16 February 2011

Mexico: part II

Before you read part II, you can have a look at part I again here, I have added a couple of pictures. :)

And now we're back to Christmas day and a flight from Mexico City to Cancún. I arrived at night and the only thing I could see was all the lights from the big hotels that defined the bay and the city. It was magical, a bit like in Harry Potter when he's flying over London by night... well magical and enchanted was the feeling. I was staying in Puerto Morelos, around 20 km south of Cancún in a hotel owned by a friend of a friend. Convenient since I was going to be alone these 4 days. Luis was very nice and he helped me a lot planning my days (I was doing it one day at a time, each day planning the day after).

The hotel and the garden: I was staying in the blue bungalow

On the first day I went to Playa del Carmen a city that is supposed to be more relaxed and more typical that Cancún. Gosh! Then I don't want to see Cancún! Playa was already very Americanised, lots of tourist shops, everybody trying to sell you stuff, talking to you in English, giving you prices in dollars, prices very expensive compared to what I had already seen the week before... But it was OK for a day, I bougt myself a hat, had lunch on the beach, had a massage, walked around, bought some jewels... a nice and relaxed day.

Lunch on the beach at Playa del Carmen

On the following day I went to Chichen Itza with a day tour. Although I didn't want to be in a bus full of Americans and Canadians, it seemed the best solution. In the bus there was a girl from Venezuela who was also there alone so I spent the day with her, she was really nice and I was happy to have some company. First we went to a Cenote, that's an opening in the ground, filled with water, you can read more about it here. People could jump and swim in this one but it was a bit chilly and windy so I didn't. After that lunch in some kind of cafeteria while watching some traditional dancers. And finally we got to the site itself. The group composed of Americans and Canadians went with our guide while the Venezuelian girl and I could join another group to have the visit in Spanish. 8 people instead of more than 40: much better! In 2007, there was a vote on the Internet to elect the new 7 wonders in the world and Chichen Itza is now the 4th. It is very impressive to see these huge Pyramids and buildings that were constructed by these Maya people who didn't know the wheel! And the mathematical and astronomical precision is all the more impressive. For instance the big pyramid has 4 sides and 91 steps on each side, 4 x 91 = 364 + the altar on top = 365, like the days in a year. Everything is like that! Very impressive and a very interesting day. I was very happy to have been there.

The Pyramid of Kukulkan (Sun) in Chichen Itza

On the following day, I had the opportunity to have an initiation in scuba diving, not snorkelling but the real thing with the bottles and everything. I have several people around me who have been diving for years: my brother, a good friend of mine, my cousin... but I was never really interested. I never really thought about it. But when I understood Yucatan was a very famous region for diving, I didn't want to miss the opportunity. And I am glad I didn't! OMG! It was really great! The weather was quite bad the day before so apparently the conditions were not optimal (poor visibility) but they seemed good enough for me. I was a lot of fished, many with vibrant colours, coral,... all sorts of things! It was like being in Finding Nemo! I was to do it again now!

Puerto Morelos

And then came my last day, way too soon since I really like that region... On that day I went to another place I really really wanted to see Tulum. That's what you saw on the sneek peak there last month. It's one of the most recent Maya cities, a more simple one since the civilization had already started its decadence (after that, the arrival of the Spanish in the 1520's only accelerated the process). Tulum means wall and that's because the city is closed by a wall on 3 sides, the see being the protection on the last side. Very different from Chichen Itza, much smaller, smaller constructions but kind of cozy and human-sized in a way. Also the premises are very well preserved with well defined waling alleys, green grass, big flower bushes. I feels like a park in a way. And then when you get close to the sea the view is just... breathtaking!!! With this white sand and turquoise water... quite unique! I loved it!


After that I went back to the hotel to collect my luggage and say good buy to Luis and went straight to the airport, time for me to change coast. Direction Pacific coast to go and celebrate the new year...


  1. c'est marrant on vient de regarder Des Racines et des ailes sur le Mexique, et ils parlaient de Chichen Itza...!!
    c'est très beau en tout cas!

  2. je ne lis pas tout car c'est en anglais mais en tout cas les photos me plaisent beaucoup !!!

  3. Soph' et Matth: merci! J'espère que le programme passera sur TV5

    Ln: tu peux traduire avec Google translation si tu veux. Comme ca tu peux le lire en francais. :)