TULUM

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I’ve not even reached the city limits and I’m already bummed to be leaving Tulum. I manage to
make it to Mexico quite often for vacation, but this was my first time here. My brother got
married and so the whole trip was a family affair – incredibly special, unforgettable times in
paradise.
Many of you were asking questions about my time here, so I thought I’d put together a recap of
my favorite spots and a few highlights that may help you should you travel here (it seems as if
many of you are!)

Firstly, the food. It was outstanding! My boyfriend Nick is an “international food blogger”
(inside joke) and so he takes care of arranging most of our meals. After eating our way through
every restaurant, ice cream shop and beach bar, here are the stand outs.

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ARCA

Be sure to make a reservation. This place is the absolute best. Their newest Executive Chef
has worked at some of the most prestigious restaurants in the world and it shows. We had the
most inventive soft shell crab tacos, suckling pig, and seriously mind blowing bone marrow, the
cocktails are sensational. The adults loved it and so did the kids. The twinkle lights and outdoor
ambiance underneath a sea of palm trees exudes charm but is also very contemporary and
aesthetically v chic.


HARTWOOD

This was rumored to be the premiere restaurant in Tulum and it is extremely hard to even get a
reservation. They don’t answer the phone, you must e-mail 30 days in advance - so make sure
to do that if you can. Arrive at 5pm if you want to eat here with no reservation. We joined
about 30 other people who were waiting and luckily got a table without a reservation. The
octopus was divine, the sweet potato was to DIE FOR, and the chocolate mouse and sweet corn
gelato was next level. You can tell the staff puts heart and soul into this place. It shows. You feel
content having just had the experience.


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EL POPULAR AT NOMADE


This is another spot that gets insanely busy so make arrangements for lunch in advance. There’s
a Moroccan vibe here to this trendy beach restaurant where guests sit on pillows or even
swings and enjoy rich, delicious Mexican grub. The music was dope, the ocean view is
incomparable, and the people watching was superb. If you like ceviche, this is the best in town.
I personally loved the guacamole and the grilled corn. (And a spicy margarita, obvi.)


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ORIGAMI GELATO


As you stroll down the main strip on foot (or bikes) make a point to stop here either after
dinner (or for breakfast like we did on one occasion… don’t ask.) The pistachio is the hands-
down signature flavor here. I had it twice in four days! Nick also loved the Ferrero Rocher.


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BE TULUM


For cocktails and a steezy scene. The space itself is incredibly beautiful.  Bohemian meets Mid-Century,
so cool - teak, candlelight, bamboo, palms everywhere.


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PRO TIP: DINERO - PESOS ARE BEST

Because I travel to Mexico so much, I’ve never had to really worry about cash in the sense that
most places take credit and debit cards or American dollars. Not so in Tulum. The beauty is that
it really is remote and idyllic… and the fact is the internet service is very hit and miss so most
restaurants don’t accept cards. Don’t make the mistake I did and have to hit the ATM machine
five times and incur all of those unnecessary charges. The best move is to get Pesos before
arriving.


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DESTINATION: CENOTES

If you despise bats, this is not for you…
but we did it anyway and the kids LOVED it! About twenty minutes outside Tulum is Dos Ojos.
It’s a natural, fresh water caving experience for the whole family. They provide snorkels, fins,
wetsuits and lockers for your things. The whole experience takes about two hours. It’s icy cold
but beautiful and definitely gets the adrenaline pumping. It wasn’t until fifteen minutes in that I
realize we are in BAT CAVES, however! We were joined by dozens and dozens of itty bitty black
bats just feet above our heads. I was crazy freaked out but the boys thought it was rad. UGH.
Still glad I did it. Would do it again I suppose.

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MUST SEE: CASA MALCA

This is a hotel now but once upon a time it was Pablo Escobar’s mansion. If you have thirty
minutes to spare, pop by to see some wild art and some original pieces of his from the 80’s. The
whole visit is kind of trippy honestly when you think of who he was, but fascinating
nonetheless. If you’re an art buff you’ll especially appreciate.


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Catt Sadler