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Two Top Things You Would Do On The Mainland?


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#1 shan7199

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 12:34 PM

Hi,

 

You all have been so helpful with my Cozumel plans. Now for Cancun - we are there for someone else's wedding. We are staying at Dreams resort (all inclu) before we come over to Cozumel. We will have about 3 full days to ourselves to do something - one of which we plan to do...nothing  :-)  Anyway, we will be scuba diving in Coz and doing one of the Tour groups (Tiger's tours I think it was - sunset cruise) and maybe Sancho's horseback riding there OR the other horseback riding that takes us to some small ruins.

 

What would be the top two things we should do and/or see while in Cancun. We would be willing to rent a car to get somewhere if its really something to do. We have never been there. I don't like "crowds" or following big groups around all day. I know its hard since Cancun is so touristy now...but want to do something different if its possible - or see something with a group that is less commercialized. If possible.


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#2 cdlu

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 01:41 PM

If they are still around; I would go swim with the whale sharks.


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#3 pecas

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 02:09 PM

I believe whale shark "season" is over.  But still, I would take a day trip over to Isla Mujeres.  You could go out to Isla Contoy in the morning (probably can do that from Cancun as well), then come back rent a golf cart, check out the turtle farm, poke around town and have dinner at Olivia.  Absolutely delish!  


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#4 hillbilly

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 04:14 PM

Xcaret and stay late for the final show, Chitza nitza (spelling) is worth seeing also


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#5 DebB

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Posted 30 September 2013 - 06:50 PM

The Isla Contoy trip from Scuba Cancun if they're still running out of there. Very nice day on a big, comfy boat with breakfast, fishing on the way, snorkeling at Ixlache, a great lunch on Contoy and open bar return.

 

Rent a car and check out some attractions off Hwy. 307 south: Parks Xcaret, Xel Ha, Xplor, Hidden Worlds (choose one), dry cave Actun Chen (also spelled Aktun Chen), Tulum ruins, towns of Tulum, Akumal, Playa del Carmen.


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#6 mslf500

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 06:02 AM

  • Visit Tulum's ruins and then have lunch in the village of Tulum.
  • Go spearfishing in PdC with Leo (SpearfishingToday.com)
  • Snorkel with the turtles just south of PdC.  (the name escapes me, las Tortugas?)

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#7 shan7199

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 08:18 AM

I should have said that I was going to be there Feb 21 - 25 (in Cancun area anyway). Is whale shark season still over then?

@DebB - can you doo all that in one day? The attractions you listed off Hwy 307. Xcaret sounds interesting.

 

@msslf500 - Spearfishing sounds exciting too  lol. I had heard a lot about Tulums ruins - is this one a little less visited too? I heard some ruins are swarming with tourists but some others - not so bad.

 

I'm going to look into everything listed


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#8 Steve

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 08:42 AM

I would rent a car in Cancun then drive to Valladolid. Get a hotel there and explore the town. There are quite a few hotels around the square that are affordable. Casa Hammaca Guesthouse is very nice but not on the square.  http://www.casahamaca.com/   The town of Valladolid is around 500 years old and has a real Mexican feel to it. There is a cenote in town and a couple more just outside of town. You are close to 3 ruins. Coba, Ek Balam, and Chichen Itza. The mercado is fun in the morning. There are churches, convents, museums, and many other sites to see. Lots of good restaurants with in walking distance of the square. I take a lot of people that come to visit over to the mainland and usually end up taking them to Valladolid. It's a great trip.


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#9 Skibum

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 10:13 AM

Valladolid prison has the BEST hammocks at the best prices! The cenote east of town has small cabins to rent with good reasonably priced food and a nice pool. Spent a night there last early February in our RV. After the tour buses left we had the cenote to ourselves! Never did explore downtown but it is supposed to be wonderful!

 

Isla Holbox might be a fun day trip - we have never been...


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#10 DebB

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 01:36 PM

Re my post: Noooo, that's a week's worth of things to do! Use Cancun as a hub for exploring a few spokes and book another trip!


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#11 MarkC

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Posted 07 October 2013 - 12:59 PM

No offense, but I'd just stay at the resort and get drunk enough to forget I was in cancun...  That or stay home and save my money... The whale sharks would be the only thing remotely interesting in the above list (to me).


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#12 shan7199

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Posted 07 October 2013 - 02:58 PM

@Mark. None taken  lol. We might just end up doing that.


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#13 mstevens

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Posted 07 October 2013 - 04:32 PM

MarkC echoes my feelings about Cancun.

 

That said, there are great ways to spend time on the mainland. Just for goodness' sake get out of Cancun. I like driving to Chichen Itza, spending the night, touring the ruins in the morning, stopping at the prison hammock store in Ebtún on the way to lunch in Valladolid, then on to Cozumel via Tulum, but that's just me.


