A Taste of Mexico
8 things to do in Tulum
Tulum is amazing. A paradise hidden on the south of Riviera Maya, "flavored" with cozy cafes and restaurants, picturesque street art and gorgeous white sand beaches. It has only one huge problem.
There are so many things to do and to see around. Don't worry – we will experience the city together starting from the best beaches to crazy adventures and delicious gastronomical traditions. But first the information how to get to Tulum from Cancun. Tulum is located about 118 kilometers (73 miles) from Cancun. The cities are connected by Highway 307, and it's a straight drive from Cancun to Tulum. The journey by road takes 1.5 to slightly over 2 hours, depending on traffic.

How to get from Cancun Airport to Tulum:

by shuttle. It is recommended to book a shuttle in advance. The price for a shuttle varies from 32 USD till 100 USD per person. If you didn't book it online, you can get it at the airport but the price is higher
by ADO bus . ADO provides direct trips from Cancun airport to Tulum every day from all 4 terminals at 12:20 pm, 15:05 pm, 20:00 pm, 21:20 pm. The bus ride costs 288 MXP (~14 USD). The road takes 1 hours and 55 minutes. The departure times are subject to change.
How to get from Cancun downtown to Tulum:


1. Visit Tulum ruins

The literary meaning of Tulum from Mayan language – fence, wall. The archaeological site was surrounded by the huge wall that defended the city against invasions. Tulum appeared to have been an important site for the worship of the Diving god serving as a major port for Cobá. And it's still an important place but now for tourism.

The Tulum ruins are open every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Entrance fee: 80 MXP ( 4 USD). On Sundays for Mexican citizens and residents it's free.
Hiring a guide per group: 600 MXP ( 30 USD).
2. Swim in a cenote

The whole area is covered with thousands of cenotes, miles of jungles and never ending white sand beaches. Water is always warm here. Swimming is like taking a bath. Steady 30 degrees. It is never cold outside. I know it might sound like any of the other beach getaways. But there are a few things that make Tulum very special: the history, nature, increadible relaxing atmosphere, stylish world class shops and restaurants and unique places like cenotes.

Cenotes are water-filled sinkholes that naturally occur in limestone rock when an underground cave collapses and exposes the groundwater underneath. There are over 7,000 cenotes in the Yucatan Peninsula. The cenote meaning to the Mayan people was so sacred that they believed that cenotes were the crossroads to the underworld (Xibalbá).

Gran cenote is the nearest and most popular cenote. It is located 5 km (3 miles) from Tulum town center on the Highway to Coba (Carretera 309). Cenote has 140 square meter for swimming, there is one big cave, a cavern, wooden platforms where you can walk, chill with nature and take pictures.

How to get to Gran Cenote:

  • by taxi. It's around a 10 min ride from the city center. The cost - 60 -100 MXP (3- 5 USD)
  • by bike. There are a lot of bike rentals. The average cost for 24 hours bike renting - 160-240 MXP (8 - 12 USD)
Opening hours: 8 am - 5 pm
Entry fee: 180 MXN (9 USD)
3. Go around the city center

To know more the city we will stroll down the streets of downtown. Here you can discover lots of interesting hidden places. Visit one of the locals cafes, order freshly squeezed juices, tropical shakes or juice cocktails and enjoy it.

Family-run café Ki'bok that serves the best coffee from Veracruz and Chiapas, fruit-based gelato (paletas) with slices of fruit frozen inside in Flor de Michoacan, best tacos al pastor in Antojitos la Chiapaneca...

These cozy cafes are the must have experience while you are in Tulum. Don't see that they are small and operated only by a few people – the service, atmosphere and the quality of food here is the best.
4. Try the local cuisine

For a truly authentic experience – go for local favourites: agua de sabor, panuchos, salbutes, classical cochinita pibil.

Agua de sabor is a typical refreshing drink made from the extracts of fruits, flowers, or seeds mixed with water and sugar. Traditionally served in big plastic cans it's a must-try.

Panuchos is a refried tortilla filled with refried black beans, topped with chopped cabbage, pickled red onion, pulled chicken or turkey (traditionally), tomatoes, avocado, and sometimes pickled jalapeño peppers. Salbutes is a puffed deep fried tortilla topped with pulled chicken or turkey (traditionally), tomatoes, cabbage, pickled red onion, avocado, and sometimes pickled jalapeño peppers.

Cochinita pibil — a fragrant regional Yucatán pork dish that's slow-cooked with orange, achiote, and other spices like cumin, cinnamon, and allspice.


