Pro-tip: Drinking too much alcohol the night before a demanding bike trip is not recommended.
Pro-tip 2: Neither is eating new/sketchy/street food. Make sure you have at least 12 hours to get the worst out before starting to bike. Too much information? 😀
I knew that today would be a long day. 96 km is a big step up from the 64 km I biked on my first day on the road, so I decided to start early and split the trip in three.
23 km south of Tulum, we have another archaeological site, called Muyil. Biking there was a piece of cake. A very sweaty piece of cake, but a piece of cake nonetheless. A straight well-paved road with plenty of space for biking. (Though it doesn’t seem like a common activity, because everyone looked at me as if I were crazy when I said I’d bike there. Imagine their reaction when I added that I will continue all the way to Nicaragua.)
Most exciting thing on this route: A bump made my bag of nuts fall out of the basket, and I had to walk back and pick it up.
The town doesn’t seem to have any hostels, so it’s not a place to stay the night. I could only see a few small huts and the archaeological site, which costs 40 pesos to enter. (Roughly 2 USD, or a little less than 2 EUR.)
This is the type of ruins I had hoped for! I can believe so many people go to the Tulum ruins and pay more, when it’s so much less interesting.
Seems to still be worked on though, as people were still digging, and it was quite badly signed. What’s in this cave for example?! No sign told me.
For 50 extra, you can take a short jungle hike to a lagoon, and it’s cool if you like walking in the jungle. There’s also a watch tower where you could see everything from above.
I really wanted to cool down in the water to survive the rest of the trip, but was disappointed to learn that you can not swim in this lagoon, only take a boat trip for more money.
There’s supposedly a swimmable lagoon nearby, but I was already a little late, so I had to get going.
We need two more pics of the ruins:
I barely got up on the bike when I saw a roadside restaurant called “Chunyaxche“, and decided to avoid the midday sun and get something to eat. 4 tacos for 65 pesos is a little more expensive than usual, but won’t break your bank.
It was time to do the main biking of the day! I put on my headphones and listened to the audio book for Stephen King’s “The Dark Tower“, and enjoyed the next 29 km of forest highway, barely seeing a single building along the way.
With 44 km to go, there’s a cafe/pub called “Cafeteria La Selva” on the side of the road. It’s your last sign of civilization until you reach Felipe Carrillo Puerto, so I recommend that you take a break and enjoy a freshly made and very fruity honey melon juice for 15 pesos. At this point, I was still not tired at all and thought that this was going to be a breeze, but little did I know the horrors of being a small human on a bicycle until that same afternoon.
(I added some special effects to this picture to simulate my discomfort.)
As with my first longer distance, each 10 kilometer seemed twice as long compared to the previous 10. When I had almost biked 90 kilometers (plus an unplanned one hour hike in the jungle, including climbing a watch tower), I really wanted to throw in the towel! This was too much for one day, and I stopped and sat down on the side of the road. No water left, and no energy left. Would I die?!
No, I wasn’t quite that melodramatic! 20 minutes later, I was up on the saddle again, and managed to ride the final kilometers of this incredibly exhausting day. “More breaks next time might be good”, I thought.
In the next post, I will tell about my experience of Felipe Carrillo Puerto!