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February In Cozumel


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#1 Kramer

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Posted 24 August 2010 - 07:32 PM

Being from Florida I completely understand the tourist invasion and the often times "Pain in the rump" it can be. I also understand the financial blessing they can be.

My wife and I will be celebrating our 10th Wedding Anniversary in February 2011. On February 19th or ship will dock in Cozumel and we will be two out of thousands of people scrambling into the town and scurrying over the Island like thousands of aunts.

From the moment my wife and I booked our Cruise we wanted to break from the pack and have an experience unlike those offered by the cruise ship. We do not consider ourselves good little Lemmings.
We are in our 40's, and I am almost into my 50's. I want to spend a meaningful day with my darling wife, and I want the people and the place to allow us to fall in love with them.
When it is time for us to decide what we want to do on our next vacation I want so much for us to have loved the Island so much that we bring our children to experience what it is we found.
I hear people ask "what would you do if you only had one day"? We only have one 10th Anniversary and we decided to come to Cozumel.

The Question really is, if you had one day in February to spend on the Island, what would you do?
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#2 Jean Mc

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Posted 25 August 2010 - 08:31 AM

The answer would depend on what you enjoy and what kind of a timeline you have. Do you dive or snorkel? Do you like a private beach or a walk on the wild side? Whatever you decide, book it independently, not through the cruise ship. Disregard all the hype they may give you about the island not being safe. The farther you can get from the main path, the more enjoyment you will find.
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#3 Carey

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Posted 25 August 2010 - 09:22 AM

If you enjoy cooking and want to really experience the local culture and people up close and intimately, consider Josefina's Yucatecan cooking class. That will take up 1/3 of your day. I think for the rest, my rec would be to do a little back street shopping in town after the class and then take a cab tour around to the wild side of the island which is breathtaking and wild. If you prefer something more active, you could snorkel and hang out at a beach bar in the afternoon before heading back to your ship.

Chankannab National Park is another lovely way to while away an entire day in a very mellow beautiful way. That's just off the top of my head. You would need to be more specific about what you enjoy doing most before we can truly help you tailor your day on the island.
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#4 TC

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 09:12 AM

I agree - it depends on what you like.

My perfect day -- I would scurry off the ship and start with breakfast at El Museo. Its a lovely view from the open air, upstairs restaruant and the waiters are all charming. Be sure to chat them up. After breakfast you could meet up with Rosy for a private snorkeling tour (far away from the cruise ship crowd). Ask her to pack a picnic and take you to a quiet beach for a romantic anniversary lunch. Or you could book Capt. Dan for a few hours of sailing with lunch and a good bottle of wine. Or you could do the wonderful farmer's market shopping tour and cooking class for the afternoon with Josefina -- eating what you cook for lunch. Before dinner, have drinks on the open patio at Rolandi's for a nice sunset view and then do a bit of selective main street shopping at Cinco Sol, Silver Emporium or Mi Casa. Don't pass up the chance to buy her something pretty from the jewelry department. For dinner book a table in the garden at Kinta. Be sure to tell Kris that its your anniversary dinner. Another great choice for dinner would be La CoCay. Wonderful food in a beautiful atmospher. Again, tell Cathy that its your anniversary. Ask to have the strolling musicians in for a serenade. After dinner, stroll the main square to watch the locals with their children (especially if its Sunday night) - there might even be a band for dancing. Finally, have a night cap on the deck of your ship, looking back at the lights of the city over the water.
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#5 Carey

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 09:25 AM

All great suggestions. My only correction would be re Dan and Karen's sailing trip. In February, one of the busiest months of the year, they are unlikely to be available for a private sailing for just the two of you. So for that lovely trip you would need to allot from 9 or 10 AM in the morning until 3 or 4 in the afternoon. Typical group size at that time of the year 9-14 people.
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#6 TC

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 09:34 AM

Carey, We've been out in February with Dan on the sweet little 22 ft. Jenna-Lynn. We had it all to ourselves. Doesn't he do that anymore?
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#7 Carey

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 10:04 AM

Don't know if he still has that boat or not. I'll have to ask him next time I talk to him. Did you go out recently?
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#8 TC

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 01:53 PM

Not recently, but I still see the Jenna-Lynn moored in the harbor when we have breakfast at El Museo and I see that its still listed on Dan's web site.
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#9 Kramer

