Girl & Boy meet… Cancun, MEXICO!

Round up that passport, take off work, pack your bags!! ..oh wait did you buy the tickets??! We are taking off for Cancun, Mexico!

MEXICO …This was one of my all time FAVORITE vacations, it was jam packed with so many activities that made for a very memorable experience. It was a VERY last minute trip, but sometimes this are the best!  We quickly packed our things and then relized we should probably actually buy those tickets we were talking about! We had decided to go and started packing without having actual tickets yet!!  DON’T do what we did.. but it was a thrill!

We landed in Cozumel, Mexico where as soon as we stepped off the plane you could smell the salty ocean and relaxation in the air.  We got a ride to our resort, Secrets Aura Cozumel, it was an ADULTS ONLY resort #WINNING.  Our plan was to stay here a couple of nights and then move on to Playa Del Carmen, which was only a ferry ride away.

About the Secrets Aura Cozumel Resort

This was a great location on the beach and it was an Adult Only Resort which made it a lot calmer and a little more romantic, which is what we were wanting. They had 3 great main pools and also had a lazy river around one of the pools.

The drinks were great, and the ceviche was very delicious as well.  They had 4 restaurants, a buffet venue, a grill and a cafe.  They also had 24 hour room service so you could dine at any time you liked!

The first night we got to know the resort and found the restaurants that were there, of course since i’m all about the food!  We got some drinks and headed for the beach.  There was a dock that went out into the ocean, where you could dive off and swim around.  We hung out here until the sunset.  A beautiful end to the beginning of an amazing trip.

After our nights were finished at Cozumel we headed over to Playa Del Carmen and stayed at the Occidental Allegro Playacar which was on the Playacar Beach.IMG_2106

As far as a good location for activities, we felt that our next hotel was a far better choice and was geared more towards our “active” sides.

About the Allegro Playacar Resort

Ideal location in Play Del Carmen – They gave scuba lessons in the pool and offered excursions as well – had 2 super clean pools and swim up bars – 3 restaurants (had to make reservations) – daily snacks by the pool – delicious fresh fruit drinks that could be enjoyed poolside!

This resort was so helpful with booking our tours, we just went to the same guy everyday and discussed what we wanted to do the next day or plan out several days in advance.

We went to the front desk and decided to book a few adventures! Below are the trips that we booked. Also with a few other recommendations, for your own trip to Mexico.

WHAT TO SEE AND WHAT TO DO?

**TIP** Go to the front desk of your resort and look at all of the things to do in your location, the people will either help you book something or you can book it on your own, but it gives you great ideas for your trip!

