The inaugural festival captured the magic of the stylish enclave while bringing new depth to its influence.
The two-hour drive from Cancún International Airport to Tulum unfurls on a single, well-paved highway. I watched as jungle gave way to all-inclusive resorts and condo developments, a scene that turned my post-flight excitement into a bit of a stupor. But just as I started to lose interest, a series of three signposts came into view:
I started to pay attention, and for the next four days, I didn’t stop. I was in Tulum for its inaugural Art With Me festival, a multidisciplinary event that brought together more than 25 businesses to put on art installations, music performances, pop-up dinners, and wellness programs. After years of hearing about the stylish enclave on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, I thought I had a clear idea of what I’d encounter in Tulum. And while there were the fashionable crowds, New Age adages, and Instagram-ready spaces, there was a deep sense of place that I didn’t expect.