With an astounding amount of things to do in Cancun, it was hard deciding which activities to do in just one week. But it had to be done. The activities we listed were cut short but we still feel we made the best choices and experienced the best we could from what we picked.
The days before we left, we worried about the weather that was indicating 100% chances of rain. I mean couldn’t it be at least 60% so we wouldn’t worry?! Turns out, when we arrived that Saturday (Day 1) at the airport the rain was intense! I’m not talking about a small shower where you need a simple umbrella. I’m talking about rain that flips your umbrella backwards and floods streets. Unfortunately it was so rainy we couldn’t do much that evening but cross the street from our hotel and grab dinner.
At this point, we were so glad we had not bought any tour tickets just like it was advised online. Rain for the following day would also be a 100% chance and tickets to a tour would have been a waste. We sure didn’t want to see Chichen Itza or go ziplining during a thunderstorm. Had it been a light rain, yes. But it wasn’t. Instead, we had to change our schedule and do something more laid back. P.S., Please excuse some of the blurry pictures as I share our one-week experience. We bought a water camera that didn’t quite take nice quality pictures. Oops!
Cancun in One Week
Day 2-Sunday: Thunderstorm Day.
Because it was pouring, we opted to get to know Cancun’s Centro or downtown. Gladly, we decided to stay in a hotel in Cancun’s centro for the first days we’d be touring so we could save money. So taking a taxi would be the easiest choice to get around. First up, we decided to head to Marketa 28, similar to a flee market. There we found souvenirs and other items at great prices. With few people around because it was pouring, it became a fun experience in that the locals and vendors were enjoying the rain. They were excited because they hadn’t gotten rain like that in months. We later were told that the strong rain was due to a tail of a hurricane nearby. Not sure, but it was quite fun seeing everyone excited.
This was followed by a trip to their centro mall, Plaza de las Americas. Here we got an amazing massage to start the week, enjoyed ice-cream, and had a Mexican Mall experience. We had never gone to a Mexican mall. Turns out they are quite modern.
Before arriving to Plaza de Las Americas though, we somehow ended up on a street that got so flooded no cars could go through. No taxi would take us to the plaza because they risked entering the floods. So they suggested we had to walk to another main street which resulted in walking through floods. Though it was dirty and felt nasty to do so, we laughed it off and entered the flooded streets. This turned out to be quite funny and a memorable experience from our trip!
Day 3- Monday: Ziplining at Xplor.
If you are afraid of heights, fear not! Unfortunately Juan has a fear of heights. But he really wanted to try ziplining and faced his fear. Luckily, Xplor offers two ziplining circuits. We took the one with least height first to make it easier. Turns out once we took off for the first line, it was so fun his fear went away. Plus, we had the chance to do the first one together which made it easier for him. The first circuit was our favorite. It included a long water slide and ziplines that went into water filled caves.
At Xplor we also rode water rafts, swam through a cave with real stalactites and stalagmites, and rode jeeps through dirt, mud, and caves. Oh, and did I mention the food was amazing and all you can eat!?
At night we met with friends who were also in Cancun and partied at Coco Bongo. Here we enjoyed amazing shows and music. Reminded me of Vegas where it was possibly a bit better.
Day 4- Tuesday: Playa Del Carmen, Tulum
Because we were up until 4am from partying the night before, we left this day to wake up late. Remember the rain changed our plans a bit? We had planned to go to Tulum, Coba, and some Cenotes but we had to cut it out of our schedule. But not completely. Instead, after waking up late, we headed to Tulum where we arrived too late to enter the ruins. So instead we enjoyed walking around and eating some delicious Mayan food. From there we headed to Playa del Carmen and taken away by 5th avenue. This is a must go if you’re in Cancun. There is tons of food and shopping options. Next time we go, we hope to stay in Cancun and enjoy this city with more time.
Day 5- Wednesday: Xcaret
Some may think the cost is pricey, but with everything that Xcaret offers Juan and I believe it is SO worth it. There’s so much to do and so little time. We rushed through everything because we wanted to see as much as we could. Before going, I had written the times of the shows to make sure we could experience each one. I was so glad we did! We followed the map and started with seeing all the animals. This was followed by attractions, then water activities, and last with the shows. Our favorites attractions were the Mexican Cemetery and the Underground Rivers where we saw real bats hanging in the caves. We left the Underground River until the end so we could change into dry clothes and be ready for the shows. We did all three in a row! Again, the food was amazing. Sadly, we didn’t have time to enjoy the beach areas or any other water activity. Maybe next time!
Day 6-Thursday: Chichen Itza, Yucatan
You cannot go to Cancun and not experience one of the wonders of the world! The amount of history and information we gained through our tour guide was incredible. We learned about the Mayan ceremonies that took place at one time and got a chance to take pictures of the famous ruins. It was so much information it was hard to retain, but we gained so much knowledge about the country we were born in. This tour included a stop at Valladolid, Yucatan which is an incredible town with rich culture starting with its main plaza. Though we only had 15 minutes here, we enjoyed it a lot. Another stop included a visit to the cenote X-Cajum which was probably one of our favorite experiences in all our trip. To swim in such natural body of water and beautiful features was just amazing. Another stop included a pit stop for lunch. All of this included free drinks on the bus and a guided tour in English or Spanish.
Day 7 and 8-Friday and Saturday: Hotel
We had originally planned to be at the hotel on Thursday but the thunderstorm forced us to change it from Sunday to Thursday. On these last two days, we decided to get an all-inclusive hotel which is completely worth it! We took these days to rest before heading back home. We definitely wanted to arrive well rested instead of tired. Let me tell you that we regretted not spending more days at the beach or in this case at an all-inclusive hotel. We stayed at Krystal Cancun and we loved the location because it’s conveniently placed next to the clubs and shopping areas. We loved that the hotel was beautiful and gave us an incredible view of the beach. We loved that it had great options and delicious food. And we loved that it had awesome pools, which we happened to spend almost a whole day at the one next to the bar in front of the beach.
And finally, we LOVED with capital letters, the beach! The colors were so unnatural and something we had never experienced. It was almost crystal clear and had different shades of blue. When we rented a jet ski, we had the opportunity to go deeper into the ocean. The color changes as you go farther. The funnest part of swimming in the warm sea, was fighting against the waves. We definitely became children at this point. And with memories of a spectacular trip, we headed home with a vacation experience we will never forget!
We’ll share more in-depth posts about each place soon!
Have you ever been to Cancun? What was your favorite experience or what did you like best?