  1. Swim with whale sharks & Isla Mujeres Island
    1. This cost us around $120 per person and included getting picked up and transferred to the location in Cancun where the boat meets to pick up all of the Whale Shark swimmers.
    1. Wait WHAT is a WHALE SHARK?!…okay so they are not as scary as they sound, a Whale shark is a slow moving, plankton eating, don’t forget largest, fish in the sea!  They are comparable to the size of a yellow school bus! They are sometimes called a Gentle Giant and that they really are! We STRONGLY recommend swimming with the Whale Sharks if you are up for an adventure.
    1. After we swam with the Whale Sharks they took us to another Island, Isla Mujeres.  This is THE place that dreams are made.  The water is clear blue, the sand is super fine and the trees give you the best shade ever.  We were allowed to eat lunch on the island, which was a choice of fish and some wine – perfect after being in the sea all morning.
    1. **Things to bring with you** Swimwear, hat, beach towel, sunglasses, biodegradable sunscreen, extra money and you can also bring your own go pro.  Make sure to bring a bag to store all your thins in, because you do leave it on the boat while you are out swimming. It was very safe and secure on the boat too.
  2. Jolly Rodgers pirate ship & Dinner
    1. This is a dinner and a show.  It was an awesome show that was spoken in both Spanish and English.  They were interactive with the guests and got everyone involved.  You went underneath on the boat and ate dinner then when you came up they began the evening show, all the while the boat is cruising around on the ocean.
  3. Tulum island and the Mayan Ruins – with boat ride to front of the cliffs and snorkeling from the boat (great view of the island)
    1. This was another tour that we purchased at the front desk, it came with travel to the Ruins but we were on our own on the way back if we wanted to leave earlier/later.  We chose to stay on the island and had some food and drinks at a little shack.  They had FRESH Coconut, Fish Tacos and also some really neat wooden swings where you could just put your feet in the sand and RELAX.
    1. Highly recommend to hang out on the beach here, you can find transportation back. They had small little vans that they would “pack” with people, it cost us around 5 pesos to get a ride.
      1. Make sure to check out the hand made items on the walk into the ruins area, there will be some vendors set up all along the way and they do have some pretty neat gifts/souvenirs.
      1. This is also where we found the boat tour for the front of the walls of Tulum.  They were just standing out in front with a small box like desk, yes it looks a little sketch, but go and talk with them, they are happy to help.
    1. Cost to get in the Ruins 35-40 Pesos each, also it is VERY hot at the ruins – prepare for long lines and make sure to bring sunscreen, hats and even swim suits!
    1. Cost of the boat tour around the front walls of the Mayan Ruins 60 pesos each – we booked this when we arrived at Tulum, there are stalls out at the front that are very helpful.
  4. Dinner OFF of the Resort – at an Italian restaurant which was referred to us and we were taken by a local!IMG_2115 2.jpg
    1. Cenacolo – traditional Italian Restaurant with homemade pastas and dishes served out of cheese wheels.  Fresh and delicious fish plates, we had a crab cake started, soooo good!  Here is the address, Cenacolo / 5ta Av. (28) / 77710 Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, just in case you want to try.
  5. Explore the Night life in downtown Cancun La Vaquita – is a club in the downtown area, and was super packed.  We had shown up kinda early so there were some spaces up stairs and could order a few drinks to have a good night on the town.
    1. Coco Bongo – another packed bar, but has GREAT entertainment with many impersonators such as Michael Jackson, Elvis, and Tina Turner.
    1. La Bodeguita del Medio – We found this really neat Cuban Bar that had live Cuban music playing and had some of the best Mojitos.  YUM!
  6. Xel Ha –  All inclusive water park 
    1. Xel-Há provides one of the best experiences in the heart of the Riviera Maya. At this All Inclusive Park you can enjoy snorkeling, water activites, restaurants and the best scenery to admire while you relax in a hammock or stroll the nooks and crannies of Xel-Há
    1. We again purchased thought our front desk, the cost was a little expensive ~$110 per person which got us the All inclusive pass and the transportation to the water park.
    1. All you can eat and drink
    1. Swim with dolphins (costs extra)
    1. Float the lazy river and stop to experience a few cliff jumps
    1. Zip line across the waters
    1. Scuba dive to the bottom of the ocean and touch the Stingrays and also see all the fish on the bottom of the ocean floor
    1. Snorkel in the bay as long as you want and see some interesting fish, we saw a barracuda!
  7. Hang out at the resort and get a little R&R, swim in the many luxorious pools, relax on the beach in a cabana, take part in the afternoon snacks and parties and drink all of the fruit drinks.. 🙂
  8. Explore the town of Play Del Carmen – we went to the Parque Los Fundadores – Seaside park with sculptures, a kids’ playground & traditional Mayan dance performances.
    1. We roamed around and got our selves lost ( on purpose). This is were we saw the Danza de los Voladores (Dance of the Flyers) it is an ancient ritual which consists of dance and the climbing of a 30-meter pole from which four of the five participants then launch themselves tied with ropes to descend to the ground. The fifth remains on top of the pole, dancing and playing a flute and drum. According to one myth, the ritual was created to ask the gods to end a severe drought.
  9. At night there was always a show at the resort, such as dancers or singers, and they always are interactive, great for kids.
  10. If you want to have dinner in a few of the “higher end” restaurants, talk to your front desk and make sure to make a reservation if it is required.

A few things to note – in the airport there will be people that will offer all sorts and types of travel means, but honestly we did not rent a car there because there are other means of travel around Mexico.  We used the tours that came with transfers or we used a taxi as they weren’t very expensive and yes we felt safe (they do not speak English well though).

Also, make sure to get cash in the airport, as some of the ATM’s out of the airport do not always work.  You will need cash to pay for taxis, snacks, dinners, as credit cards aren’t the “normal” means of payment.

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