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Quintana Roo
Free and Sovereign State of Quintana Roo
Estado Libre y Soberano de Quintana Roo (Spanish)
Coat of arms of Quintana Roo
Anthem: Himno a Quintana Roo
Coordinates: 19°36′N 87°55′W / 19.6°N 87.92°W / 19.6; -87.92
Largest cityCancún
AdmissionOctober 8, 1974[1]
 • GovernorMara Lezama Espinosa
 • ParliamentCongress of Quintana Roo
 • Total44,705.2 km2 (17,260.8 sq mi)
 Ranked 19th
Highest elevation230 m (750 ft)
 • Total1,857,985
 • Rank24th
 • Density42/km2 (110/sq mi)
  • Rank24th
 • TotalMXN 447 billion
(US$22.2 billion) (2022)
 • Per capita(US$11,479) (2022)
Time zoneUTC−5 (EST)
Postal code
Area code
ISO 3166 codeMX-ROO
HDIIncrease 0.781 high Ranked 16th Edit this at Wikidata

Quintana Roo (/kɪnˌtɑːnəˈr()/ kin-TAH-nə ROH(-oh),[6][7] Spanish: [kinˈtanaˈro] ), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Quintana Roo (Spanish: Estado Libre y Soberano de Quintana Roo), is one of the 31 states which, with Mexico City, constitute the 32 federal entities of Mexico. It is divided into 11 municipalities, and its capital city is Chetumal.

Quintana Roo is located on the eastern part of the Yucatán Peninsula and is bordered by the states of Campeche to the west and Yucatán to the northwest, and by the Orange Walk and Corozal districts of Belize, along with an offshore borderline with Belize District to the south. As Mexico's easternmost state, Quintana Roo has a coastline to the east with the Caribbean Sea and to the north with the Gulf of Mexico. The state previously covered 44,705 square kilometers (17,261 sq mi) and shared a small border with Guatemala in the southwest of the state.[8][9] However, in 2013, Mexico's Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation resolved the boundary dispute between Quintana Roo, Campeche, and Yucatán stemming from the creation of the Calakmul municipality by Campeche in 1997, siding with Campeche and thereby benefiting Yucatán.[10]

Quintana Roo is the home of the city of Cancún, the islands of Cozumel and Isla Mujeres, and the towns of Bacalar, Playa del Carmen and Akumal, as well as the ancient Maya ruins of Chacchoben, Cobá, Kohunlich, Muyil, Tulum, Xel-Há, San Gervasio and Xcaret. The Sian Ka'an biosphere reserve is also located in the state. The statewide population is expanding at a rapid rate due to the construction of hotels and the demand for workers. Many migrants come from Yucatán, Campeche, Tabasco, and Veracruz. The state is frequently hit by severe hurricanes due to its exposed location, the most recent and severe being Hurricane Dean in 2007, which made landfall with sustained winds of 280 km/h (170 mph), with gusts up to 320 km/h (200 mph).

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • Himno a Quintana Roo (letra)



Tulum - Temple of the Wind God

The area that makes up modern Quintana Roo was long part of Yucatán, sharing its history. With the Caste War of Yucatán, which started in the 1840s, all non-natives were driven from the region. The independent Maya nation of Chan Santa Cruz was based on what is now the town of Felipe Carrillo Puerto. For decades, it maintained considerable independence, having separate trade and treaty relationships with British Honduras, now Belize.

The Territory of Quintana Roo was created by decree of President Porfirio Díaz on November 24, 1902. It was named after an early patriot of the Mexican Republic, Andrés Quintana Roo. The Mexican Federal Army succeeded in subjugating most of the indigenous Maya population of the region during the 1910s. In 1913, the area was again declared to be legally part of the state of Yucatán, but was again declared a separate territory in 1915. The territory of Quintana Roo was granted statehood within the United Mexican States on October 8, 1974.[1]

In the last quarter of the 20th century and continuing into the 21st, Quintana Roo developed rapidly, with tourism being a driving force, notably with the development of Cancún.

