Tulum (sometimes Tulum Pueblo) is the largest community in the municipality of Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico. It is located on the Caribbean coast of the state, near the site of the archaeological ruins of Tulum. The community had a 2010 census population of 18,233 inhabitants. It is also the setting for Raymond Avery Bartlett's 2015 novel, Sunsets of Tulum.
As recently as the early 1990s Tulum Pueblo was a quiet village 2 km (1.5 mi) from the archaeological site, and tourism outside of the ruins was limited to a few small shops and simple cabanas on the beach. As of the 2010 census, the population of Tulum Pueblo has grown to 18,233 permanent inhabitants with the addition of a number of residential developments in the jungle areas nearest Tulum's downtown.
With the increase in tourism, vacation rentals, small hotels, and hostels, as well as restaurants and bars populate the town. Grocery stores, boutiques, bicycle rentals, gyms, tour operators, banks, ATMs, internet cafes, and various other commercial stores are available in Tulum Pueblo. Spanish Language Schools are popular in Tulum, including Meztli Spanish Language School and Jardin Espanol.
Since 13 March 2008, the town is head of the newly founded municipality (município), the ninth in Quintana Roo.
Two kilometers from the town center, the "hotel zone" of boutique hotels on Tulum beach has grown to over 70 small hotels.
Most of them are cabañas built in the traditional Maya style with thatched palm roofs though there are some more high-end hotels as well. There are many new restaurants, particularly on the jungle side of the road, some of which have received significant praise in the international press.
There are also a few beach clubs and public beaches. Inexpensive cabañas with hammocks are still available but are rare. Most accommodations remain rustic as electricity in the "hotel zone" is either non-existent or is generated on-site.
About 20 kilometers (12 mi) north of Tulum, a new international airport was announced. In March 2011, the bidding for construction contracts was to be concluded.
As of April 2014, all projects related to Tulum Airport are no longer available through official sites. The high-speed trans-peninsula train is now the main project for the area.
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