I just read your great article about your recent visit there. I was wondering if you had been to the other Mayan Ruins available stopping at Cozumel and could give me some advice. We are really looking forward to seeing Mayan "Ruins", but were shocked to see to cost of the Chichen Itza trip.... Would Xcaret or Tulum or even San Gervasio be recommended for the first timer? Or, is Chichen Itza really the ultimate and worth the bucks????
I've still really got my heart set on seeing the larger, better preserved ruins.
Thanks in advance or any advice you can offer! I love this site - I've learned so much and can't wait until my 3/31 cruise starts!!!!
Chichen Itza has the most spectacular ruins, but Tulum has a spectacular setting on the beautiful Mayan Coast and the ruins are interesting. I think Tulum is well worth the visit, and getting there is less trying than working to fit in Chichen Itza on a day stop.
If you can combine a visit to Tulum with a stop at Xel-Ha, the snorkeling there is well worth it.
Ixcaret is my pick for the most beautiful stop in the entire Caribbean. It's 80,000-acres of beauty with so much to do -- swimming with dolphins, Maya ruins and a museum, swimming along an underground river, horseback riding, a turtle pond, exotic animals and four inexpensive restaurants. There are so many places to hang out, a regular beach, hammocks overlooking the sea, plus snorkeling and so much more.
I recommend it highly -- have been there three times and still haven't seen the whole place. The joy of lying in a hammock, the sea nearby, keeps me sane in winter! And, swimming in the underground river (you wear life preservers and there's lots of light coming in) is so much fun!