Suddenly the opportunity arose to have a quick week in the sun. Ages ago Andy, my eldest brother had suggested Tulum in Mexico, and with the guarantee of warm weather and a very laid back atmosphere off we went.
It is a ten and a half hour flight from Gatwick and then a two hour transfer from Cancun to Tulum, but so worth it. The holiday was nearly over before it started when I tripped off the top step out of reception, but luckily Alexander, the concierge, was a good deal stronger than he looked and managed to catch me! We stayed at the El Pez hotel, which consists of 17 beautiful little Cabanas right on the beach.
It was the best holiday we have had for ages. Delicious sea food straight from the sea, the most beautiful, clear, aquamarine water which was positively hot, and lots of things to do. Also as it was the hurricane season the stunning beach was relatively deserted. The beach at Tulum runs for miles and miles and is crammed with every sort of hotel. No need for infinity pools and the hotels range from old hippy cabins on the beach, through yoga and boot camp retreats to beautiful air-conditioned cabanas.
Mark was incredibly energetic and went for a run every morning. I went for a run on day one - admittedly in my docksides which probably wasn't ideal, and gained a sore back and a blister, so just opted for a long walk for the rest of the week. We hired a car for two days and visited the Mayan ruins in Tulum and ate at Chamico's restaurant which is down a long, long road on it's own private beach.
We also swam in the beautiful Cenote at Saka Tun. I think this requires a little bit more research, but apparently the meteorite that killed the dinasours landed in Mexico and created underground rivers, or Cenotes, which run under the Southern Penisular of Mexico. Anyway we climbed down and swan through incredible caves full of stalagtites and stalagmites (and bats). The water was very clear, very, very cold and sulphury but it was an amazing experience. There are dozens of places where you can swim in a Cenote, but Saka Tun was recommended as one of the best. It is down a very long bumpy track, but well worth the visit.
The hotel itself was also very quiet, the only other people by the pool were two enormous and very bold Iguanas who sat out in the strongest sun and walked purposefully towards you if you passed on their side of the pool.
After a week of lying in the sun, reading, swimming and eating the most delicious food it was time to fly home to the wonderful Autumn colours, rather colder weather and very hairy horses.