TRAVEL & LGBT
Out of All the Tulum Accommodations Zamas Hotel is the Best
Zamas Hotel is the definition of a laid-back beach spot. While Tulum was once considered to be a hidden gem this beach paradise is quickly gaining fame as the trendy alternative to Cancun. Much like its fellow Riviera Maya hotspots Playa del Carmen and Cozumel, Tulum has absolutely incredible beaches with clear blue water. The flights from most of the US are very reasonably priced, often times even direct from the east coast.
The real thing that differentiates Tulum from other local cities is the number of international chains. The streets are lined with boutiques, small restaurants and of course hotels. The hotel zone, in particular, has a strong bohemian feel. The boho chic decor(La Trope), acai bowls (Macha Mamas Tulum) and hammock stores are seemingly made of your Instagram and Pinterest dreams ←– shameless plug, follow me on both!
Getting to Tulum for us meant a 4 hour and 20 US Dollar ride from Merida to Tulum via ADO Bus, by far our favorite way to travel in Mexico. Most people, however, will be flying and landing at the Cancun Airport. From there you can get the bus directly to Tulum it takes about two hours and cost $14 US Dollars. To save you some hassle, you can’t book the bus tickets online unless you have a Mexican Bankcard. The buses run every hour and to get your ticket just walk a little past the Corona Bar outside the airport doors. Once you get off your bus just walk to your hotel or take a cab if headed to the hotel zone. We hopped in a cab and excitedly headed of the Zamas Hotel.
As soon as we pulled up we were absolutely buzzing with excitement. The reception desk is a small beach hut situated on the sand. While there are rooms right on the beach, with small personal hammocks and porches our room was just across a small street. When climbed up a flight of stairs and were greeted by brightly colored hammocks and Adirondack chairs on a large covered porch with panoramic ocean views. While there were other rooms around us there was enough space dividing us that it had a real treehouse vibe. The inside of the room was just as nice, including two queen beds and a single bed size lounger. The room does not have air conditioning but the ocean breeze kept us comfortable the entire time. The shower and bathroom area is large and made of stone. While the room has a rustic vibe it also has really modern amenities.
What to Do
Tulum has no shortage of great stuff to do. Spending time working on your tan is a given but once you tire of that as if that’s possible. Here are my 3 favorite Tulum activities in no particular order.
There’s totally a difference between eating because you have to and eating for the experience. There are no shortage of fun, quirky and interesting places to grab a bite in the hotel zone or in town. Keep in mind the restaurants closest to the hotels are significantly higher than the places in town. Campanella Cremerie and Roraima are two of our favorites, both in town.
Tulum has some of the most fantastic beaches I’ve ever experienced. If it’s the bright blue crystal clear water you are searching for you’ll certainly find it here. What I love most is how the limestone cliffs or green palm trees line the shores. Something about the ocean in front and lush green space behind me make that place feel so magical. No matter if you spend the day on the beach or go back for the sunset with the locals it’s breathtaking.
We aren’t huge tour people, in fact, we typically go out of our way to avoid the crowds. So when we find one that we love we have to share it. An easy bus ride from Zamas, we went on the Xenotes tour. It was amazing, we got to swim in 4 drastically different but equally amazing cenotes. Here’s why the tours amazing, cenotes are notoriously hard to find, especially since many are underground. On this tour, we just hopped in a bus with our guide and cruise around with no stress. We got to zip line, kayak, and swim. I even had the chance to do a 25ft cliff jump which always excites me. The tour is a full day and by the end, we were admittedly exhausted from the sun and swimming but it was worth it.
We have found the Yucatan as a whole to be a comfortable place to travel and Tulum proved to be no different. There is an obvious focus on tourism and hospitality with not much attention being paid to us as a couple. We are aware that in many situations we do pass as a straight couple. However in Tulum, where I was clearly wearing a bathing suit we were greeted with the same warm smiles. As always the bathrooms continue to but the toughest situation to navigate. Some of the smaller restaurants have just a single bathroom making it gender neutral by default. It’s worth noting that many public restrooms have attendants, charging about 5 pesos but at times making me feel very uncomfortable.