Mexico: Part One

Since my last post, my travel exploits have continued in earnest. I am writing this post back in Britain, so I may be re-telling with rose-tinted spectacles as the saying goes. But then again it was incredible, and I hope I can communicate some of the magic! In an attempt to do this most effectively I will be dividing up into multiple posts.

Our expedition (Ben, Emilie, Kat, Mathilde and ourself) left the familiar territory of Boulder to fly out to Cancun, Mexico. It was a monday, and as others were settling down to a week of work, we were jetting off, feeling incredibly fortunate. We touched down into Cancun, collected our rental car after a few teething problems and made our way to our hotel. I’m not sure what i was expecting but I was overawed by pearl white sands of the beach that greeted us as we looked out of our room into the Caribbean. and for good measure, there was also a beach bar. What more can you want!!

On our first full day, it was Kat’s birthday so we celebrated accordingly by lounging on the beach and drinking a suitable amount of pina coladas.Delightful. The day after, we ventured out of the trashy Cancun and onto Isla Mujeres to do a bit of snorkelling. We treated ourself to a private boat, and went snorkelling at 2 great sites. Personally, I’m not overly keen on aquatic pursuits, but I have to admit I did enjoy it, despite feeling at one point I was helplessly drifting out into the Caribbean Sea. Our captain then cooked up the most incredible late lunch of grilled fish, rice and salad by a beautiful beach.

The next day, we started our journey south and stayed in Playa del Carmen. Much more relaxed than Cancun, and the beach was sublime. On our way we stopped at our first Mayan Site – Coba. Such a hot day, but I really enjoyed climbing the huge main temple. It’s a lot steeper than it looks from the pictures! Sampled the most amazing burrito from a random burrito stand, and polished it off with coca cola in a glass bottle. Nothing more satisfying! In the evening, after a long hard day on the beach, we had some amazing fajitas in a proper ‘local’ place. It was a bit intimidating when a pickup full of police dressed all in black and wielding heavy weaponry went past, but I guess that’s the reality of Mexico.

On our second day in Playa del Carmen, we left the mainland and went over to Cozumel for a bit of snorkelling. This time we shared our snorkelling boat, but the snorkelling itself was even better as the water was even clearer. I felt a bit more comfortable in the water as well. Once back on the mainland, Ben and myself had the most draining game of football ever with some energetic locals. Playing on sand is like playing in treacle (not that I have ever done that i may add). Fun though.

In our last day in Mexico for the time being we stayed at Tulum. Stunning place. The beach was great as there were no real beachside properties, and you could see the Tulum mayan ruins as you were swimming (or in my case being bowled over by the waves). Probably the best beach I went to in the trip, and would recommend a trip down there from Cancun. It’s a completely different world!

After departing the next day, we headed down across the border into Belize. Our initial plan was to stay in Belize city, but it turns our we booked an apartment in San Pedro, which is a 1.5 hour boat ride from Belize City. Consequently, we did not get to see the Tulum ruins up close as we had to leave early, but we all got to see them when we re-entered Mexico.

So this is the first of 4 posts for this trip. I would encourage you to look at the pictures as they really do say a 1000 words (just click on a picture and a slide show should pop up)


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