¡Hola amigos! It’s me again with the third round-up post of my around the world trip. If you missed the previous posts or just want to refresh your mind (like me), you can read them here.

Time passes so quickly that it scares me. Although my biological clock seems to have stopped working sometime in October, my smartphone reminds me that it’s December already, and yet another year is coming to an end. This also means that nine months have already passed in the blink of an eye since the beginning of our world trip and we only have three months left! Before I get more and more anxious, let’s recap what happened in the third quarter, which was kind of slow in terms of the number of countries visited: namely just the USA and Mexico.

American Road Trip

As you might remember, we had been hanging out with our friends in Seattle for almost a month, until we boarded our flight to Las Vegas on September 5, 2018. But before that, we took a boat trip to see the killer whales in the Seattle Bay area on September 1st, followed by a day trip to Vancouver, Canada. And then Vegas, baby!

Around the World American Road Trip - MAHO on Earth Boutique Adventure Tours and Travel Blog

Las Vegas, September 5-9, 2018

Before hitting the road, we spent 4 nights in Sin City, which became one of our favorite cities in the US along with San Francisco and New York.

It’s absolutely insane to find such a place in the middle of a desert. The “casino hotels” are actually small towns on their own. You have to see it for yourself how decadent humans can get.

If you’re not into gambling, just hotel-hopping and people-watching would keep you for a full day and night busy. You can find the lowest hotel rates on weekdays but the majority of them close to the Strip ask for a nightly service fee (max 39$ as of 2018) plus tax. In the end, even on weekdays, a night cost about 100$ minimum on the Strip, which is the area where all famous hotels are located. For more economical options, either consider staying in Downtown Vegas or check out Airbnb and download RideRTC app to buy bus tickets for the residential fare.

In any case, don’t leave Vegas without:

  • paying a visit to Stratosphere Observation Tower for stunning views and fun rides
  • watching a Cirque du Soleil show (KÀ was fantastic)
  • seeing the Strip hotels, especially Caesars Palace, Paris, The Venetian, and Bellagio (if you have more time, you can visit the others like New York, Excalibur, Luxor)
  • spending an evening in Downtown Las Vegas with free concerts, light shows, and more.

Remember to check out websites like vegas.com, bestofvegas.com, and smartervegas.com for discounted tickets. You can always find a good deal, even very last minute.

Las Vegas tries to get all your money but the main fun is for free. Enjoy!

Zion National Park, September 9-10, 2018

We started our “Back to Nature” trip with Zion National Park on the typical tourist loop from Las Vegas.

When you want to visit Zion National Park, make sure to arrive early, as parking lots fill up too quickly (latest by 9 am). It’s compulsory to take the free shuttle bus for the scenic canyon drive. You can hop on and off along the way and follow the trails as you please.

A pity that the trail I was looking forward to hiking (Angels Landing) along with several other trails was closed due to a storm damage from past July. We could just do some minor hikes instead. Probably that’s why I wasn’t overly impressed by this park. It reminded me of West MacDonnell Ranges in the Australian Outback, which was superior IMHO. Nevertheless, it was a pleasant day out in nature, a much-needed treat after the insanity in Vegas. If you are short on time, you can easily skip this park. We drove further to a town close to Bryce Canyon for the second night.

Bryce Canyon and onto Kanab, September 11, 2018

Bryce Canyon is breathtakingly beautiful. Make sure it’s on your bucket list. As a couple with different interests, we usually don’t come to an agreement so quickly but it’s a whole different story when it comes to the beauty of Bryce Canyon. It is beyond dispute our second favorite national park in the US after Yellowstone. Second only to Cappadocia rock formations in Turkey, this park is a unique place on earth that can’t be missed.

For overnight, we drove to Kanab, aka Little Hollywood, for the mere reason of trying our luck in the Wave Hiking Permit Lottery. Every day 20 permits are issued: 10 online and 10 walk-ins. According to park rangers, there are over 2000 online applicants for a given day, and about 100 walk-in applicants were present in the morning of September 12, 2018. Either way, chances are very slim to win the lottery but we tried at least.