Archaeological findings

Ancient human remains have been discovered in a system of submerged caves and sinkholes in the Tulum area of Quintana Roo. To date, a total of nine skeletons have been found in these caves, including one of the oldest human skeletons found on the American continent. In 2016, underwater archaeological exploration of a cave known as Chan Hol found a skeleton of a female who lived in the region at least 9,900 years ago, during the Paleo-Indian period. Dating revealed that the skeleton was probably about 30 years old at the time of death. According to craniometric measurements, the skull is believed to conform to the mesocephalic pattern, like three other skulls found in Tulum caves. Three different scars on the skull of the woman showed that she was hit with something hard and her skull bones were broken. Her skull also had crater-like deformations and tissue deformities that appeared to be caused by a bacterial relative of syphilis.[11]

According to study lead researcher Wolfgang Stinnesbeck, "It really looks as if this woman had a very hard time and an extremely unhappy end of her life. Obviously, this is speculative, but given the traumas and the pathological deformations on her skull, it appears a likely scenario that she may have been expelled from her group and was killed in the cave, or was left in the cave to die there”.[12]

The skeleton found by the 2016 exploration was 140 m (150 yd) away from a site where a previous expedition found human remains known as Chan Hol 2. Although archaeologists assumed the 2016 expedition had rediscovered Chan Hol 2, Stinnesbeck concluded that the two skeletons represent different individuals.[13]

Due to their distinctive features, study co-researcher Samuel Rennie suggest the existence of at least two morphologically diverse groups of people living separately in Mexico during the transition from Pleistocene to Holocene.[12]

The city of Cancún is a major tourist resort in Quintana Roo



According to the Köppen climate classification, much of the state has a tropical wet and dry climate (Aw) while the island of Cozumel has a tropical monsoon climate (Am).[14] The mean annual temperature is 26 °C (78.8 °F).[15] The hottest months are April and August, in which the average high is 33 °C (91.4 °F), while January is the coldest month with an average low of 17 °C (62.6 °F).[15] Extreme temperatures can range from a low of 10 °C (50.0 °F) in the coldest months to 36 °C (96.8 °F) in the hottest months.[14] Quintana Roo averages 1,300 mm (51 in) of precipitation per year, which falls throughout the year, though June to October are the wetter months.[15] Hurricanes can occasionally hit the coastal areas during the hurricane season, particularly from September to November.[14] 2020 was a historic year for hurricanes in Quintana Roo, with a record-breaking 31 tropical systems formed, of which four affected the state.[16]


Biotic situation of the Yucatán Peninsula

The Yucatán Peninsula is one of the most forested areas of the world in terms of biotic mass per hectare. However, anthropological, biological and governmental experts have determined that Quintana Roo is 'facing a faunal crisis'.[17] Many medium to large game animals are disappearing due to hunting and habitat loss. While its population is relatively small, Quintana Roo is experiencing both a population influx and an increase in tourism.[17][18] This only increases the pressure on the plants and animals native to the area.

Ecosystems and animals

There are four generalized ecosystems in Quintana Roo—tropical forests, or jungle; savanna, mangrove forests, and coral reefs. One of the byproducts of traditional and large-scale agriculture is the creation of additional habitats, such as second growth forests and fields/pastures.[19] Tourism has caused Quintana Roo to become famous around the world in the last thirty or so years for its beaches, coastline, and cenote sinkholes.[20][21] Biological experts consider the coastline of Quintana Roo one of the best manatee habitats worldwide.[22] Queen conchs are also noted for their inhabitation of coastal territory.[22] The wide variety of biotic organisms such as these has decreased drastically in the last fifteen years.[23][24]


Also affected by the loss of habitat due to both agriculture and development, birds are one of the region's most varied animal assets.[17] Hundreds of species reside in Quintana Roo permanently, with hundreds of others either wintering there or using it as a stopover on the long journey into South America.[22] As a result, many birders come to the area annually in search of the rare and unexpected.[17]


Historical population
1895[26] —    
1900 —    
1910 9,109—    
1921 10,966+20.4%
1930 10,620−3.2%
1940 18,752+76.6%
1950 26,967+43.8%
1960 50,169+86.0%
1970 88,150+75.7%
1980 225,985+156.4%
1990 493,277+118.3%
1995 703,536+42.6%
2000 874,963+24.4%
2005 1,135,309+29.8%
2010 1,325,578+16.8%
2015 1,501,562+13.3%
2020[4] 1,857,985+23.7%


The State of Quintana Roo is divided into 11 municipalities (Spanish: municipios), each headed by a municipal president:[27]


Aerial view of Cancún
Beach of Contoy Island
Beach of Punta Sur at south at the Cozumel Island

Quintana Roo's tourist boom began in the 1970s.[17] Tourism resulted in the development of coastal hotels and resorts, in addition to ecotourism inland and in coastal regions, which have increased the development of the region as well as the gross domestic product.[23] Quintana Roo ranks sixth among Mexican states according to the United Nations Human Development index (HDI).[18]

The Riviera Maya is located along the Caribbean coastline, including Cancún, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Morelos, Akumal and Cozumel.

