Akumal or Tulum
Replies: 9 - Last Post: May 31, 2013 8:46 AM Last Post By: amobr82
Nov 3, 2012 11:20 AM
Akumal or TulumAfter a long absence I'm going to be in Riviera Maya area for a nice long stay in January 2013... it's -2°C in Calgary today, and the prospect is warm and warming!
- start out on Isla Cozumel with a friend - she returns to Canada on 2 Jan, then I will be on my own for the next 10 days.
- 5 nights booked in Playa del Carmen and will be fine with a few things I'll revisit, and rack up as much beach time as possible.
- 5 nights ~ open to suggestions! read on....
- return to west coast Canada is 12 Jan @ 730 pm - suggestions for clean, basic accoms near (or an easy taxi ride to) Cancun Airport for my last night are appreciated - I haven't booked anything, thinking I could also go directly to the airport from PdC, Akumal, Tulum or ?? on 12 Jan.
I booked a b&b type place in/near Akumal (info says it's less than 2km to the main business district) after Playa del Carmen and will move further down the coast for a few days, but now am wondering if it would be wiser to just move along to Tulum from PdC.... any wisdom or experiences to share to a mature, solo female traveller about either Akumal or Tulum? or if you would prefer one over the other?
The one and only time we (no 'we' anymore, husband died 10 years ago) attempted the ruins at Tulum, the park attendants weren't permitting entrance because of heavy rains that day. I hope to return this trip - is there a best / better time in the day or week to go than others?
I will be using bus or taxi ~ will rent a car only if necessary, but I've found in the past that it's easy to get around and parking, petrol, and damage anxiety for a rental doesn't excite me. A drive in the dark from Chichen Itza many years ago was a great education! :)
I've put a few things out here as questions, I didn't want to make a bunch of posts for each item - thanks for reading this far. :)
Thanks in advance.
Nov 3, 2012 11:43 AM
1Akumal is expensive. I paid ten dollars usa for a burger there once. Tulum is three places the Maya ruins, the hotel zone and Tulum Pueblo the roadside town. Staying in the hotel zone is best but the food there not good and expensive so best to have a rental car so you can get into Tulum Pueblo to get good food cheap. Also if staying low end the car trunk is wonderful place to put you things as security not the best in the Tulum hotel Zone. Photos of Tulum see my website wolfcalls.com. I love Tulum but be prepared to rough it is staying real low cost. Bring you own skeeter net.
Nov 4, 2012 6:58 AM
2Akumal is pricey as pointed out. The snorkeling to see a turtle is the reason to go in my opinion. Akumal is really two towns, they expensive gringo one by the beach and the actual village on the other side which likely will not appeal to too many people. Sounds like you have booked one of the places perhaps on the jungle side and will be taking cabs and or collectivos. These work well and are reasonable priced, a collective from Akumal to Tulum should be around 40pesos, give or take.
Tulum is really two parts these days the beach which is every bit as costly as Akumal if not more so and the town which can still be cheap and will likely appeal to the traveler far more than the village of Akumal. I think the beaches of Tulum are nicer because it is longer and offers more walking/strolling/hang out space. It's easy to stay in Tulum pueblo and either rent a bike to take the long (4 to 10km) ride out to the beach or jump a cab/collectivo.
While not being female I would think you would be just as safe in either area and have no real problems in either. I think Tulum offers more to do/see in the evenings than Akumal and offer cheaper eats/drinks.
See Tulum EARLY before the buses of resort/AI visitors start to show up. It's popular and far to crowded these days.
Need more info or suggestions on where to stay? PM and I can send some things your way. We live about half way between Tulum and Akumal so know the area a bit ;-)
Nov 4, 2012 7:14 AM
3Stayed in Akumal many times and love it, curious where you booked as I am not aware of any B&Bs there, only a few hotels, condos and villas there and Half Moon Bay. For cheap food eat at the Loncheria or Imelda's, there are also a few places in the pueblo with cheap eats like the flat chicken places or El Ultimo Mayo.
I love the Tulum beaches but feel a lot of the hotels there are just charging too much. Visited a friend last year staying at Cabanas Tulum. Lovely place.
Go early to the ruins, they open at 8am and the entrance fee is 57 pesos and I believe they only take pesos, not USD. Saturday is a good day, lots of people travel on the weekend so probably less crowded.
