Sunday, August 28, 2011

Cozumel discoveries!

When we go to Playa del Carmen we're usually quite content just to sit back, sip beer or margaritas and enjoy a day at the beach or around the pool.  We've been going down for so many years now that it just feels like home.  We've seen the touristy stuff that we wanted to see now it's more a matter of relaxing and enjoying our time with each other and friends in Mexico.  We love having friends come to stay with us while we are there so that we can take them around and show them all the things we enjoy about Playa.

One thing that it took us a few years to get around to doing was taking the ferry over to Cozumel for the day. So we finally did that with our cousin and his lady and we made a great day out of it.  We weren't interested in all the touristy shops which are right a the foot of the ferry terminal so we rented a jeep and set off on a trip around the island.  Which only takes a couple hours - well that's IF you don't stop at EVERY watering hole along the way.  Everywhere there was a patch of sandy beach there was a little "restaurant" set up so you could stop for a beer and a bite.

I think the funniest thing we found on Cozumel were the "big name" companies in direct competition with each other, right across the street from each other vying for all the business (HAHAHA) but they were in such a remote area on the island that there was obviously no business. 

If you click on the pictures to enlarge them you can check out the signs on these buildings to see what I mean.

We certainly had fun that day driving around the island.  Perhaps we'll have friends we can take there on our next stay in Playa.

Are you interested in taking a trip to Playa del Carmen?  We have a lovely condo available to rent.  Click here for details.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Transportation like we'd never see in Canada

We never cease to be amazed at the types of transportation you see around town in Playa del Carmen.  Basically if it's got wheels it gets used. 

There is one woman we see zooming around on a golf cart and those travelling by ATV. Others use bicycles - lots of them around and I believe the resorts have them available for their guests to use for a days outing.    There are even bicycles that are built with two wheels on the front and a big metal cart type area on the front.  The locals sometimes use this to move water bottles, or fresh linens going from the laundry mat to the local resorts, or supplies for their shops or some of these bikes will sometimes be built with a bench in the front area where people can sit while one person sits on the bike doing all the pedaling. Of course there are taxis everywhere.  Never seems to be a problem flagging them down. There are tour buses bringing people from the Riveria Maya resorts to town for a day of shopping and beach time.  There's also the local ADO bus transport system that can take you to many towns outside the Playa del Carmen area.

Then there are the many mopeds and scooters zipping in among the traffic.  They make me nervous sometimes the way they zoom between cars and trucks and all sorts of tight spots. In Playa there doesn't seem to be traffic lanes like we're used to in Canada and the U.S.  It seems that if you're in a vehicle, whatever it may be, and it can fit in that space then it's a lane! I think the thing that amazed and made us most nervous were the families that would travel around on mopeds or scooters.  We've seen as many as 4 people on one moped.  The driver was usually the Dad and standing between the
Dad's legs in the middle would be one child with the Mother on the back holding another baby or young child in her arms.  Very scary sight! However scary it might look to us I must admit that I have never seen a car accident of any type while in Playa.  Not to say they don't happen, I'm sure, but considering the difference in attitude about traffic control between what I'm used to and what I see in Playa I'm just surprised that we don't see a lot more problems.  But I suppose the locals are all used to driving in this manner and I'm sure if we were there and driving we, too, would become accustomed to it. But for now our condo puts us in a good location so it's an easy walk to anything we may need. Therefore we will continue to wander merrily along and perhaps one day if you're ever in Playa our paths may cross and we can sit and share a beer and watch the traffic go by.

Thinking of visiting Playa del Carmen?  Click here to view our condo rental.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ahh, a day in paradise!

This resort is the Bahia Principe on the Riviera Maya near Playa del Carmen.  They are the sponsor of our nephew's football team, the Caballeros (which means Gentlemen of Knights).  While we were in Playa they were having a fundraiser that we were really excited to get to attend.  I mean really, what could be better than spending the day at an all inclusive enjoying all the amenities and then in the afternoon moving into a huge viewing area to watch the super bowl with hundreds of other vacationing fans!  

We made a point of getting to the resort early in the morning to take advantage of a full day of all the amenities.

