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A question about bicycling


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#1 kdogstew

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 06:26 AM

My fiancee and I are coming via Carnival in January. We are hoping to go snorkeling, but I am not sure about the weather and water temperature. We hope to rent full body wet suits and go with a guide. Does anyone know if any of the shops will rent full body wet suits and let you go with a different guide. We were wanting to go with Rosi, but if the only way to get a wet suit is to go with a different guide, we may do that instead.

The main purpose of this thread is to ask about renting bicycles. I am an amateur road racer and my fiancee is very fit too. We can definitely handle bikes. The question is.... I read this is a nice loop around the Island. Is that true? Is it paved? Is it very scenic? If we rented bikes, could we ride to the ruins or is that too far from where we would be dropped off? I assume we will be dropped off close to downtown. Is the traffic courteous if we rode on the roads? Lets say we were dropped off (where the ships usually dock), besides riding over to the museum, what would we want to ride to and see?

Thanks for help with either question. I hate to keep bothering people on this discussion forum, but I just don't know any other way to get help.

Keith
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#2 dawnb

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 07:50 AM

I can only speak to the snorkeling issue. You sure don't need a full body wetsuit for snorkeling. We just use long sleeve rash guards in winter (a type of nylon tee shirt) which you can bring with you as it takes up no space. You quickly get used to the water temp, it's never very cold. You also don't need a guide. Just cab or cycle to any place with iron shore (Money Bar, Corona, etc.) and prepare for an awesome experience! You can rent equipment at both of these places. Very nice snorkeling close to shore. Any of the staff or other snorkelers will be happy to advise as to where to go and what you'll see, so don't be shy!

The island loop is beautiful. I have not seen many bicyclists outside of downtown. Traffic can be hairy. Depending on how much time you have, you could probably get anywhere on a bike as the island isn't that big. Personally, I would do the loop in a car. There are many dire tales of scooter accidents. There is a bike/scooter trail heading toward Chankanaab.
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#3 nauticab

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 08:13 AM

the bike ride around the island is around 40 miles, and going at a decent pace on a mountain bike (pretty fast paced-i-am-exercising-not-doing-a-slow-bike-tour kind of speed), will take you about 2.5 to 3 hours. depending on the winds and their direction, a large section could be a challenge. plenty of places to stop and get a bite to eat or fill up your water bottles. VERY pretty bike ride. however, i would avoid it when there is more than 1 ship in town. sunday morning is a great time, before the locals head out there. but if you are arriving via carnival, it won't be a sunday. the bike rental place in town has pretty nice mountain bikes. take a cab into town and rent the bikes. it is in the square and they rent by the day.
the "old" beach road, heading south from town is fine to go on until around palancar when potholes can be dangerous. the new road has a good sided shoulder to ride on, just be cautious of the fast driving cars.
going to the ruins from town on the transversal is quick, less than 45 minutes going leisurely. make sure bikes are locked up. theft of opportunity will prevail.

another option is to ride to the north, where traffic is less, is it much quieter, and you can go all the way to the boat landings to isla de passion. as you go north, the road is pretty good, very wide, with sections that are for bike use. when you get to the golf course, the road will end and it is a dirt road. keep going all the way. will take you about 45 minutes from town to get to the very end, again, at a leisurely pace. lots of pot holes but fun mountain biking riding. you can even explore to the left (as you are going north) to the old stone roads that head to some beaches. note: as you are going north, you will pass the water treatment facility and there will be a few minutes of not so pleasant smells....but it passes quickly.

have fun, be safe, and wear your helmet, as i am sure you do anyway as a road racer.
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Cabrilla's Sport Center
Calle 11 % Melgar y 10av
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Dressing Fishermen and Triathletes from Head to Toe

#4 Coz2wonder

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 08:50 AM

You can rent bikes from Sombrero's...http://www.sombrerorentals.com/?page_id=34

scroll down the page, and you will see the type of bikes they offer.

Enjoy, have fun, be safe and watch for people opening there car doors!!!
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#5 Carey

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Posted 15 May 2010 - 10:21 PM

You're not bothering people with your questions. That's what the forums are for so ask away. All good advice on biking.

Lot of locals use bikes as their main source of transportation so the only people that won't be aware of and watching out for you when you bike are tourists with rental cars.

The rental bikes are pretty heavy and pedestrian. Don't expect anything fancy because you won't find it here.
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#6 nauticab

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 12:34 PM

the bikes they rent at sombrero are actually pretty decent mountain bikes.... all new and higher end quality.
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#7 Guest_pecosgirl_*

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 01:04 PM

No wetsuit.
No guide.
Explore.
Enjoy!!
Just watch out for traffic.
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#8 Charles

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 11:03 PM

Water temperature in January might be 78-79 degrees, that is warm to some and freezing to others. The weather conditions and whether a cold front is blowing plays a big role in using a wet suit. Scheduled during January, that will be busy cruise ship season and my opinion, your options are limited in safely and comfortably riding bikes except on a limited basis. I have a friend that does the island loop, but he starts at first light and makes sure he has gotten to a "safe zone" before traffic has started to pick up. I wouldn't really recommend it to cruise passengers. By the time you could get started, you'll have issues with traffic. A bike would be safer than a moto. If indeed the Carnival pier has been expanded to accommodate four ships by the time you arrive, a bike could be an option to explore the assorted beach clubs on the west side south of Puerta Maya. You wouldn't want to have to go downtown to rent a bike.
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