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School me on Cancun/Cozumel

Old 12-20-2017, 06:50 PM
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Default School me on Cancun/Cozumel

Looking to get away to somewhere warm with wifey for a 3-4 day vacation in Feb. We are not fans of places where we are confined to a resort the whole time, so it seems to me places like the DR and Jamaica are out. St. Martin and other options got smashed by last season's storms.


Cancun and Cozumel seem to have the best deals on the nicest places. Why is that? Can I expect decent dining/night life/shopping at either?


Any recommendations at either place?


Merry Christmas!
Old 12-20-2017, 07:10 PM
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Looking for a good get-away without the touristy crap, look into Isla Mujeres. Island off the coast just north of Cancun. We went there a few years ago and loved it.

Last edited by 2ntow; 12-21-2017 at 05:10 AM.
Old 12-20-2017, 07:15 PM
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I will second Isla Mujeres. I was there last July. You can tour the whole island with a golf cart. Lots of places to eat and drink and beautiful beaches.
Old 12-20-2017, 07:18 PM
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ive been to cozumel numerous times.. all while on cruises. had fun, but only went to touristy parts. Diving was great. never went fishing, but was there during the RLM in 2013.. actually wearing the shirt now.. "rodeo de lanchas meixcanas"
Old 12-20-2017, 09:18 PM
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Cancun was too crowded and busy for me. Prices High. Lagoon Stinks.

Cozumel. Nice house a few miles south of town, snorkeling beach. Short drive to diving from town.
Can't say enough good stuff about Cozumel when compared to Cancun.

If you do go to Cozumel, don't swim, board, snorkel the East side of the island, or you will also visit Cuba.
Old 12-20-2017, 09:51 PM
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Cozumel is great. I could live there actually. Folksy small town atmosphere where most locals have roots unlike Cancun. No crime, great restaurants, not much sand though. Great diving. I would like to try isla mujeres though.

The drive south down the coast from Cancun is worthwhile. There are a few places I liked. If you want to do something really good find a couple cenotes and go snorkeling. Look it up.
Old 12-21-2017, 05:55 AM
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Was in Cancun two summers ago - personally, I thought it sucked, and could see why it was so cheap compared to most other places in the Caribbean. The beaches weren't very good if you like the water - filled with seaweed and water that is not that clear. The hotel zone is crowded, and unless you like the USA type shopping mall and chain restaurant experience, the shopping and dinning is limited.
Haven't been to Cozumel in 20 years, but I expect it is still a much better choice.
Old 12-21-2017, 06:17 AM
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Cancun is very touristy

Cozumel has some great quiet day resorts and the back side of the island is a quiet beautiful treasure.


There is a very helpful THT'r that lives there. he will pipe in and offer great advice. cant pull name... doh
Old 12-21-2017, 06:33 AM
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Originally Posted by rocksandblues View Post
Cancun is very touristy

Cozumel has some great quiet day resorts and the back side of the island is a quiet beautiful treasure.


There is a very helpful THT'r that lives there. he will pipe in and offer great advice. cant pull name... doh
Skibum, or something like that ?
Old 12-21-2017, 06:47 AM
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Skibum does have some good advice for Cozumel

Wife and i have been to the same resort twice now -- just a 20 minute drive from the airport - Valentin Imperial Maya -- 5 star place, this is good if you're not looking to leave the resort and just want to relax, get fat, drink and be spoiled rotten. The food and drink is probably my favorite part, the hardest decisions to make was whether you had enough room for lunch and dinner.

We really liked the excursions to the mayan ruins, especially the ones you can still climb to the top of the pyramids, Coba and Ek Balam. Tulum is kinda boring in comparison. Haven't been to their real famous one, Chichen Itza, it was a 3hr drive one way and "restored". Ek balam and Coba felt more authentic as the jungle still covers most of the grounds. Nothing like that in the USA. I also really enjoyed the Cenotes but the wife wasn't keen on the cold water. I did go snorkeling and their reefs are meh -- just fun to be in the water i suppose.

Shopping is much cheaper in the cities, the resort offers some resellers but they're charging 2-3x what you'll pay off the resort.

I really should've brought a small travel rod/fly rod. There was little traffic on the resort beaches in the mornings and night and its all federal property and you don't need a license for shore fishing. We had hundreds of pompano and needlenose in the surf. Saw small tunas or mackerel busting one morning as well but you'd need a good casting rod.

