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Best Healthy Dining Options in Downtown Cancun and the Hotel Zone



We all like to splurge a little when we are on vacation and we often drink and eat more than usual. Cancun offers many restaurants where you can drink and eat to your heart's content, but for those of you that prefer to watch your waistline while on vacation, have no fear, Cancun is also home to eateries that offer delicious, healthy food.

Vegan Planet, located in downtown Cancun, is beloved by local vegans and non-vegans. 100% Natural, also located downtown, has been open for many years and is frequented by both tourists and locals. Healthy eaters can also find La Troje and La Pasteleria downtown. For an upscale experience try Les Cepages, Du Mexique or Peter's Restaurante.

In the Hotel Zone, Le Natura, located at km 9.5 of Blvd. Kukulcan, serves fresh smoothies, breakfast, lunch, dinner and even has a vegetarian menu. Order grilled fish at El Fish Fritanga. Fantino in the Ritz-Carlton Cancun serves cuisine prepared with the finest ingredients and they are happy to oblige vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free diners.

Other healthy vacation choices include, saying no to the tortilla chips served with your ceviche or skipping the buffets and sticking with ala carte restaurants.


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La Pasteleteria
Photo courtesy of Susan R. Vincil


This little restaurant is on one of Cancun's busiest streets, near Walmart and Market 28, yet many tourists pass right by it, without having any idea what they are missing. The name of this place can be confusing, as there are two signs over the entrance ("La Pasteleria" and "La Creperia) and some people refer to it by one name and others use the other. Regardless, just make your way to this place because you will not be disappointed. The portions are hearty and the presentation of every dish is excellent. The dishes also taste as good as they look. You'll feel like you are dining in a gourmet restaurant, until you get the check and see that the prices are far less than you'd pay in a high-end restaurant. The restaurant's signature dish is crepes...both as a meal or dessert crepes. There are around ten different options for crepes, as a meal, and they are fantastic. The salads are fresh and crispy and the soups are also great. The best soup is the Cream of Mushroom soup, served in a bread bowl. Some Mexican dishes are offered too. The menu offers enough variety to make this place appealing to most people. For breakfast, waffles, pancakes, eggs, fruit, pastries, and coffee and juices are offered. There is a bakery on-site and the display case is filled to the brim with loads of tasty cakes, candies, and pastries.

Recommended for Restaurants with Healthy Menus because: La Pasteleria may be a bakery, but they also offer many healthy, fresh items.

Kristin's expert tip: Save room for dessert! The pastries, cakes, and candies from the on-site bakery are delicious and inexpensive. There is also ice cream and sorbet, if the baked goods don't strike your fancy.

Read more about La Pasteleteria →


This cozy restaurant in downtown Cancun has only been open for a few years, yet it's one of Cancun's most popular eateries. The restaurant is staffed by a family, the owner Peter, his wife Claudia and their son Eder. Dishes include shrimp, fish, veal, beef, vegetarian and pasta and a small but good wine list. Prices are considerably lower than they would be for a restaurant of this caliber in the Hotel Zone. You can easily take the bus to Peter's by getting off at the first stop downtown and walking just a few blocks to their location on Bonampak.

Read more about Peter's Restaurante →


French contemporary restaurant Les Cepages just celebrated its 4th anniversary. They serve imaginative dishes made with the freshest, high-quality ingredients. This is fine dining at a much lower price than you will find in the Hotel Zone. Don't miss singature dish Roasted Rack of Lamb with Mint demi-glaze. They are open Monday from 6 to 11pm and Tuesday throught Saturday from 3 to 11pm and are closed Sundays. Due to the size of the dining space, reservations are suggested. To get there, take the R1 or R2 bus to the first stop downtown, then take a taxi to Plaza Nichupte on Nichupte Avenue.

Read more about Les Cepages →


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La Troje

La Troje (The Shed) is tucked in a upscale neighborhood near Plaza Las Americas in downtown Cancun. The restaurant has a sidewalk cafe feeling and they serve delicious salads, pasta, crepes, baguettes, pizza, fondues, beer and wine...so it's a wonderful place for lunch or a light dinner. Try the extremely popular Ensalada Margarita (Margarita Salad) which features shrimp and asparagus. From the hotel zone take the R-27 Bus and get off downtown on Tulum avenue just in front of Sports City then walk through Sport's City front entrance and parking lot. When you reach the next street La Troje is to the left.

