Some Great Reasons to Spend New Year’s Eve in Cancun!

Have you eve wanted to celebrate the coming of the new year in an incredible place? If that has been your fantasy for a long time, then let me recommend you one of the best destinations in Mexico and also one of the most beautiful cities: Cancun. But, what can you do or where can you go in that city? Here I give you some great reasons to spend New Years Eve in Cancun!

The Best Hotels in Cancun

If you are going to Cancun, you will have the chance to spend your vacation in some of the most exclusive hotels in Mexico where the service and the quality of the facilities are truly impressive. One of them is the Westin Resort and Spa, an all inclusive hotel located in on Blvd. Kukulcan km 20 very close to many fascinating attractions. Moreover, it boasts fully-equipped bedrooms beautifully decorated in a typical Mexican style. Another great hotel is the Grand Park Royal Cancun Caribe Hotel, a four-diamond award hotel with seven restaurants and four bars situated in Cancun’s Hotel Zone close to Chac Mool Beach and the Coral Negro Market (a famous flea market). Besides, it owns one of the largest beach fronts in Cancun and it is the only hotel that has a real Mayan ruin on the hotel premises.

Some of Cancun’s Most Beautiful Beaches

cancun new year - ShutterRunner 26-12

It is well-known that Cancun boasts some of the most incredible beaches in Mexico but if you dont have time to visit them all, here are two that you should need to check out: Pearl Beach and Marlin Beach. On the one hand, Pearl Beach is the closest beach to the city of Cancun, it is located on the Km 2.5 in front of the Barcelo Club Las Perlas which is between downtown Cancun and the Nichupte bridge. Moreover, it is a beautiful small stretch of sand near to luxurious private homes where there are almost no waves because it is protected from the open ocean by Women Island so it is a safe place for young swimmers. On the other hand, Marlin Beach is situated on the eastside area of Cancun at the Km 13 near the Carisma Courts and the Tucancun Hotel. Furthermore, Marlin Beach offers a glamourous, expansive space with an incredibly deep turquoise sea and great high waves which are popular among windsurfers and parasailers.

What to Eat during the New Year’s Party!

As regards to dining options, Cancun has a wide variety of restaurants in which you will be able to taste all kinds of food: Mexican, French, Italian, Japanese, Thai, Vegetarian and even fusion cuisine. One of the best restaurants is Maria Marie in the Royal Cancun Hotel. In this Mexican hacienda-style restaurant decorated with murals, you can taste the famous French-Mexican fusion cuisine. But, if you desire to try traditional regional dishes, you can stop by Casitas, an on-the-beach restaurant that serves delicious platter of shrimps, oysters, tuna tartar, king crab, and lobster trail and El Oasis, located in the downtown area which specializes in grilled seafood with rice, fish filled with coconut cream, ceviche and aguachiles (spicy lime shrimp).

All in all, Cancun is an amazing destination to spend an unforgettable New Years party; its hotels, beaches and tasty food (among other things you will have to discover for yourself) are more than enough reasons to purchase your flight ticket and make a hotel reservation right away!

Romina Nieto

Image: Flickr by ShutterRunner

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Come and See the Unique Mayan Ruins of El Rey in Cancun

What are the first images that come to your mind when someone mentions Cancun? Probably, you picture yourself lying on the beach, enjoying a fresh drink under the sun or maybe swimming in the clear waters of the Caribbean Sea. Even if all this sounds absolutely tempting, Cancun is also a city that represents an important part in Mexicos history and it is interesting to explore this part as well. So, do you wonder how can you do that? Come and see the unique Mayan ruins of El Rey and other nearby sites too!

Get to Know Cancun

Nowadays, the city of Cancun is seen as a gorgeous destination located in the state of Quintana Roo in the Yucatan Peninsula that boasts very luxurious hotels in the Hotel Zone, stunning beaches, pristine waters, lively nightlife, fun activities and excellent food. But, few people know about the importance of Cancun in the era of pre-Columbian Mexico. Cancun is also called the entrance to the Mayan gate since ancient civilizations used the city mainly as a port to enter into other Mayan cities. In fact, historians and archaeologists have found evidence that suggest that ancient tribes lived here as far back as 1800 B.C. Fortunately, today, Cancun (and in surroundings areas) there are many archaeological sites that, even if they are not intact, you learn about how was life before the arrival of Spanish conquistadors. One of the most significant place is Las Ruinas del Rey, a site set in the middle of the Hotel Zone.

