After 4 nights, we unfortunately reached the time to say goodbye to our little slice of heaven in Bacalar.
We had booked an ADO bus from Bacalar, which got us to the center of Tulum in 2h40. Very easy.
Our accommodation was located in the center of Tulum, unfortunately quite far from the beach as our budget wouldn’t allow closer access. We’d been told by friends it’s easy to cycle around, so thought this was a good compromise and allowed us to keep costs down. The room itself was quite nice and large, a fridge and microwave a bonus, but the rest of the facilities weren’t amazing with luke warm (at best) showers and a very average kitchen.
As the bus pulled up, so did a huge storm, which stranded us for a while. We then realised the storm had completely floaded our street, a nice welcome gift from Tulum. In between the storms, we decided to grab a quick lunch (decent pasta at Foco Loco) and go to the supermarket nearby to stock up for the following 4 days.
That supermarket was great, only about 15 min walk from our accommodation and offering a lot of choice. The nearest to a proper supermarket we’d seen in a while.
As it started to rain heavily again whilst we were shopping, we grabbed a taxi home and decided to chill for the rest of the day, opting to plan a packed schedule for the following day rather than venture out in the storm again.
The next morning we hopped on the bikes we had rented through our hotel and headed to the Tulum ruins, about 20min away. The entrance to the ruins was 75 pesos per person. The site itself is quite small, and can be done quite quickly.
The highlight is obviously its positioning right on the beach front. It is absolutely gorgeous, with the most amazing ocean views possible.
You can also swim there at the public beach, with access near the temple. As we arrived quite early (about 9.30am), the site was busy but not overcrowded so it made for quite a pleasant visit.
After a while walking around, we decided to jump in the very inviting carribean sea as the day was getting hotter and hotter. The water was so warm and nice! We didn’t want to leave!
After the ruins visit, we hopped back on the bikes and headed to the famous Gran Cenote for a dip. It was located about 25min cycle away from the ruins. Cycling in the heat was quite tough, but we made it.
Yucatan, and especially Tulum, is well known for its Cenotes. These are natural sinkholes that fill up with rain water and in which locals and tourists now go for swims. They used to be sacred by Mayans who also used them to collect their drinking water.
The Gran Cenote was beautiful. Entrance is very pricey at 180 pesos per ticket (about AUD $15), but the Cenote itself is very big. The water was nice and clear, and it gives you the opportunity to swim with turtles as there are many living in the Cenote. Always fun.
We played around for a while, enjoyed our picnic lunch and swam in a cave full of bats (terrifying and gross). We really enjoyed our time there.
For the remainder of the afternoon we decided to cycle back towards the beach, this time to check out Playa Paraiso, allegedly one of the best beaches in Mexico.
Most of the beach is private and owned by various fancy hotels, but luckily you can find the public area at Las Palmas Public Beach.
The beach itself is very nice, white sand, crystal clear and warm water, and not over crowded this time of year. We enjoyed a swim before a little walk up the beach.
We came across a massage hut that offered very well priced massages, so we decided to go for a treat and enjoyed an hour long massage each. Half way through a huge storm started, if anything the rain noise made it more relaxing!
We then cycled back to our hotel in the rain, which was actually quite pleasant after a ridiculously hot day and sunburn all round.
A fantastic day in Tulum.
- Bikes are a fantastic way to get around the town. There are many cycling lanes, or you can cycle on the side of the road. It is all flat, so easy to get around. The going daily rental price is 100 pesos per bike (about AUD $8).
- There’s so many cenotes to choose from. They seem to be priced from 100-200 pesos; some offer showers and places to relax/eat etc, like Gran Cenote, and some are just holes in the ground on private properties. Either way, the water is cooler than the sea so they’re perfect for those hot days.