I've always wanted to visit Tulum, so when I found out we were going to Cancun, not too far from Tulum, I convinced Grant to go to Tulum with me for 2 days. Being the crazy people we are, we booked two different hotels for the two nights we were there. The first night we stayed at Hotel Tiki Tiki which was more inland and then we stayed at The Beach Hotel on the beach for our last night. They were both great hotels, just different locations and prices.
We took a taxi from Cancun to Hotel Tiki Tiki. It took almost 2 hours to get there. Once we got there we ended up renting a car through our hotel. It was actually really nice to have car and pretty easy to navigate.
Hotel Tiki Tiki - Friendly staff and beautiful decor, but more inland. It is closer to the old downtown area.
The Beach Hotel - Another beautiful hotel with a hammock and private hot tub, steps to the ocean. They made the room extra special for our engagement which was sweet.
Things to do
Tulum Ruins - There is not much shade but it's cool that the ruins are right on the coast so you would get a little breeze at times. The view of the ocean is beautiful and you can even go down the stairs to swim in the ocean.
Cenote Dos Ojos - We wanted to go to both the Gran Cenote and Dos Ojos, but only had time for one. It was hard to decide. I think the Gran Cenote is more picturesque, but Dos Ojos you can do more snorkeling.
Antojitos La Chiapaneca - Great and super cheap al pastor tacos.
Humo Tulum - We had a good breakfast there. It's close to Hotel Tiki Tiki. We enjoyed their tacos and smoothie.
Chamicos - Right on the beach and super laidback. There are even some tables that have hammocks. We loved the ceviche and guacamole here.
Hartwood - Everyone raved about this place. I thought it was just ok though, but maybe we ordered all the wrong things. I would try it again. They do dinner only and are cash only. Make sure to make a reservation a month before you go. You can just email firstname.lastname@example.org to do so.
Arca - Loved the decor, drinks, and appetizers, especially the bone marrow and soft shell crab tacos. We had reservations here as well. They offer reservations from 6-7pm and then it's a first come, first serve basis. You can make a reservation by filling out their form on their site.
Ziggy's Beach Club - We enjoyed the breakfast here and it's conveniently part of our hotel.
Beverages & dessert
Prieto - A cute little yogurt shop with good charcoal yogurt and horchata.
Tulum Art Club - Right across from Prieto is a cafe with fruit smoothies and an area for artist to work on their art.
Campanella - Good gelato place cause Tulum can get hot.
Matcha Mama - A cute little hut with swings and matchas with coconut milk.
Old Tulum - This is closer to Hotel Tiki Tiki. We walked around, but nothing really caught our eye. I did read Studio DIY's blog though about her finding some cool wool stuffed animals and I was able to find the store based on her instructions! Here are her instructions: "It is on that main street with the closest cross street being Calle Jupiter Sur. If you start there and walk towards Campanella Cremerie, but on the opposite side of the street, it is one of the first couple shops along that stretch a few doors down from the OXXO on the corner. Pop in and you’ll know it when you see it. One entire half of the store is filled with the wool animals!!"
There's also the newer shopping area right near the beach, but it's super posh and expensive over there. Doesn't hurt to window shop though.
If we had more time I would have gone to Gran Cenote and Sian Ka'an. I would have eaten at Taqueria La Eufemia and Posada Margherita and had drinks at Coco Tulum. I would have also wanted to just walk around and check out the different hotels. There are some unique ones here. I can't wait to go back one day.