The Route - Grampies' Road to Ruins - CycleBlaze

The Route

Just to be sure we are all on the same page, let's have another quick check on just where this Yucatan place is. Looking at the map, we see clearly that it is south and west of Florida, and it looks almost as close to Cuba as Key West. Yucatan is a peninsula that has one coast on the Gulf of Mexico and one on the Caribbean. On this map Cancun and Merida are clearly seen as the major cities.

To the south we have Guatemala and Belize, and south of that - the whole complex of Central America. Yucatan and the rest of the country of Mexico, though, are in North America. That's why they are in (for now) NAFTA - the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Our original plan was after flying in to Cancun to shoot down the Caribbean coast, heading for Chetumal, and from there a boat to the offshore Belizean islands of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker.

Heart 0 Comment 0

We have taken the "chicken bus" once or twice between Cancun and Chetumal.  From the bus we could see that the road is flat and that it has a cyclable shoulder.  There are also interesting things along that way - notably Tulum and its ruins, several cenotes, and in Playa del Carmen the bar/restaurant/clothing store  "Señor Frog's", which name somehow I find hilarious.

Heart 0 Comment 0

But we have also been reading some other cyclists' blogs and we see there is more to Yucatan than the east coast,  which they also call the "Mayan Riviera", for the resorts and beaches that are east of the highway.

Notably we have read about Valladolid, an interesting colonial city, and of course Chichen Itza, which was the most powerful city on the peninsula in the classic Mayan era of 750-900 A.D. We are really hoping to discover a lot more, so we can plan future winter trips.

If we would just include nipping over to Valladolid, the trip would have looked like this:

Heart 0 Comment 0

It looks kind of a short fat blue line, but as you can see on the map it's actually 600 km each way. There is also a minimum 90 km stretch in there that is straight through a jungle/scrub desert with almost no services (Tulum to Felipe Carrillo Puerto - not visible on this map)

The big attraction of Chetumal and Caye Caulker was that our daughter lives there. But we have just had the joy of a Christmas visit together, so we figure we can branch out instead and see more of Yucatan, notably the second city of Merida. That also includes in one of two  major flamingo areas on the Gulf coast section,  and we love flamingos.

Here is more or less our current idea:

Heart 0 Comment 0

This will make it also about 1200 km. And oh, even this has its barren stretches. Dodie is currently burning up the other computer, trying to figure ways around these. We are consoling ourselves with the thought that if anything seems too hard for us, we can trying throwing our bikes under a bus. That is, throwing our bikes in the luggage area in the belly of the bus. Actually throwing under the bus is a really last resort!

Rate this entry's writing Heart 4
Comment on this entry Comment 1
alan bairdHi Steve & Dodie,
Found you . Looking forward to keeping up with your travels. All the best,
Wendy & Alan.
Reply to this comment
1 year ago