Mexico: Tulum

Oh, Tulum. A jungle beach dream that smells of burning copal, sounds like lapping waves, tastes like smoky mezcal, feels like a warm bath and looks like pure magic. We adore you.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Where: Tulum, Mexico

When: December 2014

Stayed: Be Tulum

Instagram: #wellsinmexico

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

We stayed at Be Tulum, and we loved everything about it. The location was wonderful (a short walk to most of the restaurants at night), the beach was beautiful (the staff swept away the seaweed each morning), and the food was delicious (as were the cocktails and coconuts)! There was live music by the beach bar during the day, and live music by the open air restaurant bar at night.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Our room was wonderful, with an outdoor shower, a plunge pool and of course, a hammock.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

The scent of burning copal was always in the air, and we would wander down to the beach at night, listening to the waves and drinking in the stars. And then head right back at sunrise. [insert heart eye emoji].

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

I highly recommend staying at Be Tulum, but if fully booked, Posada Margherita and Coqui Coqui would be my next two choices. You really can’t go wrong!

Here are a few must do’s if you visit:

Spend 3 hours in the Coqui Coqui Spa with their Ritual treatment. Matty and I are big spa lovers when on holiday, and this was hands down one of the most incredible experiences we have had. After your treatment, be sure to pop by the perfumery (I purchased the “Tabaco” cologne!), and grab some ceviche by the beach.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Visit Posada Margherita for breakfast or lunch, so you can fully grasp how utterly perfect its design is in full daylight. Then go back for dinner, so you can fully grasp how utterly romantic italian food in Mexico can be.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Eat at a new restaurant each night. They are all so unique, both in food and aesthetic. There is thoughtful design in every detail, from the menus to the cocktails to the decor. When we rode our bikes through town, I snapped a few photos during the day from outside each space, but none of them come close to the real thing. In truth, I am grateful that we ate after sundown each night and I was unable to take photos, as it allowed me to truly be present and just enjoy it all.

Hartwood was everything it was cracked up to be. We waited in line with takeout margaritas, and were quickly seated when the doors opened. I ate one of the best pork dishes of my life, and we finished the meal with two scoops of ice cream: sweet corn and cheese. Yes, CHEESE. Yum.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Cenzontle was another favorite – not only did I just love the whole vibe of the place, but the food did not disappoint. They had some of the best service, and there was a coconut mezcal crushed ice concoction that is the stuff of dreams.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Casa Jaguar should be on your list as well. It was another wonderful evening, and I loved the earthenware they used throughout the meal.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Gitano was really fun for our first night there, when we were tired from traveling all day. A giant disco ball hung from the palm trees, and there was a DJ spinning right underneath it. The food was probably the least inventive of all, but hey, you can’t go wrong with tacos!

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a1 preset

Casa Banana was a fun lunch spot. We mostly lazed about the beach and would munch on midday ceviche and guac at our own hotel, but this was one of the few jungle-side restaurants open during the day – so we tried it! Check out that bacon bloody. Mm.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Now that you have eaten your way through Tulum, ride your bike, too! It is a really fun way to explore during the day. Be Tulum had free bikes, which was the best. Definitely worth renting them if your hotel does not.

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 preset

Skinny dip as the sun wakes up.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Enjoy a lazy breakfast, every single day.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Relax.

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 preset

Have fun.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Play in the waves.

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a1 preset

Grab a souvenir! My favorite boutique was La Troupe Tienda, where I purchased two pillowcases and a sundress. I also smuggled home five bags of copal, but that is neither here nor there.

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

MEZCAL. Drink it.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Don’t go fishing with an illicit fishing company in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve. But if you do, be sure to catch a fish!

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Try to visit the coffee shop below! If you know me, you know that I love small coffee shops, and I scout them out before any trip. We tried to go here a few mornings, and a few afternoons, but it was always closed. Something for next time, I suppose.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Wake up for every sunrise.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Meet the friendly neighborhood donkey. Try not to let him eat your purse.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset Processed with VSCOcam with a6 preset

Get a cone from the ice cream truck. Sweetest man, sweetest helados!

Processed with VSCOcam with a1 preset

Enjoy every, single, magical moment. Lo mejor.

Processed with VSCOcam with a6 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Peace, love and hugs, L

  1. Oh Lauren I’ve been dying to go to this place and these pictures did not help. It look so beautiful there can’t wait to visit and thank you so much for the recommendations 🙂

    XX-Myrna
    Mybeatboutique.blogspot.com

    | Reply
  2. Your pictures are so beautiful! It really makes me want to go back to Mexico again and stay in one of those gorgeous places!

    | Reply
  3. Such bright, happy photos! Adding Tulum to my short list, for sure!

    | Reply
  4. Hi Lauren, I stumbled upon your blog and I love the design and the style of your pictures! Absolutely georgeous colors. Keep it up 🙂

    | Reply
    • Lauren

      Hi Vera,

      Thank you so much for reading, and thank you so much for the kind words!

      |
  5. Sally Stansbury

    Thanks for the tips! A group of us ate at HARTWOOD per your recommendation on Saturday and it was amazing! We had the pork as an app and you were right, best pork ever! Everything we had was great but the grilled octopus was noteworthy. The cheese ice cream was the perfect ending to an already excellent meal! You can now make reservations online but try to do it with plenty of time in advance (fyi for other readers). Also, make sure to bring pesos (it’s cash only and you save about 20% if you use pesos rather than USD, all the ATMs on that strip seem to only dispense USD).

    Wanted to thank you for the excellent rec!

    xo hope you are well.

    | Reply
    • Lauren

      Ah!! I am so jealous, isn’t it incredible?! I need to get back to Tulum, I bet there is so much more there than when we were there. Hope you had the best trip, love!

      |