There are a number of Mayan archeological sites in Quintana Roo, including Chacchoben, Coba, Kohunlich, Muyil, San Gervasio, Tulum, Xcaret, Xelha, and Yo'okop.

Projections for the tourism economy of Quintana Roo have been optimistic, based on multiple attractions, from the Maya ruins to the lush forests and beautiful beaches. However, long-term problems include the effect on the local environment, economic stresses of development and population,[24] and "economic marginalization" of the Maya natives.[23]



  • Instituto Tecnológico de Cancún, Cancún
  • Instituto Tecnológico de Chetumal, Chetumal
  • University of Quintana Roo, Chetumal
  • Intercultural Maya University of Quintana Roo, José María Morelos
  • Universidad Anáhuac Cancún, Cancún
  • Universidad del Caribe, Cancún
  • Universidad Tecnológica de la Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen
  • Universidad La Salle Cancún, Cancún
  • Universidad TecMilenio, Cancún


Newspapers of Quintana Roo include: Diario de Quintana Roo, Diario Respuesta, El Periódico de Quintana Roo, El Quintanarroense, Novedades de Quintana Roo, and Por Esto! [28][29]


Estadio Andrés Quintana Roo in Cancún.

Soccer club Atlante F.C. was founded in 1916 in Mexico City and moved to Cancun in 2007 due to poor attendance.[30] The club announced a return to Mexico City in 2020,[31] concurrently with the relocation of Cafetaleros de Chiapas to Cancún and its rebranding as Cancún F.C.[32] They play in the Mexican second division Liga de Expansión MX at Estadio Andrés Quintana Roo.

In addition to soccer, the city has a professional baseball team, the Quintana Roo Tigers, which began playing at the Estadio de Béisbol Beto Ávila in Cancún in the 2006 season.[33] The Tigers made it to the Mexican League series (analogous to MLB's World Series) in 2009, but lost to the Saraperos de Saltillo 4 games to 2.[34]

Time zone

On February 1, 2015, Quintana Roo officially adopted a new time zone, Southeastern, which is five hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC−05:00). Quintana Roo does not observe daylight saving time, so Southeastern Time is constant throughout the year. Southeastern Time (ST) is the same as Eastern Standard Time (EST) and Central Daylight Time (CDT). This means that in the winter, Quintana Roo has the same time as regions observing EST, such as the eastern U.S., eastern Canada, Cuba, and Jamaica; and in the summer, Quintana Roo has the same time as regions observing CDT, such as central Mexico.[35][36][37][38][39][40]

Quintana Roo changed to Southeastern Time for economic reasons, including:

  • Allowing tourists in areas such as Cancun, Cozumel, and Playa del Carmen to spend more time (and money) at beaches, restaurants, historic sites, and other venues.
  • Reducing electricity usage by hotels, restaurants, and other facilities.

Before Quintana Roo adopted the Southeastern time zone (officially referred to as zona sureste in Mexico), it had been part of the Central time zone (zona centro).

