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Catalonia Royal Tulum Riviera Maya
The 5-star Catalonia Royal Tulum all inclusive adults only resort, is located on the Riviera Maya in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo.
This resort is great for couples, but I actually did this as a solo trip (my first international trip!) and enjoyed myself immensely! It would also be a good fit if you are looking for a spot to do a girl’s trip, guys trip, or even a group trip to Mexico!
Catalonia Royal Tulum Review
If you’re looking for Catalonia Royal Tulum Reviews then look no further! I’m here to give you a 100% honest review of my stay at the resort.
In this article you’ll get an honest review from my time at the resort, so that you can make an informed decision about how to spend your precious time and money. To assist in your decision making, I want to go over the good, the bad, and the ugly…but mostly good so stay with me here. Let’s get started!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission. I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are my own.
the good (mostly great!)
Catalonia Royal Tulum Beach and Spa Resort has the best of both worlds. The resort is nestled in the middle of the jungle. Just as you emerge from the lush jungle you step onto gorgeous beach property.
It’s why most of us are here. The resort has a nice little slice of ocean side property with soft sand and gorgeous blue green water.
the jungle, I hope you like rain!
I chose this resort because of its location right in the middle of the jungle, and I was thrilled about that!
Quintana Roo is a tropical rainforest zone! As you might expect of a jungle location, it rained a lot, but just for a bit. One of the most enjoyable aspects of my trip was sitting on my balcony listening to gentle rain tapping out one my favorite sounds on the bright green jungle flora!
If you’re worried about the rain ruining your fun don’t. Brief rain showers don’t last long and it’s a great chance to relax!
pretty walking paths at Catalonia Tulum
Walking the lovely paths that wind through the resort was enjoyable both day or night.
They are romantically lit at night and one section of the walkway has mesmerizing color changing lights!
flowers, flora and fauna
It wouldn’t be a proper tropical rain forest without colorful flowers…and palm trees bearing coconuts!
special romantic touches
Although I had a wonderful solo trip here, this resort is definitely geared to couples.
The walkway paths are studded with cute inspirational signs.
The walkway paths are studded with cute inspirational signs.
the pool at Catalonia Tulum
With the beautiful green sea just feet away, I didn’t even try out the pool. I did stick a couple of toes in to test it out and it was a pleasant temperature for early January.
How many pools does Catalonia Royal Tulum have? There is one large pool at the resort.
Does Catalonia Royal Tulum have a swim up bar?
Yes, The Catalonia Royal Tulum has a swim up bar in the swimming pool.
my favorite spot…the hammock!
This hammock and I made great friends during my time at the resort. What a great way to enjoy the sounds of the ocean waves relaxing in a hammock. Eyes closed, I let the sound of the waves wash over me and it was bliss!
Your reservation at Catalonia comes with access to some of the cutest area residents. The walkways are teaming with coati, friendly and as you can see oh so cute! They were a fantastic addition to the whole jungle experience.
The spa runs a special on most days. I went twice for the massage/facial special. Spa services include hair, braids, waxing, nails and more.
Now that we’ve covered all of the good (great!) things about Catalonia are you ready to book yet?
Book Catalonia Adults All-inclusive on Booking.com Now!
“no” before you go
Get used to hearing the word no at Catalonia Royal Tulum all inclusive adults only resort. Even the simplest of requests seemed to elicit a response to the negative. Can you make change for my 500-peso bills? “no madam” can you reduce my room rate? my travel companion was not able to be here? “no madam.” There were a few other small requests that elicited further “no madam” replies.
NOT a 5-star resort
They advertise this property as a 5-star resort but if you’re expecting a 5-star experience I think you will be disappointed. Nice, yes, 5 starts, probably not.
When you book an all-inclusive, they usually price the rooms based on double occupancy but there is often a small reduction in price when just one person is occupying the room. The reasoning is that one person is going to consume about half of the food and drink. I wasn’t very happy that they declined to give me any type of discount but my only option was to stay home, which was not actually an option.
