Waking up for our first full day in Tulum was ridiculously exciting. We’d envisaged joyriding in Tulum, through the town and across the beach. With the wind in our hair and looking like bohemian babes. The reality was something quite different. If you’re new to the story, we reached Tulum at nighttime after having a Pitstop in Playa Del Carmen.
First of all, let me set the scene for the day. For the beginning of our trip we stayed at the stunning Tiki Tiki Hotel, booming turquoise tones and an instagram worthy interior.
Staying in Tulum beach is pretty pricey, so we thought we’d have the best of both worlds and stay in town for a few days too. Tiki Tiki is a boutique hotel boosting a spin on 1950’s Miami vibes but set within the jungle. The modernist architecture combines a mixture of locally sourced materials and is furnished using local crafts.
In the entrance there is a vintage ride just waiting for you to check out. In that colour, it was only appropriate to take millions of snaps with my dream wheels.
Obsessed with the tiles, the bar was impossible to not adore – for more reasons than one.
After checking out our new home, we decided to venture out for our morning breakfast.
You can hire bicycles from the reception and ride away to Tulum beach front. I’m sure by this point you’re wondering why this post is called joyriding in Tulum? Joyriding typically combines fast speeds, criminal behaviour and stolen wheels. Well the wheels weren’t stolen, but there definitely was a crime being committed. Two ladies attempting to cycle beaten-up bicycles on unknown territory.
Little did we know, that we were located much further away from the beach than we imagined.
Therefore, the majority of us joyriding in Tulum was spent cycling on dirt tracks, cruising through industrial estates and getting sprayed with dust as lorries zoomed passed.
As we reached closer to the beach, and rode down the main strip in search of breakfast. We realised the joy-of-riding well and truly passed as traffic blocked the main road. Trying to stop with a bike that doesn’t have breaks is quite difficult. Let’s just say we were lucky Lauren survived day one, the tree never saw her coming. Her new pedicure did not survive. I can still hear her yelping ‘I can’t stop ahhhh’ as she rocketed down the hill to the beach.
Feeling like two very exhausted and sweaty ladies, we tied our bikes to the nearest trees we could find and stumbled into Zamas.
Especially grateful to arrive to picture perfect deck chairs ready and waiting for us. The furniture was a mixture of bold and bright colours that popped out against the white sands beneath. You can sit on the beach front, but the restaurant’s location acts as a bit of a wind tunnel. Consequently I suggest sitting inside admiring the great views, (without your food blowing away).
Feeling shattered from the heat, we relaxed in Zamas, checking out the turquoise waters and ordering up a storm.
Starting with a bowl of good old gucamole. When in Rome…
After a dose of green shakes, chips and guac – we were starting to feel human again.
Both indulged in a portion of breakfast tacos. YUM.
And seeing as it was almost lunchtime, some pork pipil tacos too. Which were also finger licking good.
As a result, we then repeated all of the above, washed down with a healthy shot of tequila. Not actually what I had ordered but in the spirit of not offending the staff, I did the honours and gulped it.
Most of all it took the edge off the thought of getting back on our bicycles. We spent the rest of the day lounging on the beach and checking out some of the boutique shops. Before finally heading back to our hotel. With a long heated slog through the dirt tracks.
We managed to make it back in one piece, and agreed taxis would serve us well for any longer journeys. Look at our happy faces after surviving our joyriding in Tulum (our one and only experience).
Arrived back at our pool, and snoozed the afternoon away with our heads nestled in some good books.
Eventually pulled ourselves away from the pool, and scrubbed up for the evening.
The bedrooms were comfortable, with a hammock floating at the end of our beds, twin sinks, huge shower and cosy balcony garden. But the best bit – the floor!
Ready to hit the town, we nipped in a taxi to Gitano.
Passing through the neon entrance, with no reservation and realising the queue. We wondered if we’d even get a table, as it was a popular spot. But luck was in our favour and we were lead through the restaurant which is nestled in a jungle. Surrounded in a wild but tamed jungle was the best way to dine, under fairy lights and pineapple decorations.
One part of the outdoor seating area even had a full on sparkly disco ball suspended above (sadly my picture didn’t do it justice) but it was very cool!
Dinner was a long drawn affair, of indulging in delicious fresh food. I recommend taking the waiters lead when ordering. Everything we ordered was impeccable and made the already hot waiter even more dreamy.
Finishing the evening with one of my favourite deserts I have EVER had. Don’t be fooled by my blurry shot, it is a game changer. I’m tempted to fly back just for another bite. Chocolate – dulce de leche – banana – mezcal just in case you need a reference when ordering.
After a night of jungle dining we left Gitano with full bellies and faces beaming with happiness. Onto another day and another adventure (bicycles not included)…