This is the story of my 6 months of studying in Arizona in 2010 and subsequent travels in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. Enjoy!

Friday, February 4, 2011

A couple of days in Paradise! Day 19 and 20

Leaving Cancún Monday 31/1 felt kind of nice, especially after good breakfast in the hotel. We walked back to the bus station and caught a bus to Tulum, a place recommended by Jesús as being one of the most beautiful places ever. So I thought we'd better go... :)

He turned out to be right! We arrived and quickly found a hotel we had checked out online - a little peace of paradise. Though far from the street it was a great place to start our Tulum experience. Let me draw you the picture (and of course there are more in Facebook): We entered through a gate overgrown with green plants and flowers, and found the reception in a small cabaña, or hut if you prefer, greeted by a smiling receptionist, who showed us around. Via little stone paths around to cabañas hidden in the jungle-like vegetation, we found our favorite in a round wooden hut with a large bed, bathroom, and a hammock hanging across the room! From there we went to see the pool with a few beach chairs around in the sun. Next to the pool a larger version of the cabañas with chairs, sofas, and a bookshelf, functioning as a restaurant for breakfast and dinner, and lounge throughout the day. What a truly amazing place...

So obviously we spent most of our afternoon in the pool and in the chairs in the sun, relaxing and enjoying not having to do anything but just that. Getting hungry around 3 PM we talked with Evelina, the Polish receptionist, who suggested a restaurant for lunch. She also asked if we would be interested in a snorkeling trip the following day - first I was a little sceptical, but then realised that the offer was great: 600 pesos per person including pick-up and equipment and some hours of snorkeling in the ocean. So we accepted, looking forward to some adventure! :) And then we went to get lunch in the restaurant, specialising in fish. Very good!

After lunch Sofie went to and Internet Café, while I spent some time reading in the sun. When she came back I had retreated from the pool because of mosquitos, and Sofie joined me in our cabin. We hung around for a while talking, before going out to the restaurant by the pool to get some dinner. I had an amazing risotto with smoked salmon, and as I asked for some vegetables also tomatoes and carrots with a glass of white wine. Sooooo good! :)

Tuesday morning we woke up early, excited to be going snorkeling! We had breakfast at 8, consisting of toasted bread with butter and jam, plus juice and coffee, and a great peace of banana cake! Was picked up 8.30 by our snorkeling guide, Evelina's Spanish boyfriend Jaime, and his friend Pablo. Packed our large backpacks in the trunk, and was off to pick up wet suits and masks. Uhh, exciting! :D

On the way to the beach Jamie explained the plan for the day. First we were going to Akumal Beach to look at sea animals around the reef. He expected that we would get to see turtles, sting rays, maybe eagle rays and barracudas if we were lucky, and for sure a lot of different fish! After Akumal we would go to a cenote - a huge sinkhole where the limestone has been eroded and collapsed years ago, and now filled with water perfect for snorkeling and diving. We didn't know we were going on this second adventure as well, and got extra happy that we had chosen to go on the trip! :) 

Getting into the wet suit was not exactly comfortable in the 30 degrees heat, but as soon as we were in the water it was nice. Weird feeling to breath underwater... Never tried snorkeling before, and the first time you put your face under water and take a breath, its really about overcoming some natural boundaries towards survival-behaviour! :D But of course you get used to is quickly, and we set out towards deeper, less sandy water. Our guide had brough an underwater camera to capture our sights. And we were soooo lucky with what we got to see!! Several huge turtles, several sting rays, a spotted eagle ray right next to a barracuda, and all those other magnificently colorful fish! What an experience! We were in the water for almost an hour and a half before we headed back to the beach and the car. I had a cramp in my leg and was provided with a banana, which apparently is good for cramps. Some of you will recon that I am not a big fan of bananas, but this one... Uhm, was good! :) 

Back in the car headed towards the cenote, Jaime told us a bit more about the place and what to expect. Can't say much else than to look at the pictures. It was so incredible there! The water was cold and completely clear, the sun was shining down in the cave, the water had clear rays of sun lighting everything, and there were loads of stalagmites and stalactites, many from floor to ceiling, in all sizes. Swimming around in those caves has been one of my most beautiful experiences ever! So incredible it is hard to describe, so just imagine the cool, clear water, little fish all around, and beautiful light and rock formations... The pictures will tell the story - check the link in the menu! --->!

Back home in the town we were dropped off at a local restaurant that Jaime recommended. We had a huge meal with quesadilla, flautas, and various other things, and then moved with our backpacks to the beach-version of the hotel we had just left - from Don Diego de la Selva to Don Diego de la Playa. Another interesting story, which I will have to delay my telling of as I have to sleep a bit... 

1 comment:

  1. No se olvide pedir un cafe maya. Do not forget to ask for a cafe Maya.....that wil be a pyrothechnic experience.