With recent coverage from respected travel and media outlets like TripAdvisor,New York Magazine,Condé Nast Traveler and the Houston Chronicle,to name only a few,the up-and-coming Caribbean town of Tulum in Mexico’s Riviera Maya should be on every beach lover’s bucket list.
“This beach town has an undeniable ‘cool factor’ along with its sheer beauty and spiritual energy,” writes Forbes.com. “Development is at a human scale,the sand is powder white and the beaches are some of the most beguiling anywhere.”
At less than two hours south of Cancún proper and just 70 miles from the Cancún International Airport,Tulum attracts travelers who understand that it’s not just about the destination,but also about the journey itself. As a more singular destination than Cancún or nearby Playa del Carmen,Tulum is less about the all-night DJ’s,parties and all-inclusive resort experience,and is more about sustainability,being “off the grid” for a period of time and enjoying a true Caribbean experience – especially in the off season,from late May throughout early fall.
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In recent years,visitor numbers have spiked dramatically in Tulum and throughout the Riviera Maya,with virtually every inch of beachfront on the coastal side accounted for – either by private owners and developers,resorts,boutique hotels or protected natural areas. For example,the new Aldea Zama complex in Tulum will include nearly 600 residential,multi-family and commercial lots,and every now and then the new modern highway that runs into Tulum from Cancun gets a bit crowded,but the planned construction of a high speed passenger train and a new International Airport in Tulum over the next few years will effectively do away with these minor concerns.
“Crowds surged this past holiday season – three times what some hoteliers anticipated – and despite restaurants’ best efforts,some diners waited for [up to] one hour for their meals!” writes Forbes.com. “At any rate,go in the off season (i.e.,now) when the place is as charming as ever and the crowds are thinner.”
Although the visitor numbers may be rising,the reasons so many people from around the world still come back time and time again hasn’t changed a bit: Tulum – especially along its coastal section – is quite literally ‘off the grid’ for the most part and nobody is permitted to build more than a couple of stories high. But despite Tulum’s relatively rustic exterior,don’t let it fool you –there is plenty of luxury to be found here – in the boutique hotels and in the delectable cuisine.
“Clearly,this is a food town,“ writes Forbes.com. “The latest contender: La Zebra,is now launching 6,10 and 12-course tasting menus.”
When it comes to where to sleep,Forbes recommends checking out the latest property by Colibri Hotels,which is a pioneer in Tulum and helped put the town on the proverbial map nearly ten years ago with the opening of the trendy Mezzanine hotel,which is still home to a fabulous Thai restaurant. Most recently Colibri Hotels opened the latest member of its collection of properties in Tulum with the romantic new Mi Amor hotel on the northern end of the town’s coastal strip. The hotel is just an easy bike ride from the ancient Mayan pyramid and other ruins overlooking the Caribbean Sea,offering just 17 rooms for rent,a breathtaking infinity pool and stunning public spaces designed by the hip Muro Rojo firm out of Mexico City.
“It’s stylish,filled with details like woven swings inspired by Mexican yo-yos suspended over the pool,and bedside lamps based on a traditional ball-and-paddle game,” writes Forbes.
You can also rent bicycles at Mi Amor,sign up for a local yoga class,or take a tour of the region’s best landmarks,such as swimming in a few of the many local cenotes – famous freshwater stalactite-filled caves – or stop in for some to-die-for ceviche in nearby Soliman Bay. The choice is yours and the possibilities are truly endless,so come check out what makes Tulum so special among the world’s finest beach destinations!