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10 Restaurants you can’t miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

Posted by Matt Mathieson on June 28, 2020

We know you’re itching to get back to the Riviera Maya. As real estate agents who live and work in the area we have the pleasure of visiting many of the incredible eateries that make the Riviera Maya so special. The following are 10 of our favorites and we’ve included location links for each so you can check them out on your next visit.

Scroll down or click on the links below to skip ahead.

  1. Tacos Rasta
  2. Las Hijas de la Tostada
  3. Papa Charly
  4. Gitano Tulum
  5. Coco’s Cabañas
  6. MU Burger
  7. Nauti Burro
  8. Burrito Amor Tulum
  9. Los Aguachiles
  10. Hippos

What is your favorite restaurant in the Riviera Maya? Let us know in the comments below!

Matt - Operations Manager

Tacos Rasta

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Matt – Operations Manager

My favorite place to eat is a little taco stand in Playa del Carmen. Tacos Rasta is a family run stand offering Tacos Guisados in the mornings Monday through Saturday rain or shine. They open at 6am and are technically open until the early afternoon but being that it is Tacos Guisados and first come first serve it is best to be there before 9am to ensure you get the tacos you want. They have a wide variety of options as well as a few vegetarian options which my wife loves. 

Our absolute favorite is their Chili Relleno. It is a fried poblano pepper stuffed with panela cheese. Each taco comes with the option of rice and/or beans and they have a salsa bar with diced onions/serrano peppers as well as 10 or so hot sauces ranging from a little spicy to melt-your-face-off hot. 

Other options include Rajas con Crema, Milanesa de Pollo/Cerdo, Chicharron, Papas con Chorizo/Poblano, Pollo Buffalo and the list goes on. We’ve loved stopping by here at least once a week for the past few years and hope to continue that tradition.

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

Marisol - Real Estate Agent

Las Hijas de la Tostada

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Marisol – Real Estate Agent

The best “tostadas” place ever is Las Hijas de la Tostada! I can eat there every other day and will not get tired of it!! It has an extensive menu for every taste!

My favorite is “Tostada de Sandia” a tuna ceviche with Watermelon, cucumber and habanero! A very fresh option! But if you are more of a shrimp person, the “Camaron Caramelo” Tostada are the best! with a delicious chipotle sauce and red wine reduction!

Other great options are the “Tuna Carnitas” and “Fish and Ships”. ** They also have Vegetarian options!!!!

The location right on 5th avenue almost in the corner of 38th street is perfect, DJ music and great food and drinks to spend the afternoon with friends!

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya
Irene - Real Estate Agent

Papa Charly

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Irene – Real Estate Agent

I Love Papa Charly, it has become a real icon in the neighborhood, so much that you need a reservation to get in, specially in the Winter where all of the Canadian and American visitors are spending the Winter times in Playa.

They have an extensive and delicious menú with home made pastas, salads and a special menú for grill specials. They open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I always order the Stuffed Portobello with 3 cheeses and the Puttanesca home made fettuccine. Wine is inexpensive and with great quality. Service is fast and friendly from the owners and staff. Place is cozy, its like being in your grandma´s living room waiting for the delicious food to be served. Locals and visitors always have a great culinary experience Off 5th avenue.

Papa Charly Grill and Pasta Factory is located in the heart of Hollywood Neighborhood in Calle 30 between 30th avenue and 25 Avenue, Playa del Carmen.

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

Gaby - Real Estate Agent

Gitano Tulum

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Gaby – Real Estate Agent

My favorite place to eat is Gitano Tulum, especially because of the ambiance, they always have live music, in Tulum every day is magic and special and Gitano is just for me the essence of people that visits Tulum. The food is Mexican Gourmet, I personally love the Tuna Tostadas and the Ceviches to start and then order Shrimp tacos that are my favorite!! For meat lovers, I can recommend the “Slow roasted pork belly” or the “Grilled Ribeye. For dessert…I don’t really like desserts, but Gitano has the best Carajillos, my kind of dessert.

We can not leave a side the awesome mixology they offer using Mezcal or tequila, if you want to try something different and like spicy, then you must try ” Kisses in the car cocktail”, if spicy doesn’t sound good for you in your drink, then try “stardust cocktail” or just the amazing gin tonics with some raspberries and blueberries. I like to go on Friday for dinner, because every Friday after dinner, is Party night at Gitano and you can stay and dance with some great local DJ´s, so, as I said at the beginning, Gitano is not just a place to eat, it is more an experience.

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya
Sandra - Social Media & Rental Expert

Coco’s Cabañas

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Sandra – Social Media & Rental Expert

Coco’s Cabañas restaurant is an amazing little hidden gem in the jungle just north of Playa del Carmen near the Xcalacoco Beach. Grab a seat at the tiki bar and order a Margarita….they are the best!

The owners Sylvia and Helmut are great hosts along with a very attentive staff. The food is amazing! I love the lobster…the best I have had in Playa! It is a great place if you want to get away from the hustle & bustle of 5th ave and relax to have a nice quiet dinner.

