The second stop on my Mexican Adventure took me just over an hour south of Cancun to Playa Del Carmen. Buses run very frequently and I opted for an ADO luxury coach with toilet, comfortable reclining chairs and a movie (in Spanish) for a bank breaking 60pesos (about £2.40). The other option was a ‘collectivo’ minibus that costs 45 pesos.
On arrival into Playa I instantly liked it more than Cancun. There are lots of bars and restaurants all leading down to the beach which unfortunately, just like Cancun, was full of seaweed that made it look unattractive and smelled even worse.
The hostel, ‘La Isla’ that I stayed at was right on the beach. From the balcony you could see along the (smelly, ugly) beach. It was also right above Senor Frogs so it’s a good thing that I can sleep through almost anything, as their music was loud until the early hours of the morning.
On my first night I didn’t even notice that the music was playing, or maybe I got back late enough (and possibly drunk enough) that it had stopped.
As soon as I arrived at the hostel I met a guy from the West of Mexico who was in Playa searching for work. He hadn’t been very successful due to the temptation to go out and party all the time. He took me to a local restaurant, away from the tourist area for cheap Quesadillas and we got some drinks to have down the beach.
We ended up going out with an American in his mid 30s on some kind of midlife crisis. He came out with no money, spent the night trying to hit on girls 15 years younger than him and always wanted to ‘find somewhere better’ than the free bars that we were confined to, as I definitely wasn’t about to pay his entrance fee. Despite this guy it was a good night with a nice vibe.
The following day I met up with some ship friends. Ilke, who I met in Cancun, came to catch a ferry with me to Cozumel and we had a nice meal with our friend Annie who’s ship, Oasis of the Seas, was docked. Annie followed me to my first two ships Mariner and Indy and we remain good friends meeting up when ever we are in the same place at the same time.
After cocktails at ‘no name bar’ where crew members visit whenever they dock in Cozumel, we headed back to Playa. Ilke and me had a couple more drinks and her boyfriend came to see us and drove us to get some street food.
The following day, not feeling good at all, either because of the all day drinking, with cheap cocktails or the street food, I watched Mexico beat South Korea 2-1 before heading for my next stop in Tulum.