Recommend budget accom. in PlayaDelCarmen/Tulum/Valladolid
Replies: 15 - Last Post: Nov 5, 2012 6:22 AM Last Post By: patywolf
Oct 8, 2012 11:39 AM
Recommend budget accom. in PlayaDelCarmen/Tulum/ValladolidI have a few more questions for all you very helpful contributors.
We are independent travelers (usually) going to Yucatan for about a week, mid-end of October and trying to see all we can, but economize when possible.
After doing some research, I'm trying to stay away from the more commercial, touristy all-inclusive trip some friends (who are giving me advice, in addition to what I'm reading here, on other online resources and in many guide books) recently took there, taking some big tourist bus from Cancun on day trips and going also to Xcaret, at what seemed to be a whopping U$100pp per activity.
Want a balance of beach time, and seeing the area features including historic sights and cenote swim(s) (Are there any that are the best?), and a bit of local culture including crafts. Adventure sport (zipline) might be fun, but last priority.
Thinking of staying in Playa del Carmen for a few days, then moving (rather than day trips) to see Tulum and Coba, Chitchen Itza, maybe Ek Bal, all by public bus, staying maybe in Valladolid for the latter. Can anyone help with a reasonable schedule (times needed to see these sites and move between by bus, with logical overnight stops) and reasonable (cleanliness, comfort--not at backpack level any more) accomodation in the U$50-75 range (up to U$100 if necessary), a modest posada.
Would it make more sense to rent a car (i.e. are bus schedules inconvenient for the short time we have, and rental would make it possible to fit in significantly more or see significant things the bus doesn't stop near--or not much different for a first short visit), and what are approximate costs and comparison with bus?
I kind of have a schedule together, but the more I read, the more overwhelmed I feel. The last detail of booking accomodation has sent me over the edge. Please help. If no specific recommendations, would it still be possible in October to find something easily after Playa del Carmen (for which I'd prefer to have a reservation), wherever makes sense nearer the ruins, on arrival?
Note: On last day, I would like to be near enough to the Cancun airport for a mid-morning flight home with the minimum of stress.
Please treat me gently. :-) I answer this kind of question on the Brazil forum a lot and I know sometimes......
Oct 8, 2012 12:00 PM
Xcaret has high prices, but if you are there the last 2 days of October or the first 2 days of November, you get an additional treat, as you get to see the festival de muertos, and the special shows they have those days, including live music from Lila Downs !!
Xplor is a little cheaper and more of an adventure park.
I always recommend car rental to travellers, and if you call hertz you can get some VERY cheap prices, this will also give you the freedom the explore some of the beautiful beaches in the area and maybe also visit and swim in a cenote.
As for staying in Cancu the last night to ath your flight, it is not really necessary, the airport is nearer to Cancun ( 20 minutes from Cancun, 40 minutes from Playa) but it is not a big difference.
As for acommodation, if you want to check out the page below, the price is 350 pesos per night in a double studio this month!
Best of luck!
Oct 8, 2012 2:47 PM
2In 7 days I would recommend the following
1. Depending on time of arrival get on a bus straight to Valladolid, just over 2 hours from cancun. Valladolid is a nice colonial town from which you can leave early approx 7am to get to get to Chitzen Itza before the masses of coach tours arrive from coastal resorts. There are also some cool cenotes a few kilometres outside town which you can hire bikes to cycle to. I recommend a hotel called Auroa Colonial...2 blocks from main plaza, well within your budget and spotlessly clean.
2. You could then bus it to Tulum for 2 nights. Bear in mind tulum is two seperate areas, the hotel zone along the beach and the town which is a few kilometres inland. The tulum ruins are not the most impressive but are spectacularly located on the coast. The ruins at Coba are about a 35 minute drive....we hired a car for the day and also stopped off at the grand cenotes for some snorkelling
3, you could then end your trip with 2 days at plays del carmen which as #1 said is only 40 minutes from the airport at cancun
Oct 9, 2012 8:16 AM
3October is low season and prices will be down. Suggest you just show up and walk around checking out rooms. Then work on getting a low price once you have seen the room. ALWAYS see the room first. You can get to cenotes by getting a combi van that are always running up and down highway 307. These are great to getting to place is not dragging luggage. . Another plus as it wont be so hot in mid October.
Oct 9, 2012 11:20 AM
Oct 10, 2012 6:49 AM
5This is what we did with about the same amount of time. Rented a car from Easy Way, a local company with good service and good prices; they picked us up at Cancun airport and took us to their office 5 minutes away. We drove directly to Valladolid and really enjoyed it. We went to Chichen Itza one day and to Ek Balam the next day. Both easy with the car. We stayed there 3 nights and also stayed at Aurora Colonial, about $45. From there we drove to Sian Ka'an bioreserve, visiting Coba along the way and stayed three nights at the CESIAK ecolodge there--beautiful but more expensive. Then we drove back to Tulum and were there 3 nights. We stayed at Teetotum, small hotel between the town and the beach. One day we drove to Akumal for snorkeling. The driving is not difficult, but everyone told us not to drive much at night.
