Tulum itself is nothing special, but it’s brilliantly well located, and there is plenty to see and do around.
Tulum has great places to eat and sleep. But is quite touristic and the main streets are packed with restaurants, souvenir shops, bars and cafes. Still nothing like Cancun at all, but is still a holiday destination. Plus is easily reachable from Cancun for day trippers, which keeps the place busy and the prices up.
My first recommendation is to rent a bike, so you can visit the closest sights yourself. Renting a bicycle costs around 80MX$ ($4.50). If you’re backpacking, chances are you’re staying in a hostel in town 3 miles from the hotels near the beach. Tulum is flat, and cycling is a great way to move around.
We cycle to the Tulum Ruins (70MX$), and they truly are something special, mostly because of it’s location right next to gorgeous turquoise-blue waters. The combination of the coast line, palm trees and ruins is just amazing. So is not much for the ruins itself, that are quite modest scale and not as beautifully designed as others but it’s location.
The two entrances to the ‘city’ (ruins) are small tunnels cut into the wall. The three major structures of interest here are El Castillo, The Temple of the Frescoes, and the Temple of the Descending God.
We strolled through the ruins without a guide, but we had a guidebook to take us through the history. We went early in the morning to avoid the tours.
The two surrounded tiny beaches are amazing but just as scenery … personally a tiny crowded beach is not my cup of tea. While I don’t recommend going to the beach I do highly recommend comfortable shoes, water, hat and plenty of sun cream because there’s no shades.
To complete the day we cycled back from the ruins and visited a couple of public beaches, they were all amazing but no shadows.
photography – all rights reserved – Ana Rocha