Playa del Carmen Weather in January: Is it a good month to visit?
Are you thinking about booking a winter escape to Playa del Carmen in January and wondering what the weather will be like? Look no further!
January is one of the best months of the year to visit Playa del Carmen, as the weather is pleasant and mild with sunny skies.
How do I know? I’m a travel blogger that lives in Playa del Carmen so I’ve been able to experience the weather here every month of the year!
In this post, I’m sharing everything you need to know about the weather in Playa del Carmen in January including the average temperatures, rainfall, and humidity along with some helpful tips for what to pack and the best things to do during this time of year.
Read on to learn more about Playa del Carmen January weather trends, and start planning your perfect winter getaway today!
Is January a good month for Playa del Carmen?
January is a great month to visit Playa del Carmen! The weather is warm and sunny, with an average daily temperature of around 81°F (27°C) and low chances of rain.
This makes it a great place for a winter escape, as the tropical weather in Playa del Carmen is much warmer than in most areas of the United States, Canada, and Europe.
January also falls during the dry season in Playa del Carmen, resulting in less humidity. This makes being outside during the sunny days much more comfortable without feeling like you’re melting.
But because the weather is much more pleasant in Playa del Carmen in January, this also makes it one of the most popular times of year to travel here.
In fact, January is in the middle of high season in Playa del Carmen (it starts in December and lasts until April) so there will be more crowds and higher prices than at other times of the year.
So if you’re planning a visit during, be sure to book your accommodations and activities well in advance!
👉 Search for January hotel deals in Playa del Carmen by clicking here!
Playa del Carmen Weather in January
Here’s what you can expect from the Playa del Carmen January weather:
Average Temperatures in Playa del Carmen in January
In January, Playa del Carmen has an average high temperature of 81°F (27°C) and an average low temperature of 68°F (20°C).
While January is the coldest month of the year in Playa del Carmen, don’t worry it will still be hot enough to enjoy the beach and pool!
During the day, the temperatures are typically quite warm so you’ll be able to enjoy all the destination’s beach and water activities, from swimming and sunbathing to snorkeling and scuba diving.
You’ll probably still even break a sweat if you’re out exploring Playa del Carmen in the afternoon, so it’s a good idea to pack lightweight and breathable vacation clothes, as well as plenty of biodegradable sunscreen.
You may get a bit chilly once you get out of the water if there is a breeze, so be sure to pack a travel towel or wrap if you want to stay warm after your beach and water activities.
At night, the temperatures in Playa del Carmen in January can get cooler, so you’ll also want to pack a light jacket or sweater for any nighttime activities you have planned.
The night temperature never really drops below 68°F (20°C), so it won’t be freezing but you’ll be more comfortable with a light sweater or wrap, especially if there is wind.
❄️ Related Reading: Does it Snow in Mexico?
Does it rain a lot in Playa del Carmen in January?
In January, Playa del Carmen typically experiences 54 mm (2.13″) of rain with an average of 16 days of rain.
This is considered a low level of rainfall for Playa del Carmen — for comparison, the month of June (during the rainy season) has an average of 169 mm (6.65″) of rain.
☔️ Playa del Carmen’s rainy season typically runs from June to October.
January is one of the drier months and it’s unlikely that you’ll encounter heavy tropical storms. Plus, when it does rain in Playa del Carmen, it’s common for storms to pass very quickly and then the sun comes back out again.
If you do happen to experience heavy rainfall during your trip, Playa del Carmen still has lots of fun activities for rainy days so you can make the most of your time here even when it’s raining.
Some of my favorite rainy-day activities in Playa del Carmen are visiting Rio Secreto underground river system, checking out a cavern cenote like Cenote Tak Be Ha, or booking a massage treatment at a luxury spa.
Average Humidity in Playa del Carmen in January
The average relative humidity in Playa del Carmen in January is 77%. Due to its tropical climate, you can never really escape the humidity, but it definitely feels much lower than other months of the year.
Plus, it means that you’ll be able to spend more time outside without it feeling super muggy or uncomfortably hot.
Are there hurricanes in Playa del Carmen in January?
No, there are typically not hurricanes in Playa del Carmen in the month of January. The hurricane season in Playa del Carmen runs from June to November.
How warm is the water in Playa del Carmen in January?
The average sea water temperature in Playa del Carmen in January is 78.8°F (26°C), which is still warm enough for swimming and taking part in other water activities like snorkeling or scuba diving.
