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4sammy Feb 26th, 2008 07:49 AM

Isla Mujeres day trip?
Hi, I posted this on the Latin America board but I wanted to try here as well...

We are going to Cancun on Saturday for a few days with our 3 yr old. We're staying at the Marriott Casa Magna and were thinking the beach may be too small / waves too choppy for a lot of playtime with our son. We will do the beach and pool thing for a couple of days, and we are thinking about going to Isla Mujeres for a day for the nice, wide beaches, the calm waters and just a change of scenery.

Can anyone provide info on this? Is this a good / bad idea? Also logistically - found that we should taxi to Port Juarez and then ferry over, and how long would all of that take? Rough idea of transport $$ and time? Is there another cheapier or easier way to get there?

And once we're there... I read that we walk west / north to the north beach. Is this all as simple as it sounds? I don't want to overcomplicate things but don't want to find that I should have done more research!

We have been to Tulum before and loved those beaches. Is that an easier / better choice? I recall the water being choppy there too though.

You have all been so helpful in the past. Thanks in advance for your help on this one !

Anguillagirl Feb 26th, 2008 09:29 AM

Isla would be a good choice for you. We did it years ago, so I can't give you prices, but it's an easy trip. As I recall it took about 45 minutes by ferry. It's super easy to find your way around on Isla. I would recommend it.

Kool_Aid_Salesman Feb 26th, 2008 11:43 AM

Just make sure you don't do one of the booze cruises with the 3 year old.

Reisender Feb 26th, 2008 11:43 AM

Yes that is a good choice. Now, you can catch a city bus right in front of the Marriott, take it downtown Cancun, and from there a short cab ride to Puerto Juarez - very cheap. When we did this we were able to catch the bus all the way from the port back to the hotel zone. I am not sure why the bus does not go all the way to the port from the hotel zone. It may now. Do not be afraid to use the bus they are OK just be sure to holler at the driver when you want to stop and get off! Of course a cab all the way from Marriott to the port is an option and will cost more.

I do not recall the round trip ferry fare but it was small. The port itself is nice, has some food service and small shops. Once the ferry arrives you are in the heart of Isla Mujeres. The beach is just to your left as you leave the ferry dock. You can also rent a golf cart to explore the island with. They are gas powered and if you haggle you can rent one for the day pretty cheaply. That is a great way to see the whole island.

Have fun

4sammy Feb 26th, 2008 01:25 PM

Thanks to all of you... I heard that we can take a water taxi from the hotel zone and skip the drive to Puerto Juarez. Has anyone done that?

Kool-Aid, we will definitely not do a booze cruise! Those days are long over, and I'm not terribly upset about them!

We prefer to do the legwork ourselves vs taking planned "tours" - seem to get a lot more time to do what we want that way. It will be interesting this time as we haven't taken our 3 yr old out of the country before. But we are looking forward to the challenge. Any other input?

ishkribbl Feb 26th, 2008 06:44 PM

Have been to Isla and Tulum but not with a small child; however, Isla seems like a much better choice and easier side trip to me. I don't think the ferry took more than about 20-30 minutes and was a nice ride. You can most definitely just get off the ferry and "take a left" as others have said. You won't get lost! It seemed to me to be a great place for little children- especially all the way around the point near the cross over to the AI place- can't think of the name but there is only one- there was a very protected little area where we saw children playing in the water.
I don't recall the name of the ferry company but I bet you can search on google and find a fare schedule for Isla- maybe $8 or so per person??? I cannot remember but it was not much. Have fun!

Vallombrosa Feb 27th, 2008 05:26 AM

Gee, I must have done everything wrong when spending a day on Isle de Mujeres a few years ago; I thought the ferry ride was the best part. The beach to the left, as mentioned, was absolutely packed--on the beach and in the water. We did rent a golf cart and rode around the island which is indeed beautiful naturally, but the poverty left us shaken and guilt-ridden...

Reisender Feb 27th, 2008 07:14 AM

Must have been quite a few years ago - the island is pretty prosperous now with few signs of extreme poorness.

ishkribbl Feb 27th, 2008 04:58 PM

If the beach was absolutely "packed" I wonder if you went on Easter weekend? That is the time when the locals take a vacation and bring their families in large numbers to the beach- otherwise I do not think it would be that crowded unless it was when daytrippers were there and all concentrated in a certain area. I still say "GO"!

4sammy Feb 29th, 2008 08:14 AM

Thanks all! We are looking forward to it and will definitely plan on spending a day on Isla Mujeres. I think my 3 yr old will be over the moon about riding around the island on a golf cart... which I can't wait to see. I have travelled a lot but nothing compares to the excitement on a child's face and I hope DH and I pass on our love of adventure to this little guy.

I will post when we return. Thanks again!

blue_water Mar 4th, 2008 06:57 PM

Yes the ferry is about 1/2 hr, drops you downtown, you can walk north to North Beach. We rented a golf cart to explore the island and have lunch on the south end. The beach at North end was very calm during Sept, same as at the Riu Palace Las Americas we stayed at at the top of the hotel zone in Cancun. The golf cart was $40/day, can't remember the ferry - perhaps $15-20 pp round trip. Bus takes you to Puerto Juarez, we had a bit of a wait for a returning bus, taxi is around $20 to hotel zone from ferry.
Isla Mujeres is a nice day trip.

4sammy Mar 11th, 2008 08:59 AM

Thanks to everyone for responding. We are back, and we didn't go to Isla Mujeres after all... my 3 yr old got sick of the sand after about an hour each morning and spent the rest of the day in the pool. We went back out in the late PM for more beach time. We didn't think he would enjoy a full day of beach time.. maybe next time! Thanks for all the help !

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