Our trip to Tulum! This is is part 2! There is also part 1 and then there is part 3 (sadly neither of these contain monkeys).
Who doesn't like monkeys? About 30 or 45 minutes north of Tulum is the tiny, yet adorable, town of Chemuyil that is home to Kuxi Kaax, or "The Jungle Place". Run by a quirky couple, it's located on a large piece of land in the jungle and they help raise and care for abandoned spider monkeys. They offer tours with the money from the tours going to help support their operations.
First: this will never change because people are stupid, but monkeys do not make good pets. They talked about one of the monkeys that had been given to a couple as a wedding gift. Holy crap. Who does that? Oh, I know! Idiots do that.
But, yes, many of these monkeys were originally pets that people just couldn't handle.
Getting to the Jungle Place isn't that difficult. The exit for Chemuyil is very well marked, but once off the highway we hit construction. The road to get there was under construction and we were detoured into town (but not before I drove through the construction site much to the delight of the construction workers). The issue is that there are no signs in town for the detour, so that was a bit tricky - but, boy, the town was handsome.
We finally found ourselves near a soccer field and saw a dirt road nearby that we somehow guessed correctly was the road to the monkeys. The dirt road is quite bumpy and you feel like you are in the middle of nowhere - which I suppose you are.
I guess my point is the Jungle Place people need to update their directions and mention the detour (here's my directions on how to get there).
So, right. Monkeys.
The monkeys. I am not sure I have actually been around real live monkeys before.
You are led into their enclosure and given a handful of snacks. They tell you to hold on to the snacks and not to let the monkeys get all the snacks at once. That system doesn't work. As soon as you walk in, a monkey will come up and take your hand and pry it open and take all the snacks.
The monkeys we get to meet are all female. Apparently (and obviously) the males can be a bit of a jerk for various male reasons, so we don't get to see them (although one of the female monkeys did take some snacks and pass them through the fence to a male monkey). Apart from eating snacks, the monkeys seem to like to sit on your lap and/or snuggle up with you. It's precious. You scratch their little heads and backs. Feed them little snacks. Some of them jump around and show off swinging above you. One girl was totally groomed by two of them.
Oh, and no one was peed on or pooped on. And the monkeys are clean and smell monkey fresh (for real).