Page, AZ, September 12, 2018

As we didn’t win the Wave lottery, we drove to Page and then visited the famous sights like Horseshoe Bend, Lake Powell, and booked a tour for the Lower Antelope Canyon for the next morning. The tours for the Upper Antelope Canyon were already sold out for the upcoming week.

Antelope Canyon is actually beautiful, but the way the tours are conducted is absolutely unacceptable. During a one-hour-long overpriced tour, you’ll be rushed through the canyon. No time to enjoy anything as the tours depart every minute to make as much money as possible. I hated it all there. It felt like an utter rip-off even though I knew it was going to be rushed and crowded, I didn’t expect it to be that horrible. If you desperately want to see the canyon, either pay the double price for photography tours (not sure if you get the promised time to enjoy though), or come in the winter months when it’s supposed to be less crowded, or alternatives like Canyon X is said to be more enjoyable and a lot cheaper.

Flagstaff, September 13, 2018

After visiting the Antelope Canyon, we drove back to Kanab to pick up Tom’s tablet from the hostel, then onward to Flagstaff to visit Grand Canyon the next morning. If you wonder why Flagstaff, we selected the towns for overnight stays based on the accommodation prices and distance to the park entrances. Staying overnight in the park boundaries was not an option for us.

Grand Canyon National Park, September 14, 2018

A day was sufficient to enter from East and exit from South covering all major viewpoints along the way. We were even able to squeeze in a little section of the South Rim hiking trail too. The Grand Canyon Village with some lodges is located in the South Rim section. The North Rim is said to be less crowded.

Please bear in mind that Grand Canyon West is located on the Hualapai Indian Tribal Lands and is NOT a part of Grand Canyon National Park, meaning that you have to pay an extra entrance fee valid for the West Rim only (this is where the Skywalk is located). Just like other entrance fees on Indian tribal land, the entrance fee for West/Skywalk is ridiculously steep. We saved our money, especially after the Antelope Canyon rip-off. Speaking of entrance fees, don’t forget to buy the annual pass “America the Beautiful” at the entrance of your first national park. If you visit three national parks, it pays off already.

We drove to Williams for overnight. Both Flagstaff and Williams are located on the Historic Route 66.

Sedona, September 15, 2018

The idea was actually to have a vacation from vacation in the spa town of Sedona, AZ but the accommodation rates were way beyond our budget. So we just had a snack in Sedona town and visited the Red Rock State Park Arizona (first picture above) before heading to Phoenix for overnight. After the tourist hoards of other places, we had the hiking trails in the Red Rock State Park just to ourselves.

Phoenix, September 15-18, 2018

As we arrived in Phoenix by 6pm, the thermometer was still showing 40 °C! It was too hot to do anything else but relax at the poolside and do some planning. So we didn’t see much of Phoenix (and I don’t think we missed something).

Downtown Las Vegas, September 18-19, 2018

After four nights in hot and dry Phoenix, we returned to Las Vegas for another night just because it was so much fun. No, actually we didn’t have time/energy to visit Downtown Vegas the last time but we didn’t want to bypass it either. Instead, Tom got a bypass surgery 🙂 Ever heard of Heart Attack Grill? A hospital-themed funny restaurant. Google it!

We were actually thinking about visiting another Cirque du Soleil show but we liked the down-to-earth experience in Downtown so much that we spent the night on and around Fremont Street to conclude our road trip through Nevada, Utah, and Arizona. September was still too hot (and tourist high season) for these states but we survived.

Salt Lake City, September 19, 2018

On September 19, we dropped our rental car at the airport and flew to Salt Lake City, and picked up another car. Flying from Vegas to SLC was cheaper than the rental drop-off fee, but we still paid that fee for dropping of the second car in Seattle. I must admit that I was a bit too late with planning this part of the trip. By the time I knew when we would be flying back, the flights got very expensive that we had to drive back to Seattle instead.

