Hello Fellow Cruisers:
I have read that Costa Maya is a beautiful, rural and undeveloped Port, with little but a few beaches and some port shops; my question is this: Can one hire a taxi cab from the cruise ship pier to take them to the Ruins? I loathe group excursions....what about busses? Do I have any other choices but to book with my ship? I read where one can rent a bike, but due to a physical disability I have to pass on that one--but I would love to do a beach snorkel....am open to suggestions!!
May the seas be calm, and may you find a friend in every port....
Thanks for the info--I read on the board where there are taxi's a couple of miles away in
Majahaul--my problem is that I cannot ride a bicycle, and due to a disability can't walk that far. So, anyone with info on how I might get from the pier to Majahual, please, reply!! I really do want to see the Ruins; but I really dread doing it with the ship....Hope to hear from anyone who knows this area a bit. Also, I heard there is some decent beach snorkeling near the pier? Any info on this? Thanks!!
May the sea be kind, and may you find a friend in every port...
ss Norway, 2-01
Hi, my family did Costa Maya in April 02 and it is a very Commercial Area. I don't like that and have travelled extensively. We had our young boys with us and had a wonderful time. First we didn't find alot of info before we landed in Costa Maya, but once we docked at the Pier we walked towards the Pier and went around to the back on the right tucked behind a building is a sand road leading to a Mexican owned Beach Club. We then asked if we could leave out gear (not valuables) on some chairs under the palms and walked down the beach viewing huge and many iguanas and shell seeking. We then went back to the beach area, you can see it from the Pier, there are two directly to the right of the Pier. We did snorkling right their, we could see alot octopus, flounder and many other fun things. The great thing was the prices $5.00 for all day snorkelling and the Mexican Food was delicious and the price was great. The Cruise Line Security tried to stop us by pointing out signs that suggest it is a dangerous or unsafe un secured area, but we knew better. I was amazed at how few people were at this beach club. Many people who stayed at the Cruise Port Area complained that the prices were very high and the Cheesyness of the port. We had a wonderful time.
If you stop in Belize, get off the ship as early as possible (they let people off first who go with the ship tours, but sweet talk the right person and you can sneak off the ship earlier) and head to the local Ferry Dock near the Bridge. Get on the earliest Water Taxi and head to Key Caulker, head to the Lazy Lizard. Along the way there are shops to rent snorkle gear and even stop at Carlos Dive Shop they will boat you out to the Reef for a quick snorkle trip and then catch the Water Taxi back in time to catch the ship. Warning: If you go you will not want to go back to the ship. Fantastic Views along the way, amazing restaurants and friendly people.
Have a great trip.
The "Costa Maya port" is a new pier at Majahual, Quintana Roo, is not particularly picturesque, unfortunately, nor are there huge numbers of taxis. But there is snorkeling. (There is also a large airport capable of taking Boeing 727's that was used by the CIA to supply the Contras in Nicaragua in the "old days", but no airline service as of yet.)
A long taxi ride (negotiate it beforehand) is into the former free "port" and capital of Quintana Roo, Chetumal. The best thing here is the excellent archaeological and Maya cutlural museum (Museo de la Cultura Maya). A visit here and a stop at one of the very large cenotes on the edge of town - a passable restaurant as well at the cenote- is a good day trip, and more so if one wants to visit one of the Maya ruins.
The best, especially in the hot season (March - September) is Kohunlich (koe-hoon-LEECH). Lots of walking, wildlife (you can see the tiny dwarf deer, howler monkeys, toucans, ocellated turkeys and more). It is a little higher in elevation than the surrounding area, so nice to visit. Not much to eat, but thereare soft drinks availabel usually. One could easily do a day trip including Kohunlich, the Msueo de la Cultural Maya and lunch at a pleasant semi-open air (covered) local restaurant (good Yucatecan food) nearby.
Another ruin cery close to Chetumal- on the outskirts- is on the coastline, Oxtankah (OAKS-tank-HA) or properly, OASH-tank-hah). These can be very warm and humid, and they are FULL of hungry mosquitos. Do not wear dark clothes, and take plenty of repellent (I forgot- and wearing jeans and a black tee shirt, was bitten severely and got dengue fever). Also a very interesting and picturesque ruin. A LONG day could include Oxtankah in the morning before it gets hot, Kohunlich and a late lunch near the musum and a museum visit.
Chacchoben (chalk-choe-BEN) is also nearby, and these lovely ruins have been recently excavated. This is a half-day tour.
For an easy way to see these or other sites, and especially if you have a small number of people, you could contact Coati Tours at nearby and lovely Maya Ha Lodge (6 miles) for a van and guide. They know the area well, and are reliable; we used them while staying and diving from Maya Ha Lodge. You can find their web pages at http://www.coatitours.com/index.html
or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org and they can arrange snorkeling, diving, and a variety of excursions, including kayaking and birding- even a Maya sweat lodge or spa experience, or just a nice lunch (try the "fajitas arrachera", very nice beef). Maya Ha is a 20+ minute taxi ride from the pier, on a "pcituresque" road.
This is just the information I was looking for. My friend and I are going to Costa Maya shortly, and wondered if we had to get a ship tour to snorkel, or if we could do it on our own. Can you be a bit more specific about the beach you walked to from the pier, and where you got the snorkel stuff for $5? I have written to some tour operators about Mayan tours, but I would rather snorkel without going on a tour.