Travel itinerary in Mexico

Travel itinerary in Mexico

From the travel diary in Mexico (June/July 2011)

I’m leaving Guatemala after more than a month and a half, I’m sorry I didn’t meet Carlos, my childhood friend from Taormina who became a rock star in this country. And I’m sorry to leave this silent and cool Guatemala where I have never suffered from the heat.But Viva Mexico! I’m at the border and there’s no turning back. A boat trip like the ones I’m now used to and within a day I arrive at Palenque.
I am in Chiapas between the madness in the churches and the torrential rains at night, it is said to be the poorest region and here I decided to stay……….A month has passed since entering Mexico, I’m flying to New York soon and I feel the journey to enchanting Central America coming to an end.

Mexico turned out to be much bigger than I imagined, but the contrast Chiapas/Yucatan it makes me quite appreciate this colorful but also desert land, made up of American postcard cities, it’s true, but also of authentic and reserved places, of beautiful beaches, some remote, colored lagoons, of Mayan traditions and natural beauty.
And if you like spiciness and fun, you can eat and drink here.
The rainy season is now coming, the Caribbean is so beautiful with the sun and so disturbing with the gray sky, the other night the rains were so heavy that I saw a palm tree bend, literally, weakened by the virulent water that fell like boulders.
The electricity obviously went out, and all of us in the hostel gathered to silently watch this universal deluge playing cards with torches on our heads.
I will miss the music of Mexico, that predictable way of bargaining, the beautiful and different Chiapas and the wonderful sea of ​​the Caribbean, the too-spicy tacos, the whale shark.”

What you will find in this post

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Practical travel details in Mexico

Car rental – Cost for 14 days €268 on Car rental – From Cancun Airport to Cancun Airport
Buses and public transportRome2Rio compare different means of transport considering price and travel duration
Hostels starting from €10 in a shared room on Hostelworld
Hotels starting from €25 in a double room and private bathroom on Booking
Currency: Mexican Pesos
Lingua: Spanish
View: Not required – Maximum stay 3 months
Important holidays and celebrations – To know them month by month Click here

Brief travel itinerary (arrival and departure from Cancun)

Day 1 – Arrival in Cancun and Puerto Morelos
Day 2 – Cenote Dzitnup & Chichén Itzá – Izamal
Giorno 3 – Izamal and Mérida
Giorno 4 – Celestún & Uxmal
Day 5 – Campeche
Giorni 6, 7 and 8 -9 – Palenque and San Cristóbal de las Casas
Day 10 – Bacalar Lagoon
Day 11 -12 – Tulum & Akumal
Giorno 13 – 14 – Isla Mujeres
Day 15 – Return flight

*** This itinerary is quite extensive. Mexico is very large and very varied. This is an itinerary idea that also varies according to the season, including the whale shark season.

Two weeks in Yucatan and Chiapas – Travel itinerary

The roads of Yucatan and the connections between the main destinations are quite good, so as to allow the creation of an articulated and complete travel itinerary of the entire peninsula. If you move counterclockwise you will have the opportunity to dedicate the last few days to the sea and therefore conclude with the best of the best of the country, that is, the splendid Caribbean sea which from my point of view remains one of the most beautiful in the world (after that of San Blas in Panama, I admit it!).

Day 1 – Arrival in Cancun and transfer to Puerto Morelos for the night

Cancun is definitely not the place you want to stay, not even for a single day, it’s worth landing and immediately heading to Puerto Morales.
A bus that leaves from the airport in just 25 minutes will take us to the splendid Yucatan coast in a less “ugly” context than Cancun as well as immediately offering a wonderful place to do your first snorkeling close to the coral reef.
What we like about this small fishing village are the low costs, the small and familiar environment and the tranquility compared to the big city not far away.

Day 2 – Cenote Dzitnup, Chichén Izamal – Izamal

Cenote Dzitnup

Departure to arrive at the end of the day in Izamal passing through Valladolid, part of the Pueblo Magico of the Program since 2012 Magic towns initiative advanced by the Mexican tourism department aimed at defining the most influential towns based on their natural, historical, architectural and cultural beauties.

The guide continues on the old road with a stop at the splendid one Cenote Dzitnup.
The cenotes, of which the peninsula is rich, are natural geological formations due to a very porous soil that suddenly collapsed, the subsoil waters thus forming lakes under the earth where it is obviously possible, indeed obligatory, to bathe.
The guide then continues to visit the wonderful ruins of Chichén Itzá and then conclude the day in Izamal.

Day 3 – Izamal – Mérida


Time to head towards the north of the peninsula and reach Izamal called the Yellow City, a name due to the color of its buildings but also the City of Hills, which rather than actual hills are probably the remains of now buried pyramids.

