Me and my luggage arrived safe and well in Cancun, Mexico. My flight from Brussels to Madrid was about an hour delayed. Luckily there was an airport steward waiting for us to get us as fast as possible to the gate for Cancun. I have spent my first 2 days in downtown Cancun, and now I’m near the beach enjoying some free time before catching the bus to the Mexican jungle at 5 AM on Saturday (tomorrow).
For people joining this project and are not interested in staying a ton of money for Clipper hotel: I stayed in Hostel Mayapan, about 300-400m away from the meeting point. For cheaper options, both for accommodation and food, stay in downtown Cancun.
Night out & sea turtles
To be honest I didn’t know this was a crazy party area 🙂 but it’s nice. I also did some wildlife watching already, which got me in a strange situation. Me and my roommate at the hostel decided to go for a drink on the beach before going out. At some point, I saw something strange moving on the beach, and it was not the alcohol working… it was a sea turtle! It was huge. Anyway, so a couple of hours later I decided to have another check at the beach before I go back to the hostel. Too bad I couldn’t see any more turtles, also no more tracks so I decided to go back. There were not so many people at the beach, but at some point, a policeman came up to me and wanted to check my pockets. I was a bit cautious because of all the stories you hear of the corrupted Mexican police… The first thing he got out of my pocket was my wallet and at that point 3 more policemen arrived out of nowhere asking me more questions. One guy was checking my wallet and was taking something out of it, but I didn’t had a proper view what it was, apparently it was the copy of my passport. Anyway, besides a wallet, earplugs and keys there was nothing more to find, you could see they were disappointed… And I think I got still all my money in my wallet, so I guess I can trust Mexican policemen and maybe I shouldn’t search for turtles at 4 in the morning.
Sanctuary in Cancun & try to see more turtles
Yesterday I made a walk at the beach by daylight and I passed by 2 sanctuaries where they protect the turtle eggs in a restricted area. They were digging a hole for turtles eggs which they have found near where I saw the one the day before, so apparently, her visit to the beach was successful.
So… last night I went back to the beach :-), but this time around 11 pm. I saw a lot of turtles, about 10 of them, just crawling on the beach… there were a lot of guards looking after the turtles and some of them were not that happy with me just walking on the beach to see the turtles, others were really nice and chatted with me. So it was a great experience, no more policemen, just guards looking after the turtles and protect them from party people ending up on the beach…
Furthermore, I also saw a crocodile in the lagoon close to my hostel.
Mexico & Cancun, first impression
I already figured out being a vegetarian in Mexico isn’t the most common thing around here, but I already tried some of the Mexican food. Clubs are pretty expensive here, the really famous ones around 60-80 USD all in. I went for a cheaper one. Bar tenders here use lasers to get the attention of other bar tenders, which in my opinion is pretty dangerous. And if they get bored they are just pointing the lasers at one of the other bar tenders… crazy Mexico.
Tomorrow morning (Saturday) I’m off to Calakmul nature reserve in the very south of Mexico, close to the border with Guatemala and Belize. I will be taking volunteers/students into the field search for mammal tracks as part of a larger monitoring program. In the next 6 weeks, I’ll probably have no internet access, but I ‘ll make a new update as soon as I find internet and time.