See also


  1. ^
  1. ^ a b "Poder Legislativo del Estado de Quintana Roo" (PDF) (in Spanish). Archived from the original (PDF) on October 12, 2011.
  2. ^ "Resumen". Cuentame INEGI. Retrieved April 11, 2021.
  3. ^ "Relieve". Cuentame INEGI. Retrieved April 6, 2011.
  4. ^ a b "México en cifras". January 2016.
  5. ^ Citibanamex (June 13, 2023). "Indicadores Regionales de Actividad Económica 2023" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved August 13, 2023.
  6. ^ "Quintana Roo". Collins English Dictionary. HarperCollins. Retrieved July 26, 2019.
  7. ^ "Quintana Roo". Lexico UK English Dictionary. Oxford University Press. Archived from the original on September 1, 2022.
  8. ^ "Controversia Constitucional: Estado de Quintana Roo Vs. Estado de Yucatán (3 de Mayo de 1997)". Suprema Corte de Justicia de la Nacion. Archived from the original on November 24, 2011. Retrieved April 6, 2011.
  9. ^ "Campeche insiste en que Quintana Roo le invadió terreno". Notisureste. Retrieved April 6, 2011.
  10. ^ "Renuncia Quintana Roo a conflicto limítrofe con Campeche". El Economista. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  11. ^ Stinnesbeck, Wolfgang; Rennie, Samuel R.; Olguín, Jerónimo Avilés; Stinnesbeck, Sarah R.; Gonzalez, Silvia; Frank, Norbert; Warken, Sophie; Schorndorf, Nils; Krengel, Thomas; Morlet, Adriana Velázquez; González, Arturo González (February 5, 2020). "New evidence for an early settlement of the Yucatán Peninsula, Mexico: The Chan Hol 3 woman and her meaning for the Peopling of the Americas". PLOS ONE. 15 (2): e0227984. Bibcode:2020PLoSO..1527984S. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0227984. ISSN 1932-6203. PMC 7001910. PMID 32023279.
  12. ^ a b Geggel, Laura (February 5, 2020). "9,900-year-old skeleton of horribly disfigured woman found in Mexican cave". Live Science. Future US Inc. Retrieved May 17, 2023.
  13. ^ PLOS (February 5, 2020). "9,900-Year-Old Skeleton Discovered in Submerged Mexican Cave Has a Distinctive Skull". SciTechDaily. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  14. ^ a b c "MEDIO FÍSICO". Enciclopedia de Los Municipios y Delegaciones de México (in Spanish). Instituto para el Federalismo y el Desarrollo Municipal. Retrieved February 1, 2016.
  15. ^ a b c "Clima". Información por entidad (in Spanish). Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía. Retrieved February 1, 2016.
  16. ^ "2020 Atlantic Hurricane season finally comes to an end". Riviera Maya News. December 1, 2020. Retrieved December 8, 2020.
  17. ^ a b c d e Anderson, E. N. and Felix Medina Tzuc. 2005. Animals and the Maya in Southeast Mexico. University of Arizona Press. Tucson, Arizona.
  18. ^ a b Encyclopædia Britannica 2008. "Quintana Roo". Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Retrieved February 21, 2008.
  19. ^ Villa Rojas, Alfonso. 1945. The Maya of East Central Quintana Roo. Carnegie Institute of Washington Publication 559. Washington D.C.
  20. ^ Chandler, Gary (March 10, 2014). "Tulum Beaches and Cenotes". Moon Guides. Retrieved December 24, 2017.
  21. ^ "Cenotes". Afar. Retrieved December 24, 2017.
  22. ^ a b c Schlesinger, Victoria. 2001. Animals and Plants of the Ancient Maya: A Guide. University of Texas Press. Austin, Texas.
  23. ^ a b c Daltabuit, Magali and Oriol Pi-Sunyer. 1990. Tourism Development in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Cultural Survival Quarterly 14.2, 9-13.
  24. ^ a b Juarez, Ana M. 2002. "Ecological Degradation, Global Tourism, and Inequality: Maya Interpretations of the Changing Environment in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Human Organization 61.2, 113-124.
  25. ^ "Censo Quintana Roo 2020".
  26. ^ "Mexico: extended population list". GeoHive. Archived from the original on March 11, 2012. Retrieved July 29, 2011.
  27. ^ Hernández, Silvia (February 2, 2011). "Bacalar, el décimo municipio de Q. Roo". El Universal. Retrieved April 12, 2011.
  28. ^ "Publicaciones periódicas en Quintana Roo". Sistema de Información Cultural (in Spanish). Gobierno de Mexico. Retrieved March 11, 2020.
  29. ^ "Latin American & Mexican Online News". Research Guides. US: University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries. Archived from the original on March 7, 2020.
  30. ^ ":: Atlante Futbol Club ::". Retrieved April 15, 2011.
  31. ^ "Atlante regresa a la CDMX y jugará en el Estadio Azul". El Financiero (in Spanish). February 3, 2021. Retrieved June 27, 2020.
  32. ^ Moreno, Marcos (February 3, 2021). "Cafetaleros se muda a Quintana Roo y nace Cancún FC". Radio Fórmula (in Spanish). Retrieved June 26, 2020.
  33. ^ ".TIGRES DE QUINTANAROO". Retrieved April 15, 2011.
  34. ^ "2009 Playoffs - Events - The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". Retrieved April 15, 2011.
  35. ^ "Quintana Roo estrena horario mañana (Spanish)" (in Spanish). Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  36. ^ "Mexico's Quintana Roo Gears Up for Feb. 1 Time Change". TravelPulse. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  37. ^ Haynes, Danielle (January 29, 2015). "Cancun switches to Eastern time zone". UPI. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  38. ^ "Cancun Region Gets Longer Evenings". Time and Date. January 14, 2015. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  39. ^ "Boletín 266 .- Celebra SECTUR reforma a ley del sistema de horario en los Estados Unidos Mexicanos". Mexican Ministry of Tourism (in Spanish). Retrieved March 8, 2015.
  40. ^ "DECRETO por el que se reforman los artículos 2 y 3 de la Ley del Sistema de Horario en los Estados Unidos Mexicanos". Official Journal of the Federation (in Spanish). Mexican Interior Ministry. Retrieved March 8, 2015.


