On Saturday morning Roger drove us to Xel-Ha for a day at the park. Xel-Ha is a nature water park that far exceeded our expectations. Like the resort, Xel Ha is all inclusive, so you don’t have to pay extra for lockers, rafting tubes, snorkel gear, food, beverages or alcoholic drinks. With our guide, Sergio, we spent the entire day there and loved the natural cenotes, cliff diving, river tubing, snorkeling, ziplining, snuba, beach, Mayan Cave, as well as nature trail exploration. Visitors can also swim with dolphins and manatees here, and there’s a kid’s playground, shopping and a spa (which we indulged). Xel-Há has not only excelled as a water park at the highest international standards, but constantly strives to maintain its philosophy of appreciating nature, which has been proven by the numerous ecological awards received. As we left, all of the hanging hammocks were occupied with visitors on siesta....looked amazing! Thank you Sergio and Xel-Ha for a wonderful time!
Our last dinner at Grand Velas Riviera Maya was at their signature restaurants, Cocina de Autor, which was recently named one of the “100 Best New Food & Drink Experiences” in the world by Food & Wine magazine. This Spanish restaurant features a world-class menu created by internationally acclaimed Spanish chefs Bruno Oteiza and Mikel Alonso. Each day at Cocina de Autor brings new choices in Spanish haute cuisine when Chefs Oteiza and Alonso present their signature, gourmet Spanish Basque dishes in the a la carte menu of specialties. Incredible dishes range from Light and Refreshing Lobster Salad, Venison in Love, Fresh Fish with Wild Mushrooms, and Veal Chops Roasted for 36 Hours. Quince, Cheese and Pecan Cigars and Chocolate with Honeycomb Wax are just a taste of what’s in store to complete your meal. We ordered the Tasting Menu with Wine Pairing and were blown away. Each time they brought a new course, it trumped the last one. Three of the notables were: a gazpacho ball (yes, somehow they got gazpacho inside a ball), mango souffle with a gin and tonic foam and the beef dish that was moving and waving to us (watch this video to see). This is by far one of the best dining experiences of my life!
PHOTOS: Ziplining at Xel-Ha.