Nov 4, 2012 8:23 AM
Nov 4, 2012 3:27 PM
5We stayed in Tulum a week ago, for a few days, in the town at:
which we found comfortable, quiet, and with very nice staff. We got a very reasonable price at this low season. Easy to find, as it is just behind the ScotiaBank on the main road 307. Lots of good little food stalls set up nearby at night, and an easy stroll to shops. I walked a bit on my own (female) and felt safe.
We did have a car to get to the beach, but I noticed a lot of collectivos going and coming frequently. We went to a "beach club" called Ana Y Jose. The prices at the beach, if you want to rent a place to sit and have an umbrella, and the prices for food, seemed very expensive for us (used to a dollar or 2 to rent chairs/umbrellas in Brazil and inexpensive food there on the beach), more in line with a decent restaurant at home in a major U.S. city. You can find your own spot on the sand and bring your own food, but the sun is hot without an umbrella.
We also enjoyed swimming at the beach that is part of the ruins.
We were in Akumal only long enough to snorkle and eat, and didn't get a feel of the situation vis a vis accomodation there.
May 30, 2013 7:32 AM
We are going for 2 weeks i november 2013 staying in the all inclusice resort Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya.
We are from Denmark, but speak english. The resort look expensive, But it was the cheapest oppertunity from Denmark (pakages tour inkluding fly ticket).
Do anyone have some suggestion to
What to see in the area , nature an culture , but not amusment parks please
Best oppertunity to experience seaturtles
Possibilyty to see reptile and snake in the wild
Lokal tourguide (website or mail please)
Nature experiense, we love your black and green leguane
Anything we migth want to experience.
May 30, 2013 8:43 AM
7A resort cannot possibly cost less than U$35-50 per night for a double room, the cost of a modest and comfortable posada in that area.
What is the point of staying in an AI if what you are asking to do is all outside the resort, off premises, and you will not be using the facilities or even eating there (because of all day trips). Most of the tourists staying at AIs take expensive bus tours to see the historical/cultural sights. Not all of the sights are easy to do in a day trip, but you are stuck sleeping in an inconvenient fixed location.
Get trip insurance, with cancellation protection. The packages are cheap at that time of year because there may be hurricanes.
If I were you, and I was stuck at one of those huge isolated resorts, I'd rent a car, or use the ADO bus system (probably harder from an isolated resort), and see the sights on my own, rather than use the bus tours.
For sea turtles, go to Akumal and do a snorkle around the little cove with the local cooperative of guides, all equipment included in the inexpensive fee.
Your opportunity to see wildlife might be best at Sian Ka'an.
For "culture", there are Mayan ruins. Ek Balam, Chichen Itza (get here early in the day), Coba, Tulum, and more. Lots of iguanas all over the ruins.
The cenotes are very interesting, and are a refreshing way to spend a hot afternoon after seeing some ruins int he morning. You can find cenotes all over the Yucatan.
Tulum has a spectacular beach. You can access it from the ruins or from other points.
Interesting and charming towns to see include Valladolid and Merida, but again, these would be strenuous to do as a day trip from a resort.
May 31, 2013 7:23 AM
8Taxi to Akumal will probably cost 120 plus tip each way, pay in pesos to get the best exchange rate. There have been reports of the occasional turtle at your resort.
There are two dive shops if you need to rent snorkel gear, and both dive shops can supply guides if you feel you need one. Go early to avoid most of the tour groups at Akumal (I saw them as early as 9am a few times when having breakfast at Lol-Ha last week).
If you want to go fishing, it is US$150 for up to four people in a panga for 3 hours in Akumal, you can also arrange this with the dive shop. Many folks like to arrange fishing trips through Cueva del Pescador restaurant, if you catch anything they cook it for free (just charge for drinks, and if there are non fishers eating I think they charge them for side dishes).
May 31, 2013 8:46 AM
9When we were there last fall, there seemed to be one commercial shop at the parking lot entrance that rented snorkle equipment, and then what seemed to be the local cooperative (to the left as we came onto the beach) that we felt better about patronizing for guide and equipment rental (250 pesos each). Without the guide, as a newbie to Akumal and to snorkling, and despite all the research I did online, I wouldn't have known which side of the cove had the turtles and rays, and which just some coral and a few fish. I guess you can go further out too.
(4 star Hotel)
From US$217.70 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$293.75 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$949.71 per night