Communication with the resort prior to arrival was almost non-existent. I attempted to contact them directly several times with questions and got no response. I made my reservation through booking.com and they did not respond to them regarding one of my requests either.
Really the only “Ugly” was the QR code method for accessing the menus was at times downright frustrating; inconvenient at best and just flat irritating at worst. I found their site to be littered with glitches and technical issues. Do yourself a favor, when it’s working take a screenshot of the menu for later reference, or if you are struggling with the QR code process just try asking for a menu.
somewhere in between
For me, if I am being perfectly honest, the food was really hit and miss. There were 8 restaurants to choose from. To get into B’loved beach restaurant you will need to book a room with privileged access and the rowdy Rauxa requires a reservation.
Room service is also available with a very limited menu, and the food was just ok but if you’re in a pinch it’s better than going hungry!
In the interest of keeping this article short and sweet, I’ve covered the food in this supplemental article: Food and Restaurant Review for Catalonia Royal Tulum.
The service at Catalonia Royal Tulum all inclusive adults only resort was good, the employees friendly but I did have some communication issues. Google translate for your mobile phone can be very useful too. If you are new to google translate I cover google translate basics in this article
We all know about Mexico’s reputation. Safety is a #1 priority, especially for a solo female traveler. I felt perfectly safe here. I walked around the resort alone at night but didn’t stay out late. There is access control at the entrance to the resort. When I left and came back the guard took my name and room number from the taxi driver and took down the taxi number. Take the usual travel precautions and do your research before you travel because knowledge is always your best defense.
You can check current travel advisories at the United States Department of State official website.
The resort has several activities scheduled throughout the week such as
- beach volleyball
- bocce ball
- ping pong
- pool volleyball
- dance lessons
- and more.
rooms and prices
The rooms at Catalonia Tulum
I booked a junior suite and paid for the “privileged” upgrade which comes with the following:
- one access to spa water circuit
- 10% off spa treatments
- the possibility (but no guarantee) of early check in/late check out
- access to the BLOVED beach restaurant and bar
- access to the privileged area of the beach.
Other upgrade rooms include a “ catalonia royal tulum privileged romance room “
Check out their QR code site for the pillow menu! I didn’t find that neat feature until my last night. The room was very clean and had cool a/c. The closer the proximity to the rowdy Rauxa bar the louder the music was. If you like to retire early you might try and request a room further from this area.
These key card wristbands were perfect for a beach resort. I never had to worry about remembering my room key or leaving it unattended while I was swimming.
This is where this resort really shines. If you’re on a budget this resort is a great value! Prices start at around $240 per night based on double occupancy! That’s $120 per person per night, for all-inclusive!
Book Catalonia Adults all inclusive on Booking.com now!
location, getting there, transportation
Where is Catalonia Royal Tulum all inclusive adults only resort located?
The resort is actually located about 38 km north of Tulum in Xpu Ha, and about a 1 to 1.5 hours’ drive south of Cancun.
Address for Catalonia Royal Tulum Beach & Spa Resort Adults Only – All Inclusive, Xpu Ha: Km. 264,5 Chetumal, Carr. Cancún – Tulum, 77790 Xpu Ha, Q.R., Mexico
GPS coordinates: 20.478332025252705, -87.25840871728386
How far is Catalonia Royal Tulum from airport?
- Cozumel (CZM) about 45 km but requires a ferry ride
- Cancun (CUN) 82 km
- Tulum is getting an international Airport so soon you’ll be closer than ever! Felipe Carrillo Puerto Tulum International Airport (Aeropuerto internacional de Tulum, Felipe Carrillo Puerto) will be finished by December 2023) The airport will be located 20 miles NORTH of Tulum, which puts the distance to Catalonia resort at about 18 km!
Highway 307 is a busy highway that runs along the coast from Cancun to Tulum. Drivers will have no trouble finding the resort, located right on Highway 307.
