Friday, July 15, 2011


We didn't take many pictures. I know, I know, tsk tsk. Family and friends have already expressed their disapproval, but let me defend myself!

We vacationed in Cancun, Mexico in June. June! The humidity was 90%+. When we walked outside, we were immediately soaked. Our clothes were dripping, our towels were useless, even our books we were reading got wet. Not ideal conditions for a camera. As if that wasn't enough, it rained 3 out of the 7 day of our honeymoon. So. Not too many pictures. Don't be angry at me.

Our Resort

Obviously we didn' t take this picture; it's the stock photo from the hotel

Things We Did

Oh get your minds out of the gutter. We sludged quite a bit in the air conditioning since it was so hot. We went swimming, snorkeling and to some of the major theme parks around Cancun/Playa Del Carmen. 

We visited two theme parks that I'd highly recommend, with the caveat that I'm fairly certain they are destroying the environment in that area. Also, none of these are our pictures since these were both water parks. No camera for us. 

The first is called Xcaret (pronouned Ish-ka-ret). We went snorkeling in their underground rivers, saw a lot of wildlife, and even went down a waterslide that ended up in a natural tide pool. Tons of fish were trapped in the natural tide pool, so it was pretty neat to fall in the water and see huge 4 to 8 feet fish dart away from you.

We got to snorkel several miles of this; absolutely breathtaking!
But the real treat at Xcaret was swimming with the dolphins. There were five people in our group, and there were 10 dolphins in the water with us. 10. 4 mothers and 6 babies. You heard right. Baby dolphins. 

The mothers were the stars of the show. We got to shake hands with them, get a kiss, splash with them, pet them. Two mothers jumped over us while we tread water. Dolphins are big! I'd hate to tick one of them off. 

But the real treat was watching the baby dolphins play. They were not "part of the show", so to speak. The trainers encouraged them to be kids, and as such, asked us not to give them attention. But they were so cute! And, apparently, dolphins love to be pet, so the babies would try to swim slowly by us to get our attention. When that didn't work, they would dart at us, veering away at the last second, playfully vying for our affection. 

We spent a full 60 minutes in the water with the dolphins, and it was well worth the money. The finale was when the two dolphins pushed our feet using their noses and propelled us out of the water like: 

Fair warning, don't wear a bikini to this. We definitely saw one woman almost lose her bottoms.

Several days later, we visited XPlor, touted as "100% safe". It was the least safe theme park we have ever been to. But it was awesome.

The first thing we did is zipline all around the park. The ascent to the zipline was not safe at all. It was a stone staircase, with a tiny railing, and only a three foot wall separating me from plunging to a 70-foot fall death. However, I actually felt very safe during the ziplining; they had it down to a science. After the first three or four times, the zip lining became almost mundane. The water landings were pretty neat though:

I don't know why that teradactyl is overhead
We again swam through underground rivers, but unlike Xcaret, the ones at Xplor were limestone. We also went paddling through underground rivers. They kept telling us, "Don't touch the limestone", but it was impossible not to! We did not have goggles, so we couldn't see under the water. Sometimes, the rock would jut into the main swimway, taking me by surprise when I scraped the entire front of my body against it. Safe indeed.

Why are they smiling?
Those little paddles attached to your wrist were so ineffective it was laughable. We kept running into walls, getting turned around, but we laughed hysterically through most of it. By the time we finished, we were absolutely exhausted. Least relaxing "ride" ever. We also probably destroyed thousands of years worth of limestone accumulation. Oops. 

What really made the park was the amphibious vehicles. We got to drive them at a fairly good clip, maybe 25 miles per hour. 

When we took them out, it was raining and spectacularly unsafe. The roads were precarious, steep and slippery with little warning when a cave entrance was coming. I remember us flying over one hill to see a sloping decline into a cave...with an immediate L turn at the cave entrance. My husband slammed on the brakes to no effect. We slid down the hill, screaming the entire way. Right as we entered the cave, and I was sure we were going to hit the cave wall head on, he jerked the wheel, sending the back of our vehicle into a spin, slamming us sideways against the wall (sorry limestone). And we just kept driving, laughing like maniacs. 

See those roll bars above? Ours didn't actually connect to our vehicle; it was rusted through. So we could jiggle our roll bar. We told one of the attendants about it. She told us she would "make a note of it", but she never did. 100% safe my butt.

The Wildlife

We saw all sorts of wildlife not only at the theme parks we visited, but also at our hotel. Every morning during breakfast, birds would flock to the open air buffet tables and attempt to steal everything. And I do mean everything. They even took Splenda packets. 

Iguanas would come right up to our table and beg for food. My husband pet an iguana, fed another iguana and then got bit by an iguana. These iguanas were anywhere from a foot long to three feet long (tail not included!)

In the wild, we saw parrots, geckos, an alligator, spiny star fish, a sea spider (gross; don't Google that), sting rays, a huge 8 foot long fish (no idea what kind) trapped in a tide pool, pencil fish and countless tropical fish.

In captivity, we saw dolphins, panthers, sting rays (that we got to pet!), sea turtles (including giant 7 or 8 feet long ones as well as little babies), jellyfish, sea urchins, flamingos and manatees.

We didn't know at the time, but this is called an Agouti. We thought it was a squirrel rat dog combination.
Mr. Gator was actually in a fenced in cage on the hotel premises. He was probably 8 feet long. We saw another alligator that was not in a cage. He was just swimming along in the water feature. While some workers were working in said water feature....

This coatimundi was probably the cutest animal we saw, although I didn't take this picture
Mr. Crabby was teeny tiny; about the size of a quarter

Overall, it was an amazing trip. I highly recommend visiting Cancun if you can. 

1 comment:

  1. If I ever get there I want to go to Xcaret!