Travel insights from Jenna Buege, associate editor of The Compass

5 of the Most Interesting (and Delicious) Culinary Experiences in Cancun

As one of Mexico’s most popular tourism destinations, it’s no doubt that travelers would have a lot of choices when it comes to dining in Cancun. And while many of Cancun’s restaurants are great, these places have a little something extra to make your experience stand out from the rest.

1. Black Hole: Haute Cuisine in the Dark

They say love is blind, but can the same be said about love at first bite? Visit The Pyramid at Grand Cancun’s Black Hole, a restaurant where each course is served and eaten in total darkness inspiring patrons to be “seduced by the scents, textures and flavors of an outstanding blind tasting.” Afraid to immerse yourself in the blackness? Don’t be, the restaurant’s mysterious hosts are there to take you by the hand, literally, and guide you to your table where you will choose from 27 expertly crafted dishes prepared with the finest of ingredients.

2. Xoximilco

Get ready to par-tayyy with an evening filled with music, dancing, drinks and food at Xoximilco. A colorful excursion, travelers will board one of several trajineras (festive Mexican gondolas) and drift along a peaceful river surrounded by the beautiful landscape of the Mayan jungle. But the peace and quiet won’t last long as sounds of traditional Mexican music, singing and laughter fill the air between bites of the feast of flavors representative of the entire country. Expect fan favorites like guacamole and pico de gallo and more traditional takes like Valladolid pork loin and tamarind shrimp. Then finish off your meal with desserts of your choosing including corn flan, milk caramel and Oaxaca-milled chocolate.

3. The Traveler’s Table

Prepare your time machine because the Traveler’s Table is a culinary journey through the decades showcasing flavors dating back to the Mayan empire to present day Mexico. Is all this food talk making you thirsty? Each of the five courses at the Traveler’s Table are served alongside expertly paired wines, mezcals and tequilas so get ready to drink up. And the fun at the Traveler’s Table doesn’t end after dinner; each ticket also includes an interactive cocktail class and a sparkling wine sunset reception at a private beach club, making this one of the most romantic excursions in Cancun.

4. Elefanta

For a taste of India in the heart of Cancun, visit Elefanta, a restaurant specializing in Hindu-art- inspired food crafted by Chef Kishan Singh Negi. Prepare for perfectly spiced dishes ranging from curries, soups and rice mixed with exciting, flavorful and colorful ingredients. However, what really sets Elefanta apart from other Cancun establishments is its incredible ambiance. Nestled along the Las Islas shopping center lagoon, diners at Elefanta will eat waterside inside their own private tiki hut complete with dreamy mood lighting.

5. Marakamé Café

A relaxed establishment specializing in classic Mexican dishes, Marakamé Café is the only place in Cancun where you can dine or party inside a giant tree house. Visit for a charming Sunday brunch buffet or stop by after dark when the ambiance picks up the pace with live music and festive lighting that really brings the place to life.

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