A side trip to the city of Tulum
Excerpt from Family trip to Riviera Maya puts to rest skepticism about all-inclusive resorts published @ Cleveland.Com
A side trip to city of Tulum
Despite how lovely the water was, after a day and half of fun and sun, we wanted to stretch our legs a bit.
At a kiosk in the lobby, we easily organized a trip to the ruins of the pre-Columbian city of Tulum, about 60 miles south. (Other excursions went to the nearby Xcaret eco-theme park, where activities include swimming with dolphins, but it seemed a little too mature for our preschooler.) For about $150, we purchased round-trip transportation, entry tickets and a guided tour of Tulum. The rain was free.
We had traveled to Mexico in early May due to slightly lower cost, but I recommend going earlier in the spring. As we soon learned from locals, when it rains, it pours — and the rainy season kicks off in May.
But getting a little soggy was worth it to explore this amazing historical city.
Located on steep 40-foot cliffs along the Caribbean, Tulum is one of the best preserved Mayan ruins. For Americans schooled on Euro-centric history, it was a fascinating glimpse at pre-Columbian life in the Americas. From about 1200 until the Spaniards arrived in the 16th century, Tulum was a vibrant trading post. Ruins of temples, altars, houses and the massive surrounding wall remain.
It was a truly breathtaking experience as our English-speaking guide led us through the site, with the lush green grass amplified by the rain, the imposing ruins stark against the thunderous sky and fierce winds whipping by the jagged cliffs.
And to think, Tulum is smaller and less spectacular than the more famous Chichen Itza ruins, about 120 miles inland. We didn’t make it there on this trip — the ride was three hours each way — but will next time.