I wanted to visit Tulum again for many years. My first visit was on my honeymoon many years ago and I didn’t take any photographs. I had memories of the most amazing beach under ancient Mayan ruins. So when I found out that the Carnival Valor was making a stop there during our ShipRocked cruise I made sure to make a plan to get back to the magical site.
It was a little difficult this time because the cruise was not offering formal tours to the ruins because of time constraints so I had to plan the trip on my own. I was a little nervous but the day went flawlessly with some pre-planning.
I started immediately upon arrival at the port by taking a taxi to the ferryboat that takes you from the Port of Cozumel to Playa del Carmen. Prior to arrival, I had set up a private tour driver who spoke English to get me to Tulum, which is about 45 minutes from Playa del Carmen. I highly recommend the tour company Cozumel Tours by Johann and Sandra.
It was super easy to book online or call them directly and you pay a flat rate for up to 8 people in a brand new Mercedes sprinter van. We made it to the ruins and back in plenty of time to catch the ferry back to Cozumel and make the ship departure time. We even had enough time for one final margarita at a port bar.
At Tulum, I was a little disappointed to see that the ruins themselves are blocked off so no one can climb on them. This makes sense due to the massive increase in tourism into the area and the degradation that can occur off the site. It also made it possible to take clear photos of the temples and statues on the site.
The beach was as magnificent as I remember with crystal clear blue water. It is consistently voted one of the best beaches in the world.