There’s nothing I despise about travelling…the exotic cultures, the diverse foods and the beautiful locations. A significant portion of that includes bringing back home a little something, unique to the place, a souvenir that beckons you travel back in time and relive the memories. In this case, an extra baggage full of them!
The Fifth avenue in Playa Del Carmen, à la the renowned one in New York City was about an hour’s ride from our hotel in Cancun, Royalton Riviera. Unlike the one in New York, the Fifth avenue here is a place where one can shop without constraint. The narrow streets teeming with tourists and locals alike are home to myriad number of shops that display the essence of Mexico in their wares. It reminded me so much of a ‘Commercial street’ in Bangalore where I was a pretty frequent visitor.
Maurice, our tour guide, intimated us with the place, the shops and surprisingly even amused us with some bargaining tips. “If you don’t like the price, walk out and they will call you back”, he told us in his Spanish accent. He gave us a full 3 hours to shop& eat to our heart’s content, 7 pm to 10 pm, but if he knew better, he wouldn’t insist on a time limit ;). I surmised him to be a liaison between us and the shopkeepers for he suggested specific stores for us to shop from. But oh well! We refused to listen and explored our way.
The streets boast of local souvenir shops, High end boutiques like Victoria’s Secret & Swarovski, countless restaurants, patio seating included, art galleries and street artists.
The local sellers who were well aware of the luring techniques, invited us with a ‘Namaste'(rightly recognizing us to be Indians) and ready to cater to our every whim. The shops were replete with Talavera Pottery, Silver, carved lamps, Sombreros and how can I omit Tequila!
We stumbled upon the perfect store, price – wise and began filling up our bags. What attracted me the most was the Talavera pottery which is a type of clay work that was introduced by the Spanish artisans. They come handpainted in the most vibrant colours and I was completely smitten.
Here are a few snapshots from our visit….
How could we say goodbye without savouring some Churros with Chocolate sauce! I now wish I wasn’t so full then just so I could have gobbled up a few more….
My next post is going to burst with the sun drenched beaches of Cancun and our experience at the Royalton Riviera. Until then, Adios Amigos!