Set in the Mayan jungle, Tulum is one of Mexico’s trendiest beach towns. It’s located in the Yucatan, along the Caribbean coast. Travelers come to this famed beach town to explore the Mayan ruins, swim in the cenotes and leisurely cruise around town on bikes. My recent visit to this well-known spot was short, and although I was pressed for time, I made the most of it. Here is how I spent one leisurely day in Tulum.
I was staying at Papaya Playa Project, an eco-chic retreat offering beachfront cabins, daily yoga classes, and beautiful hammocks throughout the property. With no set itinerary, I started my day with a yoga class on the beach and then breakfast overlooking the ocean before heading out to visit one of the many cenotes.
I opted to visit the Gran Cenote. Despite its name, it is actually one of the smaller cenotes in Tulum. Cenotes are part of a massive underground network of rivers and caves that remain largely unexplored. I arrived early to beat the crowds. The entrance fee is 200 pesos, cash-only. Once inside, you can rent a locker for another 100 pesos, and snorkel gear and life jackets are also available for rent. I placed my belongings in a locker, climbed down into the water, and spent the rest of my morning swimming around, exploring the caves and watching as turtles and fish swam around me.
After an invigorating time at the Gran Cenote, I returned to Papaya Playa and went straight to the beach. I settled under a beach teepee to order lunch and dined on fresh ceviche, guacamole, and passion fruit cocktails. I spent a lazy afternoon reading, listening to music and floating in the ocean. Worn out from working on my tan, I retreated to my cabin to finish my day napping in a hammock under a canopy of palm trees.
There are countless ways to spend a day in Tulum, from bike riding to exploring ancient Mayan ruins and freshwater caves. Tulum is also the ideal environment if you are looking to get away from it all, disconnect and move at a slower pace. Time moves slowly when you are tucked away in the Mayan jungle. I left feeling renewed and captivated by yet another of Quintana Roo’s serene beach towns.