Thursday, February 7, 2008
Cancun is not a nice place. I just want to get that off my chest. It is the American equivalent of Benidorm and is filled with a not very discerning tourist, cheap and nasty bars and clubs and a 19kms strip of very ugly, very tacky hotels.
Apart from that okay. I suppose.
So no surprise that the food also caters to the low end of the market. On our first night we decided to head into downtown Cancun to see what the throbbing metropolis has to offer and having wandered up and down the main strip a couple of times and seeing nothing that we fancied we decided to head into the busiest of all the restaurants on the basis that a hundred pissed, loud and badly dressed Americans can’t be wrong. Right?
La Parilla is the usual pastiche of a Mexican restaurant found in tourist destinations. The waiters wear sombreros, a mariachi band wanders around being irritating and there is lots of flambé-ing and tequila slammers going on. Grim.
And the food wasn’t a lot better. I had a burrito which was dry and lifeless and my colleague had the taco sampling platter which was dry and lifeless. Even the margaritas we were throwing down with wild abandon didn’t alleviate the direness of the place.
Having spent five days in Cancun I can say with some authority; don’t go to Cancun for the food. Don’t go to Cancun for the beach either because most of it has been washed away. Don’t go to Cancun for the natural beauty of the place because every square inch of it has been built on by yet another tacky cheap hotel chain. In fact, don’t go to Cancun.