The indigenous coatis,which is a strangely raccoon-like creature,can be seen traveling together in tight knit family units among the lush undergrowth and vegetation that lines the roadways of Mexico's Yucatan peninsula,seeming to enjoy observing the passing traffic before dashing off into the forest with ringed tails prominently displayed. Such scenes are commonplace in the region,which lies just a short flight from many cities throughout the United States. In fact,the international airport in Cancun is a mere two hour flight from Miami or Houston and only four hours from New York. Then,in less than two hours you can enter a world that is far removed from Cancun's raucous spring break crowds and crowded rows of high rise resort hotels.
Tulum boasts an Eco-friendly vibe that is cool and modern,but still has not lost sight of real old world style. In addition,some of Mexico's most beautiful beaches can be found in and around Tulum,as can some of the country's most treasured archaeological sites. Furthermore,Tulum is home to a multi-colored coral reef that makes diving and snorkeling in the area an experience that is unlike anything else in the world.
Although a new international airport is planned for construction in Tulum,today the area is still being discovered by much of the world,making it the perfect time to get to know this magnificent region. The beaches here are unlike any in the world,with satin white-sand beaches and crystal blue waters. Jagged rocky outcroppings dot the landscape,which is full of relics left behind by the ancients that beg to be explored. One of the most popular ruins in Tulum remains the impressive beachfront Mayan temple (the only one like it in all of Mexico) known as El Castillo.
The barrier reef that is located just off the beaches of Tulum is the second largest in the entire world,which,combined with the area's impressive underground cave system,rivers and cenotes,has started to attract divers and snorkelers from around the world. Boating and yachting enthusiasts have also started to take an interest in Tulum and regularly enjoy mooring in one of its many small marinas while soaking up the stunning coastline and warm Caribbean atmosphere.
Tulum also has everything a golfing enthusiast could ask for,with courses designed by some of the best in the sport,including Jack Nicklaus,P.B. Dye and Robert Trent Jones II. Although at first glance the area may seem rustic,much is changing rapidly. Today,Tulum is home to three banks,five gas stations,a number of well-stocked hardware stores,countless bed and breakfasts,two new supermarkets and a scenic bike path along the beach.
The beaches of Tulum are home to a variety of interesting – and often rustic – boutique hotels,spas,restaurants and fitness centers. When it comes to dining in Tulum,something is available to suit almost any palate,with a variety of organic,ethnic and traditional fare available daily. Also,many visitors opt to take part in beachfront massage or yoga,or even to join in one of the popular Bikini Boot Camp classes that happen daily.
Another benefit to visiting Tulum is its close proximity to the popular tourist hotspot of Playa del Carmen,which lies just 30 minutes to the north. Here,visitors can enjoy easy access to fabulous shopping,a vibrant nightlife,excellent gourmet cuisine and a variety of arts and cultural events throughout the year. Once a small,remote fishing village,since the 1990s Playa has been growing steadily thanks to strong investments in infrastructure and overall development.
Since its discovery and initial development more than 15 years ago,Playa del Carmen has also experienced amazing growth in property values. For example,today a condo on the beach here will easily sell at $500,000 or more,and it is obvious that this trend is currently repeating itself in Tulum,which most real estate experts believe is still poised at the very start of the cycle. If you look closely at a map of the region,it quickly becomes obvious that land is scarce in Tulum,since much of it falls within national protected areas,such as the magnificent Sian Ka'an biosphere.
In addition,strict building regulations in Tulum have been put in place to limit the height and density of the buildings that are constructed here,which means that a limited inventory of land is open for development. In turn,this is expected to increase property values as the number of interested buyers and renters increases exponentially over the next several years.
Today,although there are plenty of mansions selling on the beaches here for upwards of $2 million,there are also many lots available that are located just a few minutes' walk from the beach and the center of town for just over $150,000,with financing options starting around $800 per month. Not too shabby when it means purchasing your very own luxury overseas retreat!