We left Merida, and took the ADO Bus to the city center of Cancun, about a 4 and a half hour journey. It was pouring rain when we arrived, and my husband, now well practiced at negotiation, bargained a taxi ride to our hotel. Although we had flown into Cancun, we hadn’t really seen any of it from the airport. The taxi driver navigated through the busy streets and into the Hotel Zone, and it felt like a miniature Las Vegas, minus the casinos. There were some incredibly massive hotels lining the way, and we were both awed and uncertain at the same time. We felt confident that we had chosen well to spend most of our trip further south from this touristy city. No doubt it was beautiful, though.
We stayed at the Fiesta Americana Villas, due to an awesome deal we found online. I will first say that the hotel was extremely nice, and our room had an ocean view, so how can I complain…too much? The breakfast buffet was served NEXT to the beach. That was my favorite part of this stay! When we arrived in the room, we had a very interesting rice display on the bed – colored rice forming a picture of a bunny saying “Hola” to us. One of my children, who shall remain nameless, quickly ran his hand through it, before we could take a proper picture. Sigh.
The pool area was incredible. There were bridges crossing over sections of the pool, and the ocean was right beyond. Except the ocean wasn’t swimmable in this area. That’s okay, because it was overcast and rainy the few days we were there. My only real complaint about the hotel was the massive staff stationed in the lobby, placed there to badger you into attending timeshare presentations at every chance they could get. It was exhausting and irritating, so thinking up a great response is something one should prepare for ahead of time.
Because this was just a short stopover before leaving Mexico, and it was a workweek, I must admit that we didn’t see any more of Cancun except this little corner where our hotel was. We spent our time at the pool, dodging the rain drops, and looking at the palm trees swaying in the breeze. It was not too shabby!
Although we didn’t go this time, many people recommended a visit to Isla Mujeres, so we will add this to the bucket list for next time!
So, my final thoughts on this Mexico adventure:
- Most of my fears were unwarranted. I felt safe, safe, safe. I think I was only uncomfortable a few times, like when we got slightly lost on the side streets of an unknown neighborhood in Merida, and again when I pictured our cab driver kidnapping us and holding us for ransom, but did an actual person make me feel threatened? Nope, just my overactive imagination!
- I never in a million years imagined the joy I would feel at trying to speak the language. The longer I was there, the more I tried, as little as it was, to say a few words or phrases. It was fun!
- I cannot believe how easy it is to dismiss traveling to places just out of uncertainty or lack of knowledge. I didn’t even know what I was missing until I arrived.
- So much beauty, from turquoise oceans to Mayan pyramids to sparkling cenotes in the jungle!
- Everytime I did something that stretched me out of my comfort zone, I was rewarded with a feeling of accomplishment and empowerment.
- Retiring or even living in another country isn’t out of reach for most of us. There are many benefits to experiencing life out of our comfort zone!
- Siestas really need to be a “thing” in the U.S. Seriously, hammocks included.
- It is SO much easier to travel with family and friends that can experience new things along with you, and it creates strong bonds and fantastic memories.
Will we return? You better believe it!
If you decide to go yourself (and you SHOULD), don’t be afraid to leave Cancun, or you’ll be missing out! Please feel free to share, using the buttons below, if you know someone planning a trip to Mexico!