Plus, the average surface water temperature is typically even higher. So you can still enjoy Playa del Carmen’s beaches or lounge by the pool in January without worrying about the water being too cold.
You may get a little chilly after you get out of the water if there is a breeze, so pack a light cover-up like a sarong or travel towel to stay warm and dry off quickly.
Now if you plan to visit a freshwater cenote during your trip, beware the water can be very cold during this time of year!
You’ll definitely want to wear a rash guard to keep you warm and be more comfortable in the water. Otherwise your teeth will be chattering!
Best Things to Do in Playa del Carmen in January
With great weather and low humidity, January is a great time to enjoy all of the fun things to do in Riviera Maya and the state of Quintana Roo.
Whether you’re beach-lounging, exploring beautiful caves and cenotes, or shopping on Playa del Carmen’s famous 5th Avenue, there’s something for everyone to enjoy during a January vacation to Playa del Carmen.
Here are some of the best things to do in Playa del Carmen in January:
- Visit ancient Mayan ruins: Playa del Carmen is located near many ancient Mayan ruins in the Yucatan peninsula, such as the Tulum Ruins, Chichen Itza, and Cobá. A visit to the nearby Mayan ruins makes for a fun day trip, and these are great places to visit in January since it won’t be quite as hot–the ruins typically have very little shade!
- Snorkel with sea turtles in Akumal: Playa del Carmen is home to some amazing snorkeling spots, including Akumal Bay. This area is known for the abundance of sea turtles that feed on the sea grass right off the beach. This means turtle sightings are almost guaranteed and you’ll get to see them up close in their natural habitat. To support conservation efforts, it’s best to go on a guided snorkeling tour with a local expert.
- Shop on Playa del Carmen’s Fifth Avenue: Fifth Avenue (“La Quinta Avenida”) is a bustling place for shopping in Playa del Carmen where you’ll find everything from high-end boutiques to local markets and souvenir shops. Whether you’re looking for unique Mexican handicrafts, the latest beachwear trends, or just some delicious street food, Playa del Carmen’s 5th Avenue is a fun place for a lively stroll.
- Visit an Xcaret adventure park: Playa del Carmen is also home to several popular Xcaret adventure parks. These fun and family-friendly theme parks are the perfect places to spend a day enjoying water slides, zip lining, snorkeling in underground rivers, and more. With so many different activities, Xcaret offers a variety of fun outdoor adventures for both families and adults.
- Go on a catamaran sail: If you want to get out on the water, Playa del Carmen is also a great place to go on a catamaran sail on the Caribbean Sea. These boat rides will take you sailing for a full day of sunbathing, swimming, and even some snorkeling.
- Go snorkeling at El Cielo in Cozumel: Playa del Carmen is also located near the island of Cozumel, which is an amazing spot for snorkeling and diving. If you’re a snorkeler, be sure to check out El Cielo on Cozumel as it’s known for its bright turquoise water and abundance of giant starfish.
Special Events in Playa del Carmen in January
If you’re visiting Playa del Carmen in January and looking for something special to do, there are a couple of key events and holidays that take place during this month:
- New Year’s Celebrations: Many restaurants and bars in Playa del Carmen will host special New Year’s (“Año Nuevo”) celebrations on December 31 to ring in the new year. This is a fun way to enjoy Playa del Carmen at night, and many bars and nightclubs will have entertainment like DJs and live music to get you dancing into the new year! Plus, you’ll get to participate in the Mexican New Year’s tradition of eating 12 grapes for each stroke of midnight.
- Día de Reyes (King’s Day): If you’re visiting Playa del Carmen in early January, don’t miss the Día de Reyes celebration. This festival is held on January 6th in honor of Epiphany — celebrating the arrival of the three kings who brought gifts to Jesus Christ. This holiday features a sweet baked bread called “Rosca de Reyes” that looks like a fruitcake. The Rosca de Reyes cake is kind of similar to a Mardi Gras cake, in that whoever finds the small baby Jesus figurine hidden inside their slice of cake will be tasked with providing tamales and Mexican hot chocolate for the group on February 2nd.
What to Pack for Playa del Carmen in January
When visiting Playa del Carmen in January, you’ll want to add a few extra items to your Mexico packing list:
🧳 Check out my full Mexico packing list guide for all the other essentials to pack for a beach vacation to Mexico.
- Jacket or Light Sweater: The nighttime temperatures in Playa del Carmen in January can get a bit chilly, so be sure to pack a light jacket or sweater that you can easily throw on if needed.
