Visitng Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, Got Any Advice?

my friend tingting and i are visiting mexico end of next month. we are staying in cancun but will be traveling to chichen itza, valladolid, tulum, playa del carmen in yucatan peninsula as well. i did a decent amount of research and came up with this temporary itinerary. although im pretty set with the places to visit, i need suggestions on FOOD please! i prefer local food, restaurants, markets, etc. any advice is appreciated.

also, if you are traveling to mexico around the same time and need road trip partners. hit me up as well!

i seriously cant wait for this trip, being in the sun, chillen on beach, eating mexican food, sipping Tequila, snapping photos with the wide angle lens pork belly got me for xmas, checking out Chichen Itza’s El Castillo, one of the New Seven Wonders! i havent had a REAL vaca forever ever since i started working. it’s not a real vaca for me without the beach. i used all my vaca tim traveling to china visiting the fam and friends. now its about the damn time!

muchas gracias!!!!!!!!!!!!

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21 thoughts on “Visitng Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, Got Any Advice?

  1. Hi!! Well i must say i’m envious, the yucatan is BEAUTIFUL. I travelled there during my first trip to Mexico and loved it. I highly recommend Tulum and the ruins there, we stayed at the Happy Gecko Hostel – its not fancy but its cheap and there is a bg cooking area and big common area – good fun and good to meet other travellers. Valladolid is AMAZING – the cenotes are just gorgeous. The main one in the town centre is beautiful. Ask for El Negro, there you can hire bicyles and rent rooms cheaply. Cycling to the cenotes is fun! šŸ™‚ In Islas Mujeres if you want to go diving i have good friends who live and work there as dive instructors (one British and one American) – if you would like their contact info contact me. Another friend is the manager of a really cool bar there called Phoenix Bar, ask for Julia, she will be able to tell you about cool and interesting places/activities, places to eat etc. I personally would avoid cancun, playa del carmen and all the tourist traps. Its a rip off and super touristy, you may as well go to Florida or california – full of american tourists, prices are in dollars and most places you can pay with dollars, but at a higher price and it is not really an authentic Mexican experience..but it all depends on what you enjoy. I cannot really remember any restaurants we went to to be honest.. but to eat in the markets and the street is always cheaper and you have more chance of getting real Mexican food.
    You have to try Sopa de Lima – delicious chicken soup withlime and crispy tortilla strips in it, and Panuchos – crunchy tortillas with all kinds of toppings and Cochinita Pibil, a pork dish usually served for breakfast. I hope you aren’t vegetarian – eating can be tough for veggies in Mexico.. not much vegetarian food here.. even the tortillas and bean almost always have manteca (lard) in them!
    Have a great time! šŸ™‚

    1. oh wow this is a lot info to absorb. thanks so much!!!! we are def planning to do snorkeling in isla mujeres. we are staying in cancun since we still wanna party up at night and cancun is the place to party. the chicken soup def sound delish i ll have to try that. thanks so much again for your comment! really helpful!!!!

  2. I have been there four times and enjoyed every minute of it. Be aware that the sales people are very pushy on the strip right after the entrance gate to Chichen Itza as well as they will have school age children who should be in scholl selling you scarves napkins and shirts while you are touring. Be warned the Kids are cute and will tug at your heart strings, trade them for toys or school supplies as if they always get money they wont want to goto school. The tour guides will tell you to do the same.

    I haven’t been to Xelha baut I will be there next week and making sure I get there. I did do Excaret and that was Pretty awesome can make a day out of it and the Mexican Show is amazing. The swim through the underground cae was the best.

    Tulum is very awesome, the beach is wonderful there. I would recommend going to Coba before they close it to climbers the view from above is so amazing and I’d feel bad for anyone who never gets to see that.

    I know your list doesn’t say anything about going to Cozumel but if you’d like to go over ther I would recommend booking a trip down with Atlantis Submarines. You go down 120 meters and see all the sea life that deep. With this you have enough time after the trip to go and explore downtown Cozumel for a few hours. The worlds smallest Hard Rock Cafe is just across the road from the ferry terminal. Its a good double header as Cozumel can be a bit much on its own

    Have an awesome trip, I’ll be at the Bahia Principe Tulum Next week as well

    1. really appreciate your comment! according to my research, excaret has a lot activities to do where xelha is more laid back and natural. now, im tempted to go to excaret after you mentioned it. good call on Coba. i thought about cozumel and it’s an awesome place for diving, but i heard it’s a pretty far from cancun, so we settled for Islas Mujeres for snorkeling since our schedule is kinda tight, but what you described sounds amazing, i ll do more research see if we can fit a trip to cozumel in. thanks so much again! i saw you have a lot of posts on mexico i ll def check them out! have fun in tulum next week! cant wait to see your posts on it!

      1. There is a lot to do at both ill likely goto xelha and ill have a review on it when I get back. If i have wifi down there ill post before. I did an Atv/speedboat trip at Maroma that was fun to. If you do the Coba all day you get lunch and a nice cenote as well

  3. You hve to check out the beach road in Tulum. Its been described as the new St barths, but only without all the glitz. I didn’t get a chance to eat, but know there are some NYC expat chefs there. Make sure to check out my friend’s shop – Josa Tulum Shes a beachwear designer who has gotten a lot of press lately

  4. Looks like you’ve gotten a lot of practical advice already. Slow down…lose any time pieces…don’t care…come up with a happy hour trail to follow down the beach…always greet anyone working for you like waiters, bartenders, etc. and give ’em a saludos a tu familia when you part company. Most Latin Americans value those small niceties and family consideration more than Americans. Have a vacation that’ll you remember forever as one of the best times of your lives. Time to go to my beach.
    On my Way…

  5. Looks like you’ve got a pretty good list there. If you’re feeling brave, renting a car to see all of that is really the way to go! I went in 2009 and hit all of those spots, and the absolute best way around was by car. Valladolid is BEAUTIFUL! and if you’re thinking about going that ‘far’ west, give Merida try. Those cenotes are gonna leave you breathless.

  6. so jealous!!! I went to tulum a couple years ago and wrote some notes here: http://foxflat.wordpress.com/2011/02/22/five-days-in-tulum-mexico-take-me-back/ The cenote was my favorite.

    The place we ate at multiple times in Tulum was Tacoqueto (http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g150813-d1008051-Reviews-El_Tacoqueto-Tulum_Yucatan_Peninsula.html). No menu, just “dishes of the day” and you can point to the one you want. The owners were really nice.
    Eat a bunch of fresh fruit. It’s so cheap.

  7. Your itinerary looks great! And I absolutely agree that a vacation is not a true vacation without the beach! It looks like you covered all the best things to do in the Yucatan Peninsula. Did you make it to the cenotes when you were here? There is this great new tour that a coworker went on where you can kayak, swim, zipline and rappel in the cenotes! If you didn’t make it, you have a great excuse to come back! http://bit.ly/12IZtEy

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