Tu-Tu-Tu-Tulum I want to go. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I was just there.. but I already want to go back! It is a town filled with magic, color, crystal clear waters and happiness (in the form of tacos). I absolutely love immersing myself in a new place, and I couldn’t get enough of the laid-back, peaceful feeling of Tulum.
Five days was an amazing amount of time in Tulum as we got to know the town, the beach, the food, and some of the amazing and beautiful things the Yucatan peninsula has to offer. BUT, I had no idea there were so many things to do there. I guess you have to save a few things to do for the next trip, right?! I’ll definitely be back again one day!
If you are planning a visit, here are some of my favorite things from beautiful Tulum:
WHAT TO DO:
Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, Tulum has got you covered.
- The Beach – This one is obvious! Tulum is known for it’s turquoise water and white sand beaches. So grab a good book and a drink and get your relaxation on.
- Tulum Pueblo – We spent part of our visit staying in the town (‘Tulum Pueblo’). While most people stay on the beach and just visit the town, we loved staying here for a night or two and really immersing ourselves in the neighborhood. The locals were having a street festival one night with live music and street vendors selling tacos, churros and Mexican street corn.
- Rent a Bike – Bikes are a popular way to get around in Tulum. You can rent one and ride into town or to the ruins. We also rented a scooter one day to visit the cenotes (a little scary on the highway, only recommend if you are adventurous!)
- Cenotes – My favorite thing to do on the Yucatan peninsula is visit the cenotes. They are beautiful, natural fresh water pools often with caves where you can swim and dive. We swam in Cenote Dos Ojos,which means ‘two eyes’ and has two swimming holes with caves that connect them. It is very popular with tourists so try to get there early to beat the crowds! We also visited Cenote Aktun-Ha (also known as Cenote Car Wash) which was my favorite. The water was turquoise blue surrounded by the green jungle, and there was no one there at all… we felt like we were in a real life Fern Gully!
- Tulum Ruins – These ancient Mayan ruins are right on the water and are fun to spend the morning exploring. Get there at opening to avoid major crowds (it’s so much more beautiful without all the tourists!)
- Akumal Beach – One of my Bucket List items for this year was to swim with sea turtles. I had never seen one before so I was determined. We made the 25 minute drive north to Akumal Beach and found turtles within 3 minutes of swimming in the ocean. They love the sea grass (such hungry little guys). We also saw sting rays and other colorful fish.
WHERE TO STAY:
Tulum has no shortage of beach bungalows…
- Coco Tulum – Tulum has not become a Cancun-type destination with high-rise hotels (and hopefully it stays that way!), so the hotels mostly consist of bungalows on the beach and many of them are eco-friendly. We loved Coco Tulum with it’s cute beach bungalows in the jungle and prime beach access. We also loved the beach bar where you can drink tropical-flavored, delicious daquiris (they have passion fruit, my fav!) while swinging (yes, they have swings at the bar) and talking with the friendly bartenders and fun crowd.
- Airbnb – We decided to stay at an Airbnb in Tulum Pueblo for a few nights to be a little more adventurous. While most people stay on the main beach strip, we wanted to be in town and our host gave us lots of great locals tips!
WHERE TO EAT + DRINK:
Bet you didn’t know Tulum was also a foodie destination.
- Restaurare – A jungly, open kitchen restaurant serving locally sourced, Mayan-style vegan cuisine. We loved their mole and refreshing cucumber drinks. This place is right on the main beach road as well!
- Posada Margarita – Their ambience and decor is amazing, and it’s right on the beach.
- Taqueria Honorio – We found this place by asking around with the locals in town about the best tacos (it’s located in Tulum Pueblo). They all sent us here and told us to get the Cochonita Pibil (a traditional Yucatan slow-roasted pork dish). They did not disappoint, we’re still dreaming about these tacos. Also, get the homemade horchata!
- Antojitos La Chiapaneca – Similarly, this place serves locals and tourists alike in Tulum Pueblo. Super simple, delicious and authentic tacos.
- Flor de Michoacan – I’m obsessed with paletas… fruity, sweet, chocolate, any type of paleta. They are so refreshing and delicious! This place (located in Tulum Pueblo) had THE BEST selection and the most delicious paletas I’ve ever had.
- Chamico’s Lobster Shack – This is a hidden beach spot north of the main beach strip. Stop here for drinks + food and relax in one of their many hammocks on a less crowded beach.
- Batey Mojito + Guarapo Bar – A fun bar with an outdoor patio, DELICIOUS mojitos, and live music in Tulum Pueblo.
- Taqueria La Eufemia – This taqueria is right on the beach with a lively, fun atmosphere and a great selection of drinks and tacos.