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Old 07-12-2010, 08:07 PM   #76
pdedse
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Two nights in the same place! A luxury for us. The whole idea was to get to the Yucatan and beyond, so its nice to slow down some.

Jeff got things rolling by signing me up for a beginning scuba class and it was nice to review the basics...Before I left for this trip, I took a scuba course but didn't get the chance to do the open water dive to become certified. I did all the book stuff and pool dives, but wasn't completely certified. Still, it worked out wonderfully...

We were out on the water at 2:00 and did two inspiring 40 minute dives at 30 feet. Gold, blue, purple, green, yellow camaflouge...rays, eels, big fish, little fish, octopus, schools of fish...unbelievable. A great first time for me.

We didn't have an underwater camera, but here's some surface pics...







Tomorrow we're off again. Will head for Tulum and the Mexico / Belice border, which we should cross Wednesday.

pdedse screwed with this post 07-12-2010 at 08:50 PM
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:31 AM   #77
bingo43 OP
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Mas de Playa del Carmen

The streets of Playa are clean and well taken care of.





There is a huge American and European presence here...drawn by the beach and the sand. It´s a little surreal to hear so much English. But just a few blocks off the quinto (5th avenue) where all things touristy are found, you can find little signs of a different kind of life.

I found this great home made trike conversion. Very handy for moving barrels of gas toward the beach.



As was mensioned...we went diving. Good Times! Paul had a great first dive. It was very relaxing. The current slowly pushed us along the reef and we could float upside down looking at the marine wildlife. We had a great guide from this dive shop and then Paul took a shower. It felt great to get all that salt off the gear and ourselves.





They sell everything here. A dude came up to me and said..."Hey buddy...wanna get high". Pretty funny.



The first night I found a taqueria and it was killer. I took Paul back and he had chicken fajitas that were the best he said he had ever had.



It´s right on 15 avenida by the Wal Mart. Now I have a new standard by which all tacos al pastor will be measured.



Today we are off toward Chetumal. Who knows what the future holds.
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:00 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by bingo43

... and then Paul took a shower.
Jeff, we need to talk...certain photos just should not be posted...
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:13 PM   #79
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We got away from Playa del Carmen by 10am and headed south, not really sure if we'd spend the night in Mexico or Belice.

Tulum was just down the road. I suppose it's nice enough, the kind of place that would be good to have a good book to read and have it all to yourself...but with 5632 other people, yeah, that part leaves something to be desired.

Then I realized I'd forgotten to charge the battery so only Jeff got to take pics, some of which follow...

Jeff managed to find the only angle of the day w/out any turistas...


Here we go, this is a bit more realistic...
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:25 PM   #80
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Since I could't take any pics with my camera, I wanted to do something memorable, and so I decided to take a swim, at least I can say that about Tulum...the water is beautiful.






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Old 07-13-2010, 11:38 PM   #81
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On the way to Chetumal, we stopped at a conenience store and ran into Kim, a cenote dive instructor. He told us about all the great ones we missed, but this trip has never been about covering the Yucatan extensively, rather we're just getting a taste of it.

Kim is Norwegian (or Swedish, can't remember now) and speaks Spanish and English fluently as well. If you're interested in cenote diving, contact him and he said he'll set you up.

Kim Davidsson
kimdavidsson@hotmail.com
suberodivingsolutions@gmail.com



The border crossing was easy, I'd been expecting a lot worse. Somehow I either lost my tourist visa or the police never gave it back to me at a checkpoint a few days prior, so that cost me $20 and another $27 when we go back to Mexico. But it was cool to be in another country. Made it to Orange Walk before dusk and found a nice hotel and wonderful dinner.

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Old 07-14-2010, 05:44 AM   #82
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More Playa del Carmen to Orange Walk Belize

We had a great day yesterday. The riding was superb. We met some great people. There was lots to look at at the beaches of Tulum. The border was very simple. Check out of Mexico took 3 minutes. Check into Belize needed fumigation (4$) Then check self and bike into Belize (10 min) Then through the border...then buy insurance 15 min. I had dreaded the borders... but this one was very simple and no "helpers" all over and the insurance guy was proud that it was so simple and did not cost much. To get into Belize and the bike, we paid nothing. Insurance was like 140 pesos The guy was very talkative and enjoyed what he did.

