Kelly the Culinarian: What We Saw in Mexico

Saturday, December 28, 2013

What We Saw in Mexico

Picking back up on my review of the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, I wanted to highlight the amazing experiences we had in Mexico. With our reservations, we had $1,500 in resort credits. This credit could be used at the spa or salon, for a romantic dinner on the beach, for a wine or tequila tasting or for excursions.
This photo, however, was not included.
We got a couples massage, pedicures, manicures and facials. I loved the massage, but I would suggest forgoing the couples thing. You pay a $25 upcharge to have your massages together, which doesn't net you anything other than a shared room. We thought we'd get champagne or something, so it wasn't really worth it. The manicure/pedicure was also underwhelming, but the facial was great.
Our first excursion was to Chichen Itza, which is about three hours away from the resort. 
Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
The tour included a stop off at a tourist knick knack store where I picked up a new friend.

We also stopped at a cafeteria-style place for lunch before reaching the ruins. It was amazing. No wonder this place is one of the new seven wonders of the world. It was expansive and wonderful. We spent three hours there before heading back to the resort.
Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
The next day, we took a half day excursion to Tulum, a smaller, closer Mayan ruins that has an amazing beach.
We spent a few hours there checking out the buildings, the sites and the scenery. The beach was so amazing, but quite tiny. It was totally worth going out there just to see the beach.
Our final excursion was swimming with dolphins. I don't have any pictures because I wasn't sure how I felt about it. It was so cool to pet the dolphins and such, but I just hope they're nice to the animals and they're treated well. I clearly have issues.

If I had it to do all over again, I'd skip the manicures and pedicures and get our massages separate. That way, we might be able to squeeze another massage out of the experience. We saw the most we could with the credits we were given, though, so it turned out well.


Zenaida Arroyo said...

I LOVE Chichen Itza. I've been there twice and definitely am in awe.

Unknown said...

Mmmm… would love to go! All of those things sound like a lot of fun!

Nicole Kesten said...

we loved tulum.. so picturesque. i need a vaca like that right about now.

Nicole Kesten said...

we loved tulum.. so picturesque. i need a vaca like that right about now.

KellytheCulinarian said...

It was a really cool trip!

Elusive Mamacorn said...

We're staying at Hard Rock Riviera Maya this spring, with two kids (ages 5 and 9). I want to take them to see either Tulum or Chichen Itza, but am debating which makes the most sense.

Chichen Itza: the six-hour round trip sounds terrible with kiddos, but it's the best site by far
Tulum: much less bus time for kiddos, beach experience is great, and still a great experience

Having been to both as part of HRRM excursions, which would you recommend with kiddos?


KellytheCulinarian said...

I'd go with Tulum because it is closer, it's a much shorter day, and there is that beach. Just know that the beach is small and the water was rough the day I was there.

Elusive Mamacorn said...

We're staying at Hard Rock Riviera Maya this spring and debating which excursion to do with our kiddos (5 and 9 years old).
Chichen Itza:
+ Best overall experience; wonder of the world
- Six-hour round trip in a bus

+ Still a great experience
+ Amazing beach vista
+ Far less travel time

Which excursion would you recommend with kiddos? My oldest is interested in history and other cultures, and I want to support that and take advantage of the opportunity for them to see and touch history. But, I also don't want to over-commit and risk tarnishing the experience with a six-hour commute :-)

What do you think?

Elusive Mamacorn said...

Thanks for the reco! (Sorry for the multiple post mistake :-) Tech trouble!