small town south of the major resorts
historic town with the beautiful lagoon of 7 colors
luxury tourism central
capital city of the state
Border crossing with Belize
the next Playa del Carmen, a tourist development
eclectic and seductive Mexican city
a secluded, charming district
quiet fishing town
Busiest border crossing with Belize
Remote village for Great fishing and diving
large Maya site
a UNESCO World Heritage listed biosphere reserve
impressive Maya archaeological site built in a cliff that faces the ocean
an unhabited small island and bird sanctuary
the largest island and port of call
a tropical paradise out of hustle and bustle
small cozy retreat close to Cancun
This eastern part of the Yucatán Peninsula shares much history with the neighboring states of Yucatán and Campeche; a long Maya heritage and conquest by the Spanish in the 1500s. It was long part of the state of Yucatán. In the 1840s, however, local Maya people revolted against the Hispanic people who dominated politically and economically, starting what is called "the War of the Castes". With long battles the Maya succeeded in driving out the non-Maya from this area, and established their own government with the capital in Chan Santa Cruz, now the town of Felipe Carrillo Puerto -- the Maya state was briefly recognized as an independent nation by the British Empire. An uneasy truce ended in the 1890s with a Mexican counter attack which succeeded in bring the area back under the Mexican flag in 1901. The area was then designated the Mexican Territory of Quintana Roo, named after Andrés Quintana Roo, a Yucatecan hero of the Mexican war of Independence in the early 19th century.
Comparatively sparsely populated and undeveloped, the territory of Quintana Roo did not achieve statehood until 1974, making it Mexico's youngest state. In the 1970s, Mexican developers realized the area's beautiful beaches, lush forests, and historic Maya ruins could make it a prime visitor destination if only infrastructure could be put in place. New highways were laid, new International Airports constructed at Cozumel and Cancun, and hotels were built. The tiny remote village of Cancun became a boom town, the first center of the new development of Quintana Roo, drawing a new population of workers and residents from other parts of Mexico.
Today Quintana Roo is popular with visitors with bustling tourism developments thriving while large areas of natural beauty remain unspoiled.