- Natasha Lare
The vacation we waited forever for finally came and went faster than lightning. You guys know what I mean! Back in May we were supposed to go to Cabo, but a hurricane RUINED our trip... luckily we cancelled a few days before our departure.
I had been waiting MONTHS for the trip to Cabo, so adding on three more months to reschedule our trip felt like torture. Just for a little background, I love to travel. I didn't grow up going on family vacations or regular trips. We just didn't have the money for it. I was born and raised in San Diego, Ca, an expensive town and my family didn't have much money. My mom owned her own daycare, until my brother got ill. All of middle school and high school she was his full time care giver. School supplies, let alone trips, were scarce to come by. On the flip-side, the lack of vacations growing up has made them all the sweeter as an adult!
The flight in from San Francisco landed in the Cancun airport. And like always I worried about how long the drive would be from the airport to the hotel. We took a red eye so I was tired, hangry, basically all fo the things. Not so bad about an an hour twenty minutes and we had the best experience using USA Transfers. I was able to pay in US dollars upon pick up for our roundtrip transfer. The men were friendly, easy to locate outside of baggage claim and we were in our private van within 5 minutes! SOOO important because it was hot as balls, with what must have been 90% humidity!
I spent the van ride catching up with my messages on social media! I still can't believe that I have a business I can do from ANYWHERE!
We stayed at Papaya Playa Project and were impressed immediately as the van pulled into what seemed to be a little jungle! We walked into a wide open breezy concierge desk and fell in love with the open layout and nature centered focus on the premises. I've never ever stayed somewhere so beachy!
From the concierge desk we walked through an open dining room, for those who wanted to eat "inside". If thats what you want to call it. It was covered, with old wooden tables, topped with flowers, plants and candles. So cute and I'm bummed I didn't take more pictures of the actual communal areas.
My room was its own private casita with a rooftop pool. The interior had stone or clay walls, completely white. The bed was soft, comfortable and faced the porch where two perfectly cute wooden chairs sat. The shower was SHOCKING. Completely open to the rest of the room, but we knew that before we got there! I was geeking oout on pictures of this place for MONTHS before we arrived!
Ok lets get to the main attraction.... the rooftop pool! We were hesitant to book this room only because we weren't sure how much use we would get out of the pool compared to getting a casita with an ocean view instead. Well, let's just say the pool got used a lot! early morning swims and tanning, watching the sunset, gazing over the ocean, it was magnificent and REALLY came into handy on our last day when the power was out for hours
Chichén Itzá and Cenotes
This was by far my favorite part of the trip. Most of our trip was spent beach side or pool side, relaxing and lounging. In the middle, we went on an all day adventure. From sun up to sun down. It sounds like a long day but I would recommend you do the same. This region gets blazing hot and humid in the middle of August.
What is a Cenote?
According to Wikipedia
"A cenote is a natural pit, or sinkhole, resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock that exposes groundwater underneath. Especially associated with the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico, cenotes were sometimes used by the ancient Maya for sacrificial offerings."
Why do we care?
WE CAN SWIM IN THEM! The water found in the Cenote pictured below was fresh water and located about 4 or 5 stories below the opening where I took this picture. I wish I had thought to get a picture of myself floating in the water from above. But you can see it was super crowded with tourists and people of all ages, even despite the midday rain that occurred.
This is definitely a must do while you're in the Yucatan Peninsula, just for the experience. Just do it. Cenotes are located everywhere, although this was one of the larger ones.
Chichen Itza was spectacular. Hands down. It was in fact, one of the largest Mayan Cities and was impressive in real life. There is a large pyramid at the center and various buildings and architecture surrounding it.
It still amazes me to think that this world wonder was built so long ago and still stands. Actually seeing this, made me decide that seeing all of the wonders of the world needs to be on my bucket list. ALL OF THEM. So far I've seen the Coliseum, and this. So many more to go.
It was hot at Chichen Itza. Hot humid, at least 90 degrees if not more in August, crowded with tourists but its huge. Despite the crowd we didn't have to wait long to get in. We didn't have to wait at all for our photo ops. There is enough room and space for you to see everything that you'd want to see and get all of your pictures too.
Ok I can't type anymore today and these are pretty much the highlights of my trip. The Hotel, laying by the beach and swimming and Chichen Itza! Reach out if you're traveling to Tulum and want more details!