Thursday, May 31, 2012

Day Trip to Uxmal (FREE BONUS: Mayan Tongue Twister!)

Got a last minute email from a charming couple about to tie the knot (maybe here in the Yucatan?) who were staying here in Merida and wanted to see Uxmal, Kabah, Sayil, Labna and Xlapak. This is a 12 hour tour, easily. I know I have done it with my photographer friends from Winnipeg.

Oh, and we want to be back by 2 PM. Um, no.

We took the highway and reached Yaxcopoil and who can resist a great hacienda right? A quick tour, some photos and then it was on to see the queen of the Puuc route, Uxmal. Here, the "quick" visit, immediately after enjoying one of the best espressos in the Yucatan (really, it's here at Uxmal) became a 2 hour extravaganza as my couple was enthralled with the excellent guide service from Antonio, one of the licensed Uxmal guides who not only pointed out the obvious, but also the less obvious. Did you know there was a fisherman of Uxmal? How about the naked slaves?

The Pyramid of the Magician aka The Dwarf. Or, the Dwarf Magician. Or the Magical Dwarf. 
There was simply no time to continue on to other sites along the Puuc after that so we started on the road back to Merida, stopping at a small cenote in the middle of nowhere to refresh and cool off. The water was of course crystal clear and a cool 73 degrees F.

Shot of the Governors Palace in the distance
By 3 PM, and after calling the hotel to let them know we would be late, we were back in Merida. Complete with street food in the form of natural local fruit popsicles, grilled chicken, fresh roasted peanuts and mangos conveniently peeled for easy eating in the car, this was a quick but also in-depth look at the Mayan culture in Uxmal.

And the Mayan tongue twister? It's right here:


Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Guest Comments!

One of the "twin" houses on Merida's Paseo de Montejo

Hope you're doing well.  Finally getting some time to provide some feedback. 

Prior to the day of our trip, your communication was excellent.  Good info, prompt responses on email, etc.  And it was a nice touch that you called at the start and the end of the day trip.  Overall a pleasure. 

We had a great time on our Uxmal daytrip.  Saul was a good driver and guide - felt very comfortable with him.  He knew the roads, and how long it would take to get from place to place.  He also did a very good job as a guide at Uxmal.  And we enjoyed lunch at the Pickled Onion, which was your reco.

We made good use of the flexibility of having our own vehicle and guide as we ended up going to Dizibilchatun, which we never even considered doing until after we started our day. 

My only suggested improvement is that there be greater coordination between the schedule that you sent to me and what is told to the driver (which of course is Saul in this case).  For example, in the route that you emailed to me, you mentioned the popsicles at the Muna Pemex station.  However, Saul didn't know about this.  We ended up making the stop there, but only because I mentioned it and had a copy of the email that you sent to me.  FYI, the popsicles were good, and we also enjoyed walking around the market at the main square in Muna.

Thanks again for your assistance.

- Bruce, who took the Puuc Route tour with Saul -