Seeking out unique experiences is one of the best parts of traveling – whether it’s trying local dishes, discovering a path to a secret scenic outlook or partaking in a regional tradition. In the resort-ridden Mayan Riviera, Mexico, it can be challenging to find hidden gems. However, when we went to the Ixchel Jungle Spa Puerto Morelos for Mayan massages, we experienced an exceptional adventure.
Ixchel Jungle Spa Puerto Morelos
In the wilderness of Puerto Morelos, the Jungle Spa can be a bit difficult to find, solidifying the fact that it is truly a hidden gem. Even though we provided our taxicab driver with a map from the website, we had to stop twice to ask directions; there was no doubt that we were getting off the beaten path.
The Ixchel Mayan Riviera Day Spa Story
When we finally located the jungle spa, we followed a winding path through dense forest to a gathering structure. The spa was built in harmony with the land – and the tranquil setting provides the perfect ambiance for a relaxing massage.
We had booked our jungle massages in advance, so the owner, Sandra, was expecting our arrival. However, before sending us to our rooms for a traditional Riviera Maya massage, she invited us to sit and listen to her story.
Sandra is an American who learned to speak Spanish in college and then worked for large resorts in both Spain and Mexico. When in Mexico, she met a group of Mayan women and learned of their healing massages. In an effort to help the women use their talent in order to make money to support their families, she established the Ixchel Jungle Massage Spa.
Unlike other Riviera Maya spas, the Jungle Spa maintains a natural habitat and thrives on local initiatives. In addition to offering a traditional massage given by natives, the Mayan jungle spa also hosts a Sunday market of locally made products and crafts.
Traditional Mayan Massage in Puerto Morelos
At the Riviera Maya spa, guests can choose from several different massages – including special treatments, like a pure aloe and banana leaf wrap massage, a 4-handed massage and chocolate body wrap. Although we opted for the basic Mayan Relaxing Full Body Massage, we were ensured that it would be different from any other massage we had ever had.
Not a Typical Cancun, Mexico Massage
Lupita was assigned as my personal masseuse; she was nicknamed ‘the Gorilla’ for her extraordinary strength. She led me down a path through the Riviera Maya spa to a simple thatched roof palapa. Inside, beds were partitioned off by hanging sheets. Rather than walls, there were screens, allowing the jungle sounds and breezes to waft through the room.
Before Lupita started my Mayan Riviera massage, I was instructed to remove all of my clothing and to lie on my back, facing up. She began my jungle massage at my head – first massaging my scalp and face. Next, she moved to my stomach – which was an odd sensation, but strangely calming. As she continued to my lower body, she pulled, twisted and contorted by body until she worked out all of the kinks.
When I flipped over onto my stomach, she started by massaging my toes. Then, she used a pressured, continuous, sweeping motion up each leg, over my buttocks, across my back and down my arm. Her final maneuver was to crawl onto the back of my legs while providing sublime techniques to loosen my back. When the jungle massage was complete, I was in a state of blissful relaxation.
How to Book a Treatment at Ixchel Jungle Spa Mexico
Visitors can use this link to book their Mayan Riviera spa treatment at Ixchel Jungle Spa. Note: There is more than one jungle spa in Cancun; the link provided it is Ixchel, where I had my Mayan Riviera massage.
More Unique Experiences in Puerto Morelos, Mexico
Looking for more unique things to do in Puerto Morelos? Try these fun adventures!
Catamaran Secret Sandbar Sail
Set sail on crystal clear Caribbean waters to a secret sandbar in the sea. Guests can hop out to take a swim, stand-up paddleboard or simply enjoy the incredible seascape. Lunch and unlimited drinks are provided on board. Get the details!
6-Course Mexican Cooking Class
Learn how to cook authentic Mexican dishes at a school in the Maya jungle. In the small-group classes participants are led by a local chef in the preparation of the meal – and then they get to feast on the meal set in a traditional Mexican fiesta. Book it now!
We want to know: Have you been to Ixchel Jungle Spa Puerto Morelos for a Mayan massage? What was your experience? Tell us in the comments!
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