Headed to El Panchan? Stay at Margarita & Ed’s


Somewhere on the road between the town of Palenque and the ruins of Palenque is a funny little place called El Panchan. It’s a travelers’ compound, made up of clusters of rooms and cabanas hidden behind big leaves and giant trees run by four or five different operators. Somehow amongst the ramshackle accommodation typical of the area Austin and I found ourselves in a spotless studio opening up directly to the jungle. Continue reading “Headed to El Panchan? Stay at Margarita & Ed’s”

Pictures of Palenque

Deep in the Mexican jungle, where the mountains meet the plains, there was once a great city of the Mayan civilization. Continue reading “Pictures of Palenque”

Campeche: a Story of Beauty & Botanas


Coming from the big city of Merida into Campeche was literally a breath of fresh air. This sleepy town located on the gulf coast stole my heart the moment we arrived. Maybe it was the fact that the colonial walls still stood intact, or perhaps it was the clean, cobblestone streets – no, it was simply Campeche’s modest, lovely colors. Continue reading “Campeche: a Story of Beauty & Botanas”

The Truth About Merida


One of my favorite guilty pleasures is to watch the show House Hunters: International on HGTV. I’m not going to lie, it’s kind of my dream to one day be featured in an episode. In any case, my introduction to Merida was while watching this show one fall day after Thanksgiving a few years ago. I distinctly remember feasting on leftovers on my parents’ couch while watching a couple navigate a number of beautiful colonial homes located on sunny spotless streets. I remember a scene where the couple negotiated a price for some pleasant-looking fruit on some lazy day with a smiling old lady. It looked so charming and perfect, I inserted myself into the scenes immediately and knew that one day, I’d have to check in for a visit. Continue reading “The Truth About Merida”

Chichen Itza – and Some Friendly Advice on How to Get There


The seaside ruins of Tulum were amazing, no doubt about it. But they merely wet my appetite for ruins and what was to come. Heading out of Tulum and towards the inland Yucatan city of Valladolid, I had one thing on my mind – Chichen Itza. Continue reading “Chichen Itza – and Some Friendly Advice on How to Get There”

Surprises and Cenotes in Valladolid (or, How I Remembered that I’m Not a Good Biker)


Before arriving in Tulum and seeking out starting points for a day-trip to Chichen Itza, I had never heard of Valladolid. Austin had always planned to go there, of course, but I merely saw it as a stop on my way to one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Little did I know the charm, delight, and teeny bit of struggle that awaited me in this beautiful inland town. Continue reading “Surprises and Cenotes in Valladolid (or, How I Remembered that I’m Not a Good Biker)”

Beautiful Beaches and Mesmerizing Mayans in Tulum

DSCF1879 After our sweaty search for lodgings on Isla Mujeres the previous day, Austin and I decided to make reservations ahead of time in Tulum, the next stop on our Mexican tour. Arriving in Tulum it became quickly obvious the reservation hadn’t been necessary – most of the places we passed were maybe at half occupancy. The crowds of Cancun and Isla Mujeres were long gone now – it was official, we had escaped the tourist season. Continue reading “Beautiful Beaches and Mesmerizing Mayans in Tulum”

Textures of Tulum

More to come soon, but for now – here’s a teaser of my Tulum travels. Continue reading “Textures of Tulum”

Finding Calm on Isla Mujeres

The beach at Isla Mujeres as seen from our overpriced hotel
The beach at Isla Mujeres as seen from our overpriced hotel

From Cancun Austin and I hopped the ferry to Isla Mujeres. This Mexican Caribbean island quickly proved to be the perfect respite to Cancun’s noise and traffic. Exiting the ferry terminal, it was easy to see that people move slower here – literally, most of the traffic was made up of scooters and golf carts. Continue reading “Finding Calm on Isla Mujeres”

16 Hours in Cancun (Mariana’s in Mexico!)

A & I with Mom & Dad at the Tampa airport
A & I with Mom & Dad at the Tampa airport

First things first: we made it! After bidding farewell to my parents in Florida, enjoying some margaritas and chips at the Chile’s inside the terminal at TIA (it seemed appropriate) and two easy plane flights, we landed in Mexico safely. Horrah! Continue reading “16 Hours in Cancun (Mariana’s in Mexico!)”