Coastal tourism is an integral part of the Mexican economy and one fourth of the total national tourism revenue is generated alone in Cancun, Mexico. Once the area was an underdeveloped, snake-infested jungle in one of the poorest region of the nation, however, by last couple of decades Cancun has undergone a major transformation and each year over two million visitors visited, justifying Cancun as the world-class tourism destination. Although coastal tourism in Cancun has been greatly successful in generating foreign revenue, it has severely impacted a range of environmental aspects. Green Cancun organization is dedicated to provide the historic perspective about the rise of tourism in Cancun. The environmental effects of tourism are presented in details and preventive steps towards sustainable eco-tourism have also been proposed. The fundamental causes of environmental effects of tourism are discussed, including changes in land-usage, weak regulatory enforcement, and an overall inefficiency of tourism and environmental policies.