The Most Famous Ruins of Cancun

el rey

So, one of the best sites in Cancun to learn more about the pre-Columbian history and culture of Cancun, and of the Yucatan Peninsula in general, is Las Ruinas del Rey (The Kings Ruins), an archaeological site located in the famous Hotel Zone just a short walking distance from the Hilton Club at Blvd. Kukulcan Km. 19 and 6,2 miles south of Cancuns Convention Center. Moreover, these ruins were given that name because during an excavation a mask and a skull honoring the Mayan Sun God were found. Besides, the skull seemed to have belonged to a person of a high-rank and it was decorated with a copper axe, a bracelet and accesories made of bone and shells. It is believed that this royal tomb was originally named Kin Ich Ahau Bonil which means The King of the Sun Face. Apart from the Mayan tomb, El Rey is also made up by 47 different structures such as platforms and temples that are remains of old religious buildings and markets.

Other Gorgeous Nearby Ruins

Aside from Las Ruinas del Rey, close to Cancun, there are other equally important archaeological sites. One of them is Coba, another Mayan city set almost 55 miles east of Chichen Itza and about 27 miles northwest of the site of Tulum. This ancient Mayan ruins, whose name means waters stirred by the wind, were built around two lagoons, is approximately 30 square miles in size and is the home of the Ancient Pyramid where people can climb its 120 steps. This Ancient Pyramid called Nohuch Mul (it means large mound in Mayan language) is the tallest at Coba; furthermore, it has more than 130 feet in height. A further interesting Mayan site is Tulum, which is located 81 miles south of Cancun. These ruins are the only ones built on the beautiful coast and is one of the few that is protected by a wall. Similarly to the other Mayan cities, Tulum fulfilled a specific purpose: it was a seaport for Coba where jade and turquoise stones were commercialised. In addition to this, the wall of Tulum, which is 2572 feet long, served to protect the Mayan population from invaders and it encloses the city on three sides. Also, the wall 22 feet thick and it is between 10 and 22 feet high. Other remaining structures of Tulum are El Castillo (The Castle), The Temple of the Frescoes and The Temple of the Descending God.

All in all, Cancun can offer you so much more besides sun, drinks, beaches and sea. Although it may seem so tempting, dare to explore the historical side of Cancun not many people are aware of. So, what are you doing on your next vacations? Come to Cancun and get ready to live an incredible experience.

Romina Nieto

Image: Flickr by júbilo haku

Panuchos and Salbutes, Traditional Delicious Nibbles In Cancun

In spite of the fact that Mexico is popular for its tacos and seafood, there are some other delicious nibbles which are worth giving a try when visiting this Latin country. These are the panuchos and salbutes, traditional recipes which are offered in any hotel in Cancun. Either choose to eat them in your resort or venture into the streets and choose some of the different restaurants downtown in order to enjoy yourself with an incredible feast!

SALBUTES. They are quite similar to the tasty Mexican tacos; after spending a whole night clubbing, give salbutes a try. Originally created in the state of Yucatan, the salbutes are made with wheat, and they are quite similar to the traditional pancakes. After these are ready, they are covered with all kinds of meat, spices, vegetables, cream, and special sauces as well as cheese.

PANUCHOS. They are eaten as if they were toasts. Similar to our traditional breakfast, these crunchy delicious fried panuchos are also covered with all kind of ingredients, but if I were you, I would use onion in order to give them a special touch.

COCHINITA PIBIL. This is another traditional nibble in this area, highly influenced by the Mayan culture. This is roasted pork with juice, covered with banana peels. Most Mexican restaurants prepare them and they can be eaten in different ways.

