Late in the evening, after landing in Cancún and driving in the dark for two hours, we arrive in the small town of Coba.
It is not until now, when we discover how crucial our choice of car is. (Practical and careful Finns, we rented a Jeep.)
It has rained, a lot it seems, and the dirt road is flooding.
There are no people in sight, let alone street signs, and I wonder where we could have possibly driven wrong. The directions seemed so simple on the map.
As the road becomes more narrow and bumpy, we start pondering whether we should turn back, while we are joking that this is yet again one of those trips arranged by Morjens Matkat, the imagery travel agency that is responsible for most delays, bumpy roads and weird incidents on our travels.
With this travel agency, everything is always a little so and so, a little morjens, like, hello.
And then, at the end of the street, we see a familiar-looking stone building, drive a little closer, and here we are.
You know when you are tired and it is dark and you are slightly uncomfortable, how everything can seem a little gloomy. And suddenly there are beautiful lights everywhere and there is music playing and food cooking and your spirits are lifted instantly.
After checking in we sit down for what we think would be a light meal of guacamole, ceviche and a salad but soon discover that portions at Coqui Coqui are enormous. If you order too much, you are going to be in trouble with all the food…
But what’s there to complain. There is a fire burning, nature is making its soothing sounds, the weather is warm and humid and fresh after rain. You are comfortably seated and surrounded by candles and comforting clusters of mood light – yet deliciously aware of the mysterious jungle around you.
After a good night’s sleep it is time to taste the tonic of wildness and vigorously it begins. There is a crocodile swimming in the lagoon. Not for swimming, this lagoon, we conclude.
Instead, we decide to go swimming underground, in a cenote. The land of the Yucatan Peninsula is composed almost entirely of porous limestone. Cenotes are natural sinkholes in the stone that form a network of watery caves underground.
If the ancient Maya people saw cenotes as a passage to the underworld, today they are accessed in a lighter spirit, yet there is something magical walking down the endless steps the first time, let alone plunging in the water.
On our way out, we stare in awe of the colorful toucan birds playing in a tree.
The grandest cenotes can be very busy but we soon learn that with all the tourist attractions on the area, timing is everything.
Just like our host Roberto has advised us, we go to the Maya ruins in Coba first thing in the morning and find ourselves walking practically alone in the forests there. When the tourist buses begin arriving around 11am, it is a different story.
Our days in Coba begin with a long breakfast followed by little reading, idling, plunging in the pool, and getting hot in the sun again.
As much as we enjoy Coqui Coqui by simply being there, the feeling of comfort is amplified when we return from the beach, or lunch or dinner.
The remoteness of the place is one of its best features. This peace.
Seventh and eighth picture from top courtesy of Coqui Coqui, others by me.