Originally posted by itzmichie:
Hi! I will be leaving on the Fantasy in October. It will be my second cruise.
I was wondering about public beaches in Cozumel and Costa Maya. Are they close to the ports? Or should I forget that idea and stick with the shore excursion activities? If anyone has any input on doing the shore excursions vs. just going out to explore on your own, please let me know.
Cozumel is my favorite port. Easy to get around and safe. We just grab a taxi anywhere we want to go without a problem.
Paradise Beach is $12-14 one way for a taxi of 4. (depending on where you dock or tender in)
They do not charge any kind of entrance fee. All the lounge chairs, umbrellas and tables, clean restrooms and changing rooms and internet at the bar....are all free.
All they ask is that you eat/drink $10 per person.
You can also purchase a wristband for $9 that allows you the use of their nonmotorized toys. This is optional. If some want to get it and others do not...that is fine. (2 water trampolines, an iceberg to climb, kayaks, floats, snorkeling~ remember that there is a deposit on any equipment but it is refunded when the equipment is returned)
You can also rent lockers.
They also have independent vendors there to offer you the rental of jet skis ($55 1/2 hour), parasailing (same), banana boats (not sure of the price on that), beach massages ($1 per minute with a 20 minutes minimum), hair braiding, a souvenir store etc
You can also climb a coconut tree (not a real one)!!
Just remember to keep your watch on ship time (since sometimes Cozumel's time is different).
And don't worry about getting a taxi...there are more taxis than sand!!
If you want to do a ship tour in Cozumel, I would recommend swimming with the dolphins. This books up quickly and is about the only thing I would do through the ship...just to make sure you got a spot.
Costa Maya is basically a port with lots of shops and a huge salt water swimming pool...and a little beach village. The village costs $3 per person each way to get there. The best place for drinks I have read about is the Cat's Meow. It is not as commercialized as Cozumel.
Both ports can be done without a ship excursion (unless you want to do the dolphins). Both are tourist friendly and easy to get around.
All the resorts in Cozumel use purified water and the food is great...so don't worry about that. I would not be drinking from any public fountains...but the resorts are fine.
Margaritaville opened in Cozumel in April. If you get to dock, it will probably be at Punta Langosta (across from CarlosNCharlies) and the new Margaritaville is 3 to 4 blocks to the right as you walk off the pier. It is right on the water.
Go and have a great time. And make sure you head back to the ship one hour (ship's time) before she sails!!