Sunday, February 5, 2017

Cancun Memories

Five years ago today, it was also Super Bowl Sunday but instead of being at home, we were in Cancun, Mexico. We've finished posting about this trip other than our final recap, so this seemed like a good time to relive our time there and wrap things up.

We only spent about five days in Cancun (including travel days), so we stayed at an all-inclusive resort (Dreams Cancun) and just tried to relax as much as possible. We left the days unstructured, wandered about when we felt like it, and didn't schedule anything except one dinner. We were hoping for delicious dining experiences, but ended up eating most meals at the buffet the first couple of days because it wouldn't stop raining. We didn't go to the buffet for dinner but our first two dinners weren't very exciting either. The pouring rain put a little bit of a damper on things in general since we couldn't really lay out on the beach or float around in the pool all day, but it was still nice to be away from home and resting. We appreciated all of it, especially the dolphins that liked to splash around in the rain outside our window.

While the buffet was mostly just an okay experience, the one meal we really loved there was breakfast. Breakfast on vacation for us is usually yogurt or cereal bars unless breakfast is included in the hotel rate, so being at an all-inclusive already meant a more exciting breakfast. We didn't expect such a great breakfast buffet at Dreams, but since we focused almost exclusively on the Mexican breakfast section, we were rewarded with delicious chilaquiles and sopes and beans and guacamole and all sorts of savory dishes. There was also a fabulous juice bar and good yogurt flavors we don't get at home (still). We looked forward to breakfast every morning, and filled up every day on tons of chilaquiles especially.

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A turning point in the trip, at least as far as the weather, was the Super Bowl. The party was originally supposed to be held on the beach, which sounded really fun, but the weather was so unstable that they moved the party into the hotel ballroom. Not the same, but the Giants won, so I didn't care. It was fun watching the game with all the other guests, and we had cake and chicken fingers and lots of other snacks (many of which came from the buffet). Maybe it was sacrificing the beach party, but the weather started clearing up the next morning.

Related post: Super Bowl party

Better weather meant we could skip the buffet for lunch for the first time and finally try out the Seaside Grill. We were disappointed that it was our last lunch at the resort, because the food there was delicious - tacos, salads, seafood, and more. If the weather had been good and we had tried this place earlier, we probably would have come back every day. The nicer weather also meant we could walk up and down the white sand beach and finally soak up the sun. We were grateful that at least we got that one perfect sunny afternoon.

Related post: Seaside Grill lunch

Our last trip dinner was at Paloma Bonita, the "nicer" special restaurant slightly off premises which was the only reservation we made the entire trip (and only because that was the only way we could get in to try it as part of the all-inclusive). It was worth it for good cochinita pibil and tacos and more. If we stayed at Dreams Cancun again, we would probably try to come here for dinner more than once as it was levels above the other two resort restaurants we tried for dinner. After dinner, it was time to pack up, and then have one more breakfast the next day before flying home.

Our escape to Cancun was exactly what we needed to get away from all the stress of work and living in the city. Even with all the rain and the not-always-great food, it was a really nice vacation and a welcome getaway. We haven't been back to Cancun (or to Mexico at all) since our trip five years ago, and we really do hope we'll be able to return someday. For now, we just have our happy memories.

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