Thayne, September 20, 2018

In order to enter Yellowstone from the south passing through the Grand Teton National Park, we stayed in Thayne for overnight. Jackson Hole is the closest town to the south entrance, but also very pricey, just like the lodges located in the park itself. Along the way, we made a quick stop in Afton, Wyoming, home to the world’s largest arch made of elk antlers.

Bavarians, you can skip Grand Teton National Park, it’s so very similar to Karwendel mountains.

Yellowstone National Park, September 21-22, 2018

Yellowstone National Park has a jaw-dropping beauty. I couldn’t help but walk around with my mouth wide open the entire time. Make sure to visit Yellowstone NP no matter how you twist and tweak your itinerary.

The park is huge and has many entrances. You can fly to one of the closest airports and pick up a car from there. Jackson Hole in the south, West Yellowstone in the west, Bozeman in the north, or Cody in the east are aviation gateways to America’s first national park. It’s possible to cover all the major sights in two very long days, however, I’d recommend spending three days in Yellowstone, even four would be great if you can afford it.

We stayed in a village about 1 hour away from the west entrance of the park. If you need further information before I write up the dedicated Yellowstone post, please feel free to contact me.

Boise, Idaho, September 23, 2018

We absolutely loved driving through Idaho’s almost empty roads, sleepy towns, and breathtaking scenery. A serendipitous visit to the Moon in Idaho, after visiting Mars in Wyoming, reminded us of our hike up to the summit of Acatenango Volcano in Guatemala, but with much less effort for the massive 360-degree views of the mountain ranges around. Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve is a hidden gem of a national park in the US, highly recommended. For overnight, we picked the capital city of Idaho, Boise.

Seattle, September 24-30, 2018

Back to Seattle to get ready for the party!

Leavenworth, October 1-8, 2018

Leavenworth is possibly the most Bavarian place overseas. The theme is very well implemented, complete with Oktoberfest. Of course, the culture is adapted to the American way of living that we, as original and semi-original Bavarians, can see a bunch of differences, but we also have to admit it comes really close to hometown feeling, given the town’s wonderful alpine setting.

Oktoberfest itself is a little different and with just two tents a lot smaller than the original but the vibe in the entire town is great and the bands are amazing. Given the strict regulations, you have zero chances of an alcohol overdose so everyone can have fun in style. Bussers in the tent clean your table so frequently that there is no mess at all. Oh, and there is dirndl for puppies too.

Seattle, October 8-10, 2018

Back to our base camp to get ready for Mexico.So, this was the American Dream that lasted two and a half months including Hawaii. If it wasn’t for our friends, we wouldn’t have stayed so long in the US and we wouldn’t have followed a zigzag route. But having some fixed dates to spend with friends caused a bit of back and forth. And considering that we would possibly not come back to this part of the world so soon, we wanted to make all dreams we had been talking about for years come true.

Along with our previous trip in 2010 (read here), the total number of states visited in the USA has increased to ten. Of all the places we’ve visited, Yellowstone, Bryce Canyon, Las Vegas, San Francisco, and New York are absolutely the highlights I urge you to prioritize your itinerary accordingly. The USA is not a cheap country, so spend your money wisely 🙂

Adios USA, Hola Mexico!

Given that we visited California 8 years ago, it wasn’t a big deal to fly over to Baja California to start with a smooth introduction to Mexico. We had heard all the horror stories about Mexico, and everyone advised us to be so very careful because the Mexicans even steal the flip-flops from your feet. I must confess that the first couple of days I was so scared of walking outside even during the daytime. It didn’t take long though to realize that Mexico is as dangerous as any other country. You just need to use common sense and relax.

