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mpalmer November 25th, 2006 07:45 PM

Xel-ha As A Ship Excursion
We signed up to go to Xel-ha through the NCL Dream on the Dec. 16th cruise. Has anyone done it through the ship. It says it's a 5 hr. excursion, I was wondering how much of that time would be traveling. We'll be getting off the ship at Playa Del Carmen. I was scared to try that one on my own because of the travel time. But I hope we don't get shorted on our time at the park because of it being a ship excursion. So I was hoping to hear from some of you who have done it through the ship....

jennc December 30th, 2006 02:47 PM

It will probably take you about 1 hour to drive from Playa Del Carmen to Xel-Ha by bus. ( Remember you have to wait for everyone to have everything and everyone and get on the bus!!! Can be annoying at times!!!) I am guessing you will have about 3 hours at Xel-Ha.
This place is awesome. We were unsure as to what to expect last year but were very impressed. It is very organised and clean. If you have your own towel and snorkel gear you might want to take it It will definitely save time in the line ups for the rental equipment.
Enjoy, I know you will.

cozumelcruising December 30th, 2006 04:22 PM

Hi, Xel-Ha from Cozumel is 45min ferry to Playa del Carmen, 45 min bus drive to Xel-Ha and the same back, a 5 hour tour would only allow 2 hours at Xel-Ha (which sometimes are compromised to to being high cruise season and international and national holidays!!), which I personally consider very limited due to the many attractions and activities, which are really worth spending some time on. The regular Xel Ha tour is 8 hours and allows ca. 4.5 hours in the park, I would consider this a good amount of time to spend at this site as well as at Xcaret (only 15min from playa del carmen). Doing it by yourselfes is not difficult, but requires some information. Take a taxi to downtown fiscal pier, you got a ferry every hour (with some exeptions, ask the operators of the ferry and take notice there are two companies, asking one only they will only give you their times and not the competition ones!), then a taxi or collectivo ride to Xel-Ha, that is it, just make sure you know when to take the ferry back to Cozumel, in the worst case, take a 10min plane ride back to Cozumel (ca. 150 US). Xel-Ha is a very special and beautiful and secure natural park/lagoon, as Xcaret, a must do in a lifetime.
Hope it helps!

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