I have a serious love affair with Mexico. All of it. The people, the food, the wildlife, the history, and the endless possibility of adventure sets the tone for a memorable getaway every time. And amongst a sea of growing hotels and mega resorts sprouting all over Tulum, NEST Tulum offers an intimate, authentic, and surreal approach to Mexican hospitality set against a breathtaking backdrop.
Once our plane touched down in Cancun, we hopped in a van and began our 2 hour journey to Tulum. As we made our way through the city, the sun set in the distance and the full moon gracefully took it’s place. Driving down Tulum’s narrow beach road, we saw locals and tourists alike biking alongside us… flashlights taking the place of streetlights at times and beautifully candlelit restaurants greeting guests. Being located towards the end of this long strip, NEST is especially reclusive. As we arrived, two huge wooden gates opened as staff members welcomed us. Flashlights in hand, they guided us down a sandy path towards our bungalow (one of eight on the property) and gave us a quick rundown of our home for the next week. Our homecoming was topped off with complimentary, no label, locally sourced Mezcal. As we sat and took our baby sips, the warm humid air and the sound of crashing waves released any and all tension we carried with us from our journey. We were finally here…
After a night of sea turtle hunting (yes it was sea turtle season) we woke up with that beautiful sound again… birds chirping, waves crashing and the sun beaming into our beautifully adorned bungalow. Mexico has some of the best craftsmen in the world and the owners of NEST clearly respect and embrace the fact. Working with wood makers outside of Coba they make most of their wood pieces, sourcing all their bedding, textiles, lamps, plants and soaps from local vendors. This gives NEST that perfect at-home feeling and personally inspired the hell out of my own home decor ideas.
We chatted it up with some of the staff to get the inside scoop on what to see in the area and made a game plan for the week. Everyone in Tulum gets around on a bike. Happy I packed my sneakers, we hit the street on our fix gears (complimentary with your stay, which was an added bonus). This made for a fun and not to mention healthy alternative to see the city. Checking out shops and restaurants along the way we quickly started making a list of our favorites.
The Cenotes (local swimming holes) are amongst the top of the list. There are several to pick from, and you could see up to 3-4 in a day if you plan it out well. Snorkeling through these insanely epic caves with crystal clear fresh water was definitely a highlight. The bats occasionally flying overhead made it that much cooler.
Among our many biking adventures, was the Tulum ruins. Located about a 35-40 minute bike ride from NEST. For those less “Armstrong-like” a cab is about $10 😉 The Tulum ruins are among the top three most-visited archaeological sites in Mexico. Situated on 12-meter tall cliffs along the east coast of the Yucatán Peninsula ,it was one of the last cities built and inhabited by the Maya.
My imagination went crazy here and as I starred at the many large iguanas that now serve as permanent residents I rebuilt this tiny metropolis in my head… I pictured everything as it was then and it gave me chills. I could barely get my toaster oven to work and this civilization built a whole city out of stone & clay that I’m now visiting thousands of years later. NBD.
Besides a crash course through time, we got an equally amazing lesson in sea turtles. Did I mention it was sea turtle season? Located about 20 mins from NEST Tulum is Acumal. Here you can rent snorkel gear and set out to find some sea turtles. After swimming beside our sought after friend, we explored the colorful reefs home to some of the most amazing marine life. We also got a killer snorkelers tan on our backs… sexy!
But if you’re lucky like we were, you don’t even have to leave the crisp white sandy beach that NEST sits on. The locals advised us to just walk along the beach after 9pm if we wanted to witness sea turtles hatch. Yeah, sure… like it’s a live stream of Discovery Channel, right? Just 2 mins after walking down the moonlit beach I spotted what looked like a huge mass of moving seaweed. It was better than magical moving seaweed, it was newborn sea turtles making their way to the ocean! My mezcal buzz quickly wore off and I transformed into an after school Disney special. Literally cheered them on and watched each and every one of those tiny guys take their first swim. Priceless.
If you’re looking for some adventure, relaxation, and culture in the vast beauty that is Tulum, NEST is by far your perfect home away from home. Book your next getaway now!