Friday, June 21, 2013

Tulum, Playa del Carmen and back to Isla Mujeres (08.06.2013 - 18.06.2013)

Arriving in Tulum we looked around for a place and found by chance a lovely little hotel, called Hotelito. The next day we rented some bicycles and rode to the Mayan ruins at Tulum. The ruins were nice, especially the towers next to the turquoise water. But there were way to many tourists for our taste...
Afterwards we rode back south and went swimming at one of the beach clubs, +1 beach ;).
Later we went to look around for a place to stay at the beach, but it seemed the times of cheap cabinas right at the beach is longe since past. Did I mention my 7 year old Lonely Planet? So we stayed at the town during our whole trip.
The next day we went to dive in the cenote (a sinkhole, link) Dos Ojos. A total new experience for all three of us, non of us has been diving in fresh water or in a cave before. The view was extraordinary! There isn't much to see besides stalagmites and stalactites, but they made uf for all the missing fish.
After so much excitement we decided to spend a day at the beach. We headed to the Playa Papaya Project to lay around at the empty beach, eat mango ceviche (yeah!) and drink cold beers ^^
The day after we went to dive in the cenote Anglita, a deep dive (part of Melanies Advanced Open Water) with a hydrogen sulfur cloud at 28m. Beneath it is pitch black! Coming up through it again is an spectacular sight. The second dive we did in Casa Cenote, another kind of cenote as the two before. Most of it is overgrown by mangroves and algae. Awesome sights as well!

Heading back north we stopped for two nights on Playa del Carmen. We spent the day at the (crowded) beach and the evening at the (crowded) 10th avenue. Nothing to recommend.

We ended up again on Isla Mujeres, this time we wanted to stay closer to the party and headed to the Poc-Na hostel. But after hearing their prices and seeing the rooms we changed our mind and found another little hotelroom. Getting up early we took the 1.5h boat ride to find the whale sharks in the middle of the ocean. There where dozens of boats but even more whale sharks! The captain would drop of a pair of us together with the guide and pick us up later so the next two could go into the water. It was a crazy experience to swim next to these huge (up to 7m) fish. They looked lazy but with just a stroke of there massive tails the would leave you in their wake. Next to the sharks where also some big manta rays doing somersaults in the water, awesome view as well. On our way back we were caught by a massive storm! The rain felt like hail on the bare skin, the waves were crashing against our small boat and the temperature dropped. Some times we could only see for a couple of meters because of the heavy rain. That way it took us almost 3 hours to reach the Isla Mujeres, were the weather was good again and we enjoyed some ceviche and cold beers standing in the surf.

The next day was the last for Patrick, as he headed home to Switzerland. Right in time for his birthday party ;)
Melanie and I decided to check out Cozumel and maybe do the Rescue Diver there...