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  #1 (permalink)  
Old October 18th, 2006, 04:10 PM
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Default Drop Costa Maya

Next to San Juan, this has got to be the worst port that I've been to. There is just nothing to do here. The shopping square is a joke as are most of the excurcision choices. Sure you can go the Ruins but once is enough. My last two cruises Cozumel has been replaced with Costa Maya prior to sailing. I understand that the number of ships are resrticted in Cozumel because of damage to the piers from last years hurricane. Why not go to Belize or Key West? Oh well, that's my gripe. Happy cruising to everyone.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 04:32 PM
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Complete agreement here! I'd take KW any day over Costa Maya...

in 11/05 we were rerouted due to a tropical storm chasing us around the western carib--they tried to get us into KW but it was full so we ended up in Freeport......another place where I'd just stay on the ship next time...
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Old October 18th, 2006, 05:19 PM
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I totally agree and it's good to hear someone feels the same way about Costa Maya. Of course, everyone has different experiences at any given time but our group did not like anything about Costa Maya and we all did something different. The vendors in the market on the pier were pushy and downright rude. I took a taxi to Majahual with my 15 year old grandson who wouldn't even get out of the car when he saw the gauntlet we had to walk through to get to the beach, so we turned around and headed back to the safety of the ship. I live in Florida and have been to magnificent Key West many times and would love to stop there instead of Costa Maya. There are so many great things to do and see there and it is part of the good old U.S.A. I like the idea of pumping money into the economy of one of the most unique cities in the United States...bring on those Mojitos!!
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Old October 18th, 2006, 05:30 PM
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Desdemona, I think I have read your great description of the Costa Maya swimming pool ...

I agree with all of the above.
Almost anywhere is better than Costa Maya. I have only been there once, and that was enough.
If I were unlucky enough to go there again -- due to some switch in itinerary -- I would stay on the ship.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 10:16 PM
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Hi, Fruitcake....I'm with you, I'll stay on the ship in Costa Maya. When we were there in July, the pool was drained and being worked on. The one criticism I have heard about stopping in Key West is that there isn't enough time to really explore.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 09:39 AM
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Default Describing an elephant- blindfolded!!!!!!!!!

and coming away telling the world it had this long thin thing it breathes through.

You forogt it's spectacular snorkeling, scuba, beaches, Mayan ruin tours, etc.

Next time, just stay on the ship and let all those other folks that have discovered what a great stop Costa Maya has become off the ship to enjoy their day.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 10:28 AM
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I saw the elephant first hand ...

Sorry, but it appears to me that you have to LEAVE Costa Maya to enjoy the area.
I'm not that much into leaving the port and traveling great distances.

And I've been to Mayan ruins, so those have no appeal to me now.

I'm much happier staying on the ship and enjoying the amenities, than getting overcharged by merchants in a crowded marketplace.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 11:30 AM
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the beaches are subjective--some love them and some found them disgusting. As far as the ruins go, yeah, they're supposed to be nice but it's a several hour trip and I've found few people who came back and said it was worth it (not to mention the food poisoning some got from the free lunch the tour provided). The port is an artificial, man made monstrosity that was built for the sole purpose of capturing cruise ship $$. The pool/bar area in the middle is a health department's nightmare. People ordering the large, neon colored glasses of drinks, drink after drink, and not getting out of the pool....hmmm...wonder where the liquid from the last drink went? And then there were those who just leaned over the side of the pool, barfed, and then ordered another drink.

There are MANY islands in the caribbean that offer beautiful beaches, snorkeling, etc, and still offer things for non-swimmers. As Fruitcake said, the best things about Costa Maya are when you LEAVE it, so why not send the ships somewhere that offers more things to all people?
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Old October 19th, 2006, 12:09 PM
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Desdemona, your description is so accurate!
"... artificial, manmade monstrosity" -- that sums it up nicely.

I didn't go into the pool, so I didn't stop to think about all those drinkers ... and where all that liquid went. Ick.

