Experiencing The Magic of Tulum: A Hippie Mexican Paradise

For my first visit to Mexico, I wanted a laid-back but memorable experience. It was my first trip of the year and I wasn’t too keen on going on adventures that will leave me more worn out than I started. It was important to be in top-notch shape for the rest of the year, and so an easy and relaxed holiday in Tulum was a good idea.

And the journey begins…

Almost a month after finalizing travel plans, I touched down Mexico with my sister and friend. As soon as we landed the Cancun International Airport, we boarded a 2-hr ride to Tulum. The atmosphere in Cancun was exactly as I had expected; frantic and a little too much for me. Everywhere you looked, there were taxi drivers trying to sell you overpriced tickets. I had done my research, so it wasn’t difficult to dismiss them all.

We got the ADO bus from Cancun to Playa Del Carmen which cost about 190 Pesos/ 11 USD. The bus was comfortable and neat and made no stops until we got to Playa Del Carmen. From Playa Del Carmen, we took another ADO bus to Tulum which cost about 40 Pesos/ 2 USD. Overall, my experience with the ADO bus was pleasant.

Tired and worn out from catching flights and a 2hr bus ride, we finally made it to Tulum. We checked into our AirBnB, headed off to eat at the La Zebra restaurant, and settled back into our AirBnB. It had been a long day, but I was super excited to see how the trip unravels.

The Raw Magic of Tulum!

Tulum is a magical little town in Mexico and it holds such an undeniable charm. It is a boho paradise that I came to fall absolutely in love with. The beaches are perfect, with powdery white sand and crystal blue water. The language spoken is Spanish and the currency is Pesos.

There’s a lot to do in Tulum, you’ll be spoiled for choice. Great food, great music, awesome beach clubs, a ton of restaurants and fruit stands. Tulum is best explored by bicycle. The simple life.
Note: There are two sides of Tulum; Tulum Pueblo (Town) and Tulum Playa (Beach). As you can imagine, the beach is the more expensive part but also, the most beautiful.

Tulum – Day One Highlights: Coco Tulum x Playa Paraiso

Coco Tulum

As soon as I set foot in Coco Tulum, it felt like I had been transported to one of those places that you’ll only find on Pinterest. – Ufuoma

Besides the beautiful beaches I was eager to see in Tulum, I was excited to visit Coco Tulum, a hip all-white beach club bar with swings set by the ocean. I discovered this Tulum gem on Instagram and I knew I had to make it my first stop in Tulum. Safe to say, it did not disappoint.

Welcome to Coco Tulum

An awesome massage stand by the corner
We have nothing to lose and a world to see
Now you see me…
Now you don’t…

We added some color to Coco Tulum

Trying Out Authentic Mexican Food in Coco Tulum

After taking in the place in all its glory, we settled for a nice meal of Tacos and Guacamoles. A trip to Mexico isn’t complete without those. The food here was far from disappointing. It was a little on the high side but that was a small price to pay for how delicious it was. Highly recommend checking this place out when you visit Tulum.

It is always happy hour here
Babes
Tulum Eats – Tacos x Guacamole x Mojitos
Note: There is usually a compulsory service charge/gratuity added to purchases in restaurants in Tulum. It is not very high but definitely worth noting.

A Stop at the Beach – Playa Paraiso

With happy hearts and full bellies, we headed over to Playa Paraiso, Tulum’s most popular beach. It was a little crowded but not in a suffocating way. We rented beach beds, took a couple power naps, played by the beach, and listened to the sound of the ocean. At 6pm, we were alerted that the beach was closing and we hailed a taxi and headed home. My heart was full. It was a beautiful day.

A saxophonist at the beach. What could be better?
Welcome to Playa Paraiso

My beach is better
Thankful for new experiences

The perfect beach companion

Tulum – Day Two Highlights: Tulum Ruins x Matcha Mama

A couple of events almost stopped me from seeing the Tulum Mayan ruins. The weather on the day we planned to visit was terrible, and we had run out of cash too. Everything that could possibly go wrong did, and so we were forced to cancel our plans that day.

The next day though, I made another attempt to visit the ruins, even though alone. I couldn’t imagine visiting Tulum without seeing the ruins, so nothing was going to stop me.

Was it worth it? Absolutely. The mayan ruins in Tulum is both beautiful, and historic. I underestimated just how big it was, but it was massive.  I spent about an hour walking around the ruins, asking questions and taking in all the history. After I was sure I had had my fair share of it, I headed on over to my next stop – Matcha Mama

Note: Entry fee to the Tulum Mayan ruins is 70 Pesos.

A Solid End to Tulum in Matcha Mama

There couldn’t have been a better way to end the day, and my Tulum adventures, than with a visit to Matcha Mama. I stopped there after my walking tour at the Tulum ruins and cooled off with cold sips from fresh coconuts. Julia, the shop attendant also helped me break the coconuts once I was done sipping the water. She’s a sweetheart. Did i mention, everyone in Tulum is nice, warm, and friendly. I’ll miss this place, but will be back someday.

My Final Verdict:

Tulum is an excellent choice for those seeking relaxation, history and easy explorations. It’s a charming city with friendly people, great food, and beautiful sceneries. There is something for everyone – beach lovers, adventure lovers, history buffs, couples, solo travelers, girl squads, etc. I’ll rate it a 4/5.

