Day 139 - Had breakfast and then caught a collectivo taxi which is a minibus for about 12 people but very cheap. We went about an hour from Merida to a place called Cuzama. We then went to a place where we hired transportation for a tour. The transport was a horse drawing a little carriage along metal think train tracks. The tour took us to three different cenotes, which are caves that have beautiful clear water in them for swimming. There are rays of sunlight coming through the caves onto the water which shows how clear and turqoise they are. We went to three on our little horse drawn buggy and swam in them. Very nice way to spend an afternoon. Then back to Merida and had fried fish and chips, not like the English fish and chips but still very good.
Day 140 - Booked onto a tour to see the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, which was a very important military settlement around 900-1200 AD. There is still a great deal to see there and we had a guide show us round so we knew what we were looking at. he took us to the older part first where the main thing to see was an astronomy observatory as the Mayans were big on astronomy and how it linked to crops, fertility and Gods etc. Then we saw the main plaza, which had a huge Egyptian style pyrmaid at its centre and the place where the markets were at the other end. There is also an old Mayan stadium where they played their games, which looked fairly bloodthristy from the carvings on the walls of the stadium. We then had an hour to look round on our own. After that we went for a buffet lunch which ws included in the price of the tour. Then headed back to Merida where we got back about 6pm. Freshened up and out for dinner. It is very cheap here. I had two Coronas and a pasta dish for dinner and that cost about four pounds…cant complain for that price!
Day 141 - Got up and had breakfast, nice pancakes with maple syrup. Then headed to the bus station where we took the five hour bus journey over to the Caribbean coast of Mexico to Tulum. We arrived into Tulum around 3pm and headed straight to Lobo Inn where we had a reservation. But they had messed it up and given our room to someone else to she gave a free night in the dormitory before moving to our room tomorrow. We then walked down to the beach where the ruis of Tulum are. Tulum ruins are situated right next to the beach on the cliffs. It was an important trading port for the Mayans around 1200AD. We walked round the ruins backed by the turquoise sea of the Caribbean. We ended by getting down to the beach from the ruins and having a nice swim in the sea. The out into the town which was a taxi ride away from out hotel, for dinner! Had a great pizza.
Day 142 - Got ourselves down to the beach after a very early lunch in town and it rained a little in the morning. Then set up for an afternoon at the beach. tulum beach is amazing, about 40m wide and it stretches for about 6kmn continuously of white soft sand. Spent the afternoon there and then had dinner in one of the beach side restaurants before heading back to the hotel.
Day 143 - Got checked out of the hotel and got to the bus station for about 11am. Paid barely anything for a one hour bus onto Playa Del Carmen, our next port of call. Arrived into Playa Del Carmen and annoyingly the hotel we wanted to stay at was fully booked today so had to make do with another similarly priced one nearby…at least it has air-con, because it is insanely hot right now!! Had a nice lunch and then spent the afternoon at the beach. The beach runs parallel to the main street called 5th Avenue, which is where all the shops, bars and hotels are. So we only have to walk about 30m to the beach. the beach is nice although it is quite built up as it is a major package holiday destination for Brits, Americans and rich Mexicans. There are some massive all inclusive resorts just outside the town. After nice day at the beach we went out for dinner and a wander round the shops
Day 144 - In the morning we moved to the nice hotel, which is called Lab Nah and has a pool and iseven nearer the beach. we then went out for a proper Mexican lunch and had Chicken tacos (like burritos) with rice and beans, very tasty. Then spent the afternoon on the beach and had a little excitement just before we were about to head back to the hotel. Storm clouds were brewing on the horizon and Catherine said, “Adam, is that a tornado forming out there?” I replied assertively, “no, of course it isn’t, you only get those in North American in the states.” We kept watching and before long Catherine said, “no, I am sure I can see a tornado reaching down and touching the sea surface.” And……she was spot on, a tornado had formed out at sea and by this point you could see the bottom of the twister spraying up loads of water on the surface. the whole beach was looking out and taking photos. Then the rain clouds closed in around it and it disappeared! The back to the hotel and out for a nice dinner and a walk about!
Day 145 - Spent the morning by the pool and had a good swim and read our books. Then out for lunch and had nice cheap tacos again. Then when the sun had gone from the pool in the afternoon, we headed down to the beach for the afternoon. In the evening we treated ourselves to a bit of a nicer meal and went out for a steak each and had a few drinks! Then after dinner we went down to the beach and had a drink at a nice bar then headed onto a place where we knew there was a big fire show. the crowds were huge, partly because of the show and partly because ladies drinks were free that night. The fire show was amazing, four people swinging round fire sticks and wheels. Very crazy but very entertaining!
Day 146 - Last full day in Playa Del Carmen. had some breakfast then down to the pool for the morning. Had a subway for lunch and then set off on a big walk down the beach to explore a bit. The first beach is in the town then the next beach has a few big all inclusive hotels on it. Then you come to a third beach after quite a walk. this is an amazing quiet stretch of white sand beach and clear water backed by greenery, rather than hotels, which is nice. Spent the afternoon there and then walked back. In the evening out for dinner and then off to bed!