It is our last week adventuring Mexico. The plan is to explore the Yucatan Peninsula. Yucatan is covered with ancient ruins from the Mayans.
Cenote San Miguel
On our way to Uxmal we passed by the cenote San Miguel. We heard that they allow camping in the parking lot if you spend a day there. We found an amazing playground. A 80 m high zipline flying over the cenote, a hike around the summit of the cenote, and a swim in the water with turtles and fishes. We arrived there late so we decided to explore the place the next day. As the next morning came, so did the rain. It did not stop raining, like non stop! We still decided to explore and quickly found ourselves on a soaking wet hike through the jungle. We ran into spider monkeys, owls and a huge harpy eagle. This eagle was impressively huge… like prehistoric bird huge! By the time we got back from our hike, the rain decided to slow down and the park opened their zip lines. Wow!… It was amazing flying 80 m high over the cenote and witness it from a bird’s eye view.
We were the first ones to enter the park. The park officials allowed us to camp at the parking lot and therefore, it was very easy to wake up early, eat breakfast, drink a café and stretch. We climbed all the ancient ruins by ourselves for the first hour and chased many iguanas. We left no temple or palace unexplored and our butt’s were burning from the many stairs up each one of them. We loved it!
Next stop the very next day was Chichen Itza. Entering the town of Pisté we encountered many souvenir shops. One particular shop had handcrafted jaguar heads. We got super excited as we found the one we liked. The shop owner designed and built it himself and offered to paint it for us the way we liked it. Yeah, another epic souvenir from Mexico!
We read on iOverlander app that just outside the pyramids is an empty grass lot where many people go to camp for free. We loved the idea as Chichen Itza is one of the most popular ruins and a UNESCO world heritage. As we were settling in, a tourist police car showed up. We approached him and asked what was wrong. He informed us that he was not too sure if it is safe to camp out here. We were a little confused as many fellow overlanders posted that they never experienced any unsafe incidents. The nice police officer left to discuss this with his captain. On his return he said we need to pay 100 pesos and he will watch the area for us. He sure did! Around 10 pm we saw him patrolling the area.
The next morning we were ready to adventure Chichen Itza. It was great, but man a lot of people! Everything was blocked off and you could only look at the ruins, but not climb them. Regardless we still enjoyed our time exploring the architectural masterpiece of the many intact facades and structure of each palace and temple. No wonder why so many people enjoy this ruin!
Tulum and Dos Ojos
On our way to Canacun we decided to make a short trip to Cuba. We found cheap flights for 3 days later which gave us enough time to explore Tulum.
Tulum is small and sits on the Caribbean coast. It is very pretty, but as the likes of Chichen Itza it was very crowded. We arrived there an hour before closing. We had enough time to adventure around before they kicked us out. That night we slept in another parking lot.
The next day we headed over to cenote Dos Ojos. Wow, it was amazing! We swam through caves with stalactites, stalagmites and bats. Kenny was wishing he could have dove there, but the prices were over the roof. We opted to take a guided snorkeling tour and it proved to be spectacular. Kenny enjoyed the freediving, but the tour guide often warned him to be careful. “Do not worry, I am a Navy Diver!” came out of Kenny’s mouth.