Welcoming sun, vibrant colours, mouth-watering food, lush jungles, Mayan ruins and pristine white beaches. What more do you want as an escape plan from Britain’s dark and gloomy winters? After wandering the beautiful cobbled streets of colonial towns such as Merida and Izamal we would cycle the back roads of the Yucatan, through tiny Mayan villages often stopping off to explore a hidden Franciscan monastery or to swim in the crystal clear waters of a cenote. And of course you couldn’t visit the peninsula without exploring the impressive Mayan ruins that emerge through the jungle canopy. The hotels were also a huge bonus on this trip. Each had its own unique character (one built around a private jungle!) and every one had a private pool. And of course by the time you get to Tulum, you have the biggest pool of them all – the Caribbean Sea.