Beach Benefits

Travel, Wellness

I’ve been staying at the beach and recently realized how healthy my nails look. There’s no polish on them and they’re clean, clear, and white. And then I was thinking about it, my skin looks and feels better too. Well, there’s a reason. The beach is a healthy place to be.

  • Sand is a great exfoliator for the skin.
  • The Sun gives us much needed Vitamin D
  • The Sea Air is full of negative charged ions which helps our lungs and immune system.
  • The Sea is full of vitamins, minerals (magnesium’s a biggie), amino acids, all which are great for skin, hair, and nails.
  • Swimming in the ocean is a sweatless, fun workout.
  • The Beach is a stress free environment. Perfect for when you need some R&R.

So going to the beach is kind of like going to a day spa no charge. I think I’ll make another visit tomorrow.

BTW: You can find this bench in Tulum Mexico!

 

Inti Beach Club Playa del Carmen

Playa Living, Travel

If you’re in Playa del Carmen and looking for a beach club that’s not party central, Inti Beach Club is it. It’s a beach club with a laid back vibe. It’s on the smaller size with mellower techno music and great food. Don’t worry, there are cocktails too.

The bar…always important.

Umbrellas are available too.

The only downside is the beach right in front of the club looked a bit rocky, but plenty of people were in the water just to the left of us. Also, there was a shower, but it was in the back with the bathrooms.

Inti Beach Club is between 4th and 6th streets. It’s 500 pesos with food. I had salad, quinoa risotto with shrimp (one of these dishes would have been sufficient), a morning fruit beverage, and two cocktails. Cost $750. (usd $40). Not bad for all day at the beach.

 

 

Maui in a Nutshell

Travel

Day 1 Ka’anapali. This is the view from my hotel room looking at Molokai. We stayed at Castle Paki Maui Condos. The condo was reasonably priced, good location, clean, with friendly staff. The cons were the beach next door was not the greatest and no A/C. The Fish Market is across the street serving tacos, ceviche, poke, etc. Loved this place.

 

Day 2 Lahaina. The main tourist town in Maui. Kimos Restaurant is a must and Uluani Shaved Ice lived up to it’s reputation.

 

Day 3 Wailea Beach & lunch at the Ritz. I liked this beach. There was plenty of room for everybody (mostly tourists), and the water was calm enough for paddle boarders and snorkelers. The Ritz has one restaurant for the public.

 

Day 4 Kapalua Beach (my favorite). A small beautiful beach with calm waters. And the bonus: umbrellas and chairs you can rent.

 

Day 5 Road to Hana & lunch at Mamas Fish House. Honestly, I feel the Road to Hana is a little overrated. It is definitely beautiful scenery, but really difficult to find places to park to see the sights along the way. As for Mamas Fish House,  every visitor to Maui needs to eat here. Delicious food with beautiful beach/views.

 

Day 6 Hangin at the hotel day.

 

Day 7 Makawao. A one street “cowboy” town of a few restaurants and posh stores. A perfect town to visit since we had a few hours to kill before our flight.

 

Tips:

  • What I wore for 6 days: 2 shorts/5 tops & t’s/2 sundresses/ 2 cover ups & 2 bathing suits.
  • Car rental is a must.
  • Be prepared for your beach days. Most beaches we visited did not have shade or snacks nearby.
  • Hawaii is NOT cheap.

 

 

Sutter Creek CA Girls Weekend

Travel

This past weekend a few of us gals decided to have a weekend in Sutter Creek, in the Sierra Foothill wine country. This area is known for it’s Barbera wines and needless to say it is now a current fave of mine.

We arrived and found a charming one street town with shops, restaurants, and tasting rooms.

 

We stayed at The Hanford House in one of their bungalows. The bungalow was a two bedroom/two bath cute cottage with a front and back patio.  I would definitely recommend this reasonably priced place.

My favorite wine tasting was at Le Mulet Rouge for both the friendly and knowledgeable staff, and delicious wine.

A ‘must go to’ if you are in Sutter Creek is The Sutter Creek Cheese Shoppe with over 80 cheeses available. The store is shared with Miller Wine Works and they offer wine tasting/cheese pairings. Amazing!

Having visited Sutter Creek now, I would advise:

  • Two days in Sutter Creek is sufficient time to enjoy the town itself.
  • There are plenty of tasting rooms. No driving necessary.
  • If you want to stay longer, there are places outside of town that would be fun to visit (including the haunted Preston Castle!).
  • The town is basically closed by 7pm. Nightlifers need not apply.

 

 

5 Days in Chiapas Recap and Recommendations

Travel

I just returned from 5 days in Chiapas and it was as beautiful as I imagined. Here is my recap, as well as my tips for traveling to this region. Our itinerary was 2 full days in Tuxtla and 3 full days in San Cristobal.

Let me start by saying Tuxtla is not a tourist town. There is really nothing to do there. However, it is a good base to visit Cañon del Sumidero and Chiapa de Corzo. Cañon del Sumidero is beautiful. We took a tour of the canyon from above and a 2 hour boat trip through the canyon. Definitely a sight to see, including the crocodiles!

The next day we went to Chiapa del Corzo. This is a small puebla of Indians and Mexicans with a tourist area of restaurants and Mexican goods. My advice is that if you are also visiting San Cristobal, visiting Chiapa del Corzo is not necessary.

The next tour we took was of a village of the Chamula Indians near to San Cristobal. The Chamula Indians do not appreciate photographs, so I have no pictures. I found these indigenous people fascinating. The tour was basically of their church. The church is catholic and they pray to Mary and the catholic saints, but with their own rites and rituals. Though it was brief, this visit was worth it.

The next village we visited on this tour is of the Zinacantán. These Indians are major producers of fruits, vegetables, and flowers. In fact, many of their flowers are shipped to Canada and the USA. It’s a beautiful area because we are now in the highlands. I am not sure, but I believe we are around 6000 ft above sea level. Men, women, and children all work.

Again, this was a brief tour simply to a textile shop to purchase handmade goods. I would have liked to have spent more time here and walked around a bit.

Now, on to San Cristobal. This is a pueblo mágico meaning the façade of the buildings cannot be reconstructed to maintain their historic values. It is definitely a tourist area with a lot of restaurants and shopping, but I still felt a strong sense of the city itself. I saw very few Americans here. I had the sense more of the tourists come from Europe and South America.

In the center is the Diocesis de San Cristobal.

Walking up the 400 steps for San Cristobal views.

The last tour was of Lagos de Montebello. Gorgeous blue lakes and waterfalls.

The best meal I had was in Lum Restaurant. I highly recommend this place. The food was excellent.

My Chiapas recommendation recap:

  • I would stay in San Cristobal for my entire visit. Or stay in Tuxtla for the Cañon del Sumidero tour only.
  • I would also add Palenque to my visit, staying the night there.. It is very far from San Cristobal (though they do do day trips).
  • I would skip Chiapa del Corzo tour.
  • For me, 2-3 full days in San Cristobal is sufficient.
  • For this April 5 full day trip, I recommend 2 pair of shorts/capris and tops for 3 tours. 2 pair jeans, tops for the town including 1 long sleeve shirt, and one lightweight jacket (I actually used a pashmina scarf). Sneakers for tours and walking shoes/sandals for the town. For whatever reason, it was in the 50’s temp at night, but it never felt that cold to me.
  • Any hotel in the historic center of San Cristobal is within easy walking distance to the center with a lot of the restaurants and bars. Think of the Diocesis de San Cristobal as ground zero for all the “action”.
  • The indigenous people are a huge part of visiting this area. I feel it is important to repay them by purchasing goods directly from them and the local artists in the area.