In Tulum, Mexico.

Xcaret and lounging around Tulum.

The entry to the adventurepark.
The entry to the adventure park.

We left Bahia Principe yesterday morning and stopped in an adventure park called Xcaret on the way to Tulum.  We were told that Xcaret would be a whole day thing but tourist as we are we thought we could just spend a few hours there. It was amazing.

They had a butterfly enclosure, an aviary for loads of birds, an enclosure for a jaguar and a puma that we didn’t see but we did hear them. There was a play area with climbing things for kids that Stephen and Henry went to but got told off because Henry was too young and Stephen too old to go on, lots of cafés and restaurants. Also swimming pools full of huge turtles, stingrays, sharks and dolphins. The turtles were over one meter long and wide and they were mesmerizing. They had a beach area, a swimming pool play area and they biggest attraction was the underground rivers. It is caves that goes mainly underground that you can swim in and the one we did was about 650m long. So, we put on some life vests and flippers and swam all around them, it was freezing and dark but pretty impressive!

We didn’t finish until 3pm because it was huge. I had told the landlord that we would be ready to pick the keys up in our new Airbnb place at 2pm, he didn’t believe we would make it and he was right. We got to our new apartment at 4.30 and we were exhausted. We walked over 20000 steps and swam for nearly an hour, great workout!

They had so many beautiful birds there. Here are some flamingos.
They had so many beautiful birds there. Here are some flamingos.
Henry and Stephen walking through all the caves to find were the jaguars are
Henry and Stephen walking through the caves to find the jaguars.
We took boat ride around one of the rivers.
We took a boat ride around one of the rivers.
Trying the get a nice picture with Henry in front of the waterfall but it is a no go!
Trying to get a nice picture with Henry in front of the waterfall but it is a no go!
The Pelicans are huge! they will bite you if you get too close.
The Pelicans were huge! they will bite you if you get too close.
Halfway through and we have sore feet and so so warm!
Halfway through and we had sore feet and were so so warm!
Walking over a wobbly bridge with a boy on your shoulders is not something I recommend.
Walking over a wobbly bridge with a boy on your shoulders is not something I recommend.
They had so many birds there that I have never seen before.
They had so many birds there that I have never seen before.
These turtles are beautiful. Over one meter long and wider. I have never seen anything like it.
These turtles are beautiful. Over one meter long and wide. I have never seen anything like it.
Henry is walking around the ruins. It makes you wonder if they were very short at that time or why would they have doors that are so small
Henry is walking around the ruins. It makes you wonder if they were very short at that time or why would they have doors that are so small?
It was really peacefully to float on the river until two parrots came flying over our heads screeching away.
It was really peacefully to float on the river until two parrots came flying over our heads screeching away.
This is us under ground. Swimming in and out of caves.
This is us under ground. Swimming in and out of caves.

"<yoastmark

It was dark and cold but very impressive.
It was dark and cold but very impressive.
I would say that Henry was probably too young for it . I think that maybe age 5 and up is the best
I would say that Henry was probably too young for it . I think that maybe age 5 and up is the best.

The new apartment is in Tulum and so far, I really like it. We went for a swim this morning in our pool and then took the car to the beach this afternoon. We didn’t actually make it to the beach because of all the fun shops and café’s we found along the way.

It was really busy so tomorrow we are planning on getting there early to get a good spot on the beach and then leave just after lunch.

For me so far this is the typical view of Tulum.
For me so far this is the typical view of Tulum.
We stopped at a coffe shop on the beach and some of the seats were swings and hammocks.
We stopped at a coffee shop on the beach and some of the seats were swings and hammocks.
It was sugarfree, wheat free, eggfree, dairyfree well basecly free of everything "bad" I loved it, Stephen and Henry weren't too sure.
It was sugar free, wheat free, egg free, dairy free well basely free of everything “bad”. I loved it, Stephen and Henry weren’t too sure.

MW- Maria Wines ;)
MW- Maria Wines 😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mexico, Akumal and Akumal Monkey Sanctuary.

