Exciting Trip to Tulum, Mexico
IF you are in need of an all inclusive, beachfront, relaxing vacation-Mexico is the answer. AND did we mention its VERY affordable. We were blown away at how much we loved our relaxing trip to Tulum, Mexico. We stayed at Bahia Principe Luxury Akumal where all meals and drinks are all included in the price. On property there are about 8 different restaurants open for dinner so each night you can eat a different cuisine. Also near the pool is a snack bar that is open 24/7 with everything you could imagine. You can add on different excursions, spa treatments, romantic seven course meal on the beach, and many more.
We opted to rent a car when we landed in Cancun and we drove down to Tulum immediately. Having the car let us be mobile while in mexico and not just stranded at the resort. As we do love relaxing in the sun and drinking all the pina coladas- we also love to explore around the resort as well. In this area of Mexico there is so much history and beautiful scenery to explore.
1. Tulum Ruins
Get away from the resort life and GO EXPLORE! Okay okay, a few days in the absolute beach paradise is perfect don’t get us wrong, but in this area of Mexico there is SOO MUCH TO DO!! So get out and see it! First on our agenda was to see the Tulum ruins, so from our resort it was 15 miles south on the beach. It was absolute paradise there!! The ruins on the beach makes for the best pictures! Also at this sight you can bring or wear your swimsuits and take a swim in the ocean right on the ruins. such a great experience. There are many different vendors here so you can get all your cheap souvenirs in one stop.
2. Coba Ruins
From the Tulum ruins to Coba ruins it is almost an hour drive (30 miles). On the way there are many different entrances to cenotes if you want to stop and take a dip, however we did not because we already had a full day planned. Once you get to the ruins rent a bike and enjoy the shaded walk ways through the forest to different sites in the park. Here, you can actually climb up one of the pyramids to the top and get one of the best views, IF YOU DARE.
3. Mayapan Tequila Distillery
From Coba ruins we jumped in the car to hit up a tequila distillery for the first time ever!! We absolutely LOVE tequila so we made this one of the top priorities while visiting Mexico. From Coba this was about another hour drive (38 miles). When we got to the distillery we could see agave plants in the fields and it went on and on as far as the eye could see! The distillery itself was pretty dead, we weren’t sure if it was open or not? luckily it was open and we were the only customers. We paid about 2$ each to get a tour through the distillery and see the process of how the agave plant turns into tequila. This distillery still had some of the old techniques of making tequila which made it super interesting. At the end of the tour we were offered samples of the different types of tequila and informed how long each one is stored in its barrel for. We were feeling preeeetty good leaving this place but to get back to our resort it was about a little less than 2 hours.
Be safe when driving in Mexico. We recommend to only be on the road driving during the sunlight of hours. We saw many different road blocks while driving with police stopping random cars. We asked some locals about it and they said it is normal. We asked if they want money and they responded that sometimes they do….?! Being as we are foreign to this country we made sure to stick to the speed limit and hurry back to the hotel before dark. Luckily during our trip we were never harassed for money in any type of way, however we talked to a few different couples and that was not the case for them.
4. Akumal Beach (turtle beach)
After a full day pf adventure yesterday we decided to take it easy and drive about 10 minutes north (3 miles) to Akumal Beach also known as turtle beach because this is where the turtle come to eat sea grass!!! At this beach they have many different tours you can sign up with that will provide you with masks and take you out to see the turtles. We came prepared and brought our own masks so we didn’t have to group up with a bunch of people. We saw so many turtles here it was amazing. We were completely overwhelmed with how calm and beautiful these creatures are underwater. After a day full of swimming we stopped at one of the restaurants on the beach and enjoyed a light snack before heading back to the resort.
5. Rio Secreto
We did a lot of research and found this amazing tour that takes you through the secret river. Rio Secreto has recently been designated to be one of Mexico’s most alluring and distinct nature reserves. From our hotel this was about half an hour drive north (22 miles). The tour is kind of pricey in terms of backpackers budget but let me tell you, it is worth every penny!! this tour was so amazing and our guide was so knowledgeable of the river. Inside the cave is just immaculate, there is no trash ANYWHERE. You can really tell that the locals and the staff work really hard to teach how sacred this place is to them and their country. Along with you on this tour is a photographer, you do not have to buy the pictures he takes but we are really happy we did as we did not have any camera with us. After the tour lunch is provided in the price.
6. Cenote Azul
On the way back to our resort from Rio Secreto we passed by Cenote Azul and decided to stop and take a quick dip in the crystal clear waters. When we got there it was about 4-5 PM and it was packed!!! The cenotes do rent out masks for swimming however you can save money by bringing our own from home if you can fit it in your luggage. These cenotes are just breathtaking as the water is so clear and they go very deep down! The water is pretty chilly as it is spring water so be prepared. Mexico is full of different cenotes- some popular ones being dos ojos, grand cenote and Ik Kil cenote. The cenotes remind us of the Florida springs back home.
7. Chichen Itza
You cannot go to the Yucatan Peninsula and not go to the world famous Chichen Itza! One of the seven wonders of the world, Chichen Itza dates back to around 600 AD. From our resort it took us about 2 hours and 20 minutes to get to (100 miles). We left quite early so we didn’t get there in the busy afternoon with all of the tour buses. Right when the park opens is when you want to get there for the best pictures. This site is just surreal, you can almost feel the history in every turn. Again at this site there are many vendors and snacks to buy from the locals. We enjoyed a nice lunch at the restaurant before heading back.
8. Ik Kil Cenote
About 10 minutes from Chichen Itza is one of the most amazing and jaw dropping cenote in Mexico! Ik Kil is almost like a giant jungle well down to the most beautiful water. At this cenote you must take a spiraling staircase down to the sinkhole where you can get in to swim or rather, jump in from a 15 foot ledge!? We can’t decide which is the better view? from the top of the cenote or from down in it… This was definitely one of our favorite experiences in Mexico and we hope you go and visit!
9. Romantic Dinner on the beach
After rushing back from our fun filled day out exploring the beautiful country, James had a little surprise awaiting for me when we got back. My instructions were to shower and put on a dress. As we walked down to one of the dinner restaurants we took a turn and there was a candlelit sweet dinner set up on a dock over the ocean!! literally SOO sweet. Here we enjoyed a couple bottle of wine and an eight course menu that was so delcious after such an eventful day we had! HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO US!!
10. Snorkel trip in Cozumel
Some of the best snorkeling to this day was in Cozumel, Mexico. We booked this tour through our resort with the convenience of getting picked up and dropped off there. On this snorkeling trip we were taken to three different sights where we saw TONS of fish, manta rays and nurse sharks. After seeing all the underwater life and enjoying some beers on the boat we were taken to Cozumel to explore the island life. Cozumel is super touristy as a cruise ship docks there for the day. Still it was super nice and full of local vendors selling nic nacs and souvenirs.
Thank you Mexico for a very eventful 10 days!! ALL INCLUSIVE resorts are a must when coming to this country. We hope this helps you in deciding your next holiday to Mexico! Land of all you can eat buffets.