Join us on this amazing tour where we have the chance to experience the most important archeological sites in the region: Chichen Itza, Coba and Tulum, giving us the opportunity to learn about the architecture as well as an understanding about the beliefs of the Mayans and their life. We’ll enjoy the biosphere nature reserve of Ria Largartos and Sian Ka’an and enjoy the beautiful wildlife. We’ll snorkel among colorful schools of fish, see the visual spectacle of “Pink Lake”, swim in cenotes of the deepest blue, explore ancient sites and colonial villages and oh, the wildlife! Mexico is home to some remarkable animals that live in the jungles, waters and on land. See and photograph animals like spider monkeys, sea turtles, sailfish, flamingos, many different bird species, jaguars and much more. Come connect with the friendly locals, the stunning nature and wildlife of the Yucatan Peninsula, and learn more about the Mayan culture and communities. We love it here!
After our arrival at the International airport of Cancún, Mexico we will be greeted and brought to our Cancun hotel, an oasis of tranquility in the center of Cancun. The eco-hotel’s traditional colonial facade is cheerfully painted with a Mexican flair. Passing through the wrought iron gates, we enter the interior courtyard where we are surrounded by lush tropical gardens. This interior courtyard provides quiet in the midst of the city and security in the midst of convenience. All rooms open onto the courtyard with a swimming pool and jacuzzi. A Canyon Calling Trip Leader will be on hand to assist you with check in and introductions. Dinner on own (due to arrival times). Overnight Cancun.
After breakfast we are off to snorkel in the National Reef Park of Puerto Morelos, the second biggest coral reef in world. Government eco-reserve designations protect the reef and mangroves, and the village itself, from development. We’ll swim with and enjoy the marine life, watch as schools of colorful fish flit and swim in unison, and keep an eye out for lobster, starfish, and conch shells. This afternoon we’ll have some relaxing time in this quaint fishing village to explore and shop, or just chill with a margarita. Overnight Cancun.
After breakfast, we’ll have the opportunity to swim with some of the most charming species in the sea, sea turtles! At first, our reaction was “wait! We need to protect these creatures!” We learned the waters where the turtles are living are their natural habitat and dug deeper into the results of massive snorkel tourism, and related bad practices. Ecotourism is not just a word here, and we’ll go to a natural protected area of the reef where the larger green sea turtles frequent and can only be accessed with a licensed guide. After this beautiful experience and lunch, we’ll discover one of the best secrets of the Mexican Caribbean: the Cenotes! Cenotes are surface connections to subterranean water bodies. Beautiful, blue, and with over 6000 different cenotes in the Yucatan Peninsula alone, we’ll discover our favorite. We’ll splash and enjoy this magical body of water before heading to the town of Akumal for dinner and overnight.
After breakfast we’ll enjoy birding in the Sian Ka’an reserve, a sublime area of natural beauty, Sian Ka’an is home to thousands of species of flora and fauna. This region is a designated Biosphere Reserve and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It remains the largest protected area in the Mexican Caribbean. We’ll travel to Bacalar to cool off in a cenote. We’ll enjoy the quaint village of Bacalar, among small house of fishermen emerges the beautiful lagoon of the same name, also called the Lagoon of Seven Colors due to its blue and turquoise hues. We’ll check into our hotel, stroll on the beach, and have dinner and overnight in Bacalar.
After breakfast, we’ll enjoy a morning hike in the area before we head north to Valladolid, a colonial city. On our way we’ll stop in Punta Laguna to see spider monkeys in their natural habitat. Chirpy and curious, you’ll love the photo opportunity. Then it’s on to Valladolid, an incredible hidden gem located deep in Mexico’s Yucatan jungle. Some say it’s their favorite place in the region. Quite simply, Valladolid is one of the most vibrant, authentic places you ‘ll find in a country that’s chalk full of them. We’ll enjoy a city tour of this magical town with its beautiful colonial constructions and exquisiteness of the work of its artisans in the local markets. Check into our hotel for three nights in Valladolid and enjoy dinner.
After breakfast, we’ll visit Chichen Itza, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, and a UNESCO World Heritage site. We’ll experience the magnificent archaeological site and its history. Our experienced guide will help us learn about the Maya culture and traditions. Chichen Itza was one of the largest Maya cities and was likely to have been one of the mythical great cities referred to in later Mesoamerican literature. The city may have had the most diverse population in the Maya world, a factor that could have contributed to the variety of architectural styles at the site. After this incredible experience, we’ll lunch, then cool off and enjoy swimming in a crystal water cenote. It’s back to Valladolid to further explore the city before we have dinner and overnight.
After breakfast, we’ll hit the road to visit Río Lagartos. The area surrounding Rio Lagartos has been designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, which means it is of “unusual scientific and natural interest”. This gateway to the biosphere is a bird watcher’s paradise with dozens of species making their homes here including the largest flock of flamingos in the Yucatan (about 40,000!) There are also some 58 species of mammals found here. After lunch we’ll visit Las Colaradas which seems like the setting for a fantastic dream. This visual spectacle is known as “the Pink Lake”. The vibrant pink color of these lakes is due to red-colored algae, plankton, and brine shrimp that thrive in the salty environment. As the water evaporates, these organisms become more concentrated, glimmering pink in the bright sunlight. Dinner and overnight in Valladolid.
After breakfast we’re off to visit the Coba Ruins. The site is the nexus of the largest network of stone causeways of the ancient Mayan world, and it contains many engraved and sculpted tablets that documented ceremonial life and important events of the Late Classic Period of Mesoamerican. The Coba Ruins are by no means the most famous or most popular ruins on the Yucatan, but they are the most awesome to explore, especially the site called Nohoch Mul, the great pyramid. A visit to the Coba Ruins is a lesson in history, a demonstration of nature, and a photographer’s delight! Located deep in the jungle, this site has been touted as “hands down, the best”. After this incredible experience, we’ll head to the town of Tulum to have dinner and check in to our accommodations. Overnight Tulum.
After breakfast, we’ll visit Tulum archaeological site, a maya site on the Riviera Maya, adjacent to the town of the same name. The most spectacular aspect of Tulum is its main building, a large stone structure called El Castillo (castle), and it’s location on a cliff overlooking the brilliant turquoise water of the Caribbean. The name Tulum means wall, referring to the fact that Tulum was a walled city, protected on one side by steep cliffs facing the sea and on the other by a wall of about 12 feet in height. Tulum served as a trading port. After this experience we’ll explore the town of Tulum, which offers the perfect combination of total relaxation, yet can fill your day. We’ll stroll its streets of the downtown area with it’s unique shops of bohemian and natural styles, and relax on the gorgeous white sand beaches. Back to Cancun for check in and enjoy our Farewell Dinner. Overnight Cancun.
Enjoy breakfast while we recant the joy of discovering the culture and nature of the Yucatan Peninsula. We’ll provide a transfer from our hotel accommodation to the Cancun airport, or choose to stay and play in this famous beach town.