After five days of fun in the sun, I’m back in my office trying to figure out when I can get aboard another flight to Mexico, sooner than later. At thirty I decided I would take a lavish adventure every year for my birthday during the decade. I want to spend my thirties seeing the world, expanding my scope of thinking, and using my travels as inspiration. For the 32nd anniversary of moi, I took my talents to Playa Del Carmen & Tulum. It had been two years since I first laid eyes on this tropical Caribbean destination and finally I can say – I made it! Dive in to see some highlights of my trip and get the scoop on how to really do Mexico.
TO STAY: When looking for a place to stay while in Mexico determine what amenities you want up front. Initially I wanted to stay in Tulum based on photos and the popularity of the city. However, while researching hotels in Tulum I discovered wi-fi is scarce, most hotels don’t have A/C, and there isn’t much to do outside of your resort walls. Tulum gets a reputation for being chic, beautiful, and fancy – and it certainly is, but it is also small and can be seen in a day. Rather than stay in the tiny pueblo I chose to book a room at the marvelous Thompson Hotel in Playa Del Carmen. Playa is about an hour’s drive from Tulum, has tons of restaurants, shopping, and divine ocean views just footsteps from the hotel. I cannot say enough good things about this place, seriously. From arrival to departure the service was top notch and the accommodations were seriously beyond. I will admit when we got to the hotel initially I was confused because at nearly midnight it was lively, loud, and there was a lot of foot traffic that I did not expect. I felt like I had landed in the midst of spring break and I wasn’t pleased. But once we were whisked away to our room it truly felt like a luxury retreat. Way more than I expected. During our five day stay we had brunch three of the days and each time the meals were appetizing, delightful, and delicious. As a food connoisseur I value excellent meals and the Thompson surpassed all expectations. Be sure to take in the views and breakfast at Cinco when you visit.
TO DO: Obviously the first thing you should do is grab a drink and hit the beach. I have a rule about going swimming in the ocean and it’s this – I don’t do it unless it’s the Caribbean Sea. Lol. Perhaps it’s because I’ve always lived a short twenty minute drive to the beach so it never seemed special or maybe it’s because the Pacific isn’t always inviting, whatever the reason this is the rule. Mexico was not short of great beaches to perch on and spend the day. Yet I spent most of this trip walking around and taking in the sights. But I did find time one afternoon to enjoy a cabana with a bottle of Rosé and the Husband. It was a delight. Shoutout to the Thompson Beach House for a great day.
Next, you should definitely take taxi to Tulum and spend some time at the Mayan Ruins. Not only for the educational experience but also to enjoy the picturesque views while you partake in this historical wonder. The cost from Playa to Tulum is about 900 pesos each way, which isn’t costly at all. While in Tulum you can enjoy a swim in the Cenotes and be sure to grab some cochinita or pibil tacos from one of the local stands. Amazing. I didn’t get chance to explore Tulum in full but on my next trip I’ll be sure to hit up one of the lovely beachfront hotels and get dinner at Hartwood.
TO EAT: What is a day without guacamole? Not a great one if you ask me. As a California native guacamole is like ketchup to me, always on hand and goes with everything. I couldn’t possibly travel to Mexico and not indulge myself daily in this treat right? And indulge I did. Along with my daily avocados requirement I got a chance to check out one of the restaurants on my hit list, CATCH. Usually always booked here in Los Angeles it can be hard to grab a table lucky for me there was a CATCH at the Thompson Hotel. I enjoyed the meal for the most part and will definitely go again in LA or NY. But the food train didn’t stop there I enjoyed a birthday celebration at Sur, a plate of chiliquiles at a local spot, and several rounds of great margaritas at Mi Pueblo. The only thing I did not get my fill of was churros! You guys, I live for churros. I will say the one I did get was warm, huge, and the best treat I had had all day. Many of the restaurants were open air like Trujillo’s below. I loved the feeling of eating outside under the stars every meal. Chic stamped.
If you’re planning to take a journey anytime soon definitely consider Playa Del Carmen for your next destination. It was a city full of charm, luxury, and beauty that I can’t wait to visit again. Next time I may even venture out on a jetski.
Head to my instagram for even more photos of this great trip!