Monday, November 12, 2007

Cement parks in Cancun

Cancun may be a beautiful, tropical destination for millions of visitors but for those of us who live here, we are severely deprived of outdoor recreation areas (aside from the beach of course). There are no green spaces, zero, zip, zilch, nada! There is not a single park that I feel comfortable bringing my son to to run around and play in the grass. Parque Kabah is a lovely ecological zone, but even there it's really just a running path cut through the trees, no real room for a toddler to play and this year they took the zoo out so there really isn't much for Max to see or do. It's good once in a while for a walk, but it's a mosquito haven and can be very hot in the jungle.

There are some kid play areas, but there is a fee and when living on a budget, it's a treat thing, not a weekly thing. Planeta Kids, Piccolo Mundo and Kukulkids are great but darned expensive! There are the touristy kid things but again, the pesos add up quickly!

Sooooo, we go to the cement parks of Cancun, aka, the malls. Plaza las Americas, Paseo Cancun, Gran Plaza, all air conditioned comfort and safe places for Max to run. (Perhaps not safe for other shoppers while he is there, he is a little terror!) I don't worry about him stepping on a broken bottle of Corona or getting dengue from a bad mosquito bite or having to fight off the stray dogs that don't exactly look lovey. We went to Gran Plaza yesterday and had a ball, they always have something for the kids there (face painters, clowns, bouncy castles, etc..) Our big excitement for the day was the bungee jumper which Max promptly ran to as soon as he saw it. We had to wait our turn (BIG problem for a two year old!) and then Max was up. I was scared that he would freak out or get sick, but our fearless wonder had a big smile on his face and the higher he went, the more he screamed "wheeeeeeeeeeeeee!". Here's the video evidence of our "volador".


Jennifer said...

That looks like an awesome time!!! Man I wish we had something like that around here. I would be there everyday with the kids, LOL.

My Way said...

I can't believe how high he got!

Yeah you're right. The cement, rocky, garbage filled, unsafe parks don't have much to offer for kids or adults.

I even took a look at the playground they put up at Playa Las Perlas and thought to's kind of a death trap!

Lets not talk about the random holes in the sidewalk and streets....ALWAYS keep you're eyes on the pavement!

Do they let adults play on the jumpy thingy?

Susan Lechuga said...

That looks like so much fun. It will be great memories for when he is older. I wish I could go there and jump too.

CancunCanuck said...

Jennifer and my3Ro's, you'll just have to come to Cancun for some bungee fun!

Mexico Way (can I use your real name here?), yes they allow adults up to 200 lbs (but no flips for adults!)

Fned said...

It's funny, but as a kid growing up in Puebla I never had a "craving" to go to the park, and I'm suddenly realizing why! It's true that parks in Mexico tend to be anything but actractive for kids OR moms.

We did have fun as kids though with plenty of outdoor activities too: the typical cascaritas in the street (I can see you moms squirming ;)) or the avalancha races we'd organize between neighboors, or the ocasional game of baseball in the patio, las canicas, stop,(yes I was a tomboy),etc, etc.... I just never see us asking our mom to take us to "the park" to play or do any of this.

Now that I'm all grown up (yeah right!) I see that parks in Paris are indeed extremely popular (as I am sure is the case in Canada as well). People actually take their babies still in a carriage to the park for a stoll in the afternoon! (I wonder if the kid even knows he's supposed to be enjoying this!).

I guess it's important and I'm pretty sure the gamins enjoy it. But somehow... for me, I don't miss it 'cause I never had it to begin with.... :s

.... plus, you can't beat a good avalancha race! :)

Anonymous said...

why is he already so much cooler than me...

CancunCanuck said...

fned, what is a avalancha race?? Sounds fun and dangerous, lol! It's true that you can't miss what you don't know exists, but I sure miss big green parks!

BB, you are still too cool chica! :)

Fned said...

An avalancha is a simple wooden board with four wheels and a steering wheel attached. You sit on the board while someone pushes you from behind. I think the brand was called "Apache" or something like that (maybe you'll spot one on your next trip to Juguetilandia? ;)

The races get pretty fun when:

a) you're racing another avalancha down a hill top (like it was the case of our street when I was kid) and

b) there's a tope at the bottom (also, like it was the case of our street when I was kid).


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