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 05:28 PM

Marvelous!
These are such wonderful suggestions!
Some of them I want to ask my darling wife about, and some I want to keep as a surprise!
I snorkel in my pool but most of the "Snorkel Packages" say you cannot if you have Asthma.
I have Asthma and COPD. I would love to snorkel and see the beauty of the Reef.
We live in Homosassa Florida, this is the nature coast. We love the "Wild Side" so long as wild means nature!
My wife will have a drink or two but none for me. I used to be really good at drinking.
I did think about sailing but my wife had commented that we are on a cruise, she did not want to be on another boat! lol.
I would love to enjoy a wonderful breakfast and would not miss the ship breakfast if I was on the Island and heading for a wonderful meal!
Our ship docks at 8:00am and leaves at 7:00pm. Breakfast and lunch are in our plans, for sure. Shopping some small out of the way shops is also a must.
We have to bring back something for an 18 year old, a 16 year old and an 9 year old. Any suggestions on this? (18 & 16 are girls, and 9 is a boy)
I read a post on here about renting a car and I bookmarked the page. I think a convertible VW Bug would be amazing!
I was born in Minneapolis Minnesota and my wife on Long Island (Not a typical New Yorker or I would not bring her to the Island! lol)
I love the idea of watching the people play with their children. My wife's mother is Spanish and her and her family came from the Dominican. My wife may very well be able to interact with many of the people in their native language. I hope that is a plus.
The beach is a must for wading and photography. Is it warm enough to swim or snorkel in February? I haven't been a "Northerner in over 21 years!

I really hope you all know that I appreciate the suggestions.
Not only are you spending your moments sharing with me, but many others I hope.

Again, Thank You, I'll keep reading if you'll keep posting!

David
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#10 dawnb

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 06:18 PM

Chankannab Park would get my vote for an easy snorkel. No package, and no-one checks your medical history. If you can snorkel in the pool, you can snorkel there. It's like a kiddy pool, but still lovely. Think it's around $20 pp for a day pass (we were there several years ago, others please correct me if I'm wrong.) Pretty gardens and mini fake ruins. They also have a somewhat controversial Swim With Dolphins thing, which will cost extra, like $100. A short taxi ride will get you there. Money Bar and Playa Corona can have nice easy snorkels along the shoreline, ask the waiters about the current, and if there are big waves, don't bother. Their snorkels are free, just order a water/drink.

As for gifts, how about hammocks all around? They also have hammock chairs, and I think they are locally made. They pack them up nice and tight for airport. There are some cool long-sleeved hooded woven poncho/sweater pullover things, I own a couple and love them. They are sold everywhere.

Enjoy!
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#11 Kramer

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 06:51 PM

lol, I know they don't want me to get out there and die with their snorkel in my mouth, bad for business.
You said little fake ruins. My wife and I were originally thinking of making a run for Coba on the main land but decided we may end up stranded. Not bad for us, not so good for the kids at home.
We do wish to see some Mayan Ruins during our travels.
Thus far I am sure of Renting a car, Breakfast at El Museo. A Trip to the beach to either, Swim, Snorkel, Wade and sun. (Weather permitting) Shopping (Not my priority, but my wife's wishes come first) Lunch while shopping (Silver Emporium? Is it for locals or a tourist draw?) and time permitting, a quick trip to some ruins returning to the ship by 6:00 for a 7:00pm departure. That sounds like a full day beginning at 8:00am +/- and ending with the ship pulling away at 7:00pm.
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#12 dawnb

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Posted 26 August 2010 - 07:08 PM

Cozumel has its own real ruins: San Gervasio, on the way to the Wild Side. Women back in the day traveled there to pray to the goddess Ixtchel in order to get pregnant. Lots of cool and large iguanas to accompany you. As I remember, lots of walking.
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#13 TC

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Posted 27 August 2010 - 01:48 PM

Hi David, A fellow Minnesotan here. O.K. let me see if I have this -- breakfast at El Museo, no snorkeling or do you want to give it a try? Keep in mind that most of the beach clubs and Chankanaab park will be filled with those people from the cruise ship that you are trying to avoid. Renting a car and driving around the island is o.k., but you're going to run into the ship crowd again when you reach the "wild side" stops - especially Coconuts. I think you'll be a bit surprised at how un-cool the VW convertibles can be. For the most part they are the oldest VW sedans with the tops chopped off to make a convertible. Not awful, but just so you know.

Yes, there are small ruins on Cozumel, but they really aren't impressive (sorry guys).

As for shopping, with your limited time and a wide range of needs, I think Los Cinco Sole is the best bet. While it is on main street and will be filled with cruise ship shoppers, it has a wide range of items and they are of high quality -- silver jewelry, Talavera ware, tee shirts, toys, paper mache, onyx ware, tequilla bar, clothing, wonderful pewter ware, even furniture. They don't play the bargaining games that other shops do and you can trust the quality.
I think the two girls would probably love any of the jewelry and the 9 year old boy might like one of the wonderful paper mache marianettes. We have brought our grandchildren all one of the hammock chair swings from Cozumel and they adore them.

