by SUSANN ROTTLOFF
Everything you Need to Know About The New Mayan Train
Talk about this magical train that will connect most of the Yucatan Peninsula has been
around for a few years now. Fast forward to 2021 and they have finally broken ground and
begun construction. The Mayan train, also known as Tren Maya in Spanish, is going to be
a 950km (1500 mile) tourist train that is said to bring jobs, new infrastructure, development
and draw even more tourism to the Yucatan Peninsula and beyond.
What are the details?
The Mayan Train is set to cost around 6 million USD and will take around 4 years to finish.
Work has already started on the Izamal - Nuevo Xcan and Merida - Campeche lines. It’s
said that over 150,000 jobs will have been created once the train is up and running, which
will lead to some much needed development in the more impoverished areas.
Although the Mayan Train is set to eventually loop around the Yucatan and then possibly
connect to Tobasco and Chiapas, there will be 3 distinct routes to begin with. It’s said that
there will be around 30 stations in total along the three routes, but the exact locations of
each is still undetermined. However, we do have a general idea of the set routes:
Caribbean Route - Cancun to Southern Quintana Roo. Including Puerto Morelos, Playa
Del Carmen, Tulum, and Bacalar.
Gulf Route -Cancun to Merida. Including Chichen Itza and eventually Southern
Jungle Route -Southern Quintana Roo to Southern Campeche. Including a stop at the
Calakmul Mayan ruins.
Playa del Carmen was one of the first states to sign the “land use program” for the Mayan
Train project back in December 2020. Both the mayor Laura Beristain Navarrete and
president Andrйs Manuel Lуpez Obrador signed the agreement, meaning the municipality
of Solidaridad is actively supporting the build of the Mayan Train route through Playa del
There has been a lot of speculation as to how these proposed train stations will look, with
many suggesting there will be a floating track running alongside the Federal 307 Highway
from Playa del Carmen towards Tulum. Around 30% of the Mayan Train route will use
tracks that already exist, but there’s a lot of excitement and anticipation to see what the
rest of the route will look like.
How will the train affect the real estate market?
Since the announcement of the Mayan Train, people have been snapping up land near the
proposed routes, in preparation for a real estate boom. Many developers have secured 10
to 100 hectares of land to begin building hotels to accommodate the influx of tourists to
areas that have been previously known to have less tourism.
FONATUR (Fondo Nacional de Fomento al Turismo) have announced that they expect to
attract 3 million people during the train’s first year of operation, with many of them set to
visit Bacalar and Calakmul. As it stands now, around 20 million people visit Cancun each
year, however, 85% of them rarely leave the Cancun-Playa del Carmen area. The Mayan
Train is expected to change this.
The ease and speed of travel for tourists to be able to reach these “out of the way” idyllic
places will undoubtedly increase tourism, causing an influx of people wanting to invest in
real estate in those areas. Purchasing land, housing or properties to rent, in areas such as
Bacalar, is a great way to get in on the ground and secure a high ROI.
If you’re thinking about purchasing property along the Mayan Train route, don’t hesitate to
get in touch. I’m happy to answer any questions you may have and aid you in finding the
perfect real estate investment for you.