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Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

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Hampden...
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Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

Anyone have any recent experience driving the free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid?

The toll road sounds kinda boring, and i would enjoy being able to stop if i wanted. How long does it take on the free road?

Thanks.

Southern California
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1. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

Where are you staying? The free road starts down south at the entrance to Tulum pueblo, the toll road starts almost immediately south of the airport. It takes about a little less than 2 hours on the free road due to topes and reduced speed limits through several small villages.

Friday Harbor...
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2. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

We took a free road from near the Cancun airport (we were staying in Puerto Morales) and drove to Ek Balam and Valladolid about 2 1/2 weeks ago.

We had no problem either way. We found it far more interesting than the toll road (which we have been on before in that area) because it goes through so many villages with mostly Indian/Mayan people. Do be aware of the fact that there are topes all across the roads in many places in all these villages so it's slow going at times. But the roads don't get much traffic. And you'll see lots of stray dogs which can be sad as many in these villages look in poor physical shape....very thin and bad skin/coat conditions. We saw one dead dog (a puppy it seemed) in the middle of the road in one village that had vultures landing on it as we went by. But still we preferred this road to the toll road which is super boring. When we left Valladolid is was almost dusk so we ended up driving part of the way back to PM in the dark but had no problem with that either.

Edited: 06 April 2011, 18:23
Cape Cod
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3. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

My understanding is that you can get to the Libre (free highway) from the airport by taking the same exit to the Cuota. The turnoffs to the Libre (on the right), however, are not marked. I have not done this myself.

Have a good trip!

IHX
Atenas, Costa Rica
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4. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

There are some narrow roads through the jungle that I call the local bypasses around Cancun city. It only takes about 5-6 minutes to drive one of them, and you’ll miss the city traffic mess of Cancun. They go north/south between the toll road and the free road to Mérida.

When you leave the Cancun Airport, go south as if to going to Tulum until you a see a sign for the Merida cuota(toll road). Take that exit. After a few kilometers, start keeping a eye out for some side roads on your right. There will we be some small house and/or store fronts and a rope across the road. Turn right onto the road, and someone will collect 10 or 15 pesos. If they don’t collect it there, they will collect it at the end of the road. There are at least 3 in total. So if you miss the first one, don’t panic. The last one is at the 294km marker. The first one is now beautifully paved. The last one is not but is our preference because it is the shortest. Once you get across to 180(the free road), you may have to turn east for a bit before you can make a U-turn to turn back west heading to Valladolid.

Vancouver
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5. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

Does this free road option only apply if you are coming from Cancun? We are driving from Akumal.... not sure if this applies to us?

London ON
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6. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

There is a road from Puerto Morelos to Leona Vicario which is on the free hwy 180. This road allows you to bypass Cancun. We started from Leona V. The road was hard packed dirt with many large pot holes. We turned around after a km or 2 and continued on the free road into Cancun. We asked the hotel owner in PM about the road and he said most of the road was paved, probably a few miles from where we turned around (????). I have heard the road is in better condition than when we tried to drive in March of 2009.

There is a road from Tulum to the free hwy 180 (just east of Vallidolid). It travels through Coba which I have heard has some very important Mayan ruins. I have heard this is a well traveled road, but I have not been on it. Perhaps some of the experts can share their knowledge on these two roads.

I would suggest a very good map and a google earth view of the beginnings of the road from either PM or Tulum before attempting the journey.

The free road from Cancun to Valladolid should take about .5 to 1 hour longer than the cuota road, depending on traffic. (there is no traffic on the cuota road.

Shafter, California
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7. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

Ruta de Cenote in Puerto Morelos is now in in great shape all the way to Leona Vicario where you can get on the hwy 180 libre. It takes a while but interesting. There really isn't anywhere to stop for food or restrooms besides roadside stands. I did this last year and would not recommend driving it at night. After arriving in CUN in the afternoon I drove down to PM got a inexpensive hotel for an early departure.

If your coming from Akumal you can take the above route by going north on hwy 307 to ruta de cenote but going south on hwy307 from Akumal to the Coba rd. then go northwest on the coba rd would be the best route to Vallodolid from Akumal. I've done it a couple of times.

Cape Cod
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8. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

From Akumal, head south to Tulum where you will hit the main highway west to Valladolid/Merida. Improvements over the last few years have made this an excellent highway. It joins the Libre (free road) outside of Chemax.

Don't even consider going north near Cancun.

Have a great trip!

Vancouver
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9. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

thanks for all the info! We may have already driven some of this road as we did Coba a few years back but can't quite remember!

Philadelphia...
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10. Re: Free road from Cancun airport to Valladolid

Cancun airport to Valladolid- Would you estimate the drive time taking the Ruta de Cenotes from PM? And on the 307 south, is that turnoff (onto RdeC) marked? Thx!