I landed in Cancún after flying direct from Mexico City, I had thought about getting the bus but a 24 hour bus versus a 2 hour flight that cost about the same price (around €70) just didn’t make sense! I took Viva Aerobus, (the Mexican equivalent of Ryanair except probably better!) and soon enough I arrived in the balmy Cancún evening. The difference in temperature at night in comparison to Mexico City was huge. Hola Yucatán Peninsula! I took the ADO bus to downtown, where I had booked into Mundo Joven youth hostel for the night. It was just beside the bus station (and a delicious taco stand), and I ended up spending two nights there as the hostel I was planning on heading to on Isla Mujeres wasn’t free till the following night.
First impressions of Cancún weren’t great, although the hostel was nice, when I spent the following day “exploring” I was given a map by reception where they highlighted the ‘Zona Hotelera’ and various landmarks such as the Hard Rock cafe and the Coco Bongo nightclub (!?!). The land of spring-breakers, there are loads of American chains such as Hooters and Bubba Gump’s shrimp company to ensure the kids don’t feel too far from home. The Coco Bongo club actually is supposed to be quite cool as they have live ‘cirque du soleil’ type shows in the evenings.
I made it to Playa Gaviota Azul, one of the beaches just off the (god awful) strip, and had my first taste of the beautiful Caribbean! Wow, it was stunning. I had to get a cocktail which ended up being a totally overpriced sticky sweet beverage ‘the Riviera Maya’, made of rum, melon liqueur, orange and strawberry….mmm! I made my way down to a new Mayan museum further down the strip of huge hotel complexes, which wasn’t too great but maybe I wasn’t in a museum frame of mind…
I hung out at the hostel that night (watched Beyonce’s Super Bowl half time show live, woop! KELLY! MICHELLE! wowza.) and hung out with some really nice people, getting some cheezydillas (quesadillas) from across the road for dinner. Oddly enough on the TV in the quesidilla place, I noticed a Mexican ad for ‘bruise cream’ being demonstrated on a woman’s face. Hmmm.
I have to say, I probably didn’t give it much of a chance as I’m sure there is a lot more to see and do in Cancún and it definitely has it’s place, but I was delighted the next day to get up early and get the ferry to Isla Mujeres!