Good point about going to another port that offers more of a variety!
Even Nassau has something to offer, and going to Paradise Island is not such a big trek.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 01:00 PM
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You're exactly right Fruitcake, most of the tours involve a lenghty shuttle ride to, well less just say a not so desirable part of town. The Ruins tour, to me it was not worth the THREE HOUR bus ride ONE WAY to suggest to anyone else. I am glad I'm not alone in my opinion of Costa Maya.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 01:08 PM
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Texasmunk....we are not stopping people from getting off the ship and experiencing Costa Maya. We are simply stating our personal experiences which are not necessarily reality as experienced by everyone else. As far as the Mayan ruins...been there, done that and it was far from an enjoyable experience (my personal opinion). Snorkeling, scuba, beaches? We have some of the best in Florida so they have to be pretty darn good to measure up (my personal opinion). We found the nicest beaches and the friendliest people on the eastern Caribbean itinerary (again, my personal opinion).
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Old October 19th, 2006, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosetattoo
Texasmunk....we are not stopping people from getting off the ship and experiencing Costa Maya. We are simply stating our personal experiences which are not necessarily reality as experienced by everyone else. As far as the Mayan ruins...been there, done that and it was far from an enjoyable experience (my personal opinion). Snorkeling, scuba, beaches? We have some of the best in Florida so they have to be pretty darn good to measure up (my personal opinion). We found the nicest beaches and the friendliest people on the eastern Caribbean itinerary (again, my personal opinion).
I have to agree with you on the Florida beaches, Rosetattoo!
I guess we are spoiled!

Also agree with you that this is *opinion* and we are all welcome to share our thoughts on the topic.
The OP did not enjoy Costa Maya, and most of us on this thread have had similar feelings.
We have the right to express them.

I know I read these boards to find out people's opinions on certain islands, excursions, ships, shops, etc. -- and I take those opinions into consideration when I make my choices. However, I don't let anyone's opinion stand in the way of what I want to do!

Friends told us Costa Maya was terrible, but I got off the ship to see it myself. Not that I doubted them, but I just wanted to experience the port myself.
I didn't spend much time there, because I saw they were correct in their assessment!

No one has mentioned the silver prices. I thought they were high.
I saw the same stuff -- Taxco -- at the Mexican pavilion at Epcot for far less than in Costa Maya.
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Old October 19th, 2006, 11:57 PM
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I've been to Costa Maya several times, last time being about 3 weeks ago. I can personaly take it or leave it. I think it's like a lot of places I've been, including some places in Florida. You have to get out and away sometimes to get a true feel of the place.
Regarding people being in the pool all day and drinking, the same ones that spend all day in the pool drinking and doing whatever in the pool in Costa Maya are your same shipmates that spend all day in the pool drinking and doing whatever in the pool back on the ship.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 10:36 AM
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Sometimes there are other ships in port ...

In all my cruising experience, I have never observed anyone drinking in a swimming pool aboard a ship.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 03:39 PM
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In a way is this not linked to another thread regarding Key West and US custom laws?

Are the lines now thinking that we will stay "totally" outside US ports and water until we have to come back home and then deal with all that stuff in Miami. Because breaking the cruise to come back into the USA and out again is causing us problems?

Just a thought
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:06 PM
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Doubtful.

I think some people looking to make some $$$ off the tourist trade just created Costa Maya.
Threw up some docks, a shopping village, a few bars ...
How long has it been there?
20 minutes?
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:17 PM
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Well I docked in it 5 years ago
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidBgood
In a way is this not linked to another thread regarding Key West and US custom laws?

Are the lines now thinking that we will stay "totally" outside US ports and water until we have to come back home and then deal with all that stuff in Miami. Because breaking the cruise to come back into the USA and out again is causing us problems?

Just a thought
I've never heard that and I hope not! I would hate to be restricted to all US islands or to all non-US islands on a cruise. It would really restrict the itineraries. to me it's not that big of a problem to clear immigration if it means I get to see more ports.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:23 PM
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I just read this:

Majahual town is a small fishing village that is gearing up to be the next Playa del Carmen. Much of the town has been purchased by speculators that hope the boom will eventually get down that way as it did in Playa. In fact many of the new residents are from Cancun or elsewhere.
In 2000 they finally completed their dock, which was certified to accept cruise ships, unfortunately the first ship that docked crashed into the new dock. Work to rebuild the dock was completed and cruise ships are presently docking there.

Like I said ... 20 minutes.

Empty coastal space bought by developers to catch some of the tourist $$$. Put up some silver shops, throw in a few bars, add some costumed locals to pose ... you got it.
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fruitcake

Put up some silver shops, throw in a few bars, add some costumed locals to pose ... you got it.
Don't forget the requisite 3 separate Diamonds International, because they are so native to the rural Mexican coastline..
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:27 PM
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So we can go back and this has been a port for numerous cruise ships since 2000, okay it dont suit everyone, But it aint magically appeared overnight.