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El Fish Fritanga

This casual seafood restaurant is located smack in the middle of the Hotel Zone but it's also a local favorite. El Fish Fritanga is open daily from 11 am to 11 pm but their taco stand is open from 7 am until 1 am. This is a great spot for a family meal. They have high chairs and a changing station available and an outdoor kids play area. Prices on their menu range from 10 to 200 pesos (USD: 75 cents to 15 dollars). They are located on the lagoon so you'll enjoy a lovely view. They have all this to offer plus their food is delicious. Try the ceviche or fish tacos with a frosty chelada (prepared beer drink).

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Du Mexique is another one of the amazing restaurants on Bonampak avenue in downtown Cancun. This is a lovely place to celebrate a special occasion like an anniversary or birthday. Located in what used to be a house, the divine ambiance, service and food make this restaurant stand out on the endless list of Cancun restaurants. Sonya Grimond and Chef Benjamin prepare and serve the food themselves. There aren't waiters or waitresses. The cuisine is an interesting combination of Mayan and French. Have an appetizer in the lounge or "sala", move to the 20 seat dining room for dinner, and have dessert on the patio. If you would like something special that you don't see on the menu, ask and if it's possible, they will prepare it for you.

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Zona Hotelera

Fantino is located in the Ritz-Carlton Cancun and is a AAA Diamond Award-winning restaurant. Traditional Mediterranean dishes are perfectly executed with a contemporary touch. Service is exceptional yet warm and inviting. Men are required to wear jackets, long pants and shoes. Fantino is family-friendly and features a children's menu, but keep in mind the atmosphere is quiet and elegant so children should be well-behaved. There is a private dining room for parties or celebrations. Standout dishes include the Watermelon Salad with Buffalo Mozzarella, Parmesan Soup and Porcini Crusted Filet Mignon. Save room for the dessert cart.

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100% Natural
Photo courtesy of Susan R. Vincil

This restaurant, in downtown Cancun, is a favorite of locals. The menu is large and consists of page after page of healthy dishes made with natural ingredients. Soups, salads, sandwiches and wraps, Mexican specialties and seafood dishes are the main items offered, but there is also a very large drink menu. Fresh fruit juices, teas, and fruit smoothies are as popular as they are delicious. Each one is made-to-order so beverage service can be a little slow, if the restaurant is busy. It's worth the wait though. There is an indoor dining, with air conditioning and lots of large plants to give you a sense of being outside, and there is an outdoor area, in a garden, under some large trees that provide shade and a nice breeze. Vegetarians will find quite a few delicious items to choose from, on the menu. For breakfast, tasty omelettes, scrambled eggs, and pancakes are offered, along with fresh fruit and some Mexican specialties.

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Hotel Zone
Le Natura

Le Natura is located in the heart of the Hotel Zone across the street from the old Senor Frogs, but once you enter this lush, green environment you'll forget that you are in one of the busiest areas of Cancun. They have an extensive menu geared towards fresh, healthy eating and many vegetarian dishes available for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The prices are very reasonable, try the breakfast combos or the lunch/dinner combos. The fresh juices and smoothies are a highlight but don't despair, Le Natura also serves beer, margaritas, daiquiris, etc. etc. This is a restaurant that you may want to visit more than once during your stay.

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If you're a vegetarian or vegan this is your restaurant in Cancun, and even if you're not, you should still give Vegan Planet a try. Chef Miguel Bautista not only prepares amazing food completely free of animal components but also incorporates many superfoods and gives classes on how to prepare healthy, delicious vegan and raw dishes. The entire menu is vegan and many of the dishes are raw and include sushi, pastas, pizza, smoothies, sandwiches and Mexican favorites like chilaquiles, burritos, and molletes. For dessert, try a scrumptious brownie. The prices are very economical. They are open Mon-Sat 8 am-6 pm.

Read more about Vegan Planet →


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Meet Kristin Busse

After vacationing in Mexico many times, Kristin decided to move to Cancun "for a year". That was in 2001.

Kristin grew-up in Michigan and studied Communications at Michigan State University....  More About Kristin

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