Cancun, Mexico—Complete!

Hello beautiful Cancun

Well friends, we’re back! And Mexico was, I must admit, pretty much everything I thought it would be and more. The beaches were the most unbelievable blue. The people were so ridiculously friendly. Our all-inclusive hotel was, well, the epitome of all-inclusive (to include a mini bar and liquor cabinet that was refilled every two days).

Click below to read more about my amazing birthday trip to Cancun, and my recommendations for you should your travels ever bring you there…

Let’s start the trip at the beginning, which is to say our 3 a.m. alarm clock waking us up Wednesday morning so that we could catch our 6:20 a.m. flight out of Newark. There’s not much to say about this fact except that one, it is really, really early, and two, if you think Penn Station is scary during the day, trust me, it’s 1,000 times scarier at 4:30 a.m.

But putting all of that aside, we did finally catch our flight, and after a short connection in Washington, D.C., we were in beautiful Cancun, Mexico by 9:30 a.m. And here’s the deal with the Rio Cancun, people. When they say all-inclusive, what they really mean is that they will greet you at the door with a delicious, fruity drink. And then they will stock your mini fridge with beer and mixers. And then they will provide you with four bottles of liquor, which will be replenished, along with the beer in the fridge, every other day. They also mean that they will have a buffet breakfast, lunch, and dinner with the most splendid guacamole you’ve ever eaten, and three restaurants where you can make reservations (two days in advance, don’t forget!) for dinner. There will be a bar in one of the pools, and waiters who follow you down to the beach and take your drink order. It really is, my friends, absolutely all-inclusive.

As for the rooms…well they speak for themselves.

The ocean view from our balcony
Our liquor bar, with a note informing us that it would be restocked every two days. Thank you RIU

Located at the end of the hotel zone, ours was one of the farther hotels from the airport, and therefore, by my estimation, a hotel that not as many students might choose for their spring break destination. Don’t get me wrong, that’s not to say that our hotel wasn’t busy (it was!), but it was a lot less busy than I had prepared myself for. Of course, on Saturday a whole slew of new dewy-eyed spring breakers made their way to our hotel, but they really couldn’t seem to have cared less about the things we were interested in—the beach, the awesome food, away-from-the hotel activities. They all stayed, for the most part, exactly here:

Me. Pool-barring it up

And while the pool was awesome and fun, we mostly stayed here:

That is except for Friday, when we woke up a bit early and decided to take a Hummer Jungle Tour instead. It’s pretty much exactly as you would imagine it, except that for us, we were lucky enough to have our tour guide, Ezekial, all to ourselves for the whole day. No other people had booked for that day. That meant unlimited access to driving the Hummer (yes, DRIVING the Hummer through the Mexican jungle, people…this is a must do tour if you’re ever in the area) and to Ezekial, who was nice enough to answer all of our never-ending questions, as well as to wait 45 minutes for me while I decided whether or not I would jump off of a 30-foot cliff into a freshwater cenote (more on that to come later).

The first place we stopped for the day was an ancient Mayan Ruins site:

After the ruins, we all gathered back in the Hummer and headed off-road into the jungle for a little adventure.

A little off-roading

Once we were in the jungle, our first stop was the 30-foot cenote.

the view from the top

I’d love to be able to say that I was a big girl, knew that eventually I would jump in, and just took the dive immediately.

But I didn’t. That’s just not me.

Instead, I stalled for about a half hour. I made Chris come back up twice and promised to jump in with him again, then proceeded to not jump in with him.

In due time, though, my friends, in due time, I did jump in. And yes, I was more than a little proud of myself.

After the 30-foot cenote we headed to an 17-foot underground one, which also happened to have one of my favorite things in the trip—a zip-line.

Chris’s second jump
Zip lining

After the water zip-line, we head up into the trees and did a little jungle-top zip lining as well.

Not sure I want to do this….

Turns out—it’s totally amazing!
And Chris’s turn

After our jungle adventures, Ezekial pointed us in the direction of this tiny little fishing village about 40 minutes from our hotel, and to a “restaurant” (AKA a family’s ocean view house that they converted into an outdoor restaurant). There we had the freshest ceviche I’ve ever had, and certainly the tastiest.

The view from our restaurant
Tasty ceviche

Our last stop of the day was to the Zoo Crococun. Here we got kisses from parrots, held alligators, and fed monkeys and deer.

After the zoo we headed back to the hotel, after taking down Ezekial’s number and promising to keep in touch. We also promised to pass along the good word about the tour—so I’m doing that now. Seriously. It’s really, really good. That night we even headed out into the town for a bit, checking out the local area around our hotel. Ezekial had recommended a little hole-in-the-wall taco spot where he said you could get the most amazing, authentic tacos you’d ever eat. So we stopped there, and he wasn’t kidding.

Saturday was my birthday, and I decided to cash in on Chris’s Valentines Day gift to me—a massage at the resort— on that day. We spent the majority of the rest of the day on the beach, playing cards, eating guacamole, and drinking our free drinks. The hotel staff sang Happy Birthday to me during breakfast and gave me a piece of cake with a candle in it. Then later in the day they sent up a little gift from the gift shop, along with complimentary fruit and champagne.

Sunday we had to leave early (very early. Actually, even an hour earlier than we originally thought, since it was Daylight Savings Time. Luckily I had seen a sign in the airport on the way in on Wednesday. And even more luckily Chris woke up in enough time to realize we had forgotten about the sign).

After our whirlwind trip to Cancun, I can say for certain quite a few things about the area:

  • There really is nowhere I have seen with more beautiful water than in Mexico
  • The tortilla shells in Mexico are made with corn, not flour. They taste very different.
  • The water really is bad in Mexico. Seriously, it smells. We brushed our teeth with bottled water. Luckily that was included in the all-inclusive.
  • Spring break in Cancun is exactly as you would imagine it. We saw our fair share of drunken, disorderly college students, and I’m happy to say I never partook during my college years (okay, that’s silly. I headed to Panama City Beach, Florida my junior year with my sister, her boyfriend, and some of their friends. It was equally as spring-breaky).
  • Everything feels and tastes better when you’re on vacation—including massages and guacamole.
  • All-inclusive drinks are dangerous. You really should pace yourself.

So that’s it friends, my trip in a nutshell. There are plenty of things I’m sure I’ve forgotten or left out, but this is, I think, a pretty good general recap.

Bis bald, friends! And here’s counting the days until my next Mexico trip— Cabo San Lucas in May.

Sad to leave, but we had an awesome time, Cancun

6 thoughts on “Cancun, Mexico—Complete!

  1. Hay Cheryl nice pictures. Surely Mexico is a exciting place. Specially the cenotes are really cool.

    thanks. Waiting for the some more photos

  2. This looks amazing and I’m so happy you had the time of your life, especially on your Birthday. I’m so proud of my offspring!

    Love ya,

  3. I’ll try again in case my first post didn’t take…I’m so proud of my offspring and all you did and accomplished on this trip – also happy you had such a great and memorable birthday! Look forward to the next trip blog!!
    XXXOOO Mom

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