The delays, long flights and hours sat waiting in airports were worth it for the Mexico sunshine!
At one point, after being told to get off the plane we had just sat down on in Newquay Airport, it looked like we may not make it. We considered driving through the night to catch our early morning flight from Manchester to Cancun, but THANK GOD Newquay airport decided that the plane (which had suffered a small dent to the exterior near the engine) actually was safe to fly. So we got back on.
And then we got delayed 4 hours at Manchester too…
But we made it – finally! And it definitely was worth it.
Neither of us had ever been to Mexico before, but after a trialling few months and an epic Black Friday sale, we booked our trip to Riviera Maya in a bid to catch some pretty-much-guaranteed sun and heat!
We went for a week, staying at the Sensimar Seaside Suites between Playa del Carmen and Tulum. It’s adults only (surely the only way to travel, right?) and is right at the edge of the beautiful Caribbean sea! The place is huge, with 8 restaurants, 5 pools and spa. I’ve never been anywhere like it… almost like a small town.
I was surprised when we landed at 6:30pm Cancun-time that the sun was setting already – I don’t know why but I really thought they’d be having early sunrises and late sunsets like we do in Summer, but in fact it is still their Wintertime too… it just also happens to be 20 degrees hotter!
And so we arrived at the hotel in the dark at around 8:30pm. Seeing as the place is so enormous we decided to go straight up and get room service rather than get lost trying to explore by moonlight… plus we were exhausted from a very long day.
This, along with a confused body clock, meant we were up early, and got to witness the sunrise from our balcony, shedding light on our view over the jungle treetops and the ocean beyond. It was the first time we’d seen where we were and how close the sea was!
After a walk around to get our bearings, and some delicious breakfast (I may or may not have had french toast every single morning…), we headed to the pool for some sunbathing and of course, cocktails!
During our stay we saw more wildlife than I could have imagined! Iguanas sunning themselves on rocks around every turn, beautiful fish swimming around our ankles in the shallows, hilarious pelicans dunking themselves in the water for food, and even a couple of coatis (looks like a cross between a raccoon and a ring-tailed lemur!).
Also we may have swam with wild sea turtles (ie. the best experience ever!), but more on that in another blog post…
In fact, we completed several amazing bucket list items during our trip, and I’ll be posting more about that next week, but here’s a sneak peek – a photo of our visit to the Chichen Itza Mayan ruins! It was incredible.
Of course, as with any holiday, as huge part of what made our trip great was the delicious food and drink. As I mentioned, the resort contained 8 restaurants and many, many bars, serving cocktails, wine, beer and soft drinks right to your sun bed!
Our favourite restaurant of the stay was definitely the Asian fusion restaurant, which served a mix of Japanese, Thai and Korean dishes. We went a couple of times, trying out all their varieties of sushi, of course!
Now that I’m home in freezing cold Cornwall, looking back at these beach photos feels like a dream! Averaging at 30 degrees celsius each day, it certainly was a shock to come back to a brisk 4 degrees here this week.
One of my favourite things about the whole trip was obviously the sea. It was actually warm! At the edge of the Caribbean, the ocean at Riviera Maya may just be the warmest I’ve ever been in. Even in the Mediterranean it’s still ‘refreshingly cool’, but here it was like wading out into paradise.
This bikini pictured above is one of my absolute faves! It’s by Seafolly, from Simply Beach; a website I’ve just discovered and it’s basically a haven for swimwear. I must have spent half a day browsing their site! Over the last couple of months I’d been looking for new bikinis for our trip, but in the middle of Winter, the options (even in many online stores!) were scarce, so I was so happy to find this all-year-round store! Definitely check it out if you’re off on holiday any time soon – or even just for the Summer.
As you can imagine, we spent much of the holiday sat by the beach taking in the sun and amazing views. I couldn’t quite get over the colour of the water – even living in Cornwall, it was just incredible. A crystal aqua blue, bordered with turquoise in the distance, with powder white sand at the edges.
I just couldn’t get the word ‘paradise’ out of my head.
I’ve never been on a ‘Winter sun’ holiday before, and it was definitely very strange coming home to British wintertime at the end of the trip, instead of (at least mildly warm) Summer sun.
Of course it’s a fantastic way to break up the cold months, and have something to look forward after Christmas is all over, and I’m so glad we did it!
Here’s to feeling refreshed and ready to tackle 2017 life! I’ve also put together a travel vlog on my YouTube channel, so check it out below (and don’t forget to subscribe!):
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* This post contains gifted items, but I wouldn’t feature anything here if I didn’t actually love it!