When our little family – my husband, my 12-year-old daughter and I – decided to indulge in a sun holiday, we were quickly drawn to the beaches, culture and history of Mexico. The country has so many fun and fascinating places, it was hard to narrow down our destination to just one, but eventually we had a winner: the Riviera Maya.
Welcome to paradise – a slice of heaven that stretches 120 kilometres along the coast of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, to be exact. Formerly the site of fishing villages, the Riviera Maya is now a family-friendly playground filled with resorts, restaurants, shops, golf courses and spas. And beaches, of course – so many beautiful white-sand beaches.
After checking in to our resort, we don’t waste any time. My daughter, Amy, commandeers my smartphone and pulls up a map of the area. We’re within walking distance of the ancient fortress at Tulum. Wielding the phone like it’s a tricorder from Star Trek, Amy leads the way, checking our progress on Google Maps. We can all savour the moment, since I enrolled in Roam Like Home™ before we left Edmonton. It’s a great feature for members of Rogers Share Everything™ plans: for only $10 a day, I can use my smartphone in the Caribbean, Mexico and South and Central America just like I do at home, since I’m accessing my monthly data plan. (To make sure you’re enrolled, text “travel” to 222.)
Tulum is breathtaking – the ruins are set against the backdrop of the Caribbean Sea. We snap tons of photos, including a family selfie that we upload to Facebook right away (again, I have no worries about using data, since Roam Like Home has it covered). After exploring the site, we look up nearby restaurants on TripAdvisor and choose La Coqueta for tasty tacos – plus ice cream for our child and margaritas for the grown-ups!
After breakfast, we head to the Sian Ka’an biosphere reserve, a large protected area at the southern end of the Riviera. It’s home to hundreds of species of plants and animals, and all kinds of fascinating habitats: tropical forest, wetlands, beaches, coral reefs, savannas, cenotes (large open pools surrounded by rocky grottos) and lagoons.
Our boat tour winds through the mangrove channels (an ancient Mayan trade route) and into the lagoons of Boca Paila and Campechén. We shriek with delight when we spot manatees and crocodiles along the way. A rainbow-hued butterfly lands on Amy’s shoulder – we instantly text the photo to her grandparents. With Roam Like Home, I can just send unlimited texts and calls to local numbers in Mexico and to Canadian numbers, so it’s easy and affordable to stay in touch with family and friends (and I won’t be charged for more than 10 days per monthly bill)*.
Ferociously hungry after our tour, we browse restaurant reviews on my phone and choose Restaurare. The cuisine is Mexican vegan – a terrific, unexpected find. Before we even leave, we’ve already uploaded photos of our dinner and posted a rave review on Yelp!
After a tour of the archaeological site at Cobá – where we climb the tallest pyramid in Mexico’s Maya world (huff, puff) and enjoy sightings of the aptly named howler monkey – we take a taxi northward to Playa del Carmen.
Amy and her dad snorkel at the inlet of Xel Ha while I lounge on the beach, catching up on email and reading a wonderfully trashy e-book. I realize I forgot to ask our neighbours to pick up our mail, so I give them a call. I also phone to confirm our dinner reservation at Pavo Real by the Sea, which I chose for its beachfront setting. (No need for a calling card when you’re covered with Roam Like Home.) Amy excitedly recounts the snorkelling trip while we enjoy the flavours of the Caribbean and gaze at the sea – the perfect ending to our brief but brilliant Mexican adventure.
See the world and stay connected in over 75 countries around the world, with Roam Like Home on your Share Everything plan. For more details, visit rogers.com/roamlikehome or text “travel” to 222 to make sure you’re enrolled. If so, you’ll receive an SMS telling you you’re good to go. For more details, visit rogers.com/roamlikehome.
*Taxes extra. The fee is a Pay-Per-Use rate and subject to change without notice. Fee is charged per line (in addition to your Share Everything plan monthly fee) and applies for 24 hours from first use while in an eligible country. Roaming charges apply when outside the eligible country. Data: Usage exceeding your plan allotment is charged in increments rounded up to the next MB or GB (as applicable based on your plan). Texts: Includes texts sent to a local wireless number while in an eligible country or to a Canadian wireless number. Sent/received premium texts, sent international texts to countries other than the eligible countries are charged at applicable rates. Calls: While in an eligible country, includes unlimited calls to local numbers or Canadian numbers. International long-distance rates apply to calls made to other countries while in an eligible country. Roam Like Home is not available with Wireless Home Phone. See rogers.com/terms for full terms and conditions and list of eligible countries.