Now for a beach.....hmmmmmm. So many of them will be over run with the cruise ship crowd and most don't really have great snorkeling from shore if you wanted to give it a try. Any suggestions from the locals? You can certainly walk the beaches on the "wild side" and the surf is pretty, but you really can't swim and there are no ammenities. I'm not a doctor, but I think if you snorkel in your pool, then you could give it a try from one of the shore spots. That way you are close to land in case you get winded or tired. We do this from our condo -- the Coral Princess -- which has a wonderful reef right out front. Its like snorkeling in your swimming pool only with really cool coral and fish. We used to like D'zul Ha a lot, but the coral got damaged in the hurricane a few years back and is only slowly making a come back -- and its now called The Money Bar and is marketed to the cruise ships.

http://www.moneybarb...daypackages.htm

If you have to be back to the ship by 7pm, you won't have time for a romantic dinner or stay late enough to find the locals strolling around the square. That is really the sad part about stopping for a day from a cruise ship, you just don't have enough time to interact with the locals and fall in love with the island. You have to spend a little more time there.

And YES, the water is warm enough to swim in February. That's why I spend the whole month there. Who would stay in Minnesota??? LOL

What date exactly will you stop on Cozumel. If it very late in the month, you might catch some of the pre-Carnival activities. Carnival is the first week of March in 2011, but sometimes there are parades or dance competitioins in advance.
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#14 dawnb

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Posted 27 August 2010 - 04:25 PM

Actually, Coral Princess no longer lets non-stayers access their facilities/ladder/easy putin. Hotel Fontan next door will give you access though their ladder might be difficult to navigate. However, I wouldn't recommend that stretch for Kramer as the current can be very strong. I would still rec Money Bar and Corona. Have never seen them inundated with "cruisers," more so with snorkeling tours that go out deeper. Then they go away. Actually, never had that problem at Chankanaab either.

I beg to differ about San Gervasio ruins. We really enjoyed them and indeed did find them impressive. If you are expecting the Halls of Montezuma,they are not. But for a one day trip, first time on the island, it's pretty cool.

Different strokes...
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#15 TC

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Posted 27 August 2010 - 06:10 PM

Dawn, I know that the CP won't allow outsiders anymore. Thank heavens for those of us who "live" there. I was just making a comparison that there is easy snorkeling to be had on the island. And the ruins are o.k., but David had mentioned Coba -- so I thought he should know that there's nothing like that on Cozumel. If the Money Bar isn't over run with cruisers, it would be a good choice.
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#16 Kandy

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 04:42 PM

Kramer, my husband is way behind in reading, but asked that I post this.

GET OFF THE SHIP! Cancel the cruise and spend that money staying on this beautiful island. Get a hotel; eat in the restaurants; enjoy the water at the beach or snorkeling; enjoy the music and life on the plaza Sunday night; take a tour of the wild side; rent a car and just drive around the town; shop; talk with the people who live here. Anything but the ship! OK, that's his rant Posted Image

We just celebrated our 10th anniversary on the island with a vow renewal and party. Everything was perfect despite all of the missteps along the way. Get to know Cozumel and its residents. You'll be back time and time again.


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#17 two ladies & a guy

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 05:06 PM

If I had only one day on the Island I would rent a car or jeep for the day. I would start the morning by driving to the windward side of the island, it is to beautiful to miss. There are numerous beaches you can stop at, I would stop at Playa Bonito for food and drink. Ask for Willie. They have a great staff and you get to sit by the water and watch all the beautiful waves. They have great food and some of the best lemon-aid on the island. The prices are really reasonable..Continue your drive around the island, remember to have your camera for the beautiful scenery. As I got back towards town I would take time to drive thru the back streets. There are two main streets 30th and 65th, this is a good place to see people away from the tourist areas. Depending on the time of day, you might consider doing your shopping. Don't be afraid to venture away from the crowds, Cozumel is very safe, when our daughters come come to visit they go off on there own and have never had any problems. If you are able to by Rolandi's just before sunset, If you don't want to eat a lot I recommend the shrimp cocktail. On your drive around the island you could stop at Fiesta American (hotel) they have a nice beach area for snorkeling and a wonderful swimming pool. I won't miss lead you by saying the snorkeling is the best on the island but it is an easy swim and you will see some of the sea life. They have an outside shower you can rinse off at. The staff is great and I have not seen a large crowd until the evening hours. You might try breakfast here. You can do a lot in Cozumel without spending a lot of money. I hope you have a really great trip, congratulations on your anniversary and start planning that family trip.
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#18 Coz2wonder

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 05:17 PM

San Gervasio is a really wonderful ruin. Google it, and you will understand why it was such an important site for the Mayan.

Now, for the good part...when you get back to the ship after a wonderful day in Cozumel, a sweet 10th anniversary sparkler (not talking about the fireworks, those will come later) waiting in the safe, and a chilled bottle of champagne would sure make my toes curl!!!!

Now, that is a day to remember!
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#19 Kramer

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 06:36 PM

:) All of you sure make me glad I asked!
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#20 Kandy

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 09:17 PM

I hope that's a good thing, Kramer! Posted Image
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