My husband and I are sailing on the Carnival Inspiration on 11/23/03. During our stop at Costa Maya on 11/26/03 we are interested in visiting the Parque Nacional de Chinchorro Submarino which is described in the book Insight Guides Caribbean Cruises as follows:
"The best excursion here is a snorkelling or scuba trip to the impressive Parque Nacional de Chinchorro Submarino. About 30 miles long and 9 miles wide, this atoll is one of the last virgin reefs in the region and has areas that drop to depths of 3,000 feet. Surrounded by an intricate maze of coral heads, it is nearly always teaming with exotic tropical fish, and has over 30 sunken ships to explore. Enormous leatherback turtles are often spotted by snorkellers here, as are numerous dolphins, which are not at all shy about mingling with the visitors."
This marine park appears to be approximately 20 or so miles off the coast. We would love to make a visit here but have found only one operator who runs excursions to Chinchorro (Chinchorro Divers). Because their excursions are geared toward those staying in Costa Maya, their usual times do not coincide with the time that we will be in port (10am-6pm). Because they are not already booked for that day, however, they are willing to fashion an excursion that would work, leaving at 11:00 a.m. and returning by 5:00 p.m. The cost for snorkellers is $65 per person and for divers is $135. This includes equipment, transportation to/from the pier, lunch and three hours dive/snorkel time at Chinchorro. However, they require a minimum of 8 persons to make this trip. We are looking for others who might be interested in visiting Chinchorro so that we can meet this 8 person minimum. We would also love to hear from anyone who has been to Chinchorro or who has additional information about it. The snorkelling/diving is supposed to be awesome!