Cabo San Lucas, October 10-12, 2018

Cabo San Lucas felt very familiar in many ways both with Turkey and USA (take e.g. Marmaris and throw in North American tourists). Honestly, we didn’t like this completely artificial and overpriced resort town. Despite its busy marina with yachts and cruise ships, it was impressive to find a blue-flagged beach just in town though. Oh, the scuba diving was impressive with a rare natural phenomenon, Sandfalls: https://youtu.be/cBy0BSThIog.

La Paz, October 13-18, 2018

Bienvenidos a Mexico!

La Paz, the capital of Baja California, is a relaxed Mexican seaside city that we fell in love with immediately. So impressed that we could even imagine living in La Paz. The tourist crowds and pushy vendors of Cabo are non-existent here, but just friendly smiles. English is not common unless you book tours with bilingual guides. There are no traffic lights but drivers do stop as soon as they notice us, pedestrians. There is a dedicated bike path on the street along the Malecon, a playground for locals to go skating, jogging, biking, watching the sunset, kayaking, or swimming right there in the center. And one should not forget to mention the environmentally-conscious Mexican government for preserving the natural beauty of the region for future generations.

An unreal place your bucket list is missing: Espiritu Santo, Baja California Sur, Mexico.
Balandra Beach, is another beautiful area protected from any kind of development

Los Mochis, October 18, 2018

From La Paz, we took the Baja Ferry over to the mainland in order to board the Copper Canyon train, El Chepe. As the ferry arrives late in the night, it meant an overnight stay in Los Mochis.

The first-class train departs every day, but since we wanted to save money, we decided to buy our tickets in Los Mochis, and then take the bus to El Fuerte to board the train two days later. At the station, we found out they wouldn’t sell second-class tickets there. Actually, it turned out that second-class tickets can be bought on the train upon boarding.

El Fuerte, October 19-21, 2018

El Fuerte is one of the over 100 magical towns in the country, and the first notable stop along the Copper Canyon railway. Pueblos Mágicos is a program led by the Mexican government to promote tourism throughout Mexico, a country that has more than beaches to offer. Similar to UNESCO, the aspiring towns must meet certain criteria to achieve Pueblo Magico title. Here you go, set aside the hospitality of Mexicans, just another reason to love Mexico. It may not be viewed as a first world nation but for me, it’s the first among the first.

El Chepe train ride and Creel, October 21-24, 2018

El Chepe is one of the last remaining passenger train journeys in Mexico. The train climbs from sea level in Los Mochis to the Copper Canyon rim and further to the high sierra plains of Chihuahua. It took 60 years to build the entire route which can be covered on a 16-hour long journey.

The first-class train departs every day, whereas second-class cars are attached only every other day. Instead of waiting in the busy city of Los Mochis, we spent two nights in El Fuerte town before catching the train to Creel, where we arrived after a journey of roughly 8 hours through beautiful scenery. And in my opinion, this section is more than enough to enjoy the best scenery, as the train is slow and fares are expensive compared to a bus ride.

Creel town itself was sleepy. It’s said to be a better place to base yourself to organize tours and stuff but probably due to the offseason, it wasn’t possible for us to organize anything without having to pay for a private tour. In the end, we were happy to find an open restaurant. With hindsight, we should have taken the train directly to Divisadero, where the Copper Canyon and Adventure Park is located, stayed a night or two there, and then continued by bus. Both magical towns of El Fuerte and Creel were nice but nothing special.

Mexico City, October 24-29, 2018

You might have noticed that I love contrasting experiences. Having spent three nights in the village of Creel with a 5000 population (and almost bored to death because of the low season), we flew to the biggest city in North America. To arrive on time for the Day of the Dead celebrations, I had to skip the other famous cities for this time. I don’t know what I missed but I know that experiencing the Day of the Dead was so worth it that I’d come back for a second or even third time.

