Mexico – sun, sea and ancient Maya

posted in: Mexico | 3

Mexico – sun, sea and Mayan history

Mexico
Entrance to our hotel Mexico

It’s not often I partake in luxury travel. But every now and again you need to kick back and relax. Mexico is the perfect place to do just that!

I stayed at the Eldorado seaside suites in Riviera Maya. A five-star adults only all-inclusive resort. Sounds posh I know…

I have to say the place resembled my idea of paradise. A Jacuzzi beach front room, mini bar included and a choice of five a la carte restaurants.The service was phenomenal too. The staff could not do enough for us. This is not a hotel review but to hear more about my hotel experience click HERE for my TripAdvisor review.

Being a travel geek in Mexico I just had to see Chichen Itza. Containing the pyramid El Castillo, one of the wonders of the world it couldn’t be missed.We booked our trip through our travel reps at the hotel. We were picked up by coach at our hotel and traveled straight to the site which took around 3 hours. There were two choices of order of the same itinerary and we chose to visit Chichen Itza first and then stop at a Cenote and for lunch Valladolid.

The entrance fee to Chichen Itza was 120 pesos. But this was included in our tour price through our travel guide. We were guided around the complex with a guide that spoke English very well. The history of the ancient Mayans was explained and we were guided around the site.

Mexico
Travel Geek Tara at the El Castillo Pyramid Chichen Itza

Over 1500 years old and used by the Mayans as a ceremonial centre. The site was later abandoned before being invaded by the Toltecs 100 years later.  Today the site is visited by 1.2 million tourists per year!  We spent a few hours exploring all of the ruins including the pyramids, the Great ball court and the Skull platform. We visited in May when it was very hot and there was little shade in the area. There were also vendors selling crafts and souvenirs in the area. Make sure you haggle if you are going to buy!

After our tour we went on to a Cenote, which is a natural sinkhole formed by the collapse of limestone rock exposing the water underground. Here you can jump in and swim in the turquoise waters. After the Cenote visit it was time to stop for lunch. We were taken to a buffet restaurant in Valladolid where we could taste a range of Mexican foods before exploring the area.  Valladolid is a small colonial city where you can visit the central cathedral, enjoy the central park and purchase all kinds of souvenirs. It is a very popular place for tourists visiting the nearby Mayan sites.

We returned to our hotel after a very long but worthwhile day!

Mexico
Cathedral of San Gervasio Valladolid

We also discovered that there was another Mayan site nearby in Tulum. The staff at the hotel told us we could get there by using the local workers bus. So we waited on the highway outside our hotel and paid the few pesos for the bus ride. Quite an experience, very hot and crowded but worth it! The Tulum ruins are a walled city on the sea. The beach here is protected and there are certain walkways you must stick to which are roped off. You don’t need a guide here. We paid our entrance fee and wandered around the ruins and the gardens. There are two main parts to see, the city square and the Temple of the descending god. For more on Tulum why not check out LocoGringo.com

Mexico
The beach at Tulum

There are also places to eat and some craft markets in the town, however they are quite expensive here.

Back at our hotel we continued to enjoy the hot sunny days. The temperature in May was around 32 degrees c and very little rain, usually at night. I enjoyed lazy days on the beach relaxing and sunbathing. I went snorkeling out to the reefs where I saw some beautiful  fish and a sea turtle and sea kayaking (although I wasn’t very good at this).

In Mexico you can do absolutely nothing and enjoy the beach and the weather. Or you can enjoy the historical sites, the nightlife and the sea/sporting activities. Or like me you may enjoy a mixture of the two….

Mexico
The beach at Eldorado seaside suite

Have you been to Mexico? What was your experiences……?

 

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