If you are looking to relax and recharge without losing modern day creature comforts and style, head to the coastal town of Tulum.
Located on the east coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula 80 miles from Cancun, this once sleepy surf village in the jungle has turned into an eco-luxe getaway for those seekers looking for emerald waters, white sand beaches and an immersive cultural experience combined with healthy eating, yoga and sustainability.
Here, luxury, spirituality and bohemia co-exist, and effortlessness and nature are the new luxury.
Stay at Coco Limited, Tulum
Home base this trip was the whitewashed, thatched roof Coco Limited. Located in a central point in the Hotel Zone, the hotel offers minimalistic luxury paired with sustainability. Located right on the beach, 26 rooms are surrounded by gardens, a white sand beach dotted with thatched-roof sun beds an open terrace restaurant and a quaint garden pool.
What’s limited about the stay here? Distractions. No TV’s in the room, no hair dryers, iron, coffee maker or gym. Workouts here are done outdoors, either at the beach, swimming in a cenote (fresh water sink hole) or biking through town. WiFi is available, but don’t plan on streaming any Netflix while you are here. The bath and body products are in glass jars (more eco-friendly) and are made by a local company.
Play in nature, see heritage
Tulum has something from everyone. If you are looking to explore nature, the Sian Ka’an Nature Reserve is at the edge of Tulum, and is a UNSECO World Heritage Site.
The 1.5 million acre reserve is home to monkeys, birds, turtles and, as we spotted, the occasional alligator lounging in the sun. Boat tours, as well as fishing adventures are available here. The Mayan Ruins can be a glimpse into ancient history. Coba is the tallest pyramid in the area, while Chicken Itza is the more popular, as well as being considered one of the wonders of the world.
The parks tend to get crowded, so opt for the private tours in the morning, when it is also the coolest temperature. Cenotes are an experience unique to the area. Mayans considered cenotes sacred space, and you can explore the underwater playgrounds with a guide or as a self-guided tour. If you are interested in exploring more in-depth Mayan culture, experience a Temazcal ceremony. Lead by a shaman in a sweat lodge, the experience has cleansing and healing effects to purify the mind, body and soul.
Tulum nightlife shies away from the mega-clubs of Cancun to comfortable, laid-back restaurants turned nightlife venues like Casa Jaguar, Gitano and Papaya Playa Project. Music is island deep house chill, and drinks focus heavily on gin and mescal, with fresh fruits and ingredients displayed on the bar.
Eat fresh cuisine from all over the world
Food options span street carts to fine dining, and you will find fresh, tasty food almost anywhere you go. With options ranging far beyond traditional Mexican cuisine, you will find Italian, Asian and Mediterranean accents.
For a healthy start, head to Ojos de Agua for fresh fruit shakes, smoothies and avocado toast on seed bread. If in the mood for something heavier, try chilaquiles, a traditional Mexican dish of fried tortillas topped with egg, avocado and topped your choice of green or red sauce (live on the edge and try both).
Hartwood, New York chef owner Eric Warner’s farm-to-table Tulum outpost, has been on the hotlist since its opening, and reservations are still booked a month out. The menu changes daily, and everything is cooked in a hand made wood fire oven and grill. Dedicated to the community, the restaurant powers everything by solar and uses only sustainable fishing methods and 100 percent organic composting while giving back to a local program alleviating hunger in Mexico.
Posada Margarita is the place to go for lovely beachside Italian, and the limited menu features fresh fish and shrimp of the day, homemade pastas and a melt-in-your-mouth burrata salad.
Getting to Tulum, Mexico
Major airlines (American, Delta, JetBlue, United, Virgin America) fly from the United States to Cancun, Mexico. From there, rent a car or take a taxi to Tulum. Once in Tulum, the preferred mode of transportation is by bike or foot. Taxis are also easily accessible and a one-way trip will cost you around 100 pesos each way (around $5 USD).Looking for a luxury getaway in #Mexico? Travel writer Kimberly Fisher Boone recommends putting Tulum at the top of the list.Click To Tweet