David and Nancy just returned from 5 days in Akumal, Mexico. It was quite a trip with a couple of fantastic dives included.
First of all, we decided to drive to Houston, Texas. This was to allow Dad to visit with his youngest son and daughter-in-law, while David and Nancy go on vacation. It was also easier to drive since we took Dad's little dog, Benji, with us.
As you can see, Dad's little buddy (Benji) is always at his side.
We left Thursday morning, June 4, a little after 8 am and drove two full days all the way to west Houston, Texas. With both of us driving, it was not bad and the weather was fantastic! We arrived at Ken and Mary's house late Friday. We relaxed all day Saturday and then flew out on United Airlines to Cancun, Mexico on Sunday, June 7.
Upon arriving at the Cancun airport, we went through customs and immigrations with no problems. We were met by a representative of AVANT Rental car out in front of the terminal (http://www.avantrentacar.com/). We completed the paperwork to rent a small car for 5 day and we started our vacation. Well, we thought we were going to start our vacation. David missed the exit out of the parking lot so we had to go around again. Just as we were nearing the end, a small truck started to back up. David stopped and laid on the horn but the small pickup did not stop. He backed right into the rental car doing, buckling the hood and causing several thousand dollars worth of damage to the front end. Carlos was (and still is) a very super nice man. He was very embarrassed and totally admitted to being at fault. No one was hurt but the small rental car was very damaged. Carlos spoke great English and helped us for 1 1/2 hrs to get somebody from AVANT rental car on the phone. No one answered any phone number printed on the rental agreement for 1 1/2 hrs. Finally we got a hold of someone and they responded to the Cancun airport. Carlos got a hold of his insurance person who also responded. AVANT gave us another rental car and 3 hours after we landed we started the 92 km (58 miles) drive to Akumal, Mexico.
We arrived at entrance to Akumal around 7 pm. We were very hungry so we decided to stop at the Loncheria Akumalito
for dinner before checking into the hotel. As you can see from the menu. this is a great little spot for a quick cheap meal. Plus, the people are very funny and nice.
After dinner we checked into Vista Del Mar, which has changed its name to Del Sol Beachfront (https://akumalinfo.com/condos.htm). We have always stayed here while in Akumal, Mexico. This year they changed the name and repainted the place. It looks great, but it does look like a box of crayons threw-up on the building!
David was not feeling well Monday morning so Nancy went out on a dive with Lupe, the dive master. We've known Lupe for many years. (Lupe diving)
On Monday at 11 am Nancy had a great dive at a place called "the Nets". This area of the Nets was called Turtle Reef. The name did not let her down. She saw many Turtles, Barracuda's, Blue Chromies, Parrot fish, and beautiful coral.
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On Tuesday, David felt better and went diving with Lupe and Nancy to the same great spot. Again, the dive site did not disappoint us! However, the camera had a minor issue so we were not able to take any pictures on this dive.
Also, Tuesday morning we notice a turtle nest had been marked near our hotel. Akumal is well known for turtles coming up on the beaches and laying their eggs from May through October. (for more information click here)
here is a video of her travels
Next door to the dive shop, which is next door to our hotel is the La Buena Vida Restaurant & Bar. It is a great bar and the restaurant has some fantastic food. They also have 2 crows nests with high views of Half Moon Bay.
a video from the crows nest
While eating at the restaurant La Buena Vida we saw a COATI. A Coati is a Mexican raccoon. (click here for more information on a Coati). We also took a video. After we left the restaurant we walked past the dive shop. A Coati was rummaging through the garbage at the dive shop.
video of him
Also, while at the restaurant Grackle birds will steal your food.
Plus the lizards
Tuesday night or Wednesday morning a storm started to come across the peninsula. This made the ocean angry. So angry there were white caps in the bay. This makes for entry or exit of the bay very difficult. So we did not go diving Wednesday. This turned out to be a very good choice because the ocean became angrier and angrier. The storm became so bad Wednesday afternoon, the dive shop pulled the boats out of the water onto the beach. The boats stayed on the beach the rest of the week. The weather stayed great until the afternoon. All of Half Moon Bay lost power during the rain storm. It became very windy and the temperature dropped several degrees. The power stayed out from 4:30 pm until 9:30 pm. We decided to drive over to Akumal town to a restaurant called TEQUILLAVILLE were we had a great dinner.
The seaweed or SARGASSUM appears heavier then normal. The locals say that they are leaving the Sargassum on the beach because it will help the young turtles after they hatch. No one would tell me why it is heavier than normal. I guess "they" don't know.
Wednesday we decided to do some shopping in Playa del Carmen and had a lovely time. Thursday afternoon we drove down South to Tulum, Mexico and visited some friends Nancy has known for 32 years. We had a very nice dinner at Cetli's, which is a Mexican Gourmet Cuisine establishment. Friday we drove back to the Cancun airport, returned the car with no issues. Although, we did drive over 400 km in 5 days. Our flight back to Houston was uneventful with only occasional turbulences.
We spent Saturday with my brother and sister-in-law at their home. Very nice time was had by all. Mary is such a great cook!!!
Sunday, we left West Houston driving back to Payson, Arizona. We ran into some really bad weather near San Antonio, Texas. But we trudged on and drove through it rather quickly. In all, we drove 2314 miles round trip or 1153 miles one-way, arriving back home Monday afternoon safe and sound.