Thank you for reading my adventures in Tulum. I hope you are inspired to add it to your travel list really soon. I will be sharing a more detailed guide for an epic 7-day adventure in Mexico soon. For now, the Mexico series continues next week and I will be sharing other cities in Mexico that I explored.

Are you following me on Instagram? Follow me here. And subscribe to the blog to get notified on new travel content posted here. Thank you for reading.

Have you visited Tulum, or will you love to visit soon? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below.

Until next time,

Happy Travels.

 

About the author
Working Professional by day, Travel Blogger by night. Here, I share my personal life and travel experiences as well as helpful tips to help readers start their own travel journey. Want to talk? Contact me on info@theufuoma.com. Don't be a stranger!

37 Comments

  1. You pictures are so stunning!!! One of my favorites and one I think you should print out and hang on your wall (if you aren’t nomadic) is the one with you and your friends on the white sand beach. The colors you are all wearing are so vibrant against the beach background, everyone will be green with envy. Luckily, I’m planning a trip to Tulum soon. With my family (which includes my young children). Your post made me even more excited about visiting Tulum.

  2. What a beautiful place! Tulum is one of those places that I’ve heard of but never really paid attention to. It looks so gorgeous and from your write up it seems like the perfect place for a relaxing, beach holiday. I love all the outfits you wore, they’re gorgeous! xx
    Coco Bella Blog

  3. I am embarrassed to say that I have been to the Cancun area numerous times, but have never visited to Tulum. Thanks to your post I will correct that! The beaches and the water are absolutely stunning. Thank you for sharing your fun experience.

  4. Looks so relaxing! I would loooove to get somewhere warm for a little while (need some sun and vitamin D!). And I totally agree that sometimes its good to just go and relax instead of have crazy adventures 😀

  5. This place looks magical. The best part of it is the white color set up everywhere and when it is mixed with blue at the restaurant. I am sure those swings would have been fun on the beach… You girls surely had fun…

  6. Your photos! Absolutely beautiful! My first international trip was actually to Mexico and I visited Tulum, but I only visited the ancient ruins. Now I know there is so much more to see! Thanks for sharing!

  7. I´ve been to Tulum last summer and you are so right it is really magical. It has such a special atmosphere and I can feel it again when looking at your beautiful pictures!

  8. You definitely made me finalize on our decision for Tulum! Loved the post and all the pics of the beautiful beaches. Also loved that you shared details such as the fare ride fees, tips, and also mentioned the historic ruins. Thanks for sharing and looking forward to you next trip!
    http://www.helloyvonne.com

    1. Thanks Yvonne. Glad I could help you make a decision. I hope you enjoy Tulum. Please let me know if you need any help or have any questions on Tulum.

    1. Thaks Jacqueline. I will recommend about 5 days to explore. There’s so much to do and see. I couldn’t do everything. There’s cenotes, Gran cenote, even a day trip to Xcaret. There’s so much. So five days minimum seems like an ideal time to have a taste of everything.

  9. Looks awesome, Tulum is next on my list! Did you like the airbnb you stayed in and do you have to prebook the bus tickets? And one more question – what do you mean by ‘the beach closes’ – is it illegal to be on the beach afterwards or do the daybed vendors and such just pack up for the day?

    1. Hi Annika,

      I’ll be doing a more detailed post later on in the month.

      Yes, I loved the airbnb. It was very beautiful and tucked in a secluded area of Tulum so lots of privacy and less noise. No we didn’t have to prebook tickets. We literally just pulled up to the bus tickets. Sometimes we were lucky enough to get there when a bus was only 10 minutes to departure times. Other times we had to wait about 30 minutes. So, not too bad.

      Playa Paraiso closes at 6 pm on weekdays I believe. At 6pm, everyone was packing their stuff to leave and the vendors told us the beach was closing. So, yes it does close at 6pm on weekdays.

  10. You did the right thing by taking the ADO bus. We use to live in Playa so we know the area. We are heading down to Tulum next week. How crowded was Coco? Prices there?

    Did you rent a car? We find thats the best way to see the area. It’s super easy to drive down there too.

    1. Hi Hannah,
      Yes so glad I took the ADO bus, it was convenient and super affordable too, so that’s a winner. Coco was not crowded at all. We arrived there at about 11 am and were practically the only ones there with some other people hanging around. More people started to pour in at noon but it wasn’t terrible at all. The prices were a little bit on the high side. I think we paid about 1400 pesos in total but to be fair we had four plates of Tacos, two mojitos, and a pina colada. Just more pricey compared to the food we had in town. But it was very tasty, so worth it.
      We made attempts to rent a car but it didn’t work out. We moved around with taxis and that was very reasonable. But yeah, it sure is super easy to drive around from the looks of things.

      Thanks Hannah. I hope you enjoy Tulum.

  11. You’e such a babe. Photos on this post are so beautiful! These are the ones you save for inspiration when you’re planning a trip. Aww, you know the coco stand is real when they’re willing to cut it up for you when you’re done, nothing goes to waste. Inspired to include Tulum on my “to-visit” list.

    1. Awww gracias girl. Thank you. I can’t wait for you to visit Tulum so I can relive it through you. I’m sure you’ll capture its beauty very well.
      Thanks girl.

    1. Hi Bee,
      Thank you. I don’t shop in Canada unfortunately. I get my stuff from UK sites like Asos, Zara, Missguided, etc.
      -U.

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