Kristi & Dave's Isla Adventure - Nov 11 - 16 (part 1)
Thanks to the islamujeres.info site, the people there and Laura's mapchick map!! Oh, and Dave for taking 90% of the pictures. ;-)
First, just a little bit about us: We came to Isla for the first time in early 2006, just after hurricane Wilma. We stayed at the Avalon doing the All-Inclusive (AI) thing because, that's just how we vacation (the Avalon had a gorgeous beach then).
This is Dave in Feb 2006, standing on the dock that leads to the Avalon - you'll notice that there is beach near his right elbow.
This was me on that beach in Feb 2006!
This is the Avalon now...there use to be at least 100 yards of beach in front of the wooden deck where the bar is!
Anywho - After our first night (in 2006), we went into town and we loved it! We realized that we won't ever do AI on Isla again and thought that maybe we'd try it non-AI some other time (for the first time).
We like to have fun on vacation, we're very easy going, we like try new things (especially hot and spicy things), we like our cervesas, to be on a beautiful beach, and talk with other tourists and the locals (or try to, I know a little Spanish, ask every ones name and exchange pleasantries).
Here we go: Our 2nd time to Isla (certainly, not the last) doing the NON AI thing for the first time anywhere!
We wanted to go to as many different restaurants every chance we got. We spent more money than I thought we would but, NO regrets. The weather during our stay was wonderful, sunny, partly cloudy, breezy, highs in the low 80's. At night, we never felt like we needed a jacket. Wow, has the beach changed since our last trip, especially in front of the Avalon where now, there's not much beach at all.
I won't bore you with the airport/flight details, everything went smooth. I just noticed a LOT of Red lights going off when you have to push the button...the people right behind us got it. We booked transfers to the ferry on-line threw Cancun Transfers ($50 round trip - and they hired Balam transportation).
Once out of the airport, I saw the sign with my name on it right away. Took about 15 minutes to leave because someone else got our car...oh well, we got a big new van, very comfortable and we're on our way. It was 20 minutes til the 4pm ferry, no problemo...it was off to get our first cervesas, YEAH! Two Sol's for 20 pesos, I can handle that.
Me, happily waiting for the ferry.
The ferry trip:
We had a little excitement...You can see the car ferry in front of us, and I assume you know how slow it moves compared to the Ultramar we were on. Well, this pict was taken as we were going full speed. Everyone stood up thinking, "are we gonna hit?". We slowed down, eventually. I wish we would have gotten a pict of the looks of the people on the car ferry.
Once off the ferry, a trike guy (nice man, forgot his name) took us to Ixchel Condos as we walked with him. He didn't speak English, so I pointed and did the best I could telling him where we needed to go. As we we're walking along, Dave says, "Does he know where we're going?". "I don't know."....we laugh and keep going, we were heading the right direction anyway. We were on Isla, I was happy. Tipped the trike guy $5US and checked in.
Smoothest check in ever, VERY friendly staff that always remembered us, even on the street. Nice place, I highly recommend it.
About Ixchel Condos (phase 1). We had the one bedroom suite on the fourth floor with a great pool and ocean view...HUGE deck, doors that entered the deck from the living room area and also the bedroom. Comfortable, king size bed (turned down every night too, wow, wasn't use to that!). Very clean, the maids would make little animals out of our towels and tissues. The nicest shower I've ever showered in and the towels were the thickest I've ever used. The kitchen had an upright fridge, a nice 5 gallon purified water dispenser on the counter... Well, to make it short, if you wanted to make a meal there, they had it all. They also have WiFi, we brought our laptop and emailed people back home with pictures making them jealous, hehe. We couldn't have asked for more, we were spoiled. I wish I would have taken pictures of this place to share, if you want to see for yourself, here it is: http://www.islamujeresbeachcondo.com/index.htm
Sunday night (our first night on Isla!) -
We walk along the beach to find a spot for sunset. Sunset grill was close by so we ask about happy hour there. The waiter said they no longer have happy hour. No problemo, I knew that Sergio's had it and it wasn't far away. We made it in plenty of time for the beautiful sunset (sorry, Dave didn't bring the camera tonight). 4 Sol's, chips guac & pico at Sergio's $12US. Our nice server was Who-Ben-Soe (OK, I know that's not how you spell it, but that's how it sounded). We also met Miguel here for the first time and he remembered us every time we saw him after that, nice guy.
Dinner at Jax on the upper level - split a plate of (3) fish tacos (lightly breaded here, 95 pesos) Delicioso!! With a bucket of 5 Corona for $6US.
Here's a pict of Jax taken the next day.
I really wanted to meet Romi at the Posada's pool bar, so we head there next. We walk in, the atmosphere is really nice and there he is, I recognized him from a picture I saw, I was excited, "Romi!". We sit on the swings at the bar and order our Sol's and chat with him...and Pam, a nice lady who was staying there. Romi treats us like we were old friends. I also ordered his Minnesota Special, a very tasty, huge, pinacolada type drink. I mention I was curious about the pomegranate tequila and he pours me a shot for free. After a while, we say goodbye to Romi and tell him we'll be back again, very, very nice guy.
We're not ready to call it quits yet. We sit down at Bamboo for more Sol's. Juan, our server is very nice, he chats with us. Dave's craving something "cheesy" and Juan comes back with something special (should have brought our camera). It's a hot bowl of melted cheese to spoon onto flour tortillas, very good. Also, had habanero sauce to add to it, we LOVE habanero sauce...yumm!
~ Just thought I'd mention here that Dave and I are big fans of hot and spicy food (we came to the right country) and I think we tried the habanero sauce every place we ate!
We walk back home (well, I called it home) and stopped for a 6 pack of Sol's. Once there, we were bummed that we didn't have any lime. ~mental note to self~ buy some limes tomorrow.
We watch the ocean from our deck.
Part 2 coming up!