By Sarah Sweeney
Hola! Before I tell you about my recent adventures, I want to tell you about the amazing Akumal Direct properties I’ve been staying in.
My first stop was Luna Azul, in Half Moon Bay, a stone’s throw from the main Akumal Playa. This two-bedroom condo is within walking distance from all the goingson in Akumal and is a lovely choice for both families and romantic getaways. The beach here is rockier but doable with or without water shoes, and the surf is mostly calm. Nearby restaurants include Qué Onda and La Lunita, with lots of convenience stores dotted between, and, of course, restaurants like Turtle Bay Cafe & Bakery and La Cueva del Pescador in Akumal Bay. Also within walking distance of Yal-Ku Lagoon, just up the road.
Next, I ventured to Seven Seas condos in Akumal Sur. This is a gated community and very safe. The Seven Seas property is spacious, with a large, refreshing pool and a shallow, calm beach perfect for snorkeling or kayaking. While this property is close to Akumal Bay and you can certainly make do without a car, there are zero restaurants in the area. Because of this, I recommend having a car; but without one, an easy ride on the colectivo will easily get you to Akumal Bay or Tulum. This is a great property for a family vacation and sleeps up to 5 people.
Farther south, in Aventuras Akumal, I made myself comfortable at Studio 001. I found this property to be quite large for a studio and with everything I needed—fully equipped kitchen and a terrace perfect for having a meal overlooking the beach. I loved this property because it definitely had a ‘vacation’ feel—maybe because it’s situated right next door the Oasis Tulum resort and the hotel facilities are available to guests. While here, I saw lots of activities on the beach, everything from water aerobics to volleyball. But if group activities aren’t your thing, you can easily rent snorkeling equipment from a hut on the beach or hire a boat for a fishing or snorkeling tour. The Oasis Tulum spa is incredible as well. I talked to a lot of couples here, and this area is the perfect place for a romantic but active vacation.
As for what I’ve been doing, I have two words: PUNTA LAGUNA!
Some friends and I drove to Punta Laguna, a nature and monkey reserve only 20 minutes from Cobá and roughly an hour from Akumal. The reserve is a totally authentic experience, as its run and maintained by the local Mayan community, and for $300 pesos (approx. $16 USD) you can get a tour guide to usher you into the jungle to view spider and howler monkeys. And the howlers really do howl—they sounded like roaring lions! The spider monkeys are playful and were really fun to watch, and this park is perfect for kids and adults alike. Next, we canoed and then ziplined across a gorgeous lagoon, and the tour was capped off with a visit to an underground cenote. There’s lots of bird and nature-watching in the reserve as well, and I saw several varieties of colorful butterflies.
Afterward, we ventured toward Cobá and took a refreshing dip at Muul Ich cenote and stopped for cochinita pibil at one of the restaurants lining the entrance road to Cobá. The day was a perfect mix of nature, adventure, and relaxation.
WHAT TO BRING:
- Walking shoes
- Pesos for local handicrafts + tips
- An adventurous spirit!