Tulum, Tulum. It was all Oui could hear about. Beautiful beaches. Laid back vibe. Environmentally friendly. Spotty internet access. Sounds like a dream right? Quickly becoming a popular paradise, Tulum manages to still feel like a secret when you first arrive. About 10-15 minutes before arriving on the strip, the area tourists generally speak of when they reference Tulum, we drove down the main highway smattered with little shops selling blankets, pillows, statues, and hammocks. At the end...the entrance to paradise. Ahead of us was a road barely wide enough to hold two cars + bicycles (a common way to get up and down the strip). To our right, the jungle encroached on us as if nothing could hold it back. A very literal "force of nature". Big palm leaves, bushes, and blooms spilled over onto the road. To our left was the ocean. We could hear it beating against the shore, but the beachfront bungalows & hotels are so tightly packed, we could rely only on the sound of the waves and smell of the air, thick with salt. It wasn't until we checked in and made a beeline for the ocean that we saw the big deal. It was gorgeous, and well worth the tease.
Ok, so Oui promised that this would be about our best spa experience in Tulum. If you want a general sense of Tulum there are plenty of wonderful guides available. This one is fun and captures the beauty of Tulum very well. This one takes you off the beaten path and includes Valladolid, which we absolutely loved exploring. So let's get to the good stuff.
While Oui didn't intend to visit Tulum for much more than beach time and margaritas, a few days of rain forced us to be creative. Our spa day was the result of a sudden downpour that quickly became an all day downpour. Who knew it would be an absolute highlight of our trip? Yaan welcomed us with a wooden walkway & fire pit. The reception area bridged the gap between outside and in, offering just a hint of what was to come. Once we decided on services, a massage for each of us, we were led into the changing area. Robes & slippers had already been laid out. A quick change into bathing suits and then the shower. The grounds of Yaan Wellness are immaculate, and the shower opened to the well manicured jungle and green roof of the spa. To top it off, it was a rain shower and it was drizzling. (I could actually hear my guy singing with delight over the wall separating the male & female showers).
A quick soundbite about Yaan Wellness. Designed by architect Sebastian Sas, it was envisioned as a temple of healing, incorporating the 4 primary elements in nature. Well done. Oui were lead into the area of the healing waters, comprised of sauna, steam room, hot & cold massage pools. The Yaan experience lasted about 3-4 hours. The process is: sauna-really cold shower-hot massage pool-cold massage pool. Repeat. Those pools. Oh those pools! Each had powerful jets massaging and kneading every part of your body, bottom of the feet, knots in impossible to reach places, shoulder blades. In between, Oui rested, drank tea, and snacked on nuts and fruit. Heaven on earth. The experience of the healing waters was so incredible there isn't much to say about the massage unfortunately. Very lovely, but every part of us had turned to jelly by the time we landed on the masseuse's table. Oui slept like babies that evening.
If you travel to Tulum anytime soon, this is a must visit. Clear your evening or morning for an experience.
P.S. This post is not sponsored by Yaan. Oui just think you're great and worth sharing the goodness with :)