- Pants: Normally you don’t need to pack pants for Playa del Carmen, but January is one month of the year I would recommend packing a pair of pants or jeans. Temperatures can be cool at night and you might be more comfortable wearing pants. Linen pants like these are also a great option that can double as a swimsuit coverup during the day and can be dressed up at night.
- Rash guard: You may also want to consider packing a rash guard or swim shirt if you plan on spending lots of time in and out of the water or visiting cenotes. Cenotes can be very cold during this time of year! A rash guard will help protect your skin from getting sunburned, as well as keep you warm if you get chilly. They are also great for snorkeling tours when wearing sunscreen is prohibited.
- Compact Umbrella: While the chance of rain is lower in January than other months, it’s still a good idea to pack an umbrella so you’re prepared if bad weather strikes. These compact umbrellas are lightweight and great for travel.
- Travel Towel: It’s also a good idea to pack a lightweight travel towel to use at the pool, beach, or while on tours and excursions. These quick-dry travel towels are compact and can be easily thrown into your suitcase or backpack.
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Visiting Playa del Carmen in January: FAQs
Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about visiting Playa del Carmen Mexico in January:
No, it is not cold in Playa del Carmen in January. The average temperature in Playa del Carmen in January is typically around 81°F (27°C), making it a good time of year to visit.
The daily temperatures are still warm enough for swimming and enjoying the beach or pool. However, evenings can be cool at times, so it’s always a good idea to pack a jacket or sweater for layering if needed.
Yes, Playa del Carmen is typically quite sunny in January, with an average of 7.8 hours of sunshine per day.
Yes, the water temperature in Playa del Carmen in January is on average 78.8°F (26°C), which is still comfortable enough to swim in the ocean or pool and enjoy all the destination’s beach and water activities.
Yes, Playa del Carmen is typically warm in January, with an average maximum temperature of 81°F (27°C). Plus, with the heat index, the high temperatures typically feel even hotter.
Hurricane season in Playa del Carmen runs from June to November, with the highest risk of hurricanes typically occurring between August and October.
Conclusion: Playa del Carmen in January Guide
I hope this January Playa del Carmen weather guide has helped you to get an idea of what the weather is like during this time of the year.
Overall, January is an amazing time to visit Playa del Carmen with good weather, low humidity, and low average rainfall. And even though it’s the coolest month of the year, it will still be warm enough to swim in the ocean!
If you’re looking for a winter escape, Playa del Carmen is the perfect place to get away from the cold and spend some time relaxing in the sun.
Just remember that January is also in the middle of peak season in Playa del Carmen. Since this is the best time of year to visit, be sure to book your accommodations and activities well in advance.
Have a wonderful trip to Playa del Carmen in January – and don’t forget to bring a sweater for colder temperatures in the evenings!
- Playa del Carmen Weather in December – Is it a good month to visit?
- Does it Snow in Mexico? 20 FAQs That May Suprise You
Traveling to Mexico soon?
These are the Mexico travel resources I use and recommend:
🏨 Hotels: I always find the best deals for Mexico hotels and resorts on Expedia or Booking.com. If you prefer a vacation rental, check VRBO as they are often cheaper than AirBnB’s added fees!
✈️ Flights: I recommend using Skyscanner for the best Mexico flight deals. Be sure to sign up for their price alerts for your preferred travel dates.
🚗 Rental Cars: I like to use Discover Cars because you can compare multiple car rental companies and see detailed ratings for overall value, ease of pick-up, efficiency of agents, car condition, and overall time spent.
🚙 Cancun Airport Transportation: I recommend booking a private transfer with Cancun Airport Transportation for the quickest and most hassle-free option!
🤿 Tours & Activities: I always use Viator or GetYourGuide for booking tours and activities in Mexico. You can cancel up to 24 hours before the tour for a full refund, plus they have excellent customer service if you were to have any issues.
🚨 Travel Insurance: After my Dad broke his hand in a taxi accident in Playa del Carmen, I always recommend buying travel insurance before your trip for added peace of mind! I recommend Travel Insurance Master for short trips or Safety Wing for digital nomads.
☀️ Biodegradable Sunscreen: Don’t forget to add biodegradable sunscreen to your Mexico packing list! Regular sunscreen is prohibited when swimming in the ocean and cenotes in Mexico, so you’ll need to pack some biodegradable sunscreen for sun protection. I recommend Sun Bum Sunscreen, which is reef-friendly, vegan, and cruelty-free.