Don’t forget to order the Jason Pizza! (named after Playa Real Estate Group Broker Jason Waller)

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya
Jason - Owner/Broker

MU Burger

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Jason – Owner/Broker

Mu Burger house is an off the beaten path trendy burger restaurant that has opened in the downtown area of Playa Del Carmen. Located on 40th ave between 4th and 6th streets. And they are just opening a 2nd location on 10th ave and 24th street. My favorite burger would for sure be the Mu Burger. It has all the best toppings including the home-made pickles. And you must try the Humpy Humpy Amber Ale, it is one of my favorites!!!

With an amazing selection of craft beers and some of the best burgers and fries in town this is one we definitely recommend!

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

Mike - Real Estate Agent

Nauti Burro

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Mike – Real Estate Agent

One of my favorite spots to eat in Puerto Aventuras is the Nauti Burro. I mean come on… the name alone is a great play on words and their logo plays with it. It’s a tough place to describe, maybe imagine a Mexican Subway restaurant, but with a great happy hour and live music. Dining open air, great music, on the marina in the Caribbean! OK, so nothing like eating at Subway. Owned and managed by an expat FOR expats Nauti Burro has a simple menu of tacos, burritos, taco bowls and sides like French fries (get the cheese dip!) and chicken wings. And I suppose where the similarity to the sandwich joint ends is that you go inside to order your food. You’ve got the sneeze guard in front of you so go with the burrito and you can point at the color of beans you want, type of rice, type of meat and of course all the fixings that make your favorite burrito, yours. I love the heat so absolutely recommend the mango habanero salsa, on everything (wings too)! Once the burrito is grilled, they’ll run it out to your table for you. 

Everything from the to-go containers to the smoothie cups & straws are biodegradable, so you just feel good about being here. Feeling healthy? Wash it down with one of the fantastic smoothies, or since you are here for happy hour, head on up to the bar and get your favorite Mexican beer (some artisanal varieties available!) or a margarita. Sometimes the house margarita does the trick, other times, it’s nice to get one with the good stuff.  One of the local celeb musicians often plays at the Nauti Burro, so stick around for another drink and enjoy Mike Grabow jamming away, you won’t leave disappointed.

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya
Tracy - Real Estate Agent

Burrito Amor Tulum

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Tracy – Real Estate Agent

What can I say about Burrito Amor except that is exactly that, I’m in love with their Burritos!!! This welcoming little gem of a restaurant is located on the main highway as you go through Tulum Town. Not only does it have the amazing Tulum vibe but the best burritos I’ve had in my life. So good, that my kids and I have driven to Tulum just to go to Burrito Amor to eat.

They have something for everyone, from breakfast burritos to lunch and dinner burritos as well as other items but why mess with success. They have so many clean, organic options from egg, shrimp, beef, grilled fish ( my fav),vegan and vegetarian options and my favorite is the gluten free coconut wraps they use which are better than the regular ones!! All of this yumminess is wrapped in a fat burrito and rolled in a banana leave and served with a variety of sauces, the chipotle is to dye for!!!! They have everything from fresh squeezed juices to unique somewhat heaalth conscious cocktails.

The staff is friendly, and the prices are economical compared to the usual prices you’ll encounter in Tulum.  Once is never enough!!!

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya
Leah - Real Estate Agent

Los Aguachiles

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Leah – Real Estate Agent

Los Aguachiles is one of the best kept secrets in Playa. Personally I ate here almost every lunch break for 6 years and always bring visitors and it’s a hit every time. Serving a variety of tasty seafood, tacos, and figuriens (lettuce wraps) It is also known for fresh ceviches and the delicious homemade sauces that you can purchase along with salsas that accompany them. There are a few different locations in Playa, and each location the food is exactly the same. Service is fast and prices are reasonable.

My favorite choices are the octopus, dynamite shrimp, steamed fish tacos, figurines and, the tuna tiki tiki. Do yourselves a favor and indulge your taste-buds and thank me later 😉

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

Tony - Real Estate Agent


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Tony – Real Estate Agent

Hippos in Puerto Aventuras is a popular restaurant for locals and tourists for breakfast lunch and dinner. I prefer a hearty breakfast and the Frittata is amazing. Scrambled eggs on top of roasted potatoes, green onion, bacon, ham topped with bubbling cheese and served in an iron skillet will have you coming back every morning. The friendly staff the beautiful environment and the scent of the nearby Caribbean ocean, hippos is the place in Puerto Aventuras. See you there

10 Restaurants you can't miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

4 thoughts on “10 Restaurants you can’t miss on your next trip to the Riviera Maya

  • on July 5, 2020

    Turtle Bay Caffe and El Fogon

    • Matt Mathieson
      on July 5, 2020

      Thanks for the great recommendations Ed. El Fogon is great, but I need to try out Turtle Bay Cafe. Cheers!

  • Susan
    on July 5, 2020

    Appreciate the reviews and suggestions especially Puerto Aventuras as I have never been to Hippos or Nauti Burrito
    Will try in March!

    • Matt Mathieson
      on July 5, 2020

      You’re very welcome Susan, thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Both are delicious! Enjoy. Have fun when your down next March.

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