How to Tulum

Just as other times before, I needed a break from work and the day-to-day routine in San Francisco. Without planning it exactly that way, my partner and I had a trip to Tulum, Mexico to attend my best friend’s wedding there, timing was just perfect.

We’ve been to Tulum several times before, and for some reason I end up going there when I’m search of some answers, rethinking next steps in life and just to get some sense of relaxation, connection with myself and direction in life. Tulum is this to me, for a reason that I can’t explain, so we packed our bags and headed south to Cancun, then drove two hours south to reach the secluded beach town of Tulum.

There’s something mystical in the air, the connection with the Mayan ruins, energy, ancestors, the universe, the Caribbean, the sand, all this in one tiny town on the Riviera Maya coast. I certainly believe that this is not a town for anyone and everyone, personally it helps me connecting with myself, reenergize and redirect my focus in life, last time I was there was two years ago and it keeps changing every time I go back there.

The town development is unstoppable, so there are more places where to stay in Tulum, you can stay anywhere between Cancun and Tulum, but the closer that you stay to Tulum the more unique your experience will be. Still no public lighting on the main road, leaving you with the moon and the stars to guide you in the middle of the night. Hotels will provide you with flash lights if needed. All hotels in town are required to not have more than two-story buildings, which keeps it feeling like and old village tucked in the middle of the jungle, right next to the protected biosphere.

Generator-produced electricity, water is hauled in every day as well as all other supplies that hotels may need, think food, ice and more. Your iPhone will take a little longer to charge due to the generators installed at every hotel. Your water won’t be fresh or potable, salt water will run in your bathroom. So forget about some luxuries from the city, if you’re ok with it then this is your town.

From the moment you wake up the sun is shinning on the blue Caribbean waters, early mornings are just perfect for anything there, yoga, walks on the beach, massage, breakfast. For us it was early breakfast so we could hit the beach sooner.

The first couple of days were dedicated to celebrate my friends at their wedding, and Mexican weddings top any other weddings off. Late parties, after parties, drinks, food, dance, repeat and keep going for over 24 hours. The wedding was out of this world and the dancing was like I hadn’t done in years; I know I sound old.

After the wedding came the calm, the much needed rest that I had been waiting for. For some reason I was really stressed out at work so my mind and body were ready to disconnect and just rest.

For that rest we stayed at Rosa de Viento, with an ocean front room on the second floor, room number two. It was just bliss, early mornings, long days on the beach, jumping in the warm Caribbean water, some margaritas, some fresh-catch-fish tacos, repeat. That was when my mind started disconnecting and getting more clarity on what changes I needed to make in life to have a more balanced life. The full clarity came until the day before returning to San Francisco. It only took 6 days of rest to get this done, no much yoga but yes a little meditation, and more than mediation just introspective thinking.

We usually dedicate one day to explore around the area and as we had already been to the Chichen-Itza and Tulum archeological ruins, this time we decided to explore Coba, just an hour West of Tulum. With our rental car we got there a little faster, early in the morning to avoid crowds and the heat of the day. I didn’t know that Coba had the tallest pyramid in the Mayan world (in Mexico) and it was discovered in 1974, never discovered by the Spaniards, but in 1974 buried underneath the overgrown jungle that took over all those pyramids.

We had a tour guide that explain some of the key facts if the civilization, explaining how Coba, Chichen-Itza and Tulum were the most important cities of the Mayan civilization, which its habitants, apparently, fled the area in the early 300 A.D. due to the overpopulation of their cities and a drought that lasted seven years, so they decided to leave all these towns and buildings that took centuries to build. I find this so interesting, leaving it all behind in hopes of better living.

Our vacation lasted eight days, eight days of fun, partying, dancing, resting, jumping in the ocean, getting a tan, relaxing, enjoying candle-lit diners, fresh sea food and so much more. All this in a tiny town called Tulum. After that, I came back home with a new perspective in life, taking it easier, trying not to stress about work and having a more balanced life. I know it’s hard but I’ll do my best until I get the chance to go back to Tulum and re-calibrate my life. For now, I’m good, thanks to Tulum and an amazing vacation.

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