Mexico City (CDMX), San Cristobal de las Casas, Campeche, Merida, Valladolid, Holbox, Cozumel, Cancún, CDMX

In one week from now, I'll be 33 years old. I always used to joke that this was the age to beat, since Jesus was famously unable to. Or perhaps that means it's a year for profound spiritual expansion and self-actualization. I have certainly been gearing up for those over the last seven months. Seven months of traveling, exploring Latin America, learning about all that's out there and all that's in here. It's difficult to properly express the value that both these processes have produced for me, other than to say that I am experiencing their worth with every fiber of my being. For a trip of this duration, it's important to often and intentfully look back at moments lived, to re-experience their joy or sadness through a veil of happy melancholy, and reflect on how they have affected the present. I catch myself becoming more and more aware of my life as a collection of changing instances, receiving sparse glimpses of clarity in an otherwise murky and messy reality. Taking care of the present, of myself, enjoying focused tasks, engaging in mindful hedonism, developing my desire for greater compassionate confidence. I'm midway through my journey, closing the American chapter, processing all the crazy, beautiful, sad, painful and cathartic times I've had, yet looking forward to expanding and building on them as I enter this cruci(fixi)al year of my life.

The past two months have been intense. Maria and I decided to spend their entirity in Mexico, taking our time to visit just a few parts of this gorgeous country. For Maria, this was the final destination before heading back to Denmark for a few months. She's been home a week now, and I'll be traveling solo for the forseeable future. After a somewhat shaky time in Ecuador, our final weeks together were rather blissful and loving. I keep renewing my appreciation for our way of co-existing co-dependently as two highly independent people. The day before my 33rd birthday will mark our 15-year anniversary, and I will have known this Swedish girl I fell in love with all those years ago for nearly half my life. That's incredible. It's so surreal that we can reminisce about things we did together over a decade ago, (selectively) remembering them as if they happened just yesterday. And yet, I feel that our relationship has deepened significantly over the past half year, as we both have been awakening spiritually, attempting to face our insecurities and accept our minds and bodies for what they are. Our excited, high-paced first month in Argentina, the musical unification we underwent in Chile, the introspective and peaceful journey through Peru, a month apart in Colombia and Panama, the high-altitude dizziness of Ecuador,... all culminated in what I would describe as a cozy nesting stage before the inevitable separation ahead.

Having been to Mexico before, I knew a little of what to expect of this spectacular and wild country. Still, nothing can really prepare you for the maddening, multisensory metropolis that is Mexico City (or CDMX for the cool kids). It's the fifth largest city in the world and the largest in North America, with a population twice that of my entire home country. One could spend years exploring this place and still unearth interesting new aspects of life in it. We stayed for about two weeks, in neighborhoods as diverse as their inhabitants. The old colonial Centro, an eclectic mix of beautiful, historic buildings alternated by countless strip malls, jam-packed with tiny shops that sell almost anything you could imagine. Each city block has a different specialization of goods for sale. As you wander through a maze of cellphone repair shops, you turn a corner and suddenly you're on light bulb boulevard, seemlessly flowing into amplifier avenue and steak knife street. Every 15 meters, a street-side taco stand provides delicious and cheap food to keep this frantic beehive buzzing. It's an assault on the senses, and wandering the hectic and produce-packed streets makes you want to buy everything. I was seriously considering a pair of Chinese walkie-talkies of questionable legality, but with a 7km (!) range, for less than 30 bucks. The affluent neighborhoods of Condesa, Roma Norte and Polanco, with beautiful and quiet tree-filled lanes, pricy hipster bars and restaurants, and the widest variety of pet dogs I've ever seen. The wide, skyscraper-lined Avenida Reforma cuts diagonally and imposingly through the cityscape. Endless suburbs stretch out in every direction, as far as the eye can see. CDMX has more museums than any other city on earth, and a collection of magistral colonial concert halls, galleries and churches. It's the massive, throbbing, liberal heart of what we experienced as an otherwise relatively conservative country.

Over the course of the next six weeks, we slowly made our way toward the Carribean cost. Our first stop was San Cristobal de las Casas, a town in the mountains of Chiapas province. Surrounded by stunning scenery, the place itself is a haven for yoga-seeking, budget-constrained digital nomads, due to its extremely low prices and abundance of western-catering establishments. Hostel prices were só low, in fact, that the rumour about the whole place simply being a massive money-laundering operation for the drug cartels, seemed entirely believable. The pervading hippy-wannabe hipster vibe was starkly contrasted by the traditional lifestyle of the local population in villages all around. Remnants of the indiginous Mayan and Aztec communities can be found throughout southern Mexico, fusing ancient rituals with modern-day deities within the Catholic framework imposed by the conquistadors, resulting in church services that involved the decapitation of chickens and the worship of Coca Cola bottles. Another strong reminder that the expression "I've seen it all" is just that.

Continuing onto the Yucatan peninsula, we stopped in Campeche, a beautiful fort-like seaside enclave, in Mérida, the city at the center of the dinosaur-destroying Chicxulub crater, and Valladolid, point of access to the world-famous Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza. We rented a scooter and zoomed around like proper locals, trying to stay ahead of the crushing humidity and heat by taking dips in spectacular cenotes. Cenotes are subterranean freshwater lakes, connected with kilometers-wide networks of underground, underwater tunnels. They were created 65 million years ago by giant shockwaves produced by the asteroid, and as such they cannot be found anywhere else on the planet. Dipping in felt properly prehistoric.

We had decided to take our last few weeks together really slow, and settled on the paradisial little island of Holbox in the Gulf of Mexico for 10 days. Crystal-clear, turquoise water to swim in every day, just beyond our go-to beach spot. Maria's morning yoga class, followed by breakfast, beach, dinner, an occasional cocktail in the small island town and perhaps a movie on my laptop. We went to watch bioluminescent plankton and I perfected my drone-flying skills. To be honest, we didn't feel like leaving at all. And yet we did, spending the last few days before returning to the capital on Cozumel, one of the world's best diving destination. And as an early surprise for Maria's 33rd birthday, we went diving as well. After almost two years of not having been in SCUBA gear, seeing the underwater world again was breathtaking. The most spectacular coral reef formations I've ever seen were covered in countless species of fish, crabs, eels, rays, you name it. Accompanied of course by a happy, sub-aquatic Swedish lady.

As so often is the case when looking back, the first part of 2022 and of my trip seems to have gone by in the blink of an eye. After a few more truly lovely days in CDMX together with Maria, goodbye came way too soon. It'll be almost three months before we'll meet up again in Asia, and I miss her already. My time traveling alone will no doubt be eventful, if different, but it will take some getting used to. Let's see what I'll be getting up to. In two days, I'm flying north to Canada, to pay a visit to my all-time favorite traveling buddies, go hiking in the Canadian Rockies and celebrate my birthday. After that, a big leap westward, returning to South East Asia for the 6th time in my life, knowing by now that interesting times are guaranteed down there.

Catch you on the other side of the date line ;-)

July 23rd, 2022

Get In Touch

If you have a question or comment, or simply like my stories, write me a message at
You can also follow me on Instagram.