Star Date:  Aug 2017
S. Mexico, Yucatan Peninsula: Cancun


Hello Dear Family & Friends!


"Hola!  Buenas Dias.  Como estas?"
(Hi.  Good day. How are you?  - Spanish)






"When life gives you lemons, ask for salt and tequila!"


Life, or family that is, gave us lemons and we headed west to the land of guacamole and salsa.   Travel requires flexibility for success.  You must live in the moment; when change is eminent, just go with it.  Assess your options and chart a new course.  No whining.  Besides in the long run it probably happened for the better.  And so flying from Casablanca, Morroco to Cancun, Mexico we were determined to make the best of it!

Being the Holiday Season it was busy busy in Cancun, but we gladly traded the cold of North Africa for the warm tropical beaches of Yucatan Mexico.  Talk about cultural shock.  From North Africa to Central America, from Berber souqs to tortilla stands, from falafals to enchiladas, from camels to donkeys, from burqas to bikinis, from Arabic to Spanish; all in a matter of hours.  Carrying our homes in our little bags and our hearts, we took a deep breath and embraced our new destination.  Que magnifico!

Cancun is a city on the northeast coast of the Yucatán Peninsula, in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo.   The city is on the Caribbean Sea and is famous for turquoise water, white sand beaches and lively night life.   Not just a modern party destination, the Yucatan Peninsula is one of the most historically significant areas in the Americas. With Mayan ruins scattered throughout the region and marks of Spanish colonialism still present, visitors can visit sites such as the world renowned Mayan destination, Chichen Itza Temple and Pyramid, only a 2 hour drive away.

A newly created resort area Cancun translates from Mayan as 'serpents nest'.  There are a few species of poisonous snakes remaining in the area.  Avoid the '3 step snake' because that's how far you get before you fall over and die!  Chances are scarce that you would ever lay eyes on a snake of any description.   They are more afraid of you, then you are of them.

One of the most advanced indigenous cultures of the ancient Americas, the Mayans began as hunter gatherers and migrated into the Yucatán approximately 2500 B.C.  They established ceremonial centers at Coba, Dzibanche and Kohunlich.  Many interesting and important sites still remain like Tolum, only 1.5 hours south.  The Mayans were astronomers, mathematicians, agronomists, philosophers, artists, architects, sculptors and warriors.  The Maya of old were a rich, complex society. 

Arriving after midnight, we landed in an awful room, but by next late morning we were in a magnificent room overlooking the beach.  Remember to be assertive and get what you paid for.  Quiet mice end up staying in awful rooms.  Someone has to!  Sitting watching the waves rush in and recede we figured life had dealt us a good card after all.

We walked and walked and found a fun little taco stand and many tasty restaurants all serving, what else, terrific authentic Mexican food.  We passed our next few days as beach bums catching up on rest and recharging our batteries.  We were almost on empty from months in the Middle East and North Africa.  We needed to pamper ourselves. 

Rubbing the little Moroccan brass lamp we had stashed in our suitcase.... Poof... our wish came true! Before we knew it we were staying in a 5 star resort, with a butler named Xavier.  Just days before we had been wandering narrow alleyways in Moroccan markets, staying in simple little rustic guesthouses.  Poof!  Massages and Spa treatments, swimming pools, and gourmet International buffets.  Relax. Swim. Eat. Sleep. Repeat.  Sometimes if the deal is too good to be true, it is.  But we have to admit it was fun while it lasted.  Sadly we said good bye to our 1st and last butler, Xavier, and away we went to see what life would throw at us next.

With Christmas fast approaching we felt like nesting a bit.  We rented an apartment (always online) overlooking the ocean and went shopping for ingredients for a festive meal.  The next day was spent cooking while listening to Christmas music.  We feasted on holiday comfort food, complete with a lovely French red wine.  Our tradition of no gifts but a loving card and promises of future adventures or dinners by candlelight topped the evening.

The Mexican people were 'muy simpatico' and we were glad that we had chosen Cancun for a jumping off point to New Years Eve on an island in the Caribbean.  Life gave us lemons and we definitely made limonada!






And so it goes.........................................Next C*ba.  Rested and restored we were ready to party on New Years Eve.  Until then let's remember "when life gives you lemons, ask for salt and tequila!"  Take care and Keep in Touch!





Love, Light & Laughter, 

xoxoox  Nancy & Joseph



Travel notes:


1 US Dollar equals 19.04 Mexican Pesos


Hotel Imperial Las Perlas,
Blvd. Kukulcan km 2.5 Hotel Zona, phone #52 998 849 5200
toll free 1-800 221 0477
A friendly, helpful local hotel, the most budget on the beach ( book through or  The room you stay in could be from bad to wonderful.  Request the building on the beach.  Try room #132, on the other side, away from the recreational music.

Cancun Clipper Club: Kukulcan km 8.5 Hotel zona,  phone # 52 998 891 59 97/ 77
Another local hotel with units overlooking the lagoon, kitchenettes, suites.  Try room # 413 for a full kitchen.  Friendly, helpful staff.  Buses directly to town and/or Plaza Americas only 10 pesos.  Large modern supermarket across the road and a beautiful turquoise beach just past that.  Great location.

Take Super Shuttle from airport to your hotel.  Then take bus R1 or R2 to right in front of your hotel.  Get off Fiesta Plaza for Cancun Clipper.

Back to the airport take the bus to the downtown ADO bus station for 69 pp.

Natural 100 Restaurant:  Near Hotel Carribe, down and behind the main Chendauri Supermarket and town square.
Great treed courtyard to enjoy juices and meals.   Many vegan options.

Many little local Taco stands - one right across the the supermarket on the main road in town.  Check to make sure their beans don't have lard!  Yummy and such a welcome flavor after months on the road.


An onward ticket can be requested by airlines at check-in or immigration upon arrival, generate one with this free service!




The lush tropical beaches of Cancun.


Turquoise waters.


The quiet end of the beach.


This was just what we needed.


Local fisherman.


Resident dinosaur.


The strip! 


Large sharks and touts just waiting for tourists.


Caught one!


Buy one, get one free!


Brief memory of the Spanish conquistadors.


Great murals in the city.


The battle against the bottle, in this party
resort area.


Beautiful stained glass cupola.


Beach bunnies galore.


Our favorite taco stand.


Ancient Mayans portrayed in murals.


Chichen Itza, ancient Mayan Pyramid.


 Tropical Christmas, Mexican style.


Feliz Navidad.


Better to take a boat across the inlet!




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