Kids’ Club

The resort has a club with all sort of activities planned for the little ones. We only took advantage of it twice during the last days we were there. Actually, the last thing we did after we finished packing our luggage and before leaving the resort was to drop by the kids’ club one more time. The pictures below show me involved in some art work that was going on at the time.

There were other ways kids could have fun at the club. There were toys, beds (not for me, for the sleepyheads) and they even had a playground outside. The pictures below show me playing at this playground.

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Coba

There was no rush to get to the Coba archaeological site because it is larger and less famous than Tulum and Chichen Itza. We still woke up relatively early and left right after breakfast. We hired a guide who was much less informative than the one at Chichen Itza; or we may have had this perception because the site didn’t offer as much as Chichen Itza did. The site is divided into several sections; we started with the Coba group, where I slept through our guide’s explanations. My parents though learned about stelas: sort of bulletin boards carved in rock, seriously tempered by time, now protected by thatched roofs. They also learned about the elevated Mayan roads called sacbe; one of them was approximately 100 km long and almost reached Chichen Itza. We saw a few more structures and a ball court in the Coba section, then we took a pedibike toward Nohoch Mul group.

The only thing better than in Chichen Itza was that visitors can climb Nohoch Mul (the tallest pyramid on the Yucatan peninsula; 42 meters). Daddy climbed it while I was waiting with mommy, then mommy climbed it while I was waiting with daddy. Even though I appear in one of the pictures, it should be noted that I didn’t feel like climbing even a few steps at the bottom of the pyramid.

On our way back to the Coba section, we stopped in the Chumuc Mul section to see a few more structures, the most important of which can be seen in the pictures below.

Now just a few more pictures with today’s heroes:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Gran Bahia Principe in the dark

I could not say “by night” because most of the pictures below were taken before my bed time (8:30 pm). It gets dark pretty early around here, around 6 pm to be more precise. With a few exceptions, daddy took these pictures before dinner or shortly after.

And a few pictures taken outside:

Now let’s talk about dinner. Even though our room was very close to all the restaurants in the resort, we could not be very selective. Upon arrival, we ate our first dinner at Kukulcan (the main buffet in the Coba section): it was too late and we were too hungry to start exploring right away. Among the limited options for lunch and breakfast, we restricted ourselves to the same Kukulcan buffet because it was just a few minutes away from our room and we could get in and out pretty quickly to take advantage of the daylight.

Our opportunity to explore other options came once the daylight was gone: for dinner. A range of other “gourmet” restaurants were only open for dinner, but the access was restricted based on the number of nights spent in the resort. Because we stayed a whole week, we could choose three gourmet restaurants for dinner (we chose Mediterrano, Mikado, and Le Gourmet). We also had dinner once at Riviera (the main buffet in the Akumal section) and twice at Yucatan (the main buffet in the Tulum section). Pictured below are few restaurants where we ate during our vacation:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Chichen Itza

We wanted to get to Chichen Itza before most of the other tourists (and especially before the tour busses), so we woke up at 4:30 AM and started driving at around 5:00 AM. Waking up early is not such a big deal, especially if you can continue sleeping in your mommy’s arms. We made it right after the site opened for the public (8:00 AM), but we had to eat some breakfast before going in.

We hired a guide to learn as much as possible about the place. Did you know that

  • the Temple of Kukulkan (El Castillo) is actually a calendar?
  • the sunset light and shadows give the illusion of a big feathered serpent descending from El Castillo during the spring and fall equinox?
  • if you clap your hands in front of El Castillo stairs, the echo resembles the call of the mayan sacred bird, the quetzal?
  • the mayans were playing a ball game? Apparently, the captain of the winning team got the honor of being sacrificed right after the game with the hope of being reborn in a higher social class.

Here are a few pictures of us in front of the most significant buildings:

Now a few more pictures of buildings with the view unobstructed by us:

And a few stone carvings:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Tulum

Even though daddy wanted to get to the ruins as early in the morning as possible (to avoid the crowds), we made it there only after 10:00 AM. After we got the tickets, daddy and mommy walked along the wall and pushed the stroller where I was sitting comfortably. The most imposing structure of the site is El Castillo, which may be the reason why we got so many pictures of it:

Walking among the other buildings with a stroller was not easy. In many cases (stairs, sandy paths) mommy had to hold me while daddy carried the stroller. But we managed to see the most important structures and even take pictures of them:

Now let’s move on to the fun part. Tulum ruins were built on a bluff ovelooking the Caribbean sea. The visitors can go down some stairs and spend time at the beach. Of course, we did that, too. While we were trying to build a sand castle resembling El Castillo (visible from the beach), the clouds quickly covered the skies and dumped some rain on us. We took cover under some rocks, and the clouds went away pretty much as fast as they came in (the whole episode was less than 30 minutes).

Here are a few more pictures of us throughout the site:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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At the beach

The resort has three sections: Tulum, Akumal, and Coba (the last one is where our room is). Akumal is the name of the closest city, while Tulum and Coba are the names of other nearby cities where we will go to visit some Mayan temples. Tulum and Akumal sections are very close to the beach, but from Coba we have to take a tram to get to there. Every time we went to the beach daddy got busy building sand castles for me. He always excavated the sand he needed for the castle leaving behind big holes in the ground. Sometimes waves from the sea would fill out the holes with water, making the sand easier to build with. The following pictures show us playing at the beach and building sand castles:

The weather got chillier at sunset, but mommy always had my jacket ready to keep me warm. We used to stay at the beach as long as there was still enough light for me to play. Here are some pictures of us playing late in the day:

I am sure you wonder how the resort looks like when you look at it from the beach, so here are a couple of pictures that – hopefully – answer that question:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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The pools

We spent quite a while in the pools, so dedicating one post to them seems appropriate. The resort has two pools: a “quiet” pool and an “activity” pool. We started at the quiet pool because it was closer to our room, but we also spent time in the activity pool. Going up-and-down the stairs is one of my favorite activities, so guess what I did as soon as I discovered stairs going in the pool?

While daddy was taking these pictures, mommy was right next to me making sure that I don’t fall (she even helped me float in the water). Here are some more activities supervised by mommy:

Daddy was more involved in other types of activities, like jumping in the water and taking me to the deeper side of the pools. Here you can see him in action:

Toys were an important part of the pool experience. I made friends who had different (and more interesting) toys than mine and (luckily), they were willing to share. Here I am playing in the quiet pool

Here are a few pictures of me playing with my toys in the activity pool:

And just a few more random pictures:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba

My parents (who didn’t sleep because they were packing) woke me up at 2:30 am to catch a 5:30 am flight. After a short layover in San Francisco we flew all the way to Cancun. We spent more time than we expected at the car rental place then it took us almost two hours to get to the resort (daddy drove at or below the speed limit).

Upon arrival we were upgraded to Premier status, which meant going to a different building to check in. After checking in, we got lost in the resort before we eventually found our room. A towel swan was waiting for us in bed, and turned into a simple towel when I got my hands on it. I was so quick that daddy didn’t even have time to take a picture of the swan. But don’t worry: many other towel animals visited us during the following days. Here they are:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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