  • Dumond, Don E.1985 The Talking Crosses of Yucatán: A New Look at their History. Ethnohistory 32(4):291–308.
  • Freidel, David., Schele, Linda., et al. 1993 Maya Cosmos: Three thousand years on the Shaman's Path. New York: W. Morrow
  • Harrison, Peter D. 1985 Some Aspects of Preconquest Settlement in Southern Quintana Roo, Mexico. Lowland Maya Settlement Patterns edited by Wendy Ashmore Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, A School of American Research Book.
  • Villa Rojas, Alfonso. 1945 The Maya of East Central Quintana Roo: The Pagan-Christian Religious Complex. Washington, D.C.: Carnegie Institution.

Further reading

  • Anderson, E. N. and Felix Medina Tzuc. Animals and the Maya in Southeast Mexico. University of Arizona Press. Tucson, Arizona. 2005.
  • Brannon, Jeffery T. and Gilbert M. Joseph. Eds. 1991 Land, labor & capital in modern Yucatán: essays in regional history and political economy. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press.
  • Barton Bray, David, Marcelo Carreon, Leticia Merino, and Victoria Santos. "On the Road to Sustainable Forestry: The Maya of Quintana Roo are Striving to Combine Economic Efficiency, Ecological Sustainability, and a Democratic Society." Cultural Survival Quarterly 17.1, 38–41. 1993.
  • Daltabuit, Magali and Oriol Pi-Sunyer. 1990. Tourism Development in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Cultural Survival Quarterly 14.2, 9-13. Cultural Survival
  • Dumond, Don E. 1997 The Machete and the Cross. Campesino Rebellion in Yucatán. Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press.
  • Encyclopædia Britannica 2008. Quintana Roo. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Accessed 2008-02-21.
  • Forero, Oscar A. and Michael R. Redclift. "The Role of the Mexican State in the Development of Chicle Extraction in Yucatán, and the Continuing Importance of Coyotaje." Journal of Latin American Studies 38.1, 65–93. 2006.
  • Gabbert, Wolfgang. Becoming Maya—Ethnicity and Social Inequality in Yucatán Since 1500. University of Arizona Press. Tucson, Arizona. 2004.
  • Hervik, Peter. Mayan People Within and Beyond Boundaries—Social Categories and Lived Identity in Yucatán. Harwood Academic Publishers. Amsterdam, the Netherlands. 1999.
  • Jones, Grant D. Maya Resistance to Spanish Rule—Time and History on a Colonial Frontier. University of New Mexico Press. Albuquerque, New Mexico. 1989.
  • Juarez, Ana M. 2002. "Ecological Degradation, Global Tourism, and Inequality: Maya Interpretations of the Changing Environment in Quintana Roo, Mexico". Human Organization 61.2, 113–124.
  • Morely, Sylvanus Griswold. The Ancient Maya. Stanford University Press. Stanford, California. 1947.
  • Morely, Sylvanus Griswold and George W. Brainerd. The Ancient Maya, 3rd ed. Stanford University Press. Stanford, California. 1956.
  • Pi-Sunyer, Oriol and R. Brooke Thomas. 1997. Tourism, Environmentalism, and Cultural Survival in Quintana Roo. "In" Life and Death Matters: Human Rights at the End of the Millennium. Barbara R. Johnston, ed. p. 187-212. Walnut Creek, California. Altamira Press.
  • Roys, Ralph L. The Political Geography of the Yucatán Maya. Carnegie Institution of Washington Publication 613. Washington, D. C. 1957.
  • Rugeley, Terry. 2004 "Yaxcabá and the caste war of Yucatán: An Archaeological Perspective" In Alexander, Rani T. ed. Yaxcabá and the caste war of Yucatán Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press
  • Schlesinger, Victoria. Animals and Plants of the Ancient Maya: A Guide. University of Texas Press. Austin, Texas. 2001.
  • Sharer, Robert J. The Ancient Maya, 4th ed. Stanford University Press. Stanford, California. 1983.
  • Villa Rojas, Alfonso. The Maya of East Central Quintana Roo. Carnegie Institute of Washington Publication 559. Washington, D. C. 1945.
  • Young, Peter A, ed. Secrets of the Maya. Hatherleigh Press. Long Island City, New York. 2003
  • Link to tables of population data from Census of 2005 INEGI: Instituto Nacional de Estadística, Geografía e Informática

External links

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