Today we went to Akumal Monkey Sanctuary. They take care of animals there that have been pets and not wanted any more or they rescue them from places where they are being mistreated.

Here we are – the monkey family!

We saw deer’s, goats, different kinds of monkeys, different birds, snakes and lemurs. A guide, Edwin took us around and showed us the animals and told us all about them. Some of them had really sad stories behind them but some were born there. He took us into the lemurs and we feed them and they sat on our knees. Then he took us into two monkeys that we fed and they jumped all over us and sat on our heads. Henry thought it was hilarious!

I recommend coming here early, we were there at 9 and got a private tour because no one else was there yet.

We have been in Akumal for 3 days now and we love the place we are staying at. It is an apartment from Airbnb and it is located on one of the big resorts here called Bahia Palace. We have a penthouse apartment and it is huge. There is a pool that belongs to five building with apartments but so far, we have had the pool to ourselves. We can use the hotel facilities if we want to i.e. the restaurants, pools, spa etc. but we are quite happy over in our place.

After the monkey place, we went to the beach but we’ll go back tomorrow with some money so we can go snorkelling with the turtles. So, we went home to our pool and practiced snorkelling there instead. Henry is getting so good at it, it is so nice to watch him.

We also have a hot tub on the balcony that we filled with water tonight but it was cold water so hopefully it will warm up by tomorrow.

So far it has been very hot, 33-35 degrees every day but tonight it is pouring down with rain. There are big windows right by the sofa and the jungle just outside so we have just been sitting looking out at the rain and listening to the thunder.

Let’s see what tomorrow will bring.  

I had to be the one holding the snake because Stephen gets nightmares every time we do it. I don't mind though, I think they are quite nice.
I had to be the one holding the snake because Stephen gets nightmares every time we do it. I don’t mind though, I think they are quite nice.
Henry was asking all the way around when he could hold the snake. He loves them.
Henry was asking all the way around when he could hold the snake. He loves them.

Henry was feeding it bananas and he got sticky fingers. If there is one thing Henry don't like it's sticky fingers.
Henry was feeding it bananas and he got sticky fingers. If there is one thing Henry don’t like it’s sticky fingers.
Here we are - the monkey family!
Here we are – the monkey family!

"Henry

We are down in one of their cenotes and there were bats flying all around us
We are down in one of their cenotes and there were bats flying all around is.
This is one of their parrots. It is a sad story because this bird was made blind. But she loves to be treated and carried like a baby. There was a green baby parrot as well who kept pushing her down from their tree stump to the ground to play.
This is one of their parrots. It is a sad story because this bird was made blind. But she loves to be treated and carried like a baby. There was a green baby parrot as well who kept pushing her down from their tree stump to the ground to play.

 

Daddy and the birds!
Daddy and the birds!

We have these guys hanging around our pool
We have these guys hanging around our pool
Our balcony with the hot tub
Our balcony with the hot tub

 

 

henry snorkelling
henry snorkelling and telling daddy he is ok.
Henry and Stephen under water.
Henry and Stephen under water.

 

We are back in Miami and tomorrow we are going to Mexico.

We are back in Miami after our cruise.

The cruise was actually really good. I didn’t know what to expect but I’m pleasantly surprised.

I don’t know if we would just go on a cruise as the only holiday but it is great if you are perhaps a big family and like to see different things. You always have the dinners together in the evening and you have as many trips on the various locations as you wish.

We went to touch and play with the dolphins, swam with Stingrays, rode a horse up a mountain, swam with turtles and snorkelled around a shipwreck. There were so many things you could do but we obviously chose things Henry would enjoy.

The last two days on the boat we went to Barbados and swam with turtles and snorkelled around a shipwreck.   We went out on a boat and they let us off with snorkels and masks at a spot that turtles normally congregate.  It was in about 15m water depth and Henry jumped in with his life vest and snorkel and his face was pure joy when he put his head in and saw the turtles below.  We had to pull him around as we were a little bit out to sea and there was a bit of a current but he thought it was brilliant.

Stephen was in Barbados 15 years ago with his friends and believes it is still the same!