Alberto Correu

Now you know. If you really want to give authentic Yucatan cuisine a try, come to Cancun, spend some great days during your vacations, and have a feast with these three delicious nibbles!

When on vacations, everybody fancies eating out, forgetting about our routine and embarking upon the unique experience of giving exotic food a try. Cancun is no exception and this is why this town is ready to provide you with incredible meals belonging to the Mayan cuisine which will spoil your palate.  Apart from the salbutes and panuchos, you can opt for the lime soup, which is prepared with chicken, toasts and lime. Another great option are ceviches, which is made with octopus or any other fish. Its recipe includes lemon, onions, herbs, and tomatoes. Have you ever tried fish tacos? Well, this is possible in Cancun. Delicious tacos are prepared in any restaurant here, and they can be enjoyed at affordable prices.

El Pocito is a great restaurant, where friendly people will provide you with a whole list of traditional nibbles. The ambiance is quiet, clean, and of course, waitresses will welcome you dressed in traditional Yucatan clothes. Emara is another alternative which specializes mainly in nibbles, and it is ideal for those who are on vacations with their families due to its cozy atmosphere. Labna is another great choice when it comes to eating out in Cancun; located downtown, these restaurant is a little bit more stylish than the other two, but still prices are quite cheap and the food is nothing but delicious. Come and make your own choice, but spoil yourself with traditional nibbles in Cancun!

Agostina Giacomino

Picture: Flickr (Albert Correu)

Explore the Majestic Coral Reefs in Cancun and Its Surroundings

Incredible coral reefs in the Mexican Caribbean are one of the most astonishing natural creations due to their colorful beauty and their age. These reefs are some of the oldest in the planet, and they are located in the Ecuador in shallow waters which are warm enough in order to allow tourists to do different activities. Their basic structures are formations which seem to be rocks but which actually are conglomerates of small organisms called polyps. When they die, they elaborate an skeleton which develops a sort of peel with a new generation, which begins the creation of mountains, homes to thousands of fishes and different marine species. The process is quite slow and it has its own balance. In spite of the fact that these formations are home to hundreds of polyps, these organisms are incredibly sensitive to temperature changes. This is why massive interaction with humans has turned out quite damaging for them, and now scuba diving instructors advise visitors to avoid contact with them.

Mexico and specially Cancun is a must when it comes to choosing where to spend some warm vacations. Book a room in one of the so many first class resorts and hotels in Cancun and explore everything the city has for you. Needless to say, diving is one of the most popular alternatives when it comes to doing something which involves water as well as fun. The main attractions here are the coral reefs, where thousands of fishes swim in front of your goggles. Coral reefs in the coast of Cancun and near Cozumel surprise even the most experimented divers. Either if this is your first time or you have already done it several times, exploring these coral reefs entail a memorable experience you will never forget.

Diving in Cancun natural wells is also another important attraction. Crystal clear, fresh water hidden in labyrinths with submarine caves is waiting for you. For authentic adventurers –that is, only intermediate and expert divers- the Sharks cave is a must. Here you will have the chance of watching these incredible beasts having a rest. Beginners can stay in Cancun beaches and admire the great variety of tropical fish and coral reefs which inhabit these safe waters.

There are many different marines and scuba diving schools offering complete lessons, certifications and journeys in the area. Diving in Cozumel, Cancun and its surroundings is something you cannot miss in case you happen to visit them. Different shops will provide you with the equipment needed and of course, in some cases you can even rent it at quite affordable prices. No excuse is valid – Cancun and its coral reefs are waiting for you! Come and live it to the most.

Agostina Giacomino

Picture: Flickr (Hilario Ortigosa Monteoliva)

Nichupte Lagoon, a Place Worth Exploring in Cancun

Are you looking for an adventure and don’t know where to travel during the summer? If you yet have to decide, then Cancun is the ideal place for you. Besides the fact that Cancun has some of the most stunning beaches with crystal-clear waters, there are many other things that you can do while vacationing in this city. One of these is going on a tour to the Nichupte Lagoon.

