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The Best Time to Visit Cancun: May Travel Tips

Cancun is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Mexico. It is known for its beautiful beaches, turquoise waters, ancient ruins, and warm climate. When it comes to planning a trip to Cancun, the time of year you choose to visit can make a significant impact on your experience. May is a great time to visit Cancun.

Cancun Weather in May

The weather in Cancun during May is beautiful. With warm temperatures, sunny days, and low rainfall perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and other water activities making it an ideal time to visit.

May is considered to be the beginning of the rainy season in Cancun. However, the rainfall is usually in short bursts, and it does not last long. With average of about 9 days of rain throughout the month. Which is much lower than during the rainy season from June to October. The cloud cover is also relatively low, with an average of 33% cloudy days in May. However, it is still a good idea to check the weather forecast before your trip and bring a travel insurance policy that covers unexpected weather conditions.

Average Temperature Ranges and Water Temperature in Cancun in May

Weather Conditions Measurement
Average Daily Temperatures 77°F – 88°F (25°C – 31°C)
Nighttime Temperature 76°F (24°C)
Average Rainfall 4.3 inches (110 mm)
Average Humidity 78%
Water Temperature 81°F (27°C)
Highest Average in May 88°F (31°C)
Lowest Average in May 76°F (24°C)

What to Pack for Cancun in May

  • Light clothing made of breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen
  • Sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30
  • Hat and sunglasses
  • Comfortable shoes for walking
  • Rain jacket or umbrella for sudden rain showers.
  • Swimwear for the beach and pool
  • Insect repellent to protect against mosquitoes and other bugs
  • Light jacket or sweater for cooler evenings

Note: Remember to pack light as you may not need many layers or bulky clothing due to the warm weather in Cancun during May.

Activities in Cancun in May

May is a great time to visit Cancun, especially if you want to avoid the crowds that come during the peak season from December to April. The number of tourists is lower in May, which means that you can enjoy popular attractions such as Chichen Itza, Isla Mujeres, and Playa del Carmen without having to deal with long lines or crowded spaces.

May is also the month of Cinco de Mayo, a national holiday in Mexico that celebrates the Mexican army’s victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla. Many restaurants and bars in Cancun hold special events and offer traditional Mexican food and drinks to celebrate the holiday.

Here are some of the activities you can enjoy in Cancun during May:

Swimming with whale sharks – May is the start of the whale shark season in Cancun, and you can swim with these gentle giants in the clear waters off the coast.

Exploring Isla Mujeres – This beautiful island is just a short boat trip from Cancun and offers stunning beaches, crystal clear waters, and fantastic snorkeling and diving opportunities.

Visiting Chichen Itza – This ancient Mayan city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to some of the most impressive ruins in Mexico.

Snorkeling with sea turtles – The waters around Cancun are home to sea turtles, and you can snorkel with these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.

Enjoying beach parties – Cancun is famous for its beach parties, and there are plenty of events and dance floors to enjoy during May.

Inception Music Festival – Cancun is also home to one of the biggest electronic dance music festivals in the world, which takes place during the first week of May.

Boat trips – You can take a boat trip to explore the stunning Caribbean Sea, visit nearby islands, or enjoy some fishing.

Relaxing on the beach – With its white sand, turquoise waters, and sunny skies, Cancun’s beaches are the perfect place to relax and unwind.

Festivals and Events Happening in Cancun in May

There are several festivals and events happening in Cancun during May that you won’t want to miss.

Cinco de Mayo celebration

Takes place on May 5th every year. This event commemorates the Mexican army’s victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5th, 1862. You can expect to see vibrant parades, live music, and traditional dances during this festive occasion.

Wine and Food Festival

This event brings together top chefs and wine experts from around the world to showcase their talents and offer delicious samples to attendees. From gourmet dinners to wine tastings and cooking demonstrations, this event is perfect for foodies and wine enthusiasts alike.

Cancun Jazz Festival

The is a must-attend event for music lovers. This annual festival takes place in May and features some of the biggest names in jazz music. The event is held at the beautiful Hard Rock Hotel, which adds to the overall ambiance and experience.

Tulum Vegan Fest

This festival celebrates veganism and promotes a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. Attendees can expect to find an array of vegan food vendors, workshops, and live music performances.

Food and Drinks to Try in Cancun During May

From traditional Mexican dishes to international cuisine. Here are some of the top foods and drinks to try

  • Fresh Seafood – Cancun is located on the Caribbean Sea, making it an ideal destination for fresh seafood. You can find a variety of dishes, including ceviche, shrimp tacos, and grilled fish.
  • Tacos al Pastor – This is a classic Mexican dish that is popular in Cancun. It consists of marinated pork cooked on a vertical spit and served in a corn tortilla with pineapple and cilantro.
  • Churros – These delicious fried dough pastries are a popular snack in Cancun. They are usually served with chocolate or caramel dipping sauce.
  • Margaritas – No trip to Cancun would be complete without trying the classic margarita. Made with tequila, lime juice, and triple sec, this refreshing drink is perfect for sipping on the beach.
  • Micheladas – This is a popular Mexican drink that consists of beer, lime juice, hot sauce, and tomato juice. It’s a perfect drink for a hot day in Cancun.
  • Mezcal – This traditional Mexican drink is made from the agave plant and is similar to tequila but with a smokier flavor.
  • Horchata – This refreshing drink is made from rice milk, cinnamon, and sugar. It’s perfect for cooling off on a hot day.

Visiting Cancun in May: Pros and Cons


  1. Good weather – May is a great time to visit Cancun because the weather is warm, sunny, and relatively dry.
  2. Fewer crowds – May is not a peak season, so there are fewer tourists and crowds, which means you can enjoy the beaches and attractions with more peace and quiet.
  3. Good deals – As it is not a high season, you can find great deals on flights, hotels, and other activities.
  4. Shoulder season – This means that prices are lower compared to the high season, but still not as cheap as the low season.
  5. Whale shark season – Great opportunity to swim with these gentle giants and witness their majestic presence in the waters around Cancun.


  1. Rainy season – Generally a dry month but is still part of the rainy season. There may be occasional rain showers or thunderstorms. However, they are usually short-lived and don’t affect your vacation plans much.
  2. Humidity – This may be uncomfortable for some travelers, especially if you’re not used to the heat and humidity.
  3. Seaweed – May is also a time when seaweed can accumulate on the beaches in Cancun. While this doesn’t happen every year, it can affect the appearance of the beaches and make swimming less enjoyable.

Final Thoughts

In summary, visiting Cancun in May presents several benefits. The weather is warm and sunny.The crowds are smaller than during peak season.There are plenty of exciting activities to participate in such as swimming with whale sharks, visiting ancient ruins, and attending music festivals and beach parties. Whether you want to bask in the sun on the pristine beaches, explore ancient ruins, or indulge in the nightlife and events, Cancun has something for everyone. By planning ahead and preparing appropriately for the heat and occasional rain or seaweed, you can have an incredible time in Cancun during May.


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