Carrying on our way down south towards the border with Belize, we stopped off for a few days in Tulum at a place called Hostel Casa Del Sol. There are some awesome Mayan ruins perched on low limestone cliffs right on the sea and from the photos we’d seen before leaving the UK it was on our “must-see” list for mexico. The ruins themselves don’t occupy a massive site, but are still very interesting never the less as they are set in one of the best surroundings (probably only coming second to the Palenque ruins) and also that the site was still an active trading port when the Spanish invaders arrived in the 1500′s.
We ended up spending 3 nights in Tulum before moving south, as the first day we were there a big weather front moved over so we literally took a “rain cheque” till the next day.
Hails going through one of the doorways in the barrier wall old site.
The old lighthouse at Tulum ruins.
View through some of the ruins.
View across the site (note our stylish beach bag from glastonbury)
There are loads of iguanas at the site, and they're so used to people you can get right up close to them. The ones with the spiny ridge down their back are the really big ones.
The beach in the middle of the site. Back in the day it was where the boats were pulled ashore for loading and unloading.
Another beach on the site, this one open to the public for swimming.
Obligatory "ruins-on-a-cliff-edge-in-the-caribbean" self shot.
Location, location, location.
Hails about to walk under a mah-hassive Bougainvillea.
Cool little temple on the site. The roof of that first floor is really low though, it would have come up to our shoulders. Those Mayans must have just about been midgets!
The main temple of Tulum. Its also perched right on the cliff edge, with the sea just behind it. The lop-sided building on the left was actually built with its walls at that angle, its one of those astrologically aligned buildings.
Another awesome ruins shot.
Max the iguana. Actually I don't think thats his name, but hey he was one cool lizard.
The water really is that colour. And its the perfect temperature - just cool enough to be refreshing, but warm enough you could spend all day in it without getting cold.
Beach iguana catching some rays.
Hails on the beach.
Another huge iguana on the beach. This one was funny though - some people came and put their towel down on the sand and went in for a swim and he moved over and chilled out on their towel. He must have easily been over a meter long. Luckily for the people he had moved off by the time they got out the water..
Dyl building his own ruins on the beach...
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November 25, 2010
I can highly recommend visiting an island in the Caribbean… see pics below to see why.
The ferry crossing from Cancun was only 30 mins, so we grabbed the opportunity to have a cold beer and take in the splendour of the inviting Caribbean waters.Â Our hostel (PocNa) was a 5 minute stroll over to the other side if the island and we settled into our 2nd floor room overlooking the sea – and we even had a balcony!
After waking up at the crack of dawn due to the sun streaming into our room, we made our way to the beach – and what a beautiful beach it was… glorious!Â Sandbanks everywhere, so you could walk quite far out. I purchased my own snorkel kit, so we spent hours in the rock pools visiting the locals.
Unfortunately our daybag got nicked off the beach just meters from where we were snorkelling – so after running around and checking all the dustbins, we dashed off to the hostel to make the necessary card cancellation calls.Â We were gutted – my camera, wallet (not much cash), and DylÂ´s sunglasses were the most annoying losses, so we spent the rest of our Sunday afternoon in the police station filing a report for our travel insurance.Â Luckily one of the tourist people were called in for translation assistance otherwise we would have been there all night…
The following day we spent at the beach bar – updating the blog, calls home, re-ordering bank cards, and generally not going back to the beach where our bag got stolen.Â It was time to move on.
A quick bus trip to Playa del Carmen – what a delightful little tourist spot for our American friends, but nothing compared to Cancun!
Our hostel (Popul Vuh) was a super little place, meters from the beach and very chilled.Â Out of all the many hostels weÂ´ve stayed at, this breakfast was by far the most impressive – the restaurant bit situated right next to a Mayan ruin – an old lighthouse back in its day.
After a fabulous swim, we took a stroll down the main street to check out the neighbourhood, and managed to find Dyl some new sunglasses and a new daybag for me.Â It felt good to start replacing the things weÂ´d lost.
We decided to move on to Tulum the following day – weÂ´d read about the amazing ruins on the beach, so we looking forward to heading out.
Our chariot awaits - ferry from Cancun to the Island
Friday afternoon commute - tough job but somebody has to do it.
Commute continues, fighting our way through the crowds and traffic on the island.
The view from our room at hostel Poc Na
Field kitchen being put to good use - fresh guacamole and nachos for din-dins.
Our morning exploration of the island yielded some pretty cool views...
Obligatory island self shot.
Yip, looks like its beer o'clock - you can tell from the angle of the sun through the palm tree fronds.
Creature from the deep lurks in the shallows
Yes, thats me in the distance!
Lots of snorkelling.
Tough day at the office..
Look, its a mermaid!
Pencil fish lurking in a rock pool
Baby zebra fish and a sea urchin
The fish don't give a toss how close you get.
Two types of sea urchin and a black starfish creeping round the back on the right.
I finally bought my own snorkel kit - yay!
Close up of Nemo's house, unfortunately Nemo was out..
Baby ray chilling in the shallows
Think its a little sand shark or another type of ray.
Pelicans doing their thing.
Iguana, no zoom required, just move in until you're nearly touching it.
Extreme close up, thick spined sea urchin and a black starfish from about 3cms away.
Tiny little green crab with the hairiest legs ever!
Ray zooms past.
Post "stolen-bag-lets-have-steak-to-cheer-ourselves-up" dinner
Inside the restuarant - the lights look even prettier after a strong margarita!
Hails at the beach office with a bottle of "island coffee" close at hand.
They are right, these open plan offices really do promote productivity!
Leaving the island, Dyl wearing my aviators after his Von Zippers were nicked. Playa del Carmen, here we come!
Arriving in Playa del Carmen. Our hostel is just past the pink flamingo's on the left, just before the beach at the end of the road.
What a great mo shot.
Mmmmmm tasty resfreshing ice cold Sol with lime and salt - perfect for sundowners on a caribbean beach near you! In supermarkets for only 50p a can.
Dinner is served, pasta carbonara and salad under the palm trees outside our room.
Breakfast with Mayan ruins in the background. Hard to make out, but it was an old lighthouse used to direct the boats over to Coruzol.
Do my sunglasses make me look cool? Damn skippy!
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November 24, 2010