Oct 10, 2012 7:07 AM
6Thanks Jean. Sounds good.
Trying to get an idea of costs for a car. So the rental was about U$100 per week (U$20 something per day) as I saw on Easyway's site? I want something big enough to have a trunk so stuff is out of sight, but small will do. About how many miles/km did you put on using the route you described? Was it pay per km/mile? Or unlimited? How much was gas per liter? How much did you spend on that route? Any trouble with the much publicized "mordida"?
Oct 12, 2012 7:07 AM
7HI. I don't recall how many km we drove because it think it was unlimited mileage or at least more than we needed in a day. The basic price for 9 days was $162 but we added in full insurance, which came to $229 plus tax. When we talked with other people we realized that this was a very good price. We wound up with a Nissan Tsara, which we later realized is the car for most taxis. It had plenty of space in the trunk. I don't think this is the car we booked (the smallest). Gas was about 10 pesos a liter--more than the US, much less than Europe.
On our way from Valladolid to Coba, we were stopped by a policeman. We thought "here comes the demand for payment." But in reality he checked my husband's license, passport, and the car rental document and let us go when he saw that all of them matched. He told us they were on the lookout for stolen cars. Who knows, might even be true. It may be that the reason he stopped us was that there was a temporary license plate in the back window, rather than attached to the car.
Oct 12, 2012 8:52 AM
8Thanks for all the good info.
When I booked the flight on JetBlue, a decent deal came up for Hertz (actually better for the basic rental price than the one with EasyWay for the equivalent car), so I'm going to see how that goes.
10 pesos a liter is about 40 pesos (or U$3.10) per gallon. Makes it cheaper than current U.S. prices. How long ago was this? Anyway, doesn't seem too outrageous.
Another question....was looking at beach huts in Tulum. Anybody stayed at one?
Recommendations? Bug situation? (seems they have netting to sleep under, but...)
Oct 12, 2012 9:54 AM
Oct 13, 2012 7:20 AM
Oct 29, 2012 2:14 PM
11Just wanted to thank you all for your help.
We got back yesterday after a wonderfully busy week with not a drop of rain !
Rented a car from Easyway (U$230/wk including full insurance options of U$126 and spent U$70 on gas for our route). Roads were good; driving easy; people very helpful.
Went to Valladolid (charming), saw ruins at Ek Balam, Chichen Itza, Coba, and Tulum where we also stayed, and a night in Playa del Carmen (too touristy for us). Swam in amazing, isolated local and also more touristed cenotes, and at gorgeous beaches with powdery white sand and turquoise water (Tulum). Snorkled with the turtles and rays ay Akumal. Ate local meals for 450 pesos and also U$10+ hamburgers on the beach.
Found comfortable a.c. accomodations in the U$50-62 range (end of October) with parking. (3 nights Aurora Hotel Colonial a couple of blocks from the park/church in Valladolid, 3 nights the Hotel Posada 06 just behind the Scotiabank on rt307 in Tulum, and 1 night Barrio Latino on Calle 4 between 10 and 15 in Playa del Carmen, the first 2 with pool, all with courtyard).
Day 1 , landed, got car, and went directly to Valladolid and spent the evening watching costumed folk dance demos and then dancing ourselves to a band playing everything from bachata to BoogyWoogy Bugle Boy of Company B at the blocked off street next to the plaza.
Day 2 Ek Balam, nearby pueblo to buy hammock, and a really remote cenote (SakWa?).
Day 3 Chichen Itza and a more touristy cenote. A festival with fireworks at the church at night.
Day 4 My husband did more shopping and we serendipitously watched the blessing of the leatherworkers' union at the church in Valladolid, and then on to see Coba, crocs, and to Tulum to stay
Day 5 Beach day at 'club' (Ana and Jose) in Tulum
Day 6 Tulum ruins and swim at beach there, and then snorkling in Akumal followed by drinks/snacks on the beach
Day 7 up to Playa del Carmen and town beach there--
Day 8 up very early to return car in Cancun and fly home, just missing the hurricane Sandy cancellations
Great memories !!!!!!!!!!
Nov 2, 2012 7:05 PM
Nov 3, 2012 4:56 AM
Nov 4, 2012 8:25 AM
(4 star Hotel)
From US$134.33 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$101.20 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$171.47 per night