

La Estancia Jujena is a beautiful Agrgentinean Restaurant located in the heart of downtown Tulum. We enjoyed it so much that we invited new friends to come and enjoy a second night of dinner with us. I highly recommend this restaurant. We sat on their outside patio at sunset with a beautiful floral backdrop, while we enjoyed a wonderful candle lit dinner, with strings lights hanging over the walkway and a live band playing in the distance. It was perfection. Be sure to try their meat, the Steak  Dish and Beef Wellington are to die for. They also get another brownie point for accepting credit cards.

Azulik / Kin Toh

If you’ve looked up spots in Tulum, there’s no doubt you’ve seen this one before. Slap the hashtag #tulum into your search bar and you’ll find a majority of the pictures at this restaurant. Kin Toh offers one of the most Instagram-worthy spots in all Akumal and Tulum. There are seating areas are high above the trees called nests, although they will run you about $1000 USD just to reserve the space. My suggestion is to skip the nests unless you can afford them. If you want to keep it a rather inexpensive trip, line up at the doors at 4:30 (there is always a line to get in) and just go to Kin Toh for a round of cocktails. I read the reviews on the food and it sounds like your best option is to get in, have a quick drink, then go have dinner elsewhere on the strip for 1/2 the price. During your cocktail hour at Kin Toh you will be able to explore the restaurant, bar, and the instafamous nests where you snap away for the perfect shot. You can also ask the wait staff if they will take you a picture of you and your boo, they do this daily and know the best spots to shoot. Be sure to swing by the art gallery on the way out, you can see how amazing the architecture design is in the last photo above!

To be honest: The shot on the bridge I had to almost didn’t get! The bridge was closed off and I had to ask a staff member 3 times to let me go on the bridge just to take a quick picture. Bring some extra money to tip them if you want to go the extra mile for a good pic. 

Posada Margharita

Posada Margharita is a beautiful boutique beach front restaurant that stays at the top of everyone’s must see list. Not only is the view spectacular, but so is food! They serve homemade pasta, exotic fresh juices, cocktails and wonderful fish. One of the owners stopped by our table and explained the dishes on the menu – the pasta was one of my favorite dishes on my trip. Located right in the center of the hotel zone of the left side of the road, it’s also a hotel so it’s hard to miss!

I Scream Bar

Came for the view, stayed for the service and caipirinhas. If you’re going here just to snap a photo of the bar, consider staying for some guac and cocktails. The atmosphere, the people, the vibes and the live music are incredible! We came back on three separate occasions, twice for daytime food and drinks, and once on our night out. A wonderful laid back restaurant and bar that turns into Tulums favorite discoteca at night. 

Follow That Dream Sign

The most instagramed sign in Tulum. This one is easy to miss unless there are a few people already snapping photos outside on the street.  Rent a bike, go on an adventure down the hotel zone, and find the Follow That Dream sign next to the cute Lolita & Lolita boutique across from Sueños Tulum.

Raw Love

Although it feels like the popular boho photo ops are moving towards Nomade (below), Raw Love is still on people’s list for photos and for good reason. It is all plant based, including some of the best (and most photogenic) smoothie bowls in Tulum. We didn’t have the chance to eat here but I was able to snap a few photos! Be sure to enjoy the rope swings, hammocks, and laid back jungle vibes. There’s a ton of tree cover in here so you don’t necessarily need to worry about bad lighting, it’s a great place to stop in for a afternoon snack!

Nomade

Probably ranked number 1 for the best boho vibes in all of Tulum. It’s reminiscent of Morocco and the Sahara Desert, one of my favorite destinations I’ve visited during my travels.  

La Popular is the restaurant on the beach, and I’ll warn you it is pricey, this is why we ended up not eating here because our budget had been mostly spent by the time we stopped by. Honestly, most of the hotel zone is pricey, so be prepared to pay for meals / drinks like your in San Fran or New York.

Macondo is the restaurant you see in all the photos with the poufs on the floor. It’s the first restaurant on your left when you’re coming into the hotel. As usual, get there super early if you want the place to yourself or just hang around the hotel until you see it’s relatively empty. It’s a vegan plant based restaurant (but you can add some meats on the dishes if you wish). Worth the visit if you want the best boho vibes shot.

FREEDOM OF THE DRESS EXCLUSIVE 

You won’t find these extra tips on other Tulum Instagram Guides. If you want to attempt a photo with Sancho the donkey, visit the hotel Zulim on the beach strip. A beautiful yogi hotel where Sancho lives. We made a new friend who was staying here and she invited us for breakfast (with the most amazing view and food I may add) and to meet Tulum’s cutest beach pet! I was able to snap a quick picture with him while he visited the beach! Also, This cute pink buggie is also parked outside the front of the hotel. I’m not sure if it was someones that parked there or a hotel staff’s car, but it sure makes the perfect backdrop.

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