5. Learn the culture

After a small break we will keep walking around Tulum. Despite that it's a famous touristic place the people live their life.

Hospitality is another landmark of the city. Making friends with locals, practicing Spanish, getting a lot of smiles - travel definitely does broaden the mind and widens our horizons.
6. Discover street art

Going more in the city we will discover street art. Street art in Mexico has a power to spark discussion about a particular issue on the streets. Through the works of Spaik, Zed, Senkoe, Emma Rubens, Tellaeche and with the help of the local projects like Residencia Gorila and Atelier Ink2lu'um Gallery turned into an artistic destination. Art lovers won't want to miss this up-and-coming neighborhood.

Besides the art you will see much more interesting things on the way like narrow alleys, historic homes and the stamps on each brick that tell where they're from. Indeed, sometimes the best way to embrace a city is to take it slow.
7. Have a rest at the gorgeous beach in the Hotel Zone

And now are you ready? We will go to the beach! One more must try in Tulum are the gorgeous beaches with beautiful bungalows. Just imagine: turquoise water, countless coconut palms, green forest jungle, and natural labyrinth of canals, vegan places and different luxury treatments. Spoil yourself with a divine massage, or one of many other SPA treatments. It's a truly an ultimately relaxing experience.

And then run away from touristic beaches to natural parks and cenotes – underwater caves with fresh water. You will see amazing views of the forest, unusual animals. And it's awesome.

8. Try snorkeling, diving or free diving

Jump on refreshing water, try snorkeling or diving. It's insanely crazy. And is one of the most interesting things to do near Tulum. And definitely an unforgettable one.

Snorkeling in Akumal Bay.

  • Akumal Bay, located between Playa del Carmen and Tulum, is a popular spot to snorkel with green turtles—an endangered species of sea turtle—that come here to feed on the ample sea grass beds.
You can join a group tour, or if you want a more private experience, just rent some gear and go out on your own. The best spot is to the left when facing the beach.

The government has set limits to minimize the impact to the turtles, including restricting the hours of snorkeling tours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and requesting that swimmers maintain a distance of a few meters from the turtles at all times.

Snorkeling/ diving in Dos Ojos

  • Dos Ojos is one of the best cenotes for snorkeling. Dos Ojos (from Spanish "Two Eyes") is made up of two sinkholes that are connected by a long, narrow cavern that you can swim through when the water level is high enough. You can also swim to the "Bat Cave," which is much darker and inhabited by a multitude of bats. The water is crystal clear, and though you'll see few fish, you'll have lots of opportunities to see stalactites and stalagmites as well as wildlife including birds, bats, iguanas, and more.

Tulum has so many things to offer for any kind of traveler or a local. All you need is to choose what you want – white sand beaches and romantic dinners right on the beach in the light of wooden torches, luxury spa treatments and stylish restaurants and boutiques, parties and the laid back atmosphere of the charming and artistic downtown or countless nature or historical sites… And then go for it

Where to eat in Tulum:

Breakfast & Lunch:


  • Tunich - a favorite breakfast spot next to the beach with a lot fo vegan and vegetarian options. Carretera Tulum Boca Paila KM 5.5.07:00 AM - 7:00 PM

  • PaQuino Coffee Shop - great sandwiches and amazing service in Tulum downtown cafe. Avenida Tulum in front of Piola. 08:00 AM - 4:00 PM

  • DelCielo - freshly baked bread, croissants, juices with a huge variety of vegetarian friendly and vegan dishes. Avenida Satelite in front of Scotia Bank. 08:00 AM - 2:30 PM

Dinner:

  • Tora Tulum - a contemporary concept of fine Japanese cuisine, one of the best restaurants in the region. Carr. Tulum-Boca Paila KM 7.5 Tulum Beach, Zona Hotelera. 5:00 PM - 01:00 AM

  • La Corriente - a great seafood restaurant with amazing service. Costera Tulum - Boca Paila Km 8. 1:00 PM - 11:00 PM

  • Hartwood - one of the most popular and famous seafood restaurants in Tulum. Make a reservation in advance. Carretera Tulum Boca Paila 7.6Km. Wednesday to Sunday. 5:30 PM -10 PM


Best tacos in Tulum:

  • Taqueria Honorio - one of the best-loved taco places in downtown Tulum. Mza 10 Av. Satelite Sur / Andomeda Y Sol Ote Lt 13. 06:00 AM - 3:00 PM

  • Antojitos La Chiapaneca - great tender and flavorful classical tacos al pastor. Avenida Tulum S/N. Col. Centro Manzana 6.


Enjoy your staying,
Anastasiya



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