Looking for a beach paradise?
Tulum is a Mayan walled city guarding the gorgeous Caribbean coast of Quintana Roo, Mexico. However, once tourists see this Riviera Mexicana beach, they tend to forget to visit the archaeological attraction.
Screw Cancun. Bypass Playa del Carmen. Tulum is the best beach bang for your buck on the Mexican Caribbean.
Tulum on the Riviera Mexicana, 130km south of Cancun.
I tented here 4 nights.
We also rented at least one thatch roofed cabana in which I stored my gear.
Tenting cost about US$6 / night. Cabanas run US$12 and up. A bit higher at Zazil Kin resort, your best bet.
The beach is insect free. No hassles of any kind.
Not much to do but walk the beach and snorkel out to the world’s second longest reef 400m from shore.
There were many signs of last year’s hurricane damage.
This toilet block did not survive a big blow.
Sarah, my yoga teacher. (She is kind & helpful to all though this photo would not have you think so. She doesn’t like it!) Those are the Mayan temple ruins in the background.
I enjoyed 2 days of yoga on the beach. Perhaps 90 minute slow, easy sessions.
My favourite of the inexpensive beach resorts was Diamonte K. Unique, filled with interesting art pieces.
Many resorts here long ago added “Eco” to their names. Next step is to add “solar” to the sign board.
Big old iguanas are a highlight of the Tulum scenery.
Monika and Monty, a lovely couple from the UK just starting 7 months of travel.
Monty, Ron and Tom.
This dog got plenty of exercise every day chasing his master’s kite.
Beach bar with hammocks.
Many of the cabanas are wedged into the dunes for protection against the wind. One night we got coated with a fine layer of sand.
Should I book you a hut?
Fishermen land here to sell lobster & fish to tourists.
Most evenings we caught the free hostel shuttle into town.
Tulum town is noted as “butt ugly” in the guidebooks. But I still liked it.
The hostel offered “burn your own barbecue” for US$3.50.
We much enjoyed “The Weary Traveller”. One of the best hostels in Mexico, I reckon.
One night I bought a basket of “carne” for a meat pig-out. Vegetarians were mortified.
Another night we cooked fish on the beach. This is a home made barbecue tong.
The highlight of Tulum for me was snorkelling a cenote.
Finally we hit the modest Tulum ruins. Many backpackers never get around to paying the US$5 entry fee.
The Spanish in 1518 were amazed by this city, painted vivid red, blue and yellow. It was one of the last fortresses to be abandoned.
Many spend more time on the Tulum beach than touring the ruins. A spectacular setting.
See the iguana checking out the bikinis?
I would return to Tulum any time. It is a fantastic place!