Mayan Riviera 2014 – Tulum

While I could probably spend a whole week relaxing on the beach, heading off the resort for even half a day seemed like a good idea. We booked tours with our “vacation coordinator” at the beginning of the week to see some of the things in the area – the first being the Mayan ruins at Tulum on day 4 of our trip.

We woke up to some serious wind and a few clouds on Wednesday morning but that actually made it perfect touring weather. Our bus picked us up promptly at 7:50 am but then (unfortunately) we stopped several more times to pick up others. We had been told when we booked that there would only be a couple of pick ups so we were quite frustrated to find ourselves on a resort tour instead of actually on our way to the ruins. It took about 2.5 hours to cover the 75 Km between our resort and the site.

I’ve never been to a busier tour site – there were people everywhere. We skipped the “train ride” into the site because we didn’t want to wait and instead walked the 700 m to the gates where we followed our guide (and like 100 other people) into the site. I wasn’t immediately impressed (with either the ruins or the crowds) but our guide did a good job of explaining the site and the buildings which helped me to appreciate the site more.

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After about 30 minutes of guided touring we had another hour and a half of free time. We wandered around the site to check out the other buildings and the coastal views. It was pretty crowded along the edge of the ocean but still beautiful. Unfortunately the beach was closed due to the high winds so we couldn’t get close to the ocean.

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imageWe left the site just after 12:30 pm but with another 6 stops on the way home it was almost 2:30 pm before we were back at our resort. Unfortunately, the long drive home made me feel like the tour to the site hadn’t been worth it so I was less excited about our adventures than normal. To shake off our frustrations we all changed into our swim suits and hit the beach to recover. A few hours of relaxing in the sun made me feel better and after just a couple of pool drinks I hit up the gym for a quick cycle and run.

Overall I thought a Tulum was interesting but not super impressive. Still, it is close enough to the resorts that if you can get a more direct tour it is probably worth the half-day excursion, particularly if you haven’t seen any of the Mayan ruins before. It was nice to be off the resort for a bit and it certainly made me appreciate our relaxing beach time!

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