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Published: October 22nd 2012
We left the hotel at 7am
and our flight was at 10.10am
to Dallas/Fort Worth. The flight was pretty uneventful. The seats on American Airlines are pretty uncomfortable and it's funny because all the air hostess are quite old, ours are all pretty young.We didn't have long until our connecting flight to Cancun so we scoffed down some McDonalds and reboarded. Turns out the plane was delayed 50 minutes because this couple that checked in didn't board, so we had to wait for them to find their bags and take them off, then they turned up and we had to wait for them to find their bags again and load them! Getting from the Cancun airport to Puerto Morelos was pretty simple. We walked pasted all the touts and taxi people to the ADO Playa Del Carmen bus and got 2 tickets for 128 pesos (10 paseos is about $1) then we had to get a cab from the bus stop and that was 20 paesos.
This is a sleepy little fishing village and it is low season so it seems almost empty. Our hotel is right on the beach and I can hear the Carribbean sea lapping
at the beach from our room. The room is big and clean... Life is beautiful.
The next day we spent sleeping, swimming and eating. I read the hunger games book. We pretty much had the whole beach/town to ourselves. There was a dive shop next to our room so we saw a few people going diving, but we decided to just stay and relax.
Playa del Carmen
After 2 nights, we got a taxi to the highway about 20 pesos then the ADO bus to Playa about 50 pesos. It only took about 40min to get there.
We booked a room at the Reina Roja, which means red queen. The first impression is that it could be a brothel! It is very industrial looking with bar and nets on the inside and out, red lights everywhere and maniquins on al th balconys and public areas. It's really funky and different. It advertises an indoor and outdoor pool, but they don't look swimable. The room included breakfast which were egg dishes with fruit and sweet breads, coffee and juice. Our room had a rain shower and red and black decor, the bed was so big that Chris
could starfish on it!
The hotel is right next to 5th avenue, which is the Main Street here that has all the shops and restaurants. The shopkeepers here are pretty nice and not nearly as persistent or aggressive as Asian countries. There are roaming groups of mariarchies and everything has a festive feel. The weather has been hot and sunny and we pretty much spend our days swimming, drinking, sleeping and eating...bliss. We had just booked 2 nights here, but decided to stay 2 more. The beaches are gorgeous.
On one day we took the ferry over to Cozumel
island for some snorkelling, it was crap! I'm not sure if they just took us to crap spots or the hurricanes have destroied the reefs close to the shore, but there wasn't much to see ( except a seahorse) and they make us wait for an hour in the marina, just in case there were more people on the next boat! Afterwards we hired a scooter and rode around the island. It actually broke down up the road, but these really nice people at a restaurant helped us and called the guy and he came and gave us a
new one. The other side of the island is beautiful at one of the beaches there was a group of people collecting baby turtles from all these nests to help them get to the water. We held one...they were adorable!
On another day we also held this tiny little baby monkey. It chewed Chris's shirt and was jumping all over him! The beaches here are to die for. The water is greeny blue and crystal clear all the way out and the sand is white and soft. We decided to hire a car a do a little road trip. We first went to Coba
and rode bicycles around the ruins. There is a huge mayan pyramid Nohoch Mul, 42 metres high, that you can climb. It was so high and the steps are all different sizes and steep and you pretty much need to go the whole way up on all fours. The view from the top was awesome looking across the forest with other ruins poking through and lagoons in the distance.
After this we want to the grand cenote
. This lime sinkhole is filled with crystal clear fresh water, under water caves and stalagmites. Chris hit
it head on one. The water is a gorgeous blue and we snorkelled around and through the tunnel. We could see the divers go into the underwater cave with the torches then disappear...it actually looks a bit scarey.
Next stop was Tulum
, the ruins of a walled mayan city on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean sea. There are quite a few buildings in the complex, the gardens are beautiful and the beach below is gorgeous. We had lunch at one of the resorts there. The restaurant was essentially a big hut over the sandy beach. It was really nice to eat a yummy meal while wiggling your toes in the soft white sand!
We drove back to playa and had a rest before hitting the bar and drinking too much tequila!
We took the ADO bus from Playa to Cancun. It was about 2 hours and cost about $4 each. The hotel we chose for Cancun was called Dos Playas a small all-inclusive hotel next to the the pier for boats going to Isla Mujeres. This means island of women, because apparently mayan virgins used to pilgrimage there.
There was a bit of a
stuff around to start with because we had booked it the night before with booking.com
, but apparently it didn't actually go through properly. Our room didn't have a balcony, so we asked if we could change and the next day we moved to a room with a view over the ocean. We got to the room and realised the bed was heaps smaller and hard as a rock, but we couldn't ask to be moved again!
It's a weird thing, being in an all inclusive place, because all your drinks and food is free, so we kind of felt obliged to make the most of it! Every meal was a buffet and we drank cocktails all day....Every night it got windy, I mean really windy, like a hurricane was coming. But luckily it only rained once 😊There was a big pool and a couple of guys there to organise activities during the day, like beach/pool volleyball, yoga and ping pong. The guys were Ivan and Angel and were really nice and fun, they also take guests to clubs at night and party with them...tough job hey!
On one day we went over to Isla Mujeres
to the Dolphin
Discovery centre. Instead of being in a pool like most places, this place made enclosures in the ocean. There were about 23 dolphins and also dugong, nurse sharks, sting rays and seals.We got to kiss, pat, splash, talk to, play ball and hold our dolphins, called Picasso and Valle. They also took us for a ride by holding their dorsal fin and also a foot push where they would both swim up behind you and each would push you up out of the water with their noses. It was amazing...I thought that we would just fall flat on our faces, but they knew how to balance us...they were so beautiful...
On another day we went on an organised tour to Chichen Itza
. We went to a Mayan town/shop first to people could buy 'authentic' souvenirs and then we went to a restaurant (buffet again) that had some mayan food and a few dances. The notable thing was the lime soup. Chichen Itza is another mayan ruins site, but this one has been restored and you cannot climb the pyramids. They have this awesome feature where if you stand between the main buildings and clap, then it makes with kind
whistle up the stairs and the clap echos all around, but if you take a few steps off the sweet spot, then you cannot hear it anymore. This was apparently one of the tricks the high priests used to use. There is also another sound phenomena on the ball field where you can talk at one end and 100m away at the other end you can hear it echo perfectly.
Afterwards we went to a cenote for a swim to cool off. This one was one giant circular hole in the forest. I think it might have beautiful in the day, but it was a bit dark by the time we got there and so the water was really dark, but still super duper clear.
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