September 30, 2013

Belize: Golfing Around San Pedro

Today we went to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye and rented a golf cart to explore the island with Anna, an English women we met at the Split. San Pedro is much larger then Caye Caulker so walking around the island isn't as convenient. Taylor was by far the best golf cart driver. After taking over some resort lounge chairs our main destination was Palapa Bar & Grill. A bar out on a pier with inner tubes to float in. We did just that, after lunch.

{ Palapa Bar & Grill }

September 29, 2013

Belize: Goff's Caye

First thing in the morning we moved from Yumas House to Mara's Guest House. Yumas was closing for a few weeks for a new paint job. Mara's Guest House was fantastic! We had our own deck with hammocks and it was close to The Split, life was good.
{ Feeding the fish where they practically bite off your whole hand }
The four of us took a private boat for a day trip to Goff's Caye. A small sandy island that pops out of the water. We needed to be pinched to Belize it was real!

The morning started with seeing seahorses and feeding fish. We then headed off to Goff's Caye which was about a 2 hour boat ride while we sipped on rum punch and tried to do some fishing.

Once we arrived at Goff's Caye we put on our snorkel and mask and swam off to the reef. The water was clear and the fish were colorful. After snorkeling we had the tastiest freshly cooked crab and lobster! Our three guides turned out to be great cooks. After a siesta in the sun we headed back to Caye Caulker tan and very happy.

September 28, 2013

Belize: Island Day Bike Rides

Taylor, Zoe and Hollie have arrived! Naturally, the first thing we did was buy matching Belikin tank tops ^^.

We had a major island day. We rented bikes this morning and biked around the island and saw where the locals lived, the island is rather spread out. Most people live on the south side of the island as the town (and tourists) is located on the north side of the island.

{ Lazy Lizard at The Split }
We went to the Lazy Lizard at The Split in the afternoon where we swam, soaked up the sun and had a few Belikin beers. That evening we went back to the Split for sunset. It's beautiful.

September 27, 2013

Belize: I have arrived, the Caribbean

{ Looking back at Yumas House from the ferry dock }
{ Yumas House }
I made it to Caye Caulker, Belize! Yesterday was a long travel day with multiple bus rides and boat rides. I left Mexico at 8:30 am and got to Belize at 6pm but I am now in the Caribbean and everyone speaks English. The streets are sandy and there is water everywhere. There are only three streets here, Front, Middle and Back. It's hard to get lost. I am staying at Yumas House right on the water.

I spent today laying in hammocks and reading. Taylor, Zoe and Hollie arrive this evening!

September 25, 2013

Mexico: Cobá and the Grand Cenote

Today is my last day in Mexico before heading to Belize tomorrow.

In the morning, Hollie, Tarlyn and I took a taxi out to Cobá (ruins) and the Grand Cenote. We biked around Cobá exploring the different ruins and climbed to the top of the highest one. The bike made it easy to get around and luckily the path was in the shade because you can't tell in these photos but it was a thousand degrees.

After biking in the heat we needed a cold swim at the Grand Cenote (we tried to hitchhike there but failed). The water was so clear and there were turtles swimming around too.

Hostel Sheck Update: Two fans are out in our dorm room so cross your fingers that they get them working by tonight or I'll be awake and sweating buckets.

September 24, 2013

Mexico: Tulum Ruins

Hollie and I woke up early and rented bikes to go explore the Tulum Ruins. We wanted to beat the crowds, and we did. The ruins are located up on a cliff above the water so the view is amazing.


After the ruins and being very sweaty all morning we biked over to the beach. Spent the afternoon swimming, eating the best guacamole and beach napping while Hollie snorkeled.

September 23, 2013

Mexico: The day we arrived in Tulum

Hollie, Casey and I arrived in Tulum. Hollie and I went straight to Akumal beach where I heard you can swim with sea turtles. After we found out we had to pay a lot of money to swim with the sea turtles (learning later this was a tourist trick) we took a colectivo back to Hostel Sheck. Glad we went though... the beach was so Mexico!

{ Flooded roads to the beaches of Tulum }

In the lobby of Hostel Sheck we met Tarley (British) and a couple of us headed to the beach for the afternoon. We took a taxi as Tulum town is a good distance from the beach. The massive rain storm earlier in the week left the road out to the beach flooded, our taxi just powered through. We ended up staying past sunset- my fingers were pruned by the time we headed back to the hostel.