Cancun, that Paradise on Earth

Located on the southeast coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, Cancun is known around the world as a gorgeous vacation spot. As I mentioned above, this city boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world accompanied by a turquoise Caribbean Sea. What is more, it has also gained attention thanks to the  modern and luxurious infrastructure of the hotels which offer an excellent service to compete with other tourist destinations. But Cancun hasn’t always been like that. Cancun, whose name means nest of snakes in the old Mayan language, used to be just a small fishermen town filled with unspoiled beaches. However, nearly 40 years ago, the Mexican government recognized the importance this area could have in the future of the country’s economy. And so it began, Cancun was born as a major tourist spot. But apart from the white sandy beaches, on the other side lies a rich ecosystem in the Nichupte Lagoon.

The Nichupte Lagoon

laguna nichupte - Lucy Nieto

The vast Nichupte Lagoon is home to a very diverse ecosystem of the Mexican Caribbean. The lagoon borders the resort area of Cancun and it can be perfectly seen from that strip of land in the hotel zone which divides both the lagoon and the Caribbean Sea. Moreover, Nichupte is a lagoon system that is connected to the sea through two canals and it runs over 7000 acres that are made up of seven bodies of water such as the Bojorquez Lagoon, the Lagoon of Love and the Mediterranean Laguneta. In addition to this, the whole Nichupte Lagoon is rich in waterfowl, fish, crocodiles, shellfish, and mangrove swamps. So definitely, it is a sanctuary for nature and the conservation of its ecosystem is of vital importance. Besides, the lagoon itself protects the coastlines of Cancun from the erosion and helps reduce the levels of contamination in the water.

How Can You Explore It?

  • Go for a walk or a bike ride and take pictures of the lagoon from the new pier
  • Jungle tours offer to navigate through the canals in two-seater wave runners or jet skis
  • Water skiing, recreational fishing and kayaking are also popular in the lagoon
  • Snorkel, swim and relax in the large coral reefs
  • Go on a excursion in a glass-bottom boat

As you can see, Cancun means a lot more than just lying on the beach all day. It is worth discovering the wide range of tours and attractions in which you will be able to see other natural wonders of the area. So open your mind to other experiences and visit the Nichupte Lagoon, a place worth exploring in Cancun.

by Romina Nieto

Image: Flickr by Lucy Nieto

 

Do You Want to Go Shopping in Cancun? Visit the 2 Most Popular Shopping Malls

Throughout the years, Cancun has changed from a small fishing town into an impressive destination that attracts all kinds of visitors. In this evolution, different types of upscale shopping malls and designer boutiques were built in the city. So do you want to go shopping in Cancun? Visit the two most popular shopping malls.

La Isla Shopping Village

La Isla is one of the most impressive malls in Mexico situated at the Hotel Zone on Boulevard Kukulcan, where most of the best hotels can be found. This shopping mall is a magnificent open-air complex that neighbours the Nichupte Lagoon. Thanks to this, it gives a unique experience to both shoppers and visitors since it boasts navigable waterways and bridges which makes the mall looks like a typical Venetian construction. Besides the beautiful Venetian style, you will be able to find major international brands, national and regional restaurants and different types of entertainment. You can see walkways lined up with shops and restaurants across little canals (boat rides are also availlable through them) and there is a boardwalk along the lagoon itself. Among the wide variety of shops, you can get clothes and jewelry at Bulgari, Diesel, Guess, Nautica, Nine West, Puma, Tommy Hilfiger, Ultrafemme, and Zara, as well as an important handicrafts store of Cancun called Casa Bonita. Furthermore, there is an interactive aquarium and dolphin swim facility, a movie theater, video arcade, and several bars, including La Madonna. And if you get hungry, you can taste local and international cuisine at Johnny Rockets, Chilis, Italiannis, Planet Hollywood, the Mexican restaurant La Casa de las Margaritas, and the romantic Thai Restaurant.

