Fifth Avenue in Playa del Carmen is a top tourist spot in Mexico with a variety of options for high-end shopping, dining, local shops, cafes, street entertainment, and more. Quinta Avenida is a three-mile pedestrian walkway where most of the action happens, and it runs parallel to the beach, making it an ideal activity to enjoy after spending time on the sand.
While you explore, be on the lookout for street performers such as fire breathers, painted mimes, musicians, and break dancers. Also, don’t hesitate to venture beyond Fifth Avenue. If you have enough time, there are several shops, boutiques and restaurants just a few blocks away on either side of Quinta Avenida.
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To make the most of your visit to Fifth Avenue, it’s important to have a plan. Here’s a list of must-do activities.
You can find the very best shops in 5th Avanue in the Playa del Carmen Shopping Guide.
Best Things to do in 5th Avenue Playa del Carmen
There is always something happening on 5th Avenue. From interesting performances and cultural events to new shops opening up, the area is constantly changing and vibrant. Keep in mind that things can change quickly in Playa, but wander and keep your eyes open for new and cool updates.
1. Do Some Shopping
-Don’t miss the chance to visit some of the big-name stores on the street, including Forever 21, Victoria’s Secret, Zara, Lacoste, and Harley Davidson. You’ll also find plenty of flea market-style stalls selling locally made goods and souvenirs.
If you want to buy authentic souvenirs, look for hand-painted ceramics, colorful blankets, and alcohol. Just make sure the item is made in Mexico before buying. Alternatively, you can check out Paseo del Carmen or Quinta Alegria, two big shopping centers on Fifth Avenue.
Paseo del Carmen is located after the ferry docks on the south end, near Playacar Palace. Quinta Alegria is at the corner of Constituyentes. More shops can also be found very close by on First Avenue and 10th Avenue as the Fifth Avenue expands.
There is a public park by the sea called Parque Fundadores that has many tourist attractions. You can find the Nuestra Señora del Carmen Church, the bronze statue Portal Maya 2012, and local entertainment such as Mayan Dancers and flying Papantla performers. Additionally, the park has a children’s play area and provides easy access to the beach.
2. Street Performers
Look out for street performers such as fire breathers, painted mimes, musicians, and break dancers as you explore.
3. Try the Food … It is really good
If you get hungry while exploring Quinta Avenida, you’ll find that many restaurants on the main stretch charge higher prices for tourists. However, there are still great options to explore like El Muelle, a seafood restaurant located on the corner of 32nd Street and 5th Avenue or 500 Gramos Grill, a pasta restaurant that you can find between 34th and 38th Streets on Fifth Avenue.
If you want to experience the very lively atmosphere of Quinta Avenida, check out Club de la Cerveza on 38th Street and Fifth Avenue. They have Mexican craft beer and small bites available.
4. Visit the Secret Mayan Ruins
While you’re out shopping, take a quick detour to explore some Mayan history. Head over to Fifth Avenue between 12th and 14th Streets, where you’ll find a few small ruins that aren’t typically crowded with tourists.
5. Have a drink at the Bars on 12th Street
If you’re thinking of hanging out on Fifth Avenue later tonight, there’s good news. You can easily walk over to 10th Street, where you’ll find some of the top bars and nightlife spots in the area. Our favorites: Bar Ranita, Don Mezcal and L’ambassade. If you’re not sure how to begin your night, a pub crawl could be a great option. You’ll get to visit top bars, enjoy unlimited drinks, and have easy access. Additionally, most bars and clubs are open until 5 a.m.
6. Visit L’Aquarium – Great for a rainy day
L’Aquarium is a big aquarium near Fifth Avenue, which has 45 different exhibits with over 10,000 animals. You can explore the aquarium’s three floors and see various exhibits such as dark terrariums and Yucatan cenotes, which are natural sinkholes that are sacred to the Maya. You can also choose to take a guided tour.
It is easy to reach Quinta Avenida from Playacar Palace by simply walking out of the resort’s lobby. However, if you are staying at another Palace Resorts location in Cancun, you can still visit Quinta Avenida for the day.
7. Frida Kahlo Museum
Frida Kahlo is a prominent Mexican artist whose influence is undeniable. She has become a symbol of bravery in the face of challenges because of her artistic legacy and life story. Her paintings, which were inspired by Mexico’s diverse cultural history and natural surroundings, include numerous iconic portraits and self-portraits.
The artist’s work delves into issues of identity, postcolonialism, gender, class, and race within Mexican society. If you’re an art or history enthusiast, be sure to visit the Riviera Maya Frida Kahlo museum located on 5th Avenue in Playa del Carmen. Kahlo’s impact on Mexican society extends beyond her artwork.
How much does entrance to Frida Kahlo Museum cost?
The entrance fee for the general public is $15 USD, but Mexican nationals can enjoy a 10% discount. Each space has a specialized guide dedicated to the subject of the room. You have two options for purchasing your tickets: you can either buy them from the contact center in advance or get them at the box office upon arrival. The site is open every day from Monday to Sunday, from 9:00 am to 11:00 pm.
8. The Thompson Rooftop Pool
One of my favorite rooftop pools in Playa del Carmen is waiting for you! It is a favorite spot of mine for hanging out. If you need a break from the beach, you can relax in the rooftop pool, enjoy great drinks, and soak up amazing views. The Thompson Hotel, located on 5th Avenue, is a luxurious and trendy place to stay. You should definitely check out the two rooftop restaurants and the infinity pool.
You can enjoy stunning 360° panoramic views of Playa del Carmen and 5th Avenue from the rooftop pool. Even if you are not a hotel guest, you can visit the pool during the day for free. However, you can purchase food and drinks while there. Please note that this pool is only for adults and does not allow children.
9. 12th Street – Partying
Although it’s not located directly on 5th Avenue, this place is adjacent to it and known for its lively nightlife scene. Check out my ultimate guide to nightlife in Playa del Carmen here for a complete list of hotspots on 12th street, including famous clubs like Palazzo and Coco Bongo.
One of the things I appreciate about Playa del Carmen is that all the top nightlife destinations are conveniently located on the same street, allowing you to walk from one place to the next without requiring a taxi.
In the evenings, this street can be quite busy, so please make sure to drink responsibly and always be aware of your surroundings.