Yaax Che Botanical Gardens

Mayan Botanical Gardens near Puerto Morelos

The legend has it that the giant Ceiba tree called “Yaax Che” grows right from the center of the world, with its roots reaching into the underworld and its branches holding up the sky. The Maya believe that the Ceiba tree provides a pathway for souls to reach the heavens by joining the three cosmic levels of the Mayan Universe. Jardin Botanico Yaax Che is a magical place to visit, explore and experience with its unique combination of Maya plants with typical Maya architecture.

Why visit the Yaax Che Botanical gardens?

With 150-acres of lush jungle and mangrove trees, this is the largest botanical garden both on the coast of Quintana Roo and within Mexico. In addition to the vast selection of plants, Yaax Che Botanical Gardens is home to over 220 rare animal species. This combination makes your trip to Yaax Che an educational visit that shares both Mayan ‘treasures’ and adventures. When the botanical gardens opened its doors to the public three decades ago, Jardín Botánico “Yaax Che” was dedicated to Dr. Alfredo Barrera Marín – a scientist who devoted most of his life to the study and preservation of Mayan traditions and the Yucatan’s natural environment.

What is there to do and discover at Jardín Botánico “Yaax Che”?

Besides hiking the groomed jungle trails and taking pictures of numerous exotic trees, plants and flowers (whose names can be read in English, Spanish and Latin), stay on the lookout for colorful birds, sunning iguanas and playful spider monkeys. Walk a 130-foot suspension bridge, and if you feel up to the challenge, climb a scenic lookout tower. If you make the climb, your reward is the vast panoramic view expanding from the mangrove forest to the sparkling sea and out over the jungle!

Why Yaax Che makes this adventure a bit more memorable

As in most natural parks in Riviera Maya and Quintana Roo, Yaax Che botanical gardens holds the traces of the ancient Mayan civilization. Although small, the “El Altar” Mayan ruins date back to 1400 D.C. To give you a better feel of what local life was like before tourism came to the coast, the Jardín Botánico hosts a traditional Maya home and a re-created chiclero camp. What is a chiclero camp? It’s the temporary camps set up throughout the Yucatan where the sap of the zapote or “chicle” tree was boiled down and cast into blocks for transport out of the jungle. It’s where the first chewing gum production took its origins from. The gum derived from the chicle tree served as a base for the then popular “Chiclets” chewing gum brand.

When to visit the Botanical Garden of Dr. Alfredo Barrera Marín?

The park is open daily, Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm (last entry is at 4 pm), so you can easily incorporate a visit to Yaax Che into your vacation ‘agenda’! Remember to wear comfortable shoes, bring sunscreen, water and insect repellent. You’re out in the jungle after all! The Botanical Gardens are located near Puerto Morelos just south of Cancun.

LocoGringo suggests these great vacation spots:

El Faro Residences

El Faro, Playa del Carmen vacation condo hotel, Riviera Maya, Mexico
El Faro Hotel (the Lighthouse) is more than just a landmark. This exclusive beach front all-suite resort offers the best of the beach. Fully equipped 1, 2 and 3 bedroom suites w/ full kitchen, large...
Take Me

Villas Sacbe

Villas Sacbe, Playa del Carmen condos, vacation rentals Riviera Maya, Mexico
Contact us for special promotion and rates for all future dates! Surrounded by cascading waterfalls and tropical plants, Villas Sacbe is a luxury condominium complex with beautifully furnished 1...
Take Me

Hacienda Kukulkan

Hacienda Kukulkan, Puerto Aventuras rental home, Riviera Maya
All new bookings for 2015 & 2016 receive complimentary Gourmet Chef Services for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Don’t want to settle for anything but the best? Featuring 4-10 custom designed...
Take Me

Hotel Illusion

Hotel Illusion, Playa del Carmen hotel, Riviera Maya
Just a 1/2 block away from the beach and Playa del Carmen's famous 5th Ave, this elegant hotel boasts 41 Air-conditioned “Indonesian-style” suites, a rooftop pool, a full-service spa, deli market...
Take Me

Hacienda Corazon

Hacienda Corazon, Puerto Aventuras villa rental, Riviera Maya
All new bookings for 2015 & 2016 receive complimentary Gourmet Chef Services for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This exceptional beach front Hacienda style villa on Puerto Aventuras main beach has...
Take Me

Villa Canteena

Casa Can-teena, Playa del Secreto vacation home rental, Riviera Maya
It's all about pleasure, privacy and peace of mind. Four posh bedrooms, a living room, with its cozy built-in sofas, wet bar and satellite TV has been designed for ultimate relaxation and long...
Take Me

Villa Miramar

Villa Miramar, Puerto Aventuras rental home, Riviera Maya
Besides all the luxurious features of this gorgeous vacation home, the location is fantastic. Nestled in Puerto Aventuras, you’ll be living the Caribbean lifestyle as soon as you arrive!
Take Me

Corto Maltes

Corto Maltes, Playa del Carmen condos, vacation rentals, Riviera Maya
Deluxe 2 bedroom condos right on Playa del Carmen main beach and Calle 10 in Central Playa del Carmen. Enjoy full AC, luxurious interiors, Flat TV/satellite, DVD, ocean view balcony/terrace. Sleeps 4
Take Me
See All Properties

Explore Your Next Trip...

I Want...

Departing from

Going to

Start Date

Return Date

Who's Going...

Give Me the Details