@lyse.net> wrote in message
> Going to Mexico for the first time in Feb.
> Looking for a mix of beach & culture.
There really isn't a mixture of beach and culture in that area. The
beaches are just about all Americans and Europeans with a smattering of well
off Mexicans. Local families tend to stay away from the few open beaches
because many of the tourist's have very casual ideas about clothing that
they find unacceptable. Probably about the most diverse place left would be
Isla Mujeres. Xpuha is one of the last open beaches and you see some locals
in the area between the Robinson Club and the Copa Cabana.
Cancun is full of tourists. Playa has become a smaller version of
Cancun, but it's a pleasant small city when you get out of the tourist
district. Cozumel is great if you're a diver or enjoy fishing, so-so if
you're out there to ride the submarine and mostly a boring tourist trap for
everyone else. The beaches are made from sand shipped from the mainland.
Tulum is a study in contrasts. It has been a long time favorite for budget
travelers and counter-culture folks. The Mexican section of town is very
poverty stricken. There are some nice little hotels along the beach.
Can anyone suggest a (very) good
> hotel in either of these places. Beach view, etc is a must.
> Not too fond of the all inclusive stuff with so many potentially good
> eating and drinking places around.
Define very good? My personal favorite in that area is Paamul. It's
mostly an RV park with a nice little cove, a dive shop, a restaurant, and
some rooms and cabanas on the beach. The rooms are what I would call rustic.
The place is moderately priced and nothing fancy. What you meet there is
mostly expat's staying long term, a few Mexicans and some travelers. It's
easy to see the nice places along the coast from there. For something a bit
more upscale I'd look at Akumal.
> Staying for 2 weeks in total but plan to move around. Not necessarily
> locked to these locations but should be reachable from Cancun
> where we fly in/out.
With that sort of time you can see some of the archaeological ruins in
the area, along with some of the other sights, and Merida, as well as
spending some time on the beach.