Some with heritage would say that some others only appeared in the last 20 minutes . so dont go casting stones
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidBgood
So we can go back and this has been a port for numerous cruise ships since 2000, okay it dont suit everyone, But it aint magically appeared overnight.

Some with heritage would say that some others only appeared in the last 20 minutes . so dont go casting stones
Huh???

Fruitcake's point is that it's a relatively new port, manufactured for the sole reason of attracting cruise ships. Unlike the majority of the other ports visited by the cruise ships, this one did not already exist--the tiny village nearby isn't called Costa Maya. They might as well have named it Costa Bigbucks...and yeah, in the scheme of things, it pretty much did magically appear overnight....

The casting stones comment is just nonsensical....
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Old October 20th, 2006, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidBgood
So we can go back and this has been a port for numerous cruise ships since 2000, okay it dont suit everyone, But it aint magically appeared overnight.

Some with heritage would say that some others only appeared in the last 20 minutes . so dont go casting stones
The 20 minutes was hyperbole, DBG.
Just putting it in perspective in comparison to some of the other ports that we visit.

It is a manufactured place, designed to attract tourists.

Casting stones? Moi?
Um ... this is the gripes thread, and the first stone was cast by the OP.
I'm just along for the riode, although I have pegged a pebble or two.
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 03:17 PM
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Have we got two threads running for the same thing...confused
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Old October 22nd, 2006, 08:42 PM
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Hi DBG,

Yes, apparently we do have two threads for "Drop Costa Maya". Don't let it confuse you . Don't know why San007 started a new one, but I'd "guess" it was to make a point?
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 02:47 PM
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At risk of going against popular opinion, we have quite enjoyed Costa Maya. It has often followed back to back days of strenuous excursions, and a day of lying on the beach in Majahual is just so relaxing, a nice getaway from the crowds and noise. As far as the commercial square, what is the difference between that and the private cays owned by the cruiselines in the Bahamas. Same thing for the docking center at many ports...Cozumel (langosta pier), Belize City, Cristobal Panama, Puerto Limon CR, and so many others. Its ALL there for the big bucks. As one T-shirt states "same ****--different island". We've never gone in the Costa Maya pool....oops, I mean swam in the pool!
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 02:54 PM
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I would never compare HAL's Half Moon Cay with Costa Maya.
It's apples to oranges.

As for the other ports, a lot of them have *history* along with the T-shirt shops.
From what I've seen of Costa Maya [and what I've read] it was created on some vacant land to attract cruisers.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 08:37 PM
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There are two points of interest near Costa Maya, at least from my understanding of where Costa Maya is. One is Xel Ha (pronounced "shell ha") and Xeret (both spellings are approximate.) These are Mexican national parks, I think. The first place I mention is a bay area that is somewhat cut off from the Caribbean by a reef. Many underground rivers of fresh water flow into this bay, and somehow the mingling of the cold fresh water and the warm sea water attracts numerous fish. great snorkeling there. The second place I mention has a small flowing stream, part of which is open to the ground around it and part of it flows through little caves. Good tubing, but it is very cold water. Cultural shows and entertainment are also presented there.

I do not know if the cruise lines offer excursions to these places. If they do not, it is probably due to the fact that these attractions are actually too small to accomodage passengers from 2,000 - plus passenger ships. I've never visited these places in the context of a cruise, but have visited them during land resort vacations in Playa del Carman and Cancun.

Thanks,
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Old October 30th, 2006, 01:59 PM
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I have been to Xel Ha on a cruise excursion, twice. The first time was 20+ years ago and it was not big enough to accomodate huge groups. Just the lagoon. Was back a year or two ago and it has totally changed. Full fledged "theme" park now and more than adequate to hold thousands of cruisers. But, the excursion was not out of Costa Maya, but Cancun, if I remember correctly.
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Old November 5th, 2006, 08:45 PM
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i'm going on a cruise with just a few of the girls i work with in jan. They have never cruised, I've cruised a few times. They really want to do the
Kohunlich Mayan Ruins at costa maya. I've never done costa maya. I have done chitinitza ruins at cozumel. (it was neat but that was enough for me) I was really wanting to do a beach that day...but you think no? Stay on the boat? This is so dissappointing!
Save my money for a 1/2 off massage that day?? or go with the girls and get haggled?
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