While on vacation in Playa del Carmen we took a tour to visit Chichen Itza which is one of the largest Mayan cities, located in the Yucatan and is one of the most visited archaeological sites in Mexico; over one million tourists visit the ruins every year.
We left around 8am and spent more time travelling on the bus then at Chichen Itza itself, we also had a stop for lunch, a visit to a Mayan village together with swimming at a cenote, which is a sinkhole or natural pit, where the collapse of limestone has exposed groundwater underneath to create a natural swimming pool. Steps have been carved or added to access the pool. There was also a short stop at Valladolid on the way back, a very picturesque town that was more bathroom break then sightseeing. We have decided that if we visit again, it would be better to hire a car so we can spend more time at the ruins. To me though, the most amazing thing about the coach ride was the offering and serving of alcohol. This tour was not for the recovering alcoholic, and as my husband noted, if we were in Canada, look how many laws would have been broken. Because of the time spent travelling and to alleviate boredom, the tour guides decided to turn the “siesta into a fiesta” with the offering of drinks. Beer was on offer before lunch. After our stops, and once back on the bus there was more beer, followed by a shot of Xtabentun the Mayan liqueur. After the tour of Chichen Itza, there were Tequila shots, Tequila sunrise cocktails, vodka, gin, scotch and Bacardi plus more beer. At some point a bottle of Squirt lemonade came out mixed with red wine and a game started where you took as much liquid in your mouth without swallowing and then when full drank it down. It was a great success with those who tried it! At 8pm we pulled into the hotel very tired, it had been a long day.
About Playa del Carmen Quintana Roo. From small fishing town, to luxury tourism playground. Playa del Carmen has an abundant amount of new luxury hotels, residential condominiums, restaurants, boutiques and entertainment venues. Mostly gated with security checkpoints for access. There is a huge shopping area called Quinta Avenida, or Fifth Avenue. It can be accessed from the beach near the pier. Fifth Avenue is lined with hundreds of shops, bars and restaurants.