AMLO Expands Plans for Yucatan Tourist Train

Yucatan Tourist Train - it's a joke, get it? Ha ha - we have no idea what the train will look like since it hasn't been built yet.

During the course of his administration Mexico’s President, Andreas Manuel Lopez Obrador – aka AMLO – doubled the scope of his pet project, the tourist train that will link most of the Yucatan peninsula’s tourist attractions.

In a Nutshell: The ‘tourist train’, also known as the “Maya Train”, intended to link popular tourist destinations, is now partially open (see updates below) and features a station at the Cancun Airport, giving those flying into Cancun and then heading further south to the Riviera Maya area more transportation options.

Although the vacation concept of all-inclusive resorts has gained popularity year over years, there are those who complain that it robs local businesses of tourism traffic because vacationers stay primarily on resort grounds or on carefully curated tours, and many tourist attractions – especially those outside of the Cancun area – have struggled to attract visitors who fly into Cancun but rarely venture farther south.

Previously, visitors to the Cancun area had to take taxis, buses, or private transportation – which can be expensive – and spend hours on the road to get from Cancun down to Tulum as well as points beyond and in between.

The Tourist Train (aka Tran Maya or the Maya Train) is intended to allow tourists to travel between various popular destinations at a lower cost than joining an expensive group tour or paying what could be expensive taxi or private limo fares, and will run through areas that are dominated by jungle, wildlife reserves, pre-Hispanic archaeological sites, wetland and underground rivers (sounds like a cool trip to us!), and includes a western spur that could stop in the cities of Campeche, Merida and Valladolid — the latter near the famed ruins of Chichen Itza — and ultimately complete the circuit in Cancun.

Current Update as of March 2024

One section of the Maya Train’s route is now opened – from Cancun to Campeche – and the next section, from Cancun to Tulum, will be ready for service by February June 2024.

At the moment, tickets can only be purchase online at, but will also be available for purchase at the train stations in the near future. Please note that website is entirely in Spanish but we’re hopeful they will add an English language translation soon, in the meantime Google Translate does a decent job of at least making the ticket options (you’ll find after scrolling down somewhat understandable.

Prices for the twice-daily train is estimated to be roughly $68 USD for a premier-class ticket and less for an economy-class ticket.

This new tourist train will provide an alternative transportation option to travelers who want to see more of the local areas even while they want to enjoy included meals and activities at a resort. Offering curated local tours and matching guests with certified local tour guides is quickly becoming a popular activity and the Maya Train will contribute to the growth of that trend, as well as open up new tourism opportunities for a number of small communities along the route that have historical and ecological attractions but few visitors.

However, due to the controversy surrounding the project, with concerns raised by numerous ecologists, archaeologists, and cave divers opposed to the destruction of caves and cenotes among other ecological areas, it remains to be seen how popular the train will be with tourists.

Naturally we’re hoping it will have a Bar Car serving chips and spill-proof Margaritas!

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About Trisha Miller - Editor-in-Chief 59 Articles
Trisha is also the Editor-in-Chief at Travel Writers Exchange, a community for travel writers & bloggers. She's also a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, and a former member of the IFWTWA, serving on their Board of Directors from 2009 through 2015. When not traveling the world visiting the many all-inclusive resorts she loves, Trisha spends her time writing, mainly about travel and technology, sometimes both at the same time.
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