Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tulum, Mexico


The vast Caribbean Sea is teal toned and bath water warm. The sun rises and sets fluffy cotton candy pinks and gauzy turquoise blues with whisps of orange. The night sky is abundant with stars. And the sand. Oh my goodness the limestone sand - thick and powdery, pure white, pillowy soft. When wet it takes on this amazing ricotta cheese-like consistency - lumpy and silky with a hint of grit, so it's ultra-exfoliating. Just to run it through your fingers and toes, lie in it, is otherworldly. The sandbars unfold with tiny flecks of coral pink, while storms wash the coral ashore in all forms; from large hunks to delicate pieces lent from the great barrier reef
Forget what you know about Mexico. One and a half hours south of the all inclusive mega resorts in Cancun, Tulum beckons a laid back type of vacationer with chic cabana and boutique bungalow style accommodations. That confectionery sugar sand stretches back until it begins to mingle with the jungle, and it runs so far deep that it can't support structures taller than three stories. The region itself is off the grid - electricity is powered by solar and wind. Don't pack a hairdryer or much makeup. In fact, don't bother packing much at all. If you're in an eco-hotel like ours, it was swipes of mascara by candlelight and beach hair all week long. If you're doing it right, you hardly need shoes during the daytime. Think walking the beach to an early morning yoga class, then meandering to a brunch destination where the tables are in the sand or on a porch just steps from it.

It took some getting used to. But it was perfect. 
Tulum Playa is reached by one road that separates the beach from the jungle. The jungle side lends itself to restaurants that wind through pathways revealing well-designed, weathered settings lit by flickering candles and wood-fired ovens. These spots take cash only - pesos or dollars are fine, but no credit cards, no exceptions. The local cuisine is terrific, I can't wait to tell you more about our meals and the must visits. 

When you're ready to put down your book and peel yourself away from the beach, or your hammock, adventure calls. There are Mayan ruins just up the road to marvel at. And there are cenotes to snorkel! These massive freshwater caverns (or sacred entry's to the underworld) where the jungle light slices through in only a few spots and you deftly navigate around stalactites and stalagmites are extremely beautiful and exhilarating, if not life changing. Then there were the tropical fish in YalKu Lagoon and the sea turtles in Akumal Bay, both relaxing spaces with stunning wildlife. 
Tulum is mysterious and intimate, exquisite and rustic. It is at once calming and invigorating. I miss it. A lot.

11 comments:

  1. This looks like heaven! And you look so relaxed and happy :)

    Sues

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love the snorkel photo! I have heard amazing things about Tulum - might be the only place that makes flying into Cancun worth it!

    ReplyDelete
  3. That looks like an absolutely amazing trip! I would love to be able to go somewhere like that, shut off my brain and just relax. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Looks like another fabulous trip! You look so relaxed in that last photo!

    ReplyDelete
  5. take me there! well luckily I will be in the Dominican Republic in 6ish weeks:) love the beautiful coral and that hammock looks like perfection.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Looks and sounds heavenly! Love the hammock photo of you

    ReplyDelete
  7. This simply looks like paradise! And you look so relaxed and gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
  8. What an amazing trip! This makes me want to head to Tulum ASAP.

    ReplyDelete
  9. What an incredible trip! This location looks absolutely stunning and you look so relaxed and happy.

    ReplyDelete