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The Center & heart of Playa del Carmen
The center of Playa del Carmen has different neighborhoods and is considered to be in the area from the beach to the highway and from Avenida Juarez to Avenida CTM (also called Calle 46). Basically the orange part of this map. Walking distance from the highway to the beach is between 10 and 15 minutes, depending on how fast you walk. If you walk along Avenida 5 (famous 5th Avenue), starting at Avenida Juarez and ending at Avenida CTM (Calle 46) it will take around 30 minutes. Calles (streets) are numbered 2, 4, 6 etc. and run from the south to north of town , and Avenidas (Avenues) are numbered 5, 10, 15 etc. and run from the beach to the highway.
Advantages & disadvantages if you live in the centre:
To live in the center of Playa del Carmen has its advantages, because everything is walking distance or an easy bike ride away. The highlight is to always be close to 5th avenue, a pedestrian street filled with shops and restaurants, and the beach with trendy beach clubs like Mamitas and Kool or find a quiet spot towards the northern end towards at Coco Beach. For grocery shops you find Wal-Mart on Calle 8 and Ave. 30, Mega Comercial on Ave. Constituyentes and Ave. 30 and a great fruit and vegetable market called DAC on Ave. 30 between Ave. Constituyentes and Calle 20. In the centre you will also find the most common banks, like Scotiabank, HSBC, Banamex, Bancomer and Banorte.
Living in the centre also has its disadvantages. For some people it is not quiet enough (Mexico in general is not a quiet country) and for people with dogs it might be hard to find any grass or a free field to let them run. Also families with younger children won’t find enough green areas or playgrounds.
Housing Situation in the centre:
Houses are very rare to find in the center, there are mostly condos and apartments, the majority being 2 BR condos. In the centre there are only a few 1 BR and 3 BR units available and as far as I know only a handful of 4 BR units.
The center includes the following neighborhoods: Villas del Carmen, Gonzalo Guerrero, Quintas del Carmen, Zazil-Ha, Aviacion, Tohoku, Little Italy, Mamitas Beach, Coco Beach, Downtown, Shangrila
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