One of the joys of travelling around Mexico is it’s excellent bus network.
It’s main operator is ADO. They’re not the cheapest bus service, but they are by far the more comfortable.
Operating 1st class and executive services, their buses are clean, punctual and efficient. They all have toilet facilities on them and a TV that usually shows a child-friendly film at a decent volume. You can view their bus timetable and book tickets on their website (http://www.ado.com.mx).
The main ADO bus service runs it’s buses into the centre of Tulum. They do not stop anywhere other than at their bus depo. There is a further stop at the Ruins heading towards Playa Del Carmen.
Taxis queue up outside the bus terminal and will take you anywhere.
There is also a second tier of bus, one of the largest operators is Mayab. These are cheaper than the luxurious ADO buses, but they are loud, hot and slow. Depending on your departure point, you can usually buy a ticket at the ADO depo, look for the Mayab signage.
These minibuses run the routes between towns, are very fast, economical and can be a bit scary. They run until they are flagged down. Get in, tell him where you’re going, pay at the end of the journey.
They are a fast route in and out of town and are pretty cheap ($40 pesos Tulum to/from Playa Del Carmen).
Taxis will take you anywhere for a cost. They are useful if you’re going somewhere off the main route, they can wait for you even. One popular use of the taxi is to go to some of the cenotes, Dos Ojos for example – while it’s ok getting a collectivo or Mayab bus to the gates of the cenote, it’s a long long walk once you get past the gates – maybe a 5-10 min drive!
Contrary to popular rumour, we still don’t have an airport in Tulum, nor will we for some time yet. The closest international airport is in Cancun an ADO bus will leave the Tulum depo, they call in at Playa Del Carmen and Puerto Morrellos and will be at the airport two hours later. Chetumal services the south, an ADO bus will take around 3:15 to the bus terminal, from here you will need to get a local taxi to the airport.