We decided to start our year of travel in one of our favorite places and potential future homes, Tulum. This is our third trip to this Caribbean paradise and we love it more and more each time. Read about our previous trips here.
Getting There – Cancun to Tulum
We took a 2 hour bus ride from the Cancun airport on the ADO bus. It was nicer than we expected with TVs and air-conditioning!
Where We Are Staying in Tulum
We have two and half weeks here so we decided to split up our time between the Pueblo and the Beach. It was our first time staying at the beach and although being steps from the sand is amazing, we actually miss our spot in town. Our AirBnbs were pretty budget but nice and both are in great locations. You can check them out here and here.
Meztli Spanish Language School in Tulum
Since we will be traveling to Central and South America over the next few months we really want to become fluent in Spanish. I minored in college and studied abroad in Spain and of course Grant and I used to get a lot of practice on our frequent visits to Tijuana and Valle de Guadalupe, but we still have a lot to learn. Based on a recommendation from a blogger friend who lives in the area, Tulum Traveler, we decided to take Spanish classes at Meztli Spanish School. We weren’t really sure what to expect but we absolutely loved it! We learned a ton and really enjoyed having some routine in our days.
During our first week here we started our days with a mile bike ride to school, which does not look like a traditional school by the way. Think outside palapas in the jungle. Metzli is so beautiful and the staff is super kind. The free coffee and bug spray are added perks too! At 8am is yoga, in Spanish of course, followed by 2 hours of grammar and 1 hour of conversation. In the evenings they have fun activities to attend. We went to cooking class and salsa class. They were so much fun! Our fellow students were wonderful and we hope to keep in touch with them and possibly meet up with them again on future travels.
Volunteer Work in Tulum
Meztli had an opportunity for students to do a little volunteer work after class. We visited a local school in Macario Gómez where the children speak Spanish and Mayan. We helped teach them English and the importance of reusing and recycling.
Working and Relaxing in Tulum
After class we would go to a cafe to work for a few hours (Check out our list of the best places to work in Tulum) and then head to the beach to relax. We are quickly becoming locals at La Eufemia where you can eat dollar tacos on the sand!
During our second week, while staying at the beach, transportation has been a little more difficult. We don’t have our bikes (they were included in the first Airbnb) and cabs are way overpriced since the beach is the tourist zone. Instead we’ve been taking the collectivo back and forth to town. It is a shared van that only makes certain stops. The best part is that it is only 15 pesos (around 80 cents) each! However it is intended for locals so oftentimes they drive right by us. Read more about our collectivo adventures and other transportation options in Tulum in this post.
Our weekends in Tulum consist of trying new restaurants, listening to fabulous live music, attending full moon parties, and exploring cenotes! Read about our favorite Tulum restaurants and nightlife here.
The cenotes are freshwater underground caves formed by limestone and there are thousands of them in the Yucatan Peninsula. It is my personal goal to see them all! This trip we snorkeled three different cenotes and went scuba diving in one. Read more about our cenote exploring here.
The food in Tulum is delicious with amazing international options. We ate Japanese three times! But our go-to meal is always ceviche. We usually order the mixed option which includes octopus, fish, and shrimp. The seafood is delicious and so fresh! One day we visited nearby Soliman Bay to snorkel the reef and have lunch at Chamico’s. Their ceviche was the best and even included little fried lobster pieces! Read more about Soliman Bay and other Tulum day trips in this post.
Tulum also has fabulous shopping. Since we are backpacking we don’t really have room for much but I love looking at all the beautiful jungle boutiques. Check out the best shops in Tulum here.
We are sad to leave this special place but are looking forward to more adventures. Next stop Isla Holbox!
Happy in the sand,