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Isla Mujeres Day 1

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Woke up to an upset stomach this morning. Slept a couple of hours longer than usual and still didn’t feel well. Not the best for a travel day.

Eventually I rounded up my stuff, repacked my bags, and checked out. I dropped my keys through a hole in the wall around the compound. Even though I wasn’t hungry I stopped for breakfast. I wouldn’t arrive in Isla Mujeres until about 3pm after a bus, taxi, and ferry, so I felt compelled to eat something. And the restaurant was very relaxing and only a block from the bus station.

I arrived at the bus station 20 min before my bus departed. Again, this bus station is much too small for the amount of people who use it daily. It’s smaller than the one in Progreso, a town about the same size but <5% of the tourists of Tulum. I could have taken a series of colectivos, but the ADO bus is very comfortable, requires no transfers, and only cost $10 USD for the 2hr 40min ride. After waking up not feeling well, I was really glad I opted for the bus.

This bus played an Alejandro Sanz concert. I was relieved it wasn’t something unbearably loud or obnoxious. Stopped in Playa del Carmen. I got to take a look around since it was one of the places I considered before choosing Merida. Wish I would have spent a little time here.

Ferry to Isla Mujeres

Eventually, we made it to Cancun Centro where I grabbed a taxi to Puerto Juarez where I got my ticket for the Ultramar ferry and headed over to Isla Mujeres. After getting a seat on the top, a lively band set up a few rows in front of me, entertaining the passengers for tips. I was not entertained. I still felt pretty bad, especially regretting eating breakfast. If I was feeling well, I think the short trip over to the island would’ve been pretty enjoyable.

Ultramar ferry

At the primary station in Isla Mujeres, it’s chaos. Everyone who had just gotten off the ferry was looking for a taxi. Golf carts dominated the roads. Not feeling well and not up for competition, I started walking in the direction of my final Airbnb. I figured once I got away from the chaos it might be easier to find a taxi. That was wrong. Every single taxi I saw was full. Either taking people from the south back to the ferry port or from the ferry port around the island. There I was with my loaded backpack and carry on sweating my butt off in the middle of the day walking across the island. Not my finest moment. When I reached the Airbnb 35 minutes later I showered and laid down for a while.

My Airbnb was perfect for a person who was probably going to be spending a lot of time in bed. I splurged for an oceanfront room that I could see from anywhere inside. Perfect. The internet didn’t work but I was hopeful that by the time I needed it the next day it would be functional. From what I understood about islands, it can go up and down with no forewarning or explanation.

My private patio

After a few hours, I decided to go get some Pepto-Bismol, more Band-Aids and bananas. I walked to Chedraui, the main grocery store. Grocery stores always remind me of my former life. Their produce section looked fantastic. The rest of the store was similar to a Walmart. None of the grocery or convenience stores in Mexico offer bags. Either buy a reusable bag or be prepared and bring your own. I got what I came for, and called it a night.

Daily Expenses

Amounts in Mexican Pesos

Total Spend$3031 (~$151 USD)
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