One of the many Alebrijes on display

Mexico City is so huge that five full days were not enough to cover all the places I wanted to see. What we could squeeze in was:

  • A day strolling in Centro Historico
  • A visit to Museum of El Carmen with mummies, and admiring the altars at Emilio’s House (Monumental Casa de Emilio el “Indio” Fernández). We skipped Frida Kahlo’s House due to crowds.
  • A fun night at Lucha Libre Wrestling
  • Day of the Dead Parade and hunting Alebrijes (Mexican folk art sculptures)
  • Day trip to the Pyramids of Teotihuacán, and plenty of walking
A mummy at Museo del Carmen
A scene from the dance show at Emilio’s courtyard

I’ll surely be returning to this fantastic city to explore more. BTW, we didn’t feel unsafe at all. According to our host’s advice, you should avoid the Historic Center during the night, and keep your wallet and valuables safe while riding the metro.

Oaxaca City, Oaxaca, October 30-November 2, 2018

Day of the Dead (Dia de Muertos) is celebrated all around the country, but Oaxaca is said to be one of the best places to be. Upon check-in, we went straight to the city center and found ourselves in the middle of the party.

Day of the Dead has nothing to do with Halloween. It’s believed that departed souls come back to earth during this time. The families prepare altars with the deceased one’s favorite food, drinks, and flowers so that they can find their way back easily. And tons of dance and music can’t be missing to please their souls. Of course, nobody knows if they really come back, but the ambiance is a treat for the soul for sure.

We spent three days and nights and I wasn’t bored for a second. This is possibly the most colorful, cheerful, and artful event ever that everyone should experience at least once in a lifetime.

If you haven’t watched it yet, make sure to watch Coco (2015) about this topic and Mexican culture.

From Oaxaca, you can take several day or half-day trips to nearby attractions. One afternoon, we took the local bus to the widest tree in the world, El Tule, and another afternoon we took a colectivo (shuttle van) to Monte Alban pre-Colombian ruins. Both places are easy to access and well worth the trip.

Huatulco, Oaxaca, November 3-6, 2018

After the crazy busy days spent in Mexico City and Oaxaca City, we spent three days hanging out at the beaches of Huatulco, a naturally protected region made up of 9 bays and 36 beaches.

This place is extremely laid back, even the busiest beach is very quiet compared to many other beach destinations. The best thing is though, you can find every hue of green with white and golden sandy stretches in between. With its lush lowland jungle, pristine beaches, and rich biodiversity, Huatulco is a nature lover’s paradise, and yet another sustainable tourism development success story.

San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas, November 7-11, 2018

After the beach days, we took another overnight bus (ADO is the first/tourist class bus company) to base ourselves in San Cristobal de Las Casas to enjoy nature and other attractions around.

San Cristobal itself is a picturesque colonial town with charming pedestrian streets dotted with nice cafes, pubs, and restaurants. Very enjoyable if there wasn’t the constant poverty-in-your-face. The vendors are very persistent here in the poorest state of Mexico. There wasn’t a minute that someone wouldn’t ask for money or food staring at your plate. We couldn’t enjoy the town itself at all but the tours to natural attractions were great (and really cheap that you’d pay more if went by public transportation).

Christmas tree waterfall, Sumidero Canyon
Rainbow at El Chiflon Waterfalls

Sumidero Canyon, San Juan Chamula, El Chiflon Waterfalls, and Montebello Lakes were the places we visited, all worth seeing if you have time.

Palenque, November 11-13, 2018

By this time, Tom was done with overnight bus travels, and the direct route between San Cristobal and Palenque is said to be prone to robberies. Therefore, we took the 6am ADO bus to Palenque to visit the famous Mayan ruins. We stayed at a lodge in the jungle, out of the town but close to the park entrance. Yet still, I didn’t notice it was a long walk that I arrived after the tour buses had arrived, despite getting up early. Though not as busy as Chichen Itza, this place was also very crowded with hoards of tourists.