The last day was a “out at sea” day, so we spent time at the swimming pools. Henry really loved going to the kids club so he was there a few hours in the afternoon and had a pirate party and then after dinner. I’m normally against kids clubs because I don’t think you should go on family holidays and then dump your kids in the club. But Henry really had a good time and asked to go every day. We didn’t let him go as much as he wanted to as we wanted to play with him as well.

Yesterday the cruise came back to Puerto Rico and we had a day and night there in a hotel. We spent the entire day in the swimming pool. Henry went down the slide about 50 times, up and round and down again. Then we flew to Miami this morning and tomorrow we fly off to Mexico to spend two weeks there.

Below are a mixture of pictures from the last couple of days.

Atlantic water meets Carabean water.
Atlantic water meets Caribbean water.
One of the afternoons in the kids club they had a pirate party and painted all the children's faces
One of the afternoons in the kids club they had a pirate party and painted all the children’s faces.
Henry is a water baby and he loves the water. We have to force him out of it to have a break.
Henry is a water baby and he loves the water. We have to force him out of it to have a break.
There were a game room on the ship and every evening Henry was allowed to choose 3 games.
There were a game room on the ship and every evening Henry was allowed to choose 3 games.
This is the motorbike game. He was really too small for it but had a go anyway.
This is the motorbike game. He was really too small for it but had a go anyway.

 

 

At dinner time.
At dinner time.
Miami airport welcomes you.
Miami airport welcomes you.
One afternoon there was a group of singers outside the boat in Martinique. Henry thought they were too loud!
One afternoon there was a group of singers outside the boat in Martinique. Henry thought they were too loud!
Bare bottom looking out at sea.
Bare bottom looking out at sea.
Last day we just hung around the swimming pool
Last day we just hung around the swimming pool on the ship.
Barbados beach
Barbados beach
We swam with turtles at Barbados beach.
We swam with turtles at Barbados beach.
They were huge and swam right next to us.
They were huge and swam right next to us.
On the boat back from snorkelling
On the boat back from snorkelling
Snorkelling around a shipwreck.
Snorkelling around a shipwreck.

Thinking of all our friends here.
Thinking of all our friends here.
We were flying back to Miami and Stephen took this picture.
We were flying back to Miami and Stephen took this picture.

 

A day at Stingray City.

Today we went to swim with some Stingrays at Stingray City. It was amazing. We booked the tour for 10.15 and the other tours so far haven’t been that busy. But this one was very busy! We were maybe 50 people all together.

Us in Stingray City with one of the big stingrays.
Us in Stingray City with one of the big stingrays.

We arrived in Antigua this morning and they took us on a bus ride for about 30 minutes and then they held a quick briefing. After that we went into speedboats for another 10 minutes out in the middle of the sea where they had a platform.

Everybody got into the water and then the stingrays came swimming up to us. These were all wild rays that just go there because they know they get fed. They are huge! It was a bit frightening to start with but as soon as you got use to them stroking around your legs it was fine.

Henry loved it, he is a real water baby.

We all got a turn holding the stingray in the water and for the people who wanted to  they could also feed them. They are not scared at all and they just swim around you. I got one that cuddled me from the back, it just slid up against me and put its fins around my body. Henry got to stroke one and he also got a kiss from another (the fin, not the mouth)

We were in the water for about 1,5 hours and I would say that that was enough time to swim, snorkel and play with them.

We loved it and would definitely recommend it for others that come to Antigua!

 

View from our balcony of us leaving Antigua
View from our balcony of us leaving Antigua
Henry ready to go snorkelling
Henry ready to go snorkelling
Stingray
Stingray
Stephen and Henry touching a Stingray
Stephen and Henry touching a Stingray
Mia and Henry touching a Sam the Stingray
Mia and Henry touching Sam the Stingray
Large Stingray
Large Stingray
Baby Stingray
Baby Stingray

Fish

 

The cruise through the Caribbean.

St Maarten, Anguilla, St Kitts, Antigua, Martinique, Barbados

 We are on a cruise through the Caribbean and love it so far.

