Tulum began closing nightlife spaces at earlier times in March due to an increase in alcohol-related violence and disorderly behavior. By taking this action, the local government hopes to make the community safer and minimize the impact on tourism.

Vacationers frequently visit Tulum, which is located in Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula’s Caribbean coast. Tulum nightlife caters to locals and visitors thanks to the abundance of bars and clubs. Attracting more than one million visitors each year, the destination is popular for its exotic atmosphere, entertainment and natural landscape.

Now, bars must close at midnight rather than 2 a.m., and police patrols will enforce the new law. 

New regulations state that after 1 a.m., bars, restaurants and nightclubs on the coast of Tulum, where most of the action happens, can’t play music louder than 65 decibels.

Some business owners are on the fence about the change because they fear it will cut into their profits. However, many residents are in favor of it because they believe it will make tourism safer and more long-lasting. 

The local government hopes that by closing bars earlier, they can curb violence in Tulum. Local officials also anticipate making life better for residents and visitors alike. 

Coming to Life Sculpture is a popular site for photos - Tulum Nightlife will soon close earlier
Photo Credit: Rafael Cisneros Méndez

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How Recent Violence Is Impacting Tulum Nightlife

Overcrowding and an uptick in crime have plagued Tulum since the end of the pandemic. 

Recent episodes involving violence in the area have confirmed the need for increased security measures and caution when exploring the nightlife scene in Tulum.  

On March 31, Riviera Tulum saw four shootings, according to Riviera Maya News. Between late March and earlier April, several people were shot and killed in the city.

Because of this wave of violence, hotels are putting up surveillance cameras to keep guests safe. They will also step up security on the property to help police solve cases. In a similar fashion, police will share tactical equipment and wear body cameras.

“Disorder has nothing to do with tourism. Tulum has become a popular tourist destination, but people come here for reasons other than partying and disorder. Our visitors come for rest, gastronomy and the fact that we have the most visited archaeological zone in the country,” Tulum Hotel Association president David Ortiz Mena told Reportur.

A Warning For Travelers

These episodes have prompted the U.S. State Department to warn its citizens to be careful if they planned to spend Spring Break in the popular Mexican resort town.

Travelers must be vigilant at all times, the official document states. Avoiding areas where illegal activities take place and leaving potentially dangerous situations is also encouraged.

The document highlights the importance of being aware of your surroundings and not flashing wealth or valuables. Only use authorized taxis or transportation, and avoid traveling alone or at night. It’s also a good idea to keep a low profile and register your travel plans with the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) in case of an emergency.

“Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage in Mexico or purchase travel insurance that covers you in Mexico. Seek coverage that includes medical evacuation. Confirm costs of medical treatment in advance, when possible. Avoid strong currents and do not swim after drinking or when warning flags note unsafe conditions. Drink responsibly and always watch your drink. If you begin to feel ill, seek medical attention immediately,” US State Department shared on its official website.

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