our wedding / travel

tulum, mexico

01.28.15

our honeymoon in tulum

well, i’m FINALLY posting about our honeymoon as promised. tulum was a magical place that i absolutely fell in love with the first day we were there. and honestly, i’d be happy going back every year. when we went in october, it was low season — so there were some pros and some cons.

the PROS were : hotel rates were cheaper, the town itself was super quiet and serene. there were no lines anywhere and we had the beach to ourselves. we expected some rain, but the weather was perfect everyday.

the CONS were : a lot of restaurants were closed, the bugs are REALLY intense, there’s more seaweed on the beach thus a funky smell sometimes.

regardless, though — we had such an amazing trip and i highly recommend tulum (just like everyone else in the universe). if you want a quieter more relaxing experience and prefer to not have tourists everywhere, then i recommend low season.

Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset ziggys tulum

we stayed at the beach hotel, and based on our visits to a bunch of hotels – we were so happy with our choice. every staff member was so friendly and fun. the vibe of the hotel was also so relaxed – we barely ever wore shoes and ziggy’s bar had 2 for 1 happy hour everyday. and they had swings at the bar. so yes, i loved our hotel.

the beach hotel in tulum the beach hotel | tulum

we chose to stay on the second floor because gideon was concerned about the bugs on the ground level. and with the second floor rooms, you not only have a patio with a hammock, but you have a roof deck with a bed for stargazing. so dreamy.

casa violeta | tulum tulum tulum honeymoon

the bohemian designer-y vibe is so unique, there’s beautiful colors and murals and landscapes almost everywhere you look.

tulum, mexico Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset mayan ruins cenote Oct 3, 6ppl, Cenotes (70) cenote cenote jump

places to go + things to do in TULUM

first off — we made friends with another couple that got married the same day as us. we spent most of our trip with them, and we bonded so hard, so that made our trip even more memorable.

the mayan ruins : go as early as you can in the morning, because you’ll get cranky fast the hotter it is.
coqui coqui : the most serene spa experience, and i had one of the best massages of my life there. (we had a second massage on our patio at the hotel, which was also amazing)
walk around tulum : i didn’t get any photos, but we spent a good couple hours browsing the shops in the town, i got the cutest leather purse and a hammock chair. dreamcatchers, mexican blankets, you’ll be in heaven.
the cenotes : we went on two excursions with the adventure tour center, and we had such a blast hanging out with jeff and cesar (tell them i sent you.) our first trip was a cenote tour, we visited three of them. the first two we snorkeled and the third was a private sinkhole that we jumped into a dozen times. can you believe the water?! unreal.
the sian ka’an muyil river : this was hands down our favorite day in tulum. jeff took us first for some authentic tacos, and then we took a boat through the most crystal clear warm water you’ve ever seen. the whole “sea” was man made and you really have to see it to believe it. after we hopped off the boat, we floated down the river with tubes and beers.

mayan reserve Oct 4, 6ppl, Muyil (12) mayan reserve Oct 4, 6ppl, Muyil (43) coqui coqui coqui coqui tulum

where to eat in TULUM

like i said, a lot of places we’d planned on going were closed for the season. this included the famously awesome places : hartwood, gitano & el tabano. which is why we decided we’re going back asap. we also wanted to check out mezzanine which is supposed to have amazing thai food, but we ran out of time.

casa banana : amazing food. we had this slow roasted duck with some sort of cauliflower garlic mush that was so damn incredible.
casa jaguar : a super cute place with really good drinks and food and vibe. we split a huge fish dish that was dope.
posada margherita : an italian restaurant right on the beach. so romantic. and they have amazing everything. (we went twice)
matteo’s : a really good lunch spot that we may have eaten at multiple times, because it was where our excursion company was located. their fish tacos are what they say they are, the best.
casa violeta : a gorgeous hotel restaurant with amazing view. tropical ceviche and purple basil margaritas? guh.
papaya playa : we initially wanted to stay at this hotel, but decided on the beach – so we went for lunch instead. really hip fun vibe and super good ceviche.
flor de michoacan : if you’re shopping, stop in for the tastiest paletas (popsicles) ever.

posada margarita ceviche paletas paletas coco loco casa violeta

tulum TIPS

bring cash. the ATMs have huge fees if you run out, so just try to bring as much as you think you’ll spend. most places don’t take cards, and be a little weary of using your card in certain [non-gringo] places. also, exchange your currency before you go to the airport. we did this downtown a few days before we left and the exchange rate was way lower than it was at the airport.

bring so much bug spray if you can. SO MUCH. most of tulum didn’t sell any with deet in it, and the all-natural ones just don’t protect as well.

you can’t wear normal sunscreen in the cenotes, so if you’re planning to go visit them, buy some biodegradable sunscreen on amazon before your trip.

pooping in tulum… is not the best. TMI, but i wasn’t aware before we went. the septic pipes at the hotels are TINY, so you’re not supposed to flush toilet paper. i just wanted to prepare you for this, because i like you.

stay at a hotel that includes a breakfast plan. i am so glad we did this, because it gave us the mornings to relax and not have to venture out until we felt like it. the beach hotel had a DOPE breakfast included, we had a huge breakfast everyday with fresh juice and coffee. it was perfect.

we were unsure if we should rent a car, but we ended up doing it. unless you’re into loooong bike rides, it was pretty nice to be able to drive into the town or to excursions whenever we wanted. we also needed it to go stock up on bug spray because we went through almost a bottle a day.

