Spring has sprung and we've already started the month of April. Here in Cancun, the crazy Spring Break season is coming to a close, which means I can come out of my cave again. Haha. It's funny that Spring Break is the thing that brought me here originally, yet nowadays I can't stand it! Spring break is GREAT for businesses in Cancun and in that respect it's nice, but for locals who work a 9-5 and are sober sallies like myself, it can be a huge nuisance. Additionally, we like when Cancun is known for being a beautiful, culturally robust city with historical attractions, great food, and amazing beaches, not just a party town for college kids to come get drunk in. I thought this would be the appropriate time to share why I think the destination of Cancun is so much more than just Spring Break.
1. Mayan Archaeological Sites
Also known as "Mayan Ruins", this name sounds icky to me sometimes so I try to change it up with "archaeological sites." If you haven't already heard of Chichen Itza you must be living under a rock. It's one of the new 7 wonders of the world and is a serious must-visit. Chichen Itza is the biggest and baddest of the Mayan archaeological sites around these parts, but there are several more you can choose from: Uxmal, Coba, Ek Balam, Tulum, and El Rey. These sites have some of the most beautiful structures on the planet with historic tales that go along with them. It's fascinating being on sacred ground and imagining being alive during one of the first civilizations on earth. Mind blown. Do yourself a favor and hit up one or all of these sites during your lifetime.
2. Local Culture
There is plenty to do right here in Cancun. The Museo Maya is brand new, located in the hotel zone and is free to locals on Sundays. I can't wait to get there soon. In downtown there's a new planetarium where you can catch different programs each week. A popular weekend spot also located in downtown is Parque las Palapas, a park where you can find street vendors, artists, live music, and yummy eats. There's always different restaurants to try and cultural events happening --- many options besides going out to the party center.
3. Foodie Heaven
Well you all already know how much I love food. One of the best things about not being on Spring Break in Cancun is being able to explore the local food. If you haven't eaten a torta de cochinita from a street vendor in downtown yet, you don't know what you're missing! Real Mexican food comes in a wide variety of levels - street vendors, gourmet Mexican restaurants, cocina economicas, and taco joints just to name a few. You'll most likely learn of Mexican dishes you never even knew existed. After 5 years here I am still finding out new ones!
One of the best parts about being a Cancun local - or a "Cancunense" as they say in Spanish here - is that I live close by to several amazing beach towns, islands, attractions, and even other countries. I've explored Isla Mujeres, Isla Holbox, Tulum, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Morelos, Akumal, Mahahual, Bacalar, Coba, Merida, and Cozumel just to name a few and I still have SO much more to see! What an amazing place where I live close to so many other unique destinations. My list of places left to see around these parts continues to grow every day: Ek Balam, Uxmal, Rio Lagartos, Isla Contoy, Isla Blanca, Belize, ......it goes on.
Another thing I love about Cancun is that it hosts many sporting events and is home to several sports teams that have games that are fun to attend. There are always 5K runs and each year the Cancun Marathon is held - I ran my first half marathon ever here in 2012. In the spring and summer some of my favorite things to do are go to Atlante soccer games (Cancun's professional team) & Tigres baseball game (pro Mexican baseball team.) There's nothing like screaming for your team in the porra (the cheering section) while eating kibis and elote! It's a great pastime and fun to compare how professional sports here differ from those in the USA.
These reasons only scratch the surface of why the destination of Cancun is so much more than just Spring Break. I'm happily living a sober sally lifestyle in a town that is known for partying and I'm here to tell you it CAN be done - plus it's fun and fulfilling! If you have even more reasons about why Cancun should not just be recognized as a Spring Break town, leave them in the comment section below!