Tulum was very brief. Not much to see there. The best look at the pyramid is as you walk out.





Dinner last night was a Mayan place recomended by the hotel guy. Very nice food. I had Creole Shrimp and Paul had Chicken tacos. Most store owners here are Asian. There must be a huge Asian population because there were like 7 channels on TV in their native language. Lots of Mennonites as well. It smells great here. Sugar cane, Papaya growing. It's amazing to be in Belize.

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Old 07-14-2010, 09:00 AM   #83
LaCorrida
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Parece que otra vez hay unas vistas que no hay que explicar.....
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Old 07-14-2010, 12:26 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaCorrida
Parece que otra vez hay unas vistas que no hay que explicar.....
nunca ha cambiado
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Old 07-14-2010, 04:49 PM   #85
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¡Gracias por Dios por eso!
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Old 07-14-2010, 09:08 PM   #86
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Orange Walk to San Ignacio, Belize

Today was one of those amazing days in CA. We left sweaty Orange Walk in the morning. I had gone for a walk and this very nice lady helped me around. She was from Guatemala. She told us not to go there. I gave her and her daughter a soccer ball.




Leaving Orange Walk I realized that this was sugar cane country. In a big way.



We blasted through Belize. It's really not that big of a country. I wanted to do some back road riding, but early in the day it wasn't in the cards. We made it past Belmopan and just before San Ignacio I saw a sign for ATM cave. Actun Tunichil Muknal is the real name. Let me say right here that you need to go to San Ignacio and to pay a company and to get a guide. We got so excited because we had 7 miles to go and it was all dirt. Amazing riding...



If you don't have a guide you can't go in. This cool old guy would not let us go the last 2 miles. So we were stuck and we were going to have to get a room in San Ignacio and try again tomorrow. The old guy let us call a company to see if they would send a guide. The were willing...for 100$ american each. Just then a van came by with three people and a guide. They were going to have 5 people, but two dropped out so they had helmets for us and sandwiches. Talk about good times. Let the Karma train just roll. This was the experience of a lifetime. Getting to swim in a cave and hike and see remains and be in an archeological area like that....It was killer!

45 min hike in...



Entrance





Here's the money shot...



This is the final remains you see at the end...Pretty cool. You hike through and swim in the river and it is amazing!

I could not contain my joy and Paul sparkles with joy.







Paul dumped his bike on the ride out. I did not get a picture. AAAAahhhhh... O well... his secret is safe with me. We wet to a Sri Lankan restaurante for dinner. Chicken curry....very nice. To dark to take pics. Here in Belize people kind of swarm around you. It can be a little crazy...
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Old 07-14-2010, 09:16 PM   #87
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SamRat

Sri Lanka??? That is quite unique to see in the middle of central america.
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Old 07-14-2010, 11:10 PM   #88
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Nice work guys!



IN!
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:46 PM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bingo43
...
Paul dumped his bike on the ride out. I did not get a picture. AAAAahhhhh... O well... his secret is safe with me. ...
Paul says...

Jajajaja! Nice secret. So there I am standing over my bike on the dirt road, pain in right knee, blood oozing out from the mud caked on (oh, btw, second time all trip I dont have my riding pants on, and of course she decides to lay down for a nap), and honestly my first thought was, cool, Im all right but wheres my camera? Second thought was oh, I better shut off the engine, third thought was, crap, the chain has slid off, must need tightening. With all that excitment, I forgot to ask Jeff to take a photo!! And, Jeff, I dont know what he was thinking, has the gall to come up to me and ask if I all right. Why even ride with someone if they're not going to take pictures of you with your bike side down in the mud? I DO have video of me getting back on the bike with the bloody knee and all, but that needs editing, so it will have to wait till we're back.
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Old 07-15-2010, 06:56 PM   #90
tricepilot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bingo43
Paul says...

Jajajaja!
Perfect for a spanish teacher!
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