We started with a buffet breakfast then headed to the beach to claim some hammocks and soak up the sun and atmosphere of the resort.  It seemed that there were endless chairs and hammocks on the beach but surprisingly we had a bit of difficulty finding any available.  So my advise - head to the beach early to find the best locations still available.  We spent the day alternating between lounging in the sun, wandering over to the bar to enjoy the all inclusive benefits available, swimming in the ocean or pools or having endless snacks - good thing we had our hammocks to doze off in because you know what happens when you have unlimited drinks, sun, surf and fresh air!

We had a wonderful day including buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner then watching the big game with abut 600 hundred more people! It was such a good time we're hoping to be down there at the same time next year so we can support the team again!

Interested in visiting the Playa del Carmen area?  We have a condo available to rent.  Click here for more details.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Entrepreneurial spirit at work!

It's so interesting the things to see and do in Mexico.  And you just never know what you might find!  I tell you I find the Mexican people to be very imaginative in the ways and means to create work for themselves.

I was sitting out on my deck at our condo one day and started to hear this piping sound in the neighborhood.  It was a very pretty melodic type sound - much like a pan flute. I enjoyed it without thinking that it was anything more than a child playing with a toy.  A few days later I again heard this pretty sound and this time curiosity got the better of me as the sound seemed to be following the same path as it had the previous time.

So I summoned the energy to get up from lounging in the sun to investigate and once I found the source I had to run to get my camera, thinking this would make an interesting blog subject.  So there I was out on my deck trying to discreetly take pictures of this guy walking down the street blowing on his little blue flute and carrying this box on his back!??!  I had absolutely no idea what that was all about!

Next time I got together with my brother and his family, who live in Playa, I asked him about what I had seen.  Apparently this man sharpens knives and scissors using that box apparatus that he carries around.  He blows his flute so everyone knows he's coming and that sound tells people that it's a knife sharpener who is coming through the neighborhood.  If you need his service you just call out to him and he will sit on the side of the street and sharpen everything for you!

Condo rental available for your next trip
to Playa del Carmen.  Click here for details.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Bulk food shopping Mexican style

We went on an adventure the other day into Cancun. We drove through the tourist hotel district with it's beautiful beaches and big resorts surrounded on both sides by beautiful blue water.  

Then we went into what I referred to as "real" Cancun.  Meaning that we visited areas where the locals shop. This outdoor market was just one example of life in Mexico.  You could buy everything there from fresh produce, fresh meats, plants, clothes, everything imaginable!

The pictures here are of a "bulk food" store where all the sacks of food - from dry pasta, spices, flour, grains and beans to dry dog food - are just opened up and set on the floor for people to buy from.  (click on picture to enlarge it and then click your back button to return to the blog).

It was funny to see it all just out on the floor like this as there were birds landing close by just waiting for their chance to sneak in for a meal. 

There was a candy store that was packed solid with bags and bags of every type of candy possible.  The aisles were just one person wide and the place was packed with people trying to get past each other and trying to see and reach past each other to get at the goodies.  It was lots of fun to try to shop in there.  

I would look forward to going back there to shop now that I know what to expect.  It would be fun to see what kind of "treasures" I could find. I still prefer the simple lifestyle I experience living in Playa del Carmen but now I know I can just drive down to Cancun for a different shopping experience.

In answer to a query to my blog:  Thank you for reading my blog. As for the market in Cancun - the name of it is Mercado 28. The best thing I can suggest for telling you where it is, is this:

go to google maps, type in Mercado 28 Cancun Mexico and you will see a map showing you exactly where it is. Enjoy!

Interested in visiting Playa del Carmen?  Click here to view our condo rental.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Music Festival brings good times and good tunes to Playa del Carmen

It's so busy in Playa del Carmen right now!  How fabulous for all the businesses!  

There is a music festival happening in town right now and it looks like everyone came down for a some good music and a good time! 

The 4th annual BPM Festival is an annual world class electronic music festival which takes place in the beginning of January and if you're on the beach during the day you're going to be hearing some great music. I know that the Blue Parrot is having special performances during the festival, as I'm sure will Kool and Mamita's.  The weather has been excellent and attendance seems really good from what we see around town - I know that last year there were over 18,000 people attending the events.

 Personally we prefer a more laid back, quiet time at the beach so we wander by all the music and party goers down further to an undeveloped part of the beach front and just contemplate nature in all it's raw beauty.

Thinking of a trip down to Playa del Carmen?  Click here to view our condo rental.