September 22, 2013

Meixco: Chichen Itza

After sleeping through my early morning alarm clock I made my way down to the hostels breakfast and met Casey (Australian Air Emirates flight attendant) who was also going to Chichen Itza so we bused out there together and spent the day exploring the Mayan ruins. It was blazing hot but fortunately not that crowed as we arrived fairly early. We did not hire a guide so we probably missed a lot of history but we still enjoyed walking around looking at each ruin, taking photos and finding shade because even in my tank top I was drenched.

After getting back into town we bumped into Hollie (Australian- a women from my dorm) and ended up watching a bike circus show all afternoon. The two guys performing were a father/son duo. Once they spotted Hollie and I we were in for it. Once the show was over we started to walk back to our hostel but were quickly stopped by the father yelling at us to come back and bike with his son on the big red bike (I think the father wanted me to marry his son). The crowds cheered as Hollie and I biked around the square in the pouring rain.

September 21, 2013

Mexico: Cenote Bike Rides

I have arrived in Valladolid, which is a short three hour bus ride from Cancun. After realizing I didn't know where my hostel was and tried to ask for directions in my broken Spanish I eventually found Hostel Candelaria. I checked in and went off to explore the cenotes. I rented a bike from the hostel and biked 30 minutes in the blazing heat through the jungle to Cenote Samula. Cenotes are big caves underground with fresh water and black catfish swimming around.

Arriving mid-afternoon I was worried there would be crowds of people but instead I was the only one there. I walked down the staircase into the cenote and realized being the only one was nerve-racking. This huge hole, swimming alone with black catfish, no thank you. But I was not going to leave without swimming as I was so hot and sweaty after my bike ride. Luckily after I stood around pumping myself for a while seven Mexican guys showed up. Finally! I wasn't alone in this big hole and could go swimming! The fresh water was so cool and refreshing. It rained while I biked back to the hostel but I was already soaked so it didn't even matter.

{ Cenote Samula }
{ The seven guys insisted on taking photos }

September 20, 2013

Mexico: Isla Mujeres

After one day in Cancun I ferried over to a small island off the coast, Isla Mujeres. I decided to figure out Cancun's public transportation by taking a colectivo to the ferry dock. With a few language barrier issues and a random bus transfer I made it!
{ Backseat of the golf cart }
{ Baby sea turtle at the turtle sanctuary }
{ Reef shark }
On the ferry to Isla I met an older couple from California who invited me along on their day of golf carting around the island. After picking up our golf cart from one of the local shops our first stop was checking into my hostel, Poc Na, so I could drop off my backpack. The California couple was fascinated by hostel life and took photos as we walked through the lobby to my dorm and put my backpack away in the lockers. I later found out the whole hostel thought they were my parents.

After educating them on hostels we went to explore the very small island. We scooted around town through the narrow streets and down sandy roads to beaches. After we were acquainted with town we drove down to the southern tip of the island which was absolutely beautiful. It was stormy that day so the waves were huge and rain clouds were dark. On our way back to the north tip we had lunch at a delicious Rasta themed restaurant. We were also able to dry off since we got soaked in the golf cart, no windows to role up or doors to close. I had read previously about a turtle sanctuary so after lunch we went to find it. With only a few roads on the island we eventually bumped into it. Baby sea turtles, I am obsessed. We then followed a sandy path out of the turtle sanctuary and found a man holding a reef shark. Ok, awesome. The reef shark was massive, he did not make it look easy. Luckily the California couple loved exploring as much as I did. We spent the rest of the afternoon driving around the island going down dead ends, pulling u-turns and stopping randomly to take photos of iguanas (after St. Thomas I don't care for iguanas but they loved by them). After a great day they dropped me off at my hostel and they went back to their resort in Cancun.

That evening I took a beach walk around the point to see the sunset. It was gorgeous but I stepped on a pile of red ants so my feet were on fire for the rest of the night. After arriving back at the hostel lobby I met Alessa (Austria) and Nurit (Israel) while learning macramé from two Spaniards. We spent the next three days together on Isla before parting ways. We went snorkeling, laid on the beach, went swimming, did macramé at night and ate tacos! Isla is amazing. Everyone should go.

{ Naturally, three days in and already getting a hair wrap }
{ Sombrero shopping at the market }