Weather, currency and language
The weather is almost always warm on the Caribbean Sea, even when it rains it just seems more pleasant that here at home where it’s cooler in the Northwest. Summer months have high humidity which can bring lots of mosquitos. If you prepare yourself, you can manage these pesky creatures if you’re up for a challenge. We provide citronella for the patio and recommend a mosquito repellent like Autan, a biodegradable product. Generally, midday is not a problem. The worst times of day are mornings shortly after sunrise, and in the evening at dusk and afterwards. If a hot, tropical rain system persists you may spend more time indoors. Casita Paraiso is comfortable on days like this when you use the A/C, and/or the ceiling fans throughout. While you’re on vacation, should the weather keep you in at times, nature’s blessing may force you to relax and read a good book. We have a great, little library that we’ve carefully chosen books of the area, as well as some of our favorite reads that you’re welcome to enjoy. If you want some fun or indoor entertainment, we have board games, cards and some good classic movies, too. Sitting out storms are some of my favorite family times.
You can pack more lightly than you think. If you’re like most people who enjoy the beach, you’ll be spending much of your time in your swimsuits. During the winter months you may encounter cool evenings and depending on wear you’ve come from, your travel clothes may be suitable so that youcan avoid overpacking. We like to wear comfortable cotton and moisture wicking fabric as much as possible. Bring plenty of swimsuits and shorts. Your toes will love the vacation days living in flip flops and sandals.
~Check Weather.com for the 10 day forecast in Tulum~
Check Universal Currency Converter for up-to-date exchange rates. There are ATM machines all over the Riviera Maya. You’ll be able to pay for admission to local attractions with your credit cards or VISA/Mastercard debit card. You can pay with credit cards in many restaurants, but some of your small ‘mom and pop’ type places would appreciate if you bring cash. Unless you’re off the beaten path, you’re not far from a cash machine. Always bring a back up card.
While were talking about money, there is one scam in Mexico that is very popular with the unassuming tourist and sometimes the seasoned tourist will still have the wool pulled over his eyes. When you go to the Pemex stations, have the exact change before you arrive, so that you are organized. Pull up to the pump, get out of the car and greet the attendant. Tell him (for instance), “300 pesos, por favor” or “trescientos pesos, por favor”. Make sure that the pump is zeroed out. And make sure when you hand him the money, you repeat the amount you’ve just purchased. Say “trescientos pesos” and hand him the bills and tell him, gracias. If the transaction went smoothly, give the attendant a tip. We usually give him up to 10 pesos.
Free Translation – Use this easy site to translate words or phrases. You can also translate blocks of text, but the translation is sometimes loose and difficult to comprehend, but you may get the gist of it.
If you want to learn the language, here’s a great free site so that you can brush up on those classes you took 20 years ago or start from scratch – StudySpanish.com
Mayan is the other native language of southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belize. Mark and I have found ourselves speaking our limited Spanish and being frustrated only to find out that there are many natives here who speak Mayan only. The younger generation is now becoming more multi-lingual and also learning English as well as Spanish. We have learned a few Mayan words, but still would love to learn more. (I’ll update this page as soon as possible with some Mayan translations for you.)