If you crave Indian cuisine while in Cancun, Elefanta is the place to go. It is the sister property of the highly-praised Thai restaurant, as well as its neighbor, so you can be sure that you'll receive an amazing meal at Elefanta too. Eat early and watch an amazing sunset over Nichupte Lagoon, or dine later and enjoy the warm lighting, vivid colors of the decor and the rich tastes and smells of Indian spices which make this a restaurant that shouldn't be missed. If you are there before dark, watch for crocodiles in the lagoon.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Elefanta is one of the few Indian restaurants in Cancun and the setting is relaxing and inviting.
Kristin's expert tip: Do not request a table by the water if you have small children in your party. There is no railing and little ones could easily fall into the lagoon.
One of Cancun's oldest restaurants, Lorenzillo's has been a favorite among locals and tourists since it opened in 1979. Since there is a lobster farm on the premises it's no surprise the menu consists primarily of seafood dishes. A few meat and poultry dishes are also offered. For starters, try Las Cornamusa, which is lobster croquettes, served with chipotle mayonnaise. The hardcore seafood fan should try the Treasure Chest entree. It is a grouper filet, stuffed with lobster, shrimp, mushrooms and Bernaise sauce. Alaskan King Crab Legs are offered seasonally and they are nothing short of fabulous. After enjoying the perfectly prepared seafood entrees, finish off the evening by indulging in one of Lorenzillo's sinful desserts, like the Chocolate Volcano.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Lorenzillo's has been open for decades because they serve up delicious food and unforgettable Cancun sunsets.
Susan's expert tip: This restaurant has a lobster farm on-site, so you can enjoy sweet, succulent lobster year-round.
Hidden in an upscale neighborhood in downtown Cancun, Marakame is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They even deliver. This indoor/outdoor restaurant is great for an event, like a baby shower or birthday, a family breakfast or a romantic dinner. They feature live music every evening outside under the twinkling lights. Marakame features an extensive menu of pasta, seafood, salads, pizza and a fully stocked bar. The ambiance is welcoming and relaxing. Leave your board shorts and flip flops at the hotel, this crowd is casual but fashionable. To arrive, take the bus, get off at the first stop downtown and then take a taxi to the restaurant.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Marakame's ambiance can't be beat and they feature live music every night.
Kristin's expert tip: The best place to dine is in the garden.
Harry's Prime Steakhouse and Rawbar's specialities are USDA prime, Black Onyx and Kobe beef prepared to perfection. They also serve tempting appetizers, other meats like lamb and ribs, seafood, hamburgers and sandwiches. Harry's also offers delicious desserts and a variety of creative cocktails. Service is top notch. The restaurant was recently remodeled and expanded and feels like a scene from The Great Gatsby movie. Portions are large, so you might want to consider sharing an entree or side dishes. Once you dine at Harry's, you'll return time and time again.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Harry's Prime Steakhouse and Raw Bar serves Cancun's most coveted steaks.
Kristin's expert tip: Make a reservation for just before sunset, sit outside on the terrance and save room for the cotton candy that is delivered to each table at the end of the meal.
This cozy restaurant in downtown Cancun is a quaint, European style eatery that locals and tourists visit over and over. The restaurant is run by a family, the owner Peter, his wife Claudia, their son Eder. Dishes include shrimp, fish, veal, beef and pasta, desserts, 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 Restaurante by getting off at the first stop downtown and walking just a few blocks to their location on Bonampak. If you are celebrating a special occasion be sure to mention it when making a reservation.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Peter's is a beloved Cancun restaurant. Owner Peter and his wife, son and staff really value every customer.
Kristin's expert tip: Be sure to make reservations as the charming dining room has only 8 tables.
This small French restaurant is tucked away on a quiet side street in downtown Cancun and is operated by a Parisian who arrived in Cancun some 30 years ago. Don't be surprised if she's sitting at the door waiting for you when you arrive. The menu is small but the fare is fresh and perfectly prepared. At night the garden area is filled with twinkling lights. The intimate setting is lush with tropical vegetation and is perfect for a romantic date or a quiet dinner with a friend. With an impeccably trained wait staff and french music, L'escargot makes for a delightful evening in Cancun.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: L'escargot serves excellent French cuisine in a lovely, intimate setting.
Kristin's expert tip: Call ahead and ask which night they will have live music.
La Joya is, in one word, enchanting. From the stained glass windows and the pink flowering trees to the authentic live music and scrumptious Mexican food, a meal at La Joya will charm all of your senses. Parents will love the welcoming room off the restaurant where children can play video games, watch cartoons, take a nap or play with the nanny. La Joya also offers a divine dining experience called The Table, which follows the history of the Yucatan Peninsula, as do the ingredients, cuisine, explanations and projections on the table.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: La Joya's dim lights, flowering trees and live music make for a very romantic experience.
Kristin's expert tip: Don't miss La Joya's Cadillac Margarita, which is oh so strong and oh so Mexican.
La Habichuela has been a fixture in Cancun for over 40 years and is located in what was once owner Armando Pezzotti's home. The delightful ambiance which includes Mayan sculptures, trees, plants and twinkling lights can be enjoyed in the open air garden or from the indoor section. Offering high quality food made with the finest ingredients and superb service, the restaurant's signature dish is Cocobichuela, a mixture of lobster, shrimp, rice, curry sauce and tropical fruits, all served in a coconut shell. No meal at La Habichuela is complete without the Chichen Itza dessert and Mayan coffee.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: La Habichuela is one of Cancun's finest and most romantic restaurants.
Kristin's expert tip: Request a table in the dreamy garden area.
This is, arguably, Cancun's best Thai restaurant and it happens to be the prettiest too. Actually, it's one of the most beautiful, romantic settings in all of Cancun. People rave about the food, the decor, the service, and the waterfront location. As the name implies, Thai cuisine is the specialty of the house. The food and setting will make you feel as though you've been transported to Thailand. The atmosphere is unbeatable; picture soft lighting, ambient music, incense burning, plants, trees, palapas, palm shelters, gardens and little wooden huts. Make sure you arrive on time if you have a reservation because they will only hold your table for 10 minutes. Keep an eye on the lagoon for a visit from the resident crocodile. Thai Lounge is located in Plaza La Isla at km 12.5 in the Hotel Zone.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Thai is one of the most romantic restaurants in Cancun. The private tables add a special touch.
Kristin's expert tip: Call ahead to reserve a private, over-the-water table for special occasions.
This incredibly romantic restaurant is located in The Ritz-Carlton hotel. There are tables around the pool, as well as in private cabanas right on the beach. An individual cabana can be reserved for 1950 mxn pesos, and this romantic, unique, tropical setting is well worth every penny. A saxophone player performs while you dine under the stars, however the music is soft enough for you to enjoy the sound of the waves crashing onto the shore. Casitas serves primarily steak and seafood and, as you would expect from the Ritz-Carlton hotel chain, the food is divine and the service is impeccable.
Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Casitas' setting is romantic to say the least and the cuisine and service are top notch.
Kristin's expert tip: For an unforgettable evening, reserve a private cabana on the beach.