Saturday, October 17, 2009

Tulum, Quintana Roo

On Tuesday, we decided we had had enough with Cancun. The downtown area we stayed in was nice, but still basically aimed at the tourist. The beach area was nothing but tourist shops and activities, except the beach, which is amazing for everyone. We were tired of being bombarded with things to buy and so many people. We talked to someone at a travel agency about small towns on the coast, and he recommended Tulum, so we went back.

The ruins are on the outskirts of the town, and the beach is about a five minute taxi ride from the town. There are little cabins on a beach that are popular to rent, but it was hot and Jose was not willing to forgo air conditioning. We found an inexpensive hotel in town with air conditioning, then explored the town since it was too late to go to the beach.

There are many tours offered for different kinds of fishing and snorkeling, but it is overwhelmingly for the residents. There are some resorts on the beach, but they are far enough away that they don’t make up a part of the town. It was nice to be in a town that was actually for living, yet still have the Caribbean a few minutes away.

We ate dinner at a restaurant near our hotel whose owner lived in Santa Rosa for a long time. After he divorced, he moved back to Mexico, but his daughters now have families in Santa Rosa. He said that people from Sonoma County do not visit Tulum, and was excited that we had.

On Wednesday we took a taxi to the beach early and spent the whole day there. We rented lounge chairs, so whenever we felt like getting out of the water, we could gaze out at it, or take a nap, which our gazing easily turned into. There were less people, and the beach wasn’t lined by malls and hotels, so it was a lot quieter and more relaxing.

We left Tulum on Thursday morning to return to Cancun for our afternoon flight from Cancun to Puebla. When we got to the bus station, we were told that the 9 o’clock bus we were planning to take could arrive between 9 am and 1 pm. Luckily, it arrived at 8:45 and we were able to get to Cancun a few hours early. We ate lunch at Chili’s for some refreshing American food (there is really good corn on the cob there), but the bus to get us back downtown was extremely late, and then extremely slow, so we got stressed out about making it to the airport.

We got to the airport an hour early, like they ask, but their Express Check-In machines were broken, so we had to wait in line. The line was huge, and the service was poor, so it took almost an hour just to check in. We arrived at the gate just 2 minutes before the shuttle to the plane arrived. It was very stressful, but luckily it worked out and we got on the plane. We don’t plan on flying Mexicana again, though.


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