Then continue to Mérida, the cultural center of the region and characterized by old buildings more than 500 years old and built on the ruins of a Mayan locality called Ichcansihó which in the Mayan language means “five hills”.

Giorno 4 – Celestún ed Uxmal


From Mérida, depart for the Ría Celestún Biosphere Reserve, another protected area and UNESCO site, located in the north-eastern coastal strip of the peninsula, between the State of Campeche and Yucatan. Continue south to reach the beautiful Mayan ruins of Uxmal. The journey to Uxmal, if done by car, will pass through small Mayan villages, crumbling Spanish haciendas, and numerous archaeological finds. It is worth visiting the ruins early in the morning when temperatures drop.

Day 5 – Campeche


Campeche is the best preserved walled city in the Americas, to the point of being declared a World Heritage Site in 2000, thanks to the splendid narrow streets that wind through the city, the colonial-era buildings painted in pastel colours. This city was the seat of the ancient Mayan culture, so much so that from here you can visit many ruins including Calakmul, Chicanná, Becan, Edzna, Xpujil, Hormiguero, Balamku, El Tigre.

The Campeche region is the ideal destination for those who want to escape from the masses of tourists and love the sea, no longer the Caribbean but this time the Gulf of Mexico.

Giorni 6, 7 and 8 -9 – Palenque and San Cristóbal de las Casas

San Cristóbal de las Casas

The route from Campeche to Palenque is long but we are about to enter the Mayan and most rustic heart of the country.

A riot of natural beauty and ancient culture. Before reaching the beautiful colonial city San Cristobal de Las Casas you stop in Palenque where you can visit the magnificent pyramids here and if you want the ruins of Bonampak and Yaxchilán, the next day before heading to San Cristóbal de las Casas.

In addition to getting lost in the splendid city center, it is absolutely worth visiting the fascinating Mayan communities of San Juan Chamula and Zinacantan (for these it is recommended to go with a local guide).

Day 10 – Bacalar Lagoon

Bacalar Lagoon - Mexico

Xpujil marks the turning point of our journey, we return to the Yucatan but this time we are not on the Caribbean sea, even if to be honest it seems just the opposite.
The Lugana of the Seven Colors, a unique place in the world that has just begun to be a tourist attraction in a still dormant small village.
Beyond the lagoon it is worth a visit to the Pirate museum where you will discover a rather interesting history of the very famous, but little known, Pirates of the Caribbean.

Day 11 and 12 – Tulum and Akumal + Cenotes


One of the most beautiful and evocative places on the Riviera Maya and it would be a shame to skip it because in the throes of the delirium of “I want the little touristy”, Tulum and its surroundings are wonderful and it is actually a shame to be able to dedicate so little time to it.

We then reach the most fascinating of the Caribbean cities in Mexico characterized by the well-known Mayan historical complex overlooking the blue sea that couldn’t be bluer.
A short distance from Tulum are the Biosphere at Sian Ka’an just south of the city and reachable by shared taxi, degli splendid cenotes and the beach of Cumulative famous for the large population of sea turtles among which swim a few meters away from the shore.

The hotels on the beach are very expensive and the city center is about 5 kilometers away, which is why generally all the guest houses and hostels in Tulum offer free bikes, cycling to reach the beach is a beautiful walk and in the evening the town is full of life.

Day 13 – Puerto Morelos

Puerto Morelos

There is one day left before departure and it is therefore time to get closer to Cancun. But instead of returning directly to the capital it wouldn’t be a bad idea to go back exactly where we started: Puerto Morelos a beach town just 31 km south of Cancun.

Day 15 – Flight from Cancun

Time to leave Mexico and not everything has been visited… at this point I’m sure the famous “I’ll be back” will start, there is still so much to do and see, and this country is too big and complex to be liquidated in So little time.

As an alternative to Chiapas in period whale sharksbetween May and September, it is worth replacing the three days in Palenque and San Cristobal de Las Casas with Holbox Island where you can swim with the largest fish in the oceans.

Trip extensions (4 days) – Relax, sea and whale sharks

For those who have a few more days there are wonderful sea extensions Women Island ed Holbox Island.
Women Island it is easily accessible by hydrofoil from Cancun, for more information Click here.
Holbox Island requires at least half a day of travel, it can be reached by bus, towards Chiquila, which takes about 4 hours. Buses leave daily at 5:30am, 7:30am, 12:40pm and 1:30pm (cost approximately $6).
Boats from Chiquila to Holbox depart daily at the following times: 6:00, 8:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 14:00, 16:00, 17:00, 19:00.

Alternatively, for those interested in Mayan culture and attracted by areas not yet overrun by tourists such as the Mayan Riviera, it is possible to enter the Guatemala and visit Tikal.

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