My little adventures south of the border.

Let’s go to Coba…

I know everyone knows I’m staying in Tulum right now and expects a report on that.  I’m going to put that off for awhile because I have mixed feelings and want to sort those out.  In the meantime, I will post my experience at Coba today.

Okay, so I bought this map of the Yucatan when Border’s was going out of business a couple years ago.  It cost me about a dollar and I couldn’t pass it up.

Before I go on with the rest of my post, I want to mention that I decided to rent a car while staying in Tulum.  I knew I wanted to do some exploring but have heard some bad stories about renting a car…but I went ahead and did it.  I was referred to a place in Tulum by the person who owned the hotel where I was staying so I felt better about that.  It cost $35.00 USD a day which included insurance, so that didn’t seem bad to me.

I was kind of nervous about driving a car in Mexico considering all the crazy cab drivers.  But to tell you the truth I’m kind of a confident (sometimes kind of crazy) driver myself (having lived on the east coast), so I thought I’d give it a whirl.  Here’s my new wheels…

A Hyundai!  Whoo-hoo…I own a 2009 Hyundai Elantra!  This is what the inside looked like.  A standard transmission…and I forgot to take pictures of the torn upholstery.

While driving down the road, I thought I’d take a look at the odometer.  I thought maybe it had tenths or hundreths of the mile at the end, but I timed it and this is the actual number.  If that’s the case, then my 2009 Elantra (with only 19,500 miles on it right now) should last the rest of my lifetime.

After getting used to the extremely loose gear shift, I was feeling pretty good.  I think this car has had its share of topes.  Speaking of which, one of the biggest warnings I would give to people is to watch out for the…

The road bumps.  That’s right…they are EVERYWHERE!  Just when you least expect it, one will appear out of nowhere.  That’s why no vehicle in Mexico has any suspension.  The topes.  They can look like this…

Or like this…

Or they can be about four feet wide and about a foot tall.  Those are usually on main thoroughfares and I didn’t want to stop traffic to take a picture of one of those.

Okay…on to Coba.  Coba has one of the few natural lakes in the Yucatan which i did not know about.

Here’s the layout of the Coba ruins…

So I went in and starting taking pictures…

After I took this one, I started getting a beeping noise every time I wanted to take another picture.  My camera told me that the memory card was full.  WHAT???  It only had about 20 pictures on it and I didn’t bring the new 16 GB card with me because I didn’t think I’d be taking that many pictures!  I went back down to the souvenir shops and found a place that sold me a 4 GB card for 300 pesos.  Bleah!!  This is one of those times when you eat your stupidity for the sake of getting photos.  Live and learn.  But I’m glad I did…you’ll see why.

So, at the beginning of the ruins, there’s an area where they will rent you a bicycle or will transport you with a trike to the ruins.  After I purchased the expensive memory card, I went back in and said “posh” to the bikes/trikes.  After a million miles later, I wish I had opted for the bikes/trikes.  After hiking about 20 minutes from the entrance, I got to this…

And then after another 20 minutes, I got to this…

So now I’m thinking, “Is this really worth all this walking???”  Then I get to this and I think, “Well, this is a little better.”

And again after another 10 minutes (and a prayerful thank you for a refreshment booth), I finally got to this…

And I’m thinking, “Oh, my God…you really CAN climb it!”  Then, as I got closer, I thought, “Yikes…do I really want to?”  It’s a million degrees out here and that is WAY up there!

So, I tell myself…”You came all this way…you talked about climbing ruins. This is it.”

So I did it.  I had to stop about three times to rest on the way up, but a bunch of people who were younger than me had to do the same thing, so that made me feel better.

Here’s the view from the top.  The one benefit was that there was a really nice breeze up there.

I was really hoping there would be some kind of restroom up there so I could fix my hair for a nice picture…but, alas, not…this was all they had…

Which is why I look pretty sorry after trekking up those rocks…

I went down backwards the whole way…that way I didn’t have to look down and I held on to the rope.  It also helped that I was a tomboy when I was young…my three older brothers would have given me sh** if I hadn’t done this.  A lot of women went down on their butts one step at a time.  It is an intimidating sight to look down.

After I got down, my legs were so weak, I had to sit and rest.  When I finally got up to walk, they were still shaky, so I had to take a trike ride back.  My one wimpish part of the deal.

By the way, I’ve heard that they will be not allowing people to climb this ruin soon, so if you want to do it, you should do it pretty quickly.

So I went to the main restaurant there afterwards because I hadn’t even had breakfast before the big climb.  The chicken tacos were so-so…

But this definitely hit the spot…

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2 responses

  1. That’s an excellent idea to wait until your destination and just rent a car for a day or two! We climbed El Castillo at Chichen Itza before they shut that down and it was a thrill. I bet Coba was one hot day!

    August 5, 2012 at 2:31 pm

  2. That’s an understatement, Beck…especially since the temple is right out in the blazing sun. Checking out of my hotel at noon today and on to the next adventure.

    August 5, 2012 at 2:45 pm

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