Tales from a Trekker: Louise's Mexican BLT

  • Playa del Carmen

Beaches, jungles, ruins and tequila - Mexico totally makes for the perfect adventure.

In another instalment of our 'Tales from a Trekker' series, we chat to Louise, who blogs at Formidable Joy, about her experience of the Mexican BLT...

What was it that made you decide to take the Mexican BLT?

I've wanted to go travelling for so long now but never had the guts to go. Travelling with Trek America seemed like the perfect opportunity to get a taster of travelling without throwing myself in too much - I flew out alone (having never been on an airplane alone before nor ever travelled long haul) and stayed on a few days after the tour, so it was the perfect opportunity to explore the idea of travelling in a way that pushed me out there but kept me safe!

I chose the Mexican BLT because it sounded so amazing - the whole trip seemed like it was full of variety. Also, Mexico is a place so different to anything I've ever known, with it's jungles, waterfalls and lagoons and such.

There’s loads of amazing architecture in Mexico – did you have any favourite spots?

I really, really loved the ruins at Palenque - they were beautiful and the site absolutely blew me away. Not sure if it counts, but I also noted that around Mexico there is some seriously stunning graffiti which I'd have loved to learn more about.

Palenque ruins

How was your tour leader?

Delai was great - he knew a lot about Mexico and was laid back - he acted more like a friend than a 'leader' which I liked, as it's good to have someone you can genuinely chat to and joke with on a tour. I especially loved his knowledge of great places to eat and I believe he introduced us to some amazing gems that we wouldn't have found otherwise.

What were the rest of the group like – did you get to know each other quickly?

Everyone was lovely. It was about half and half with the age ranges - there were some younger people who liked to party in the evening and more settled people who were happy just having a glass of wine over good conversation, but it was all a great mix. Everyone gelled with each other really well, but likewise, everyone was so different in terms of their past travels or the type of everyday lives they live, so it was really interesting to mix with people so different.

Can you tell us a bit about the accommodation throughout the trip and what you thought?

The accommodation was amazing! Being that it was a BLT tour, we weren't expecting much but we were pleasantly surprised.

What did you see on your jungle tour?

We were told monkeys were often spotted on tours but we weren't lucky enough to see any this time. However, it was so much fun trekking through the jungle anyway - I felt like Tomb Raider or Indiana Jones. It was definitely something to tick off my bucket list.

Playa Del Carmen

What did you get up to in Playa del Carmen?

Playa del Carmen was pretty relaxed - we briefly visited the ruins of Tulum and spent some downtime. Our hotel here was really cute with a beautiful seating area on the roof, so we went out for food (and spent a small amount of time walking around) then had some drinks on the roof before heading out! It was officially the last night of the tour (well, the tour actually ended the following night but some of us were flying that night, others were moving onto a different hotel early etc) so we had to go out with a bang, of course. It was an amazing way to spend a final full night together. I'd love to return one day to explore the area as there was so much I'd have liked to of seen.

Did you spend any time in Cancun before or after your tour? If so - what would you recommend for others doing the same?

I chose to stay on four more nights and it was definitely a great decision. I also visited Xcaret which was one of my favourite days of my whole time in Mexico. I wanted to visit the beach, but unfortunately it rained that day so we went shopping instead. I'd suggest people take the time to explore Cancun as there's a lot to see - such as the nightlife area with Coco Bongo and chain restaurants (you'll know the area when you see it!), and there's also apparently an area just like Playa del Carmen with lots of chic restaurants with outdoor seating and fairy lights, boho shops etc - I didn't have the chance to find this area though. I'd without a doubt recommend Xcaret (and, if you have time, any of the other parks), but also just see what your hotel or hostel is offering, if you stay in one. I also got a tattoo on my last night but hey, I wouldn't recommend that for EVERYONE.

Cancun

Were there any moments in particular that you’ll never forget?

So many. Waking up that first morning in Mexico and having it hit me that I was finally there, many of the nights we relaxed on the cute hotel rooftops and just chatted etc. The day spent in Palenque at the ruins and on the jungle tour really blew me away and is something I'll remember for the rest of my life - it was just so stunning. And I'll also never forget the cute jungle restaurant Delai took us to - there was a restaurant, bar, shops and other things all connected through wooden walkways in the jungle which was really different and cute. After dinner, we drank tequila and danced to traditional Mexican music, so this was one evening I really felt like a local.

What would you say to someone thinking about taking the Mexican BLT?

Just do it! If you're looking for something really different, then I'd recommend this particular tour, especially if you've never travelled before or done anything scary like that before. There are a few other Trek America tours I really want to do, but I'm so glad this was my first. The price was totally worth it, too.

Check out our Mexican BLT

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