Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

This is: Canada & Mexico 2011


Although it seems barely believable in retrospect, this trip was in fact a 'Plan B'. Plan A was hatched around the summer of 2010 and revolved around the possibility of my friend Bruce and I taking an Alaska cruise, departing out of either Seattle or Vancouver. I quickly thought of extending the week into a fortnight, taking the opportunity to re-visit Toronto after a gap of 22 years. As far as the cruise was concerned, we were only prepared to go ahead if a certain type of deal became available for the week that we were tied to.

As the months slipped past and the eagerly awaited deal failed to materialise, we realised that we needed an alternative to fall back on, and quickly agreed on Mexico. Although the country was not getting a good press at the time, we knew that the problems of drugs-related violence were confined to reasonably well-defined areas that could easily be avoided. We decided that Plan B would involve a stay in the capital, followed by a visit to what could justifiably be called 'Undiscovered Mexico', in the form of Campeche. Part of the attraction at the latter was a collection of high-end properties recently acquired by Starwood for their premium Luxury Collection brand.

With less than two months left to run, we finally made the decision to abandon all thoughts of Alaska for the time being and commit to Mexico. With no need to relocate to the Pacific coast, I was able to add Quebec City to my Canadian itinerary as a consequence of the change of plan. In retrospect, I have absolutely no regrets. I realised within 24 hours of arriving in Mexico that many of my pre-conceived ideas would have to be firmly consigned to the bin.

So welcome to the first of three major North American trips in 2011.