the beaches and roads are super dark at night, so bring a flashlight or use your phone flashlight. we walked to dinner along the beach our second night and didn’t use a light, only to find out the next night that we’d been walking on a zillion crabs for 20 minutes. there are crabs EVERYWHERE.

the hotel zone of tulum has two “parts” – the hotels are all located on the beach side, and behind the hotels is the jungle side. this is where a lot of the restaurants are, and also the direction in which the sun sets. if you’re planning on eating on the jungle side, especially in bug season, prepare yourself. shower in bug spray before going, and try to cover your skin as much as possible.

don’t book excursions through your hotels, you can find better deals online. and again, i really just recommend our tour company. they really made our trip what it was.

pack less clothes and more bathing suits than you think. you may have noticed i’m wearing the same bikini in almost all the photos. with the wedding craziness, i didn’t invest a lot of time in getting bathing suits for the trip, but i barely wore the clothes i brought. pack less so you have more room in your bag for hammock chairs.

if you’re aiming for a relaxing trip, stay at a quiet hotel where you’ll want to hang out a lot. we spent a huge amount of time at our beach and hotel, and we’d be so tired after long days that we ate at the hotel more often than we thought we would.

tulum sunset tulum honeymoon Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset

luckily, our honeymoon wasn’t over. come back tomorrow for part 2!

28 comments on “tulum, mexico”

  1. These photos are SO BEAUTIFUL! And I definitely LOL’d at your pooping tip. That is so funny and something I would NOT have expected. My husband and I looked at tulum for our honeymoon but ended up picking elsewhere – but looking at these pictures I am pretty jealous!

    Thanks for sharing your tips and all these photos – they’re really beautiful.

  2. I am amazed with your honeymoon experience. Not only is this place gorgeous, but the food and experiences sound so fun. We definitely have to visit here. Thanks for sharing, and kudos to you and your Gideon for finding such a cool spot.

  3. i’ve read A LOT of tulum guides in my life and yours is by far the best. i really appreciate it. also, if i’m like SUPER anti-bug (like i can’t really go camping) and bugs love me (like i get crazy mosquito bites when i have outside dinner parties), is tulum not the place for me??

    amazing honeymoon experience! can’t wait to read/see the rest.

  4. I actually prefer travelling in the off seasons… everything just has a slightly different vibe when there are less people around. Glad you enjoyed it, it looks absolutely gorgeous!

  5. noooooooo! i was so pumped when i read this because we are looking at going to tulum in april and i was SO excited to see your amazing write up! BUT i just went to the website and the beach hotel is adults only?!?!?! now what am i going to do? you sold me! i don’t want to go anywhere else now! im ruined! did you happen to jot down a name of any place that looked at least 50% as great and was family friendly???

    1. oh shoot! good news is there’s a family version next door (cabanas tulum) and it’s the same beach and restaurant — we also wanted to originally stay at be tulum so i might try that one too — it’s a bit further up the street! x

  6. This looks perfect! I’ve never had a big draw to visit Mexico but this post is really giving me something to think about. And I have to ask…your bikini (with the floral bottom) is amazing! Where is it from??

  7. Going to Tulum in April too! These pictures have me so pumped now. Definitely going to do the Sian Ka’an trip!!! did you guys check out any of the vegan restaurants when you were there??

  8. Such beautiful photos! My family has been to the mayan ruins in Tulum, but we’ve always stayed closer to Cancun and spent only one night at hotels everywhere else. Seeing these makes me want to go back now though… it would be such a different experience!

  9. “Pooping in Tulum is not fun!” OMG so funny you mentioned this. I knew about the whole “not flushing paper” thing in some places in Mexico so before we booked our honeymoon hotel I made Bret call the place up and ask if paper could be flushed! He had to be transferred about ten times before someone finally understood what he was asking. LOL One of the funniest moments of our relationship! And you’re so right to bring it up, because it’s certainly something I wanted to know before booking!

  10. My husband and I are going back in June. We spent our honeymoon there in 2013. Next time you go stay at the Posada Luna Del Sur, and tell Tom we sent you. Can’t wait to go back. Thank you for posting these pics! Beautiful!

  11. Wow, this is great! Thank you! Leaving for Tulum in 2 days :) Is there a way to make a spa appointment in advance for coqui coqui? Thanks!!!

  12. Just popping in to say I love your blog and am currently in Tulum checking out your tips! Thanks to you my cenote trip is tomorrow and I’m pumped. I haven’t even left and can’t wait to come back! Thanks!

  13. Awesome tips! My husband and I are heading there for our honeymoon in a week and we were wondering what company you rented the car from? Thanks!

  14. So happy I came across your blog as I was doing Tulum research because we are headed to the SAME hotel on Monday for our honeymoon! Would love ANY other tips you have. Definitely going to buy more bug spray tomorrow – thank you!!!

  15. Hey,

    Really enjoyed your post! Great pictures!

    We are going to Tulum in May for our delayed Honeymoon/one year anniversary. It’s all booked and i’m so excited, only problem is, I am TERRIFIED of crabs!!! :-( Is there anything I can do to avoid them? Do they just come out at night really?
    Thanks! x

  16. Great article…and congratulations on your recent marriage! I was married in April myself. Thanks for sharing such detailed information and beautiful photos. I’m headed back next month and I’m looking forward to exploring more of the area, especially the cenotes!

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