After spending a few days in Cancun, we were ready to move down to Playa del Carmen, but not before taking a day trip to see Chichen Itza, one of the new 7 wonders of the world.
We signed up for a private tour with YucaTreks and had a fantastic experience with them! They picked us up at our hotel in Cancun early in the morning, loaded all our luggages into their spacious van, and then began our way towards Chichen Itza, which would be a 2 hour drive. Our guide provided snacks and drinks for us on the ride, and spent a lot of time teaching us about the Mayan history.
We arrived around 9am and Chichen Itza was already flooded with tourists. It was also an intensely hot day…I mean, it was HOT. Our guide had prepared umbrellas for us and initially, we rejected them as we thought it would be too troublesome to carry the umbrellas around. He insisted we hold onto them and boy, were we glad we did because we had to keep using them throughout the tour to provide some shade for ourselves. Otherwise, it really would’ve been completely unbearable!
It was so hot we didn’t stop much for the street vendors along the path leading to the pyramid. We simply wanted to see the pyramid and leave. Our guide was so good at sharing all his knowledge with us about the pyramid’s history, but it was hard to focus in the extreme heat.
It use to be that you could climb up the steps of the pyramid, but that is no longer the case, so we just admired its majestic architecture from below, all while we continued to sweat bullets from the heat. 😆
We ended up spending about 2 hours at Chichen Itza, before we headed to a beautiful cenote to cool ourselves off. This cenote was a beautiful underground cenote called Cenote XKeken, with limestone formations arching over the cool water. There is a small hole in the ceiling of the cenote where a ray of light will come through, allowing you to see the gorgeous glistening blue of the water inside.
After our swim in the cenote, we were taken to a lovely hacienda for a buffet lunch that had the BEST pulled pork ever! I must have eaten like 3+ servings of just the pulled pork, haha.
Our last stop, before being dropped off at our new hotel in Playa del Carmen, was the small town of Valladolid, where we got to walk around for a little bit. We spent most of our time inside this chocolate shop that we discovered, which sold not only chocolate in its edible form, but also chocolate shampoo, soap, and other products!