If your Instagram feed looks anything like mine, chances are it’s been filled with your favourite influencers, models, and bloggers riding aesthetically pleasing bicycles around Tulum, Mexico.
Now personally, I don’t know how to ride a bike, and I also can’t afford to stay in the super popular luxury resorts. But hey, I still had an amazing weeklong trip around Tulum and other parts of Quintana Roo for the price of two or three nights in an all inclusive, and I’m here now with a travel guide!
(Side note: this wasn’t my actual itinerary, since I ended up winging it on my trip. These are some of the places I went, and the order I would suggest doing them in.)
DAY ONE: land at the Cancun airport, and catch a collectivo or book a transfer to Tulum. There’s no shortage of places to stay here for every budget, but if you’re looking for moderate price range and still want a unique experience, I’d 10/10 recommend Mamasan Hotel.
Check in and get ready to enjoy the jungle sounds from your own private treehouse. Considering the fact that you’re in nature, the rooms are super clean, and if a creepy crawly does make its way into your room, the staff are more than happy to help catch and release it for you. I’m literally terrified of bugs, and didn’t have an issue during my weekend there.
Speaking of the staff, they’re beyond sweet and welcoming. I had great conversations with Alex and Joanna, and the lovely Itzal helped me take my photos and videos, which was much appreciated as a solo traveler.
The rooftop restaurant is delicious, and even though it feels like you’re sleeping in the middle of the jungle, Mamasan is still close to other attractions in Tulum and you aren’t isolated at all.
If all of that doesn’t convince you to check it out, this photo definitely will:
DAY TWO: I sadly didn’t make it to the famous centotes during my trip, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. There are countless centote trips and tours, so spend your second day exploring— I’ve heard amazing things about Dos Ojos!
DAY THREE: Rent a bike (assuming you’re cooler than me and actually know how to ride one, otherwise get ready for a walk) and take a trip up the main road to see some of the most iconic hotels and photo spots in Tulum.
Stop at Coco to see the all-white beach club and swings, and peek into different hotels and shops as you work your way to Azulik for dinner, drinks, or even a spa treatment. The resort is like a giant play structure or jungle gym for adults, and there’s tons to explore but don’t forget to check out the insane net canopy:
DAY FOUR: Take a collectivo and spend the night in Playa del Carmen. As far as accommodation, Hostel 3B did not disappoint, and neither did the $10 a night price tag.
The room and bathroom were comfy, clean, and most importantly, air conditioned, and 3B has a fantastic rooftop pool, bar, and tanning area, where my friend and I were more than happy to relax after our hours in the collectivo.
I personally found walking to the food carts or restaurants nearby insanely delicious and insanely cheap— I probably spent a total of $15 or less on lunch, dinner, and drinks. If you have extra time, I would suggest a second day in here. I wish I’d had more time!
DAY FIVE: Time to get back on the collectivo and catch a ferry to Isla Mujeres! This island off the coast of Cancun is the definition of paradise, with pristine beaches, crystal-clear water, and the main form of transportation being golf carts. There’s tons of hotels and hostels, but I opted for an airbnb called Casa Barco, an adorable home with different themed rooms for rent, plus air conditioning and a rooftop pool.
DAY SIX: Isla Mujeres is home to an underwater art museum, with a sculpture garden situated on the ocean floor. Take a morning or afternoon trip out to see the sunken cars and statues, and test out your free diving skills. End your day by the beach and kick back with a pina colada for a relaxed evening.
DAY SEVEN: If you’re a fan of marine life, take this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go swim with whale sharks today! You’ll be pretty exhausted from another day on the water, so finish your final day in Mexico taking in one last sunset on the island.
DAY EIGHT: board your plane home and say adios to Mexico!
I hope this travel guide gave you some inspiration for a trip of your own, and as always, reach out to me if you need any help planning or have any questions!