Scarlet Macaw, Aluxes Ecopark
Palenque Ruins

In the afternoon, I went to the Aluxes Ecopark, a private center for the conservation, rescue & reintroduction of native flora and fauna. I had the place almost to myself, and would highly recommend a visit when you are in Palenque. Tom? He was having a day off from sightseeing (and me). While traveling long-term you are 24/7 together with your partner. There is no place to escape, called the office, thus such breaks are crucial for a healthy relationship.

Bacalar, November 13-15, 2018

It took us an entire day to get to Bacalar, a Pueblo Magico (magical town) at the shores of the same-named freshwater lagoon. Bacalar is also known as the Maldives of Mexico and it’s easy to see why. We couldn’t see all 7 colors of the lagoon on such an overcast day but what we could see was so worth the total journey time of 12 hours by several vehicles. So, here is one of the most beautiful natural swimming pools I’ve ever seen.

Cenote Cocalitos with stromatolites, the rock formations considered the earliest signs of life on Earth

There is actually a direct bus but it either arrives too early in the morning or very late at the night, so we wanted to travel daytime. First, we took a minivan (colectivo) from the jungle to Palenque town center, and then another one to Zapata town. Once there, I had to search for the only guy who sells tickets to Chetumal for the TRT Bus Company but never sits in the ticket office. After the most complicated ticket purchase process (at some point, I wasn’t sure if we were at the right place), we waited for the bus that came delayed by 40 minutes, and then came the bumpy bus ride of 7 hours itself. In the meantime, we had lost an hour due to the new time zone and it was already dark. So we got off the bus around 7pm in a village before Chetumal not to backtrace the same way (even the driver was surprised and asked us what we wanted to do in that village). And then we tried to flag down a minivan to Bacalar but they either didn’t stop or weren’t going there, and even the taxis wouldn’t stop.

I wasn’t panicked yet but I had started thinking about a Plan-B/C/D by the time a taxi dropped off a passenger and we jumped in. A quick ride of 20 minutes later, we finally got to the magical place by 8pm. It was one of those stressful travel days but as the saying goes: “No pain, no gain” (Warning: don’t attempt such a journey without knowing Spanish, at least good enough to handle such situations).

Tulum, November 15-19, 2018

Tulum is the first and only place we hate in Mexico. It has received the title as being “The Worst of Mexico”. The town, built alongside the highway, is not nice at all; the people are pushy; the prices are inflated. On top, the Airbnb I booked for four nights was horrible. Normally I wouldn’t book anything for more than two nights, but I was possibly too afraid of having to search for a new place in case we wanted to stay longer. Despite all the great reviews, the place wasn’t great. Not a bit.

Iguana at the Tulum Ruins beach
Cenote Dos Ojos

I allocated so many days for Tulum to do some cenote diving, take a boat tour of Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, and of course to visit Tulum Ruins and the beach. Due to adverse weather conditions, the Sian Ka’an Ocean tour had been canceled. But I did my otherworldly dives in El Pit and Dos Ojos cenotes and visited the ruins as well. The beaches on the Caribbean Coast suffer from a seasonal (?) seaweed problem and are not really enjoyable. If I had known that a day would be sufficient for both diving and visiting the ruins, I wouldn’t have stayed here more than one night. And if had known that you can easily reach Tulum by colectivo and organize cenote dives from Playa del Carmen as well, I wouldn’t have stayed in Tulum at all. Bottom line: skip Tulum, base yourself in Playa del Carmen which offers more options for a way better value for money.

Playa Del Carmen, November 19-28, 2018

After the horrible apartment in Tulum, we found in Playa del Carmen a very nice 2-bedroom apartment for a much cheaper rate. It was a bit far from downtown but still easily accessible by bus or colectivo.