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#14 DanB

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Posted 08 October 2013 - 10:49 AM

"stopping at the prison hammock store in Ebtún"

 

mstevens:  For our next trip we are planning a 3-4 week visit.  Want to spend a couple days in Vallodolid, then a week in Merida, a couple days at San Felipe/Rio Lagartos.  Have been tending toward using the bus instead of renting a car.  There are a few things that we'd like to do in the Valladolid area that would be nice to have a car for - the visit to Ebtun for hammocks, a visit to a traditional Maya ceramics studio in Uayma (my wife is an artist and potter), a visit to Ek Balam ...   I can't seem to find a reliable reference about a car rental place in Valladolild (there are some comments on TA about a place called Portal Maya where you can rent cars, but I can't find anything else about it).  Do you know of any car rental in Valladolid?  What would taxi fares be like for those side trips?


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#15 crunch

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Posted 08 October 2013 - 11:52 AM

Snorkel with the Sea turtles in Akumal Bay.  Make a day of it.  I can tell you all the best places to eat while you are there too.


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#16 shan7199

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 02:01 PM

Wow. Ok now after looking into things I'm thinking to just stay three nights in Valldolid and not go to Cozumel this time. Cenotes look incredible!Are there similar places in Cozumel (cenotes?). Maybe that's better plan - and next time we travel south, would stay in Cozumel for a week. Geez I wish we had more time! We really either spend part time in Cancun (b/c of wedding) and then head to Cozumel for three nights - where we have everything already planned out LOL. Or nix it and go to Valladolid for three nights. I just can't see doing this any other way. I'm just thinking this now b/c really, I'll never go to Cancun as a "choice" but I would go to Cozumel. Decisions decisions. I'll post what we decide soon. That Casa Hamaca looks perfect and still had room for our dates.

I would love to hear more on car rental places if anyone had input.


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#17 DanB

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 03:30 PM

Shan, I rented cars in Playa and Cancun a couple times.  I used 'america' car rental (america-carrental.com).  They have cars for around $30 a day including all the insurances and the zero deductibles.  RE: cenotes - cozumel does not have any cenotes like the ones on the mainland.  I'm not an expert but the most stricking cenote I've seen is the one just outside of Chitchen Itza (I think its called Ik Kill).  Google 'yucatan cenotes' in google images and you'll see a bunch of them.  If you do end up going to Valladolid, report back in detail what your experience was.  I'm currently planning a trip that will involve  a couple days there and I'd like to benefit from your experience.  And look for car rental places in Valladolid and let me know their contact info.   I'm REAL cheap when I travel and currently plan to stay at the Aurora Colonial hotel there.  (There is an online web/magazine called Yucatan Living that just had a 3-part article about the Aurora Yucateca company in Valladolid that was the first place in Mexico to use steam engines in manufacturing.  I believe the hotel is the former home of the founder/manager of that plant.   As a diver, I couldn't pass up spending 3 days underwater if I was anywhere near cozumel - but if you are not a diver, the mainland away from the coast has a lot of charm.  Good luck!


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#18 DanB

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 03:38 PM

Shan, I rented cars in Playa and Cancun a couple times.  I used 'america' car rental (


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#19 Steve

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 07:38 PM

I've rented cars dozens of times in Cancun, Playa, and Cozumel without any problems. I've had my own vehiche down here for about 8 years so my information is out dated. I Usually will go to 4 or 5 different places to get the best price. Usually around $175 per week with all insurance. By comparing places you will quickly find out the going rate. I would check online now to find the best price. Even though you book a particular car online don't get your hopes up for getting the car you booked. Deal with it when you get down there and be flexable. I always like to pay cash for a rented car so I let the agent swipe my card but not charge anything to it because I don't like a hold being put on my card. When you return the car pay in cash and get the swiped card receipt back. Make sure to take photos of your can and mark down all nicks, scratches, and anything else you find. Check to see if the car has a jack, a spare, plates, and that all mirrors are there and not damaged. Make suree to put the same amout of gas back into the vehicle before you return it. Most likely your car won't have any gas in it when you pick it up so go directly to a Pemex and fill it up. Make sure to get a phone number where you can call in case the car breaks down. They are usually pretty good about that and have mechanics all over that they can call to fix it for you. If you have to have work done on the vehicle and pay for it yourself make sure to get a receipt and keep the old parts. The rental place should deduct that from your bill. You should be alright as you aren't going that far.

 

There are 2 great cenoted about 5 to 10 minutes outside Valladolid. Dzitnup and Samula. They are basically across the parking lot from each other.  Cenote Zaci is in the town of Valladoild. Cenote Ik Kil is righ down the street from the ruins of Chichen Itza and well worth seeing along with the Balancanche caves.

 

You really need a couple of weeks to explore everything around the area but a lot can be squeezed into a couple of days. Don't forget to relax also. If you wander into the food plaza in the square and decide to have pizza, make sure to order sauce as that is an extra ingredient.

 

Have a great trip.


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#20 Eileen

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Posted 11 October 2013 - 11:19 AM

A great article in today's Toronto Star about Valladolid. Certainly would make an excellent day or overnight trip.

 

http://www.thestar.c...an_history.html

 

Let me know if you can't access it (subscription), and I will repost the article here.


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