We booked through Tana Vaynshteyn on Facebook, got us rates better than our typical agent and 2nd floor oceanview(first floor view is obstructed by dunes/trees).

Last edited by porcha; 12-21-2017 at 06:53 AM.
Old 12-21-2017, 07:39 AM
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Cancun is a big city, the tourist area is separate, but is struggling with crime as the cartels have started fighting a bit - something fairly new to the Yucatan. There have been shooting on the beaches during the daytime, in the Zona tourista.

Cozumel is sometimes referred to as the "safest island in the world." There has been an uptick in petty crimes, most crimes of opportunity and against property by juveniles, who are released 12 hours later to commit more crimes. Violent crimes may happen once or twice a year, but are usually local vs. local. I routinely walk home at night through very local areas to my house, which is a mile back from the water and have never felt threatened.

The good stuff... Cozumel is rather sleepy, but does cater to the cruise crowd. The good part is they all leave by 6 PM, freeing up town for exploring, drinking and dining. We have a lot of good restaurants, only one I would label great, although people who visit seem to think we have many great ones... consistency is an issue. Lots of variety for housing, from all inclusive to private homes with pools, condos, and a new Westin high rise. Lots of expats (Canadian and American - you'll find us in the bars!

World class diving, although I never have. Snorkeling on the west side has many options, and can be very good. A trip to Cielo - waist deep sand bottom, all food and drinks included... definately worth an afternoon (Blue Angel is who we go with). The east side of the island has no electricity, but plenty of beach bars and good food. The southern tip of the island is accessible - Punta Sur - but a little pricey per person ($13usd I think). Climbing the lighthouse and seeing crocs is kind of cool. There are some strong currents at some of the beaches, but also life guards (they arrive at 11-noonish). When the wind is out of the west/northwest it can get very calm and provide a very different snorkeling and swimming experience. We tend to go to San Martin beach a few times a week. Look for a light blue vw bus with a white top. The side door will be open and the large cooler will have beer...

We have a golf course that is remarkable as it is cut through the jungle. Condiditons vary, but if you golf it is a fun loop. Friday afternoons is a local skins game - 300p for nine holes and a cart, $15ud for clubs, always a good time!

Flats fishing on the north side of the island is excellent. Many of my friends go out trolling and bottom fishing and usually end up with meat. Local restaurants are always happy to cook your catch.

All in all its apples and oranges between the mainland and the island. Happy to answer any questions you may have. We are in the states for a couple weeks and then back on the 30th for a few months at least. Flying into CZM is usually a bit more than Cancun, but SO convenient. If you need any other information please elt me know. Happy to help.
Old 12-21-2017, 08:44 AM
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Awesome input. Thanks everyone.
Old 12-21-2017, 08:55 AM
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Read Borderland Beat before you go to Mexico, today 6 bodies were hanging from bridges in La Paz and Los Cabos, I know the cartels target other cartels but they are bad shots and don't care who they hit
Old 12-21-2017, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by 805gregg View Post
Read Borderland Beat before you go to Mexico, today 6 bodies were hanging from bridges in La Paz and Los Cabos, I know the cartels target other cartels but they are bad shots and don't care who they hit
Kind of like condemning the whole US because of Chicago, or assuming all Californians are nuts because some continue to elect Pelosi!
Old 12-21-2017, 10:45 AM
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Going to be in Cozumel again last week in JAN Forget which day
Going to rent scooters again and bar hop along far side of island.
Old 12-21-2017, 10:46 AM
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I don't think you ever said if you were into scuba diving if if you are then I can recommend a company called "Aldora Divers".

http://www.aldora.com/
Old 12-21-2017, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Gary Schulte View Post
I don't think you ever said if you were into scuba diving if if you are then I can recommend a company called "Aldora Divers".

http://www.aldora.com/
I know the owner!
Old 12-21-2017, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by rocksandblues View Post
Going to be in Cozumel again last week in JAN Forget which day
Going to rent scooters again and bar hop along far side of island.
Let me know what day may join you for a margarita at Sr. Iguanas on the east side if I'm not at San Martin Beach! We sit just to the left of the life guard shack, you'll see the bus if we are there!
Old 12-21-2017, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by skibum View Post
I know the owner!
Dave Dillahey is a great guy
Old 12-21-2017, 02:57 PM
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Forget Cancun except for the airport. For a short trip isla mujeres would be my choice. We love cozumel also but flights from nc are expensive. Unless you can find a great deal on an all inclusive I wouldn't stay at one on either island. Too many great places to eat.

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