Playa del Carmen is a very touristy place, but it’s also a very convenient town to base yourself with all the amenities of a big city: Big supermarkets, easy and cheap public transportation, nice beaches, several cenotes, diving, the ferry over to Cozumel Island and loads of other activities. La Paz remains our first love, but Playa del Carmen would be the candidate for a rational marriage 🙂

Cenote Azul
A green turtle bigger than me!

Again, I did some scuba diving here, namely, I dove with Bull Sharks (no feeding!) in the rough ocean, and then dove in two more cenotes: Chichen Ha and Angelita. I’ll write a separate post on this otherworldly experience, but even if you are not a diver, make sure to visit one of the over 6000 cenotes found in the Yucatan Peninsula, the freshwater sinkholes in the middle of the jungle.

I took Tom to Cenote Cristalino one day and to Cenote Azul another day. Cenote Azul was an open type of cenote with loads of fish that are eager to give you a free pedicure. Cenote Cristalino is formed as a half-open cave and is very good for snorkeling with all the light beams, swim-throughs, and plenty of fish. It gives you the closest sense to scuba diving. We went to Punta Esmeralda as well, which is the closest cenote to the ocean, but it was rather like a shallow pool. Other than these activities, an afternoon spent at the poolside, and another at the beach, I slept a lot. After two strenuous dives in the choppy ocean, and then having to carry my scuba gear (as heavy as me) all the way to the dive platform at the cenotes, I was exhausted. So exhausted that I slept for three days in a row and didn’t want to do anything at all (a very weird situation for me). During the dives, I was the only female and I sometimes seem to understand why.

Valladolid, November 28-20, 2018

Whenever I was able to get out of bed in Playa del Carmen, I tried to plan the next steps.
And one day, we took the bus to Valladolid to stay overnight so that we would be able to visit Chichen Itza early in the morning and beat the tourist hoards. Nice plan, but again I preferred sleeping longer, then having a nice breakfast before heading to Chichen Itza. Despite the crowds, it’s a site well worth the visit and the high entrance fee. All other ruins cost about $70 MXN, whereas Chichen Itza comes with a hefty fee of $254 MXN (as of November 2018).

When you spend a night in Valladolid, make sure to watch the spectacular video mapping show on the walls of San Bernardino Convent, currently from Wednesday to Sunday at 9pm in Spanish, 9:30pm in English (though it’s definitely worth watching twice). The show is free of charge. We can’t think of any other country that would offer such fantastic shows for free. In that case, viva Mexico!

Cancun, November 30-Dec 4, 2018

The last stop of our Mexican Dream trip over two months, Cancun, is inconveniently big, pricey and ugly. We don’t hate it as much as we hate Tulum, but it’s a redundant place apart from the airport and Isla Mujeres ferry. Instead of moving back and forth for a few nights, we decided to do a day trip to Isla Mujeres and check out Cancun for ourselves.

Mexico is a fascinating country that we would love to spend more time exploring new places and truly enjoy the ones we liked the most: La Paz, Mexico City, Oaxaca City, and Huatulco’s beaches. Unfortunately, the towns in the Yucatan Peninsula are not our favorites but Playa del Carmen is a convenient base, and I believe I would return there for the sake of scuba diving in the future.

But for now, our ticket says December 4th, bound for Bogota, Colombia.

What’s next?

We’ll be boarding a flight to Bogota, Colombia on December 4th. As usual, we have no set plans, just a rough itinerary in my mind that says we would not visit any country other than Colombia and Brazil in the last quarter.

Even if the end of the tunnel is in sight now, I feel so grateful for every moment that passed and I feel so excited for what’s about to come. As a brand new year is approaching, make sure to write down your resolutions and actually achieve them. Don’t procrastinate on your dreams. Whatever your dream is, get up off the couch and do the work; make it a plan and make it work. There is only one life, this is not a rehearsal. Live it right, guys.

As always, remember to check my social media accounts for more frequent updates through @earthmaho and Facebook. You can also check our route and whereabouts on this MAP that I keep updated along the way.

¡Hasta luego!