Sunday, August 18, 2013
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Thursday, February 02, 2012
For a live view of your future vacation spot, check out these live webcams of Playa del Carmen and the Riviera Maya.
Sunday, November 06, 2011
Cenote: A rare geological feature of the Yucatán, acenote is a freshwater sinkhole formed when the limestone ground caves in and fills with water from underground rivers.
Colectivo: A sort of taxi-bus combination, a colectivo is a van or similar vehicle used for local transportation. It has semi-fixed routes and is cheaper than a taxi.
Costa Maya: The coastline south of the Riviera Maya (which officially ends at Tulum).
Federal: Used when referring to Highway 307, a federal highway.
Ha: Mayan for “water.” You’ll see it used everywhere.
Mole: A chocolate-based sauce made with dozens of herbs and spices, used in traditional Mexican cooking.
Muelle: Spanish for “dock,” it’s commonly used when referring to the ferry landing, which is also called the “embarcadero.”
Nopales: Sliced cactus from the nopal tree, it’s used locally in breakfast juice and can be served grilled or sautéed with any meal of the day.
Palapa: Thatched palm used to make roofing in the Riviera Maya. The tight weave keeps out rain and has to be replaced every couple of years. The word is also used generically to refer to any structure that has a thatched-palm roof.
Pan dulce: Literally “sweet bread,” it’s used to describe a variety of delicious locally made breakfast pastries. For a quick start to your day, order a café con pan dulce.
Parada: Spanish for “bus stop.”
Playa: Meaning “beach” in Spanish, this is the short name used locally when referring to Playa del Carmen.
Playacar: A name created in 1992 to refer to the tourist development located just south of First Street and the ferry dock.
Propina: Spanish for “tip.” Make sure you check your bill to see if tip has already been added: propina incluida.
Quinta: Spanish for “fifth,” it’s the name used for Fifth Avenue, the main tourist strip in Playa del Carmen.
Riviera Maya: The name used to refer to the area from just south of Cancún to Tulum. The actual boundaries tend to change a little bit, depending on whom you talk to. The phrase was coined in the early 1990s and is sometimes said in English, “Mayan Riviera.”
Tacos al pastor: Pork tacos cooked on a vertical spit, seared with licking flames and served with pineapple slices.
Tiempo compartido: Spanish for “time share.” If a deal is too good to be true, like a Jeep rental for $20 a day, chances are it’s part of a tiempo compartido offer.
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Jorge and Brenda Alfaro acquired Ajua Restaurant (now Ajua Maya) in Playa del Carmen in 2001. The restaurant specializes in Mayan, Mestizo, Mexican and a touch of Virginian cuisine; and now, ten years later, the Alfaros enjoy working with many of the same staff and wonderful Ajua friends who return each and every year to share their success.
"Immediately after the acquisition of Ajua, we worked hard to provide our customers with the highest quality ingredients and preparations available on the Riviera Maya," said Brenda Alfaro, the Virginian partner.
"We feel blessed," said Jorge Alfaro, the Mexican-Mayan side of the couple. "Those who experience our creative and inclusive restaurant style, convey to us that we are one of the best, if not the best, restaurant experiences they have ever had in their life. What a compliment."
The Alfaros attribute their restaurant’s success to the extraordinary Mayan staff they have worked with for 10 years. Brenda explained that the Maya infuse Ajua Maya with their noble heritage, including their traditional community culture, which ensures harmony in daily life and in work, free of negativity and full of the joy of working together as a family and a village.
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Excerpt from the story:
It's like a fishbowl full of whale sharks," said Robert Hueter, director of the shark research center at the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Fla. "We are witnessing a spectacle of nature down there that we don't fully understand."
Hueter, Mexican biologist Rafael de la Parra and a group of other marine scientists are trying to make sense of the big shark reunion, an event dubbed the "afuera." The word means "outside" in Spanish, and it was the name de la Parra initially used to describe to the phenomenon.
Read the whole story >>
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