The first day we went on-board and had a swim in one of the nine swimming pools. Henry loves the fact that there are nine!  We had some ice creams and just looked around the ship. It is the first time we have ever been on one so we didn’t know what to expect. When we lived in Stavanger we saw them day in and day out.  When we considered it we thought it was the best way to see as many islands as possible.

We flew into Puerto Rico the night before and had a relax in one of the hotels there. There was a taxi strike on when we landed so we had to wait for about 1 hour 40 minutes in a queue before a minibus took us to the hotel. There were so many people waiting and I talked to one lady who had been there for 2,5 hours! Not the start we were hoping for but it was nice when we got there.

While we were waiting for our taxi Henry decided to climb a palm tree. He didn't get very far mind you.
While we were waiting for our taxi Henry decided to climb a palm tree. He didn’t get very far mind you.
Henry has discovered that swimming is so exiting! He loves that water.
Henry has discovered that swimming is so exiting! He loves that water.

We saw our ship out of the window of our hotel in Puerto Rico
We saw our ship out of the window of our hotel in Puerto Rico
Walking on board our ship was like walking in any big hotel, only busier!
Walking on board our ship was like walking in any big hotel, only busier!

So far, we have been to St Maarten, Anguilla and today we are in St Kitts. In St Maarten, we sailed to Anguilla on a small boat and went to see some dolphins. We got to touch and play with a male dolphin that was four years old. Henry loved it! He thought it was amazing. We learned different hand movements to get it to cuddle you, kiss you, dance with you and let you stroke it. Henry talked and talked about it all day and evening. After our little lesson, we had lunch and then we went to play on the beach.  Only complaint was that you could not take your own camera into the water and had to buy the professional photos.  They were lovely pictures and of course you wanted to buy them, but damm they were not cheap. 

This is were we went to swim with our dolphine. It was a great experience.
This is where we went to swim with our dolphin. It was a great experience.
Anguilla center.
St Maarten centre.
This is the picture they took and printed out for us were we played with the dolphine.
This is the picture they took and printed out for us where we played with the dolphin.
Henry was so excited when the dolphine kissed him.
Henry was so excited when the dolphin kissed him.

Today we are at St Kitts and I went on my own to do some horse-riding in the rain forest. It was really good. We were nine people in total and we all got a nice, well-kept horse. The horses all had cowboy style saddles and it was quite comfortable. They took us up a small mountain, we had a break and then down again. It was a 3 hour long ride and I will hurt tomorrow. Stephen and Henry came and met me afterwards and we went to the beach.

The horses stood in line waiting for us when we arrived.
The horses stood in line waiting for us when we arrived.
Up through the rainforest.
Up through the rainforest.
This is my horse - thunder! I wasn't to sure when they told me the name, but he was as calm as anything.
This is my horse – thunder! I wasn’t to sure when they told me the name, but he was as calm as anything.
We rode up the mountain and then down again. Down was harder than going up.
We rode up the mountain and then down again. Down was harder than going up.

Henry went to a kids class this morning for an hour and Stephen had a relax (researched which beach to go to). Henry loved it, they made crowns and played and he wants to go back tonight. We are going to take him there after he has had his dinner and he can play while we eat ours.

Henry and daddy are all dressed up for dinner.
Henry and daddy are all dressed up for dinner.
Our ship
Our ship
St Kitts Centre
St Kitts Centre

In the sfternoon we went to a beach further along the coast.
In the afternoon we went to a beach further along the coast.
Ever since a monkey landed on my shoulders in Gambia Henry wanted a monkey to sit on his shoulders. So when we saw the men with the small monkeys today we had to let him do it.
Ever since a monkey landed on my shoulders in Gambia Henry wanted a monkey to sit on his shoulders. So when we saw the men with the small monkeys today we had to let him do it.
Henry is a very happy boy on this holiday.
Henry is a very happy boy on this holiday.

Tomorrow we are going to Antigua and we are planning to swim and play with some Stingrays! This cruise has been great so far 🙂