La Isla - BORIS G

Plaza Las Americas

Located in the downtown zone on the well-known Tulum Avenue, Plaza Las Americas is where locals mostly do their shopping. There you will find clothing (Sears, Zara, Del Sol, Benetton, Hang Ten, etc), sports, jewelry, shoe and department stores, a pet store, a nail salon, cafes and restaurants and even a supermarket. The food area is huge and there are many fast food dining options such as McDonald’s, Burger King, Subway, Cajun Grill, Italian Steak, Pizza Pazza, and many more. Moreover, if you love going to the cinema, stop by Cinepolis VIP. Even though it is small (it has only four theaters and each one holds only around 65 people), the service offered is exactly like the name of the cinema: VIP. The reclining seating is amazing, the screens are extra large and the food and drink options is incredibly varied (there is a full bar with sushi, pizza, popcorn and baguette sandwiches). Besides the VIP cinema, in the middle and at the end of every month, retailers set up tables outside their shops and offer their sale merchandise. Also, during the holidays several musicians play on the weekends.

As you can see, you can do so much more than just going to the beach and sunbathe in Cancun. Shopping is another interesting way to explore this city; moreover, you can get nice local products, clothes from international brands and the prices offered are usually very accesible for tourists. So do not miss visiting these two shopping centers and get ready to spend some money.

by Romina Nieto

Image: Flickr by BORIS G

Make Your Dreams Come True: travel to Cancun this summer!

Those who have visited Cancun will tell you that this idyllic destination is one of the best places you go to in your life. They, as well as locals, praise not only its white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters but also its historical and cultural attractions. So there are many great places to explore in Cancun and in this article I will tell you something about them.

Beaches of Cancun

Along the famous Kukulcan Boulevard, the road part of the Hotel Zone where there are the most luxurious hotels in Cancun, you will find some of the most well-known beaches in the city. One of these beaches is Pearl Beach, which is located between downtown Cancun and the Nichupte bridge at the beginning of the famous Hotel Zone. In Pearl Beach, there are almost no waves there because it is protected from the open ocean by Women Island which makes it a safe place for young swimmers. Another great beach is Youth Beach in front of the Villas Juveniles hostel. Fortunately, this beach is a renowned spot for swimmmers, divers and snorkelers. What you have to bear in mind is that even though all beaches are public, the hotels are private property. However, some of them may provide entrance to the public to get access to the beaches.

Cancun - Rodrigo Accurcio (24 de Julio)

The Caribbean Sea

Archaeological Sites

Cancun is widely known as the entrance gate to the Mayan world since evidence was found in the area that indicates the Mayans lived there as far back as 1800 BC. One really famous archaeological site in Cancun is called Las Ruinas del Rey (The King’s Ruins). These ruins are located in the hotel zone just a few steps away from the Hilton Golf Club. El Rey, as it is commonly called, is known to have been the playground of the Mayans. Another important archaeological site is Chacchoben, which took its name after the village of the same name located a few miles away and which means place of the red corn in an ancient Mayan language. In 360 AD Chacchoben was a Mayan sanctuary in which Gran Basamento was the most significant ritual center. Nowadays, visitors can tour on its circular path to see three excavated and restored pyramids and many other things.

The Cultural Side of Cancun

Besides going to the beach and exploring old Mayan sites, you can visit different important and creative museums in town and out if town. One of the most interesting museums is the Tequila Museum located at the Hotel Zone on the second floor of La Europea store. This tequila center opened in 2010 and it has the mission to promote this alcoholic drink as a great heritage and as the national beverage of the country. In the museum, you will get to smell and taste different types of tequilas, learn about the elaboration processes (old and modern) and the history of the San Jose del Refugio Hacienda, the house with the finest tequila in the world. A second impressive museum is the Underwater Museum, which is close to the gorgeous Isla Mujeres and was created by the British sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor. He built eco-friendly statues which will turn into a reef in the future years.

As you can see, Cancun is not only one of the most beautiful destinations to visit but also a very interesting place. In the end of your trip, you will see it was worth spending money to get there. So dare to make your dreams come true and travel to Cancun this summer!

by Romina Nieto

Image: Flickr

Author: Rodrigo Accurcio