The resort can also be reached by bus. To seamlessly plan your bus transportation see the Rome2Rio website or app.
On the recommendation of a friend, I booked private transport. They will take you directly to your resort as opposed to shared transport which has to stop and let other’s out along the way making your trip potentially much longer. There are many companies that perform this service. I used Mayaland (booked through booking.com airport taxi booking, which gave me the best rate) and USA Transfers (booked direct), both of which have stellar Google reviews.
For around $80 each way I had the entire van to myself. NOTE OF CAUTION WHEN USING BOOKING .COM. They booked me with Mayaland airport to the resort but when I tried to book my return transport they offered me some company that has very bad google reviews. Do a little research on the company before you finalize with them.
Another great place to book shuttle is Get Your Guide. They offer plenty of customer reviews so you can pick a reliable company!
book your airport shuttle on Get Your Guide now!
You can rent a car, join group tours, take the bus or do like I did and take Taxis. The fares seemed a little high but I felt it was the safest option for me. Make sure you already have the correct amount of change in your mind before you hand over your fare, otherwise they may take it upon themselves to take a large tip.
other “need to know” information
getting money and tipping
There is an ATM at the resort that gives Pesos. I had trouble getting smaller bills (was not able to get any from the resort) but brought plenty of smaller USD bills for tipping and Things. You’ll want to have enough to tip your driver (to and from) the Cancun airport if you choose this option. I brought enough money with me to leave a tips for housekeeping.
Do I need to tip wait staff, bartenders etc. at an all- inclusive resorts Tulum?? I have heard it both ways. Some all-inclusive resorts actually discourage it but this was not one of those resorts. Feel free to tip! Only have dollar bills? They take those!
Catalonia has a bit of a more casual vibe than I was expecting. I brought a lot of fun tropical print clothes but it seemed that most guests had a more subdued wardrobe.
Headed to Tulum and need packing ideas? Look no further than this guide! Tulum Packing List: 32 Essentials For A Perfect Tulum, Mexico Getaway
when is the best time to visit?
You’ll probably have to decide between fair weather and crowds.
Hurricane season in Mexico is from May through November, with most storms developing between July and October.
The weather was almost perfect during my stay in the month of January. I never really got hot and despite the daily rain showers humidity didn’t seem to be an issue. In general daytimes temps averaged 81 degrees f, nights 65 degrees f.
Peak tourist crowd season in this area is from December to April.
Should I book Catalonia?
All in all, I find that there were more positive aspects about this resort. I would go back in a heartbeat. In fact, I find myself dreaming of heading back again soon!
Want to learn a little Spanish before your trip? These are my favorite options for learning a language for travel:
- Google Translate (I have an entire article on how to use it)
- Duolingo (free and fun!)
- Pimsleur Language Courses (not cheap but highly effective if you want to learn even more Spanish)
- Lingopie (let’s you watch your television programs with Spanish subtitles!)
Book Catalonia Adults All-inclusive on Booking.com Now!
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easy day trips from Hotel Catalonia Royal Tulum
I did two day trips while I was at the resort. Both are very close to the resort so you can spend your time having fun instead of sitting in a car or on a bus.
swim with sea turtles at Akumal Bay
Kantun Chi Cenote Park
Another day visited the Kantun Chi Cenote Park.
There are tons of tour companies that offer hotel pick up service. On offer:
- Mayan Ruins
- horseback riding
- adrenalin parks
- whale shark and sea turtle encounters
Playa Xpu-Ha Beach
If you leave the resort area and head south on the beach you’ll pass by some cheap eats and beach clubs just a short walk away. Locals like this area so if you’re looking for a little authentic Mexico, head on down!
Explore your options on Get Your Guide here!
Want to hear more about my travels around Mexico and the rest of our amazing planet? You might be interested in my Tropical Trips page, and be sure to submit your email address to my subscriber sign up at the end of the page to be the first to know when a new blog publishes!