Tulum and the Art of Zen

The last few months have been....well....a bit of a ball of confusion. I went from having super lows to super highs and recently started having "highlows", feeling happy/sad/elated/crushed/overworked/bored/frustrated/peaceful/depressed/ecstatic all at the same time.  This past Friday night I had an experience that left me feeling completely discombobulated and I realized I needed to reset and recharge. I woke up Saturday morning and booked myself a cabaña in Tulum and boarded the bus for the two hour trip south.

The hotel zone of Tulum is pretty much the opposite of Cancun. Where Cancun is high rise cement resorts, Tulum is small cabañas and palapas, off the "grid", running purely on solar/wind/generator power. Not many TVs or telephones in this retreat in paradise. The hotels are reached by a narrow road that leads from the town of Tulum through the Sian Kaan biosphere, surrounded by lush jungle, cenotes and the sea.

I made my way to Cabañas Tulum where I was greeted by a lovely receptionist from Ireland of all places. She welcomed me warmly, brought me a fruity cold beverage and took me to my sweet little escape. Like most hotels on the strip, it is small, right on the beach and filled with lush greenery and flowers. My room was clean and bright, with (surprise!) air conditioning (only available at night and I found I didn't need it with the ocean breeze) and a fantastic little porch with a couple of chairs and my very own hammock. I spent the remainder of the day drinking beers on the beach and unwinding completely.

I felt my confusion and angst and whirl of emotions sliding away. My head began to clear. I awoke EARLY the next morning and walked the few steps down to the beach to welcome the sun. (Super sappy cheesy moment warning....) When the sun peeked over the horizon and through the clouds, I felt a powerful surge of energy, tears came to my eyes, I got to my knees and I whispered "thank you". I really don't think the moment can be explained, you'll just have to experience it for yourself.

I took a million sunrise photos then crawled back into bed more relaxed than I had been in a long time. I set my alarm for nine, took a quick shower, donned my bikini and pareo and followed my growling stomach to the restaurant for some brekkie and coffee on the beach. Amazing how hungry inner peace can make you and the Eggs Benedict hit the spot perfectly.

Caffeinated and stuffed full of yummy goodness, I sought out my palm tree and lounge chair, slathered on sunblock and ran for the sea. It was a windy day, the waves intense and I let the ocean knock me around and enjoyed myself massively! I got pretty banged up, spun head over heels (lost my sunglasses and almost lost my bikini top) and took one wave to the kidney that I felt through my whole body like a punch from a prize fighter. And it was PERFECT.

Refreshed, renewed, healed and at peace, it was time to go home. Tulum has POWER, this was only two quick days and I felt ok with myself again. Zen. At one with nature and the universe and aware of my place in it and just fine with it all. I boarded the bus north with a contented grin on my face, ready to face the hustle bustle again. Namaste and ommmm everyone, peace and love......


Good four you, I need one of these time outs myself.
Marc Olson said…
I went to Tulum for the first time about eight years ago and found one of those little cabaña hotels. It was wonderful. Although Tulum has been changing, there are still these quiet, perfect places. Thanks for reminding me. I'll have to go back soon.
CancunCanuck said…
Carlos, I think we could all use these time outs every now and again, hope you can find yours soon.

Marc, yes, it is changing, but it seems to be at a slower pace than in places like Playa. You can still find tranquility in Tulum, go for it! :)
TravelDesigned said…
As much as I LOVE those luxurious all inclusive resorts with all the amenities in the corridor, I have to admit, it's wonderful to have a change of pace. I must admit a few days of "detox time" in Tulum is sounding pretty good to me right now!
CancunCanuck said…
Stephanie, there is something to be said for both kinds of escapes. The luxurious pampering in the big resorts is great, but the simplicity and isolation of the small cabañas is a different kind of luxury. Come on down for a visit and recharge! :D
KfromMichigan said…
It's so wonderful that you have so many go-to-places for relaxation! Tulum sure sounds good to me right now. Glad you feel recharged!
I know exactly what you are describing here and it made my heart ache in longing! It's seriously bad for me to read your blog...in a good way! ;)

I hope the Tulum Zen is always with you!
CancunCanuck said…
K, I am a very fortunate women indeed, that I can wake up on a Saturday morning and just make a run for paradise....ahhhhhh

Ana, it's time for you to visit again! Keep the Tulum Zen in your heart (but take a trip to remind yourself how it feels!) :D
You really are in that perfect paradise spot to just leave everything behind for a few days and relax and forget about it all. I do envy you, darling. :)


CancunCanuck said…
Ceri, I am a lucky lucky lady. Having paradise at my door step is priceless! :D
TravelWriteGirl said…
Sounds like a great day. Could you share the names of some Cabanas hotels in Tulum that you would recommend for someone who has never been there? Thank you!
CancunCanuck said…
HI TravelWriteGirl,
Be happy to share! I really enjoyed my stay at "Cabanas Tulum" and "Coco Tulum", both well priced and lovely. I also had the pleasure of staying at a house called "Casa de las Olas" that is simply divine, very last property before entering the Sian Kaan biosphere, totally remote and private. I can not give first hand knowledge, but I have heard nice things about La Zebra and Papaya Playa too. I've also gone beach camping down there, tremendous! There are so many cabanas, I just want to try them all! :)

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