Mayan Riviera vs. "real" Caribbean

Old Jun 15th, 2002, 07:22 AM
  #1  
fran
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Mayan Riviera vs. "real" Caribbean

We love the islands of the Caribbean but we are considering going to the Caribbean side of Mexico. Has anyone been to the Playa del Carmen area? Thinking of Hotel El Faro, specifically? I am posting on this forum as opposed to the Latin American forum because I would like to get opinions from travelers familiar with Caribbean island resorts. Thanks.
 
Old Jun 16th, 2002, 07:42 AM
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fran
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No one?
 
Old Jun 16th, 2002, 03:04 PM
  #3  
JMM
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Have been all over caribbean and to Akumal area (south of Playa Del Carmen).
Liked Akumal area very much - quiet, very nice beach,some snorkeling,close to Mayan ruins at Tulum. Went to Playa for the day - it was OK but a little too "busy" for my taste. Lots of shopping and restaurants.
 
Old Jun 16th, 2002, 03:45 PM
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Liz
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We have been to Playa Del Carmen.Stayed in a resort--thatched roof cabanas. Beautiful beach, nice snorkeling, even from the beach. Took a trip to "Chichinitza" overnight, woke up to a symphony of jungle sounds, birds & monkeys.Went to Ixcaret park, swam w/ the dolphins.
It's a great, diverse place for a vacation.You have the beach, the jungle, pyramids, snorkeling excursions.I recommend it highly.
 
Old Jun 16th, 2002, 05:53 PM
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Nancy
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Hi Fran,
We go to both the Mexican Riviera every Spring, and one of the other Caribbean islands in the Fall.
If you like the Caribbean, I think you will really like that area, but I might suggest you go to Cozumel first and take day trips over to Playa and Akumal/Tankah/Tulum and see what you like.
El Faro is not one of the more glitzy resorts in Playa, but almost all of PDC is very laid back and funky. The beach at PDC is gorgeous!
If you tell me specifically which islands/resorts you liked on some of the other islands, I could help you more...
 
Old Jun 16th, 2002, 06:17 PM
  #6  
fran
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Thanks for your responses. Nancy, we have been to Young Island (St Vincent), BVI (Virgin Gorda and Tortola), and the Out Islands of Bahamas (Abaco and Exuma). We like small resorts and uncrowded beaches. Nightlife not important. We like to be right on or at the beach, and we like to have some shade on the beach. In addition to El Faro, also thinking of Shangri-La Caribe or La Posada del Capitan Lafitte. Both of those look great from their websites. Appreciate any input you can offer.
 
Old Jun 17th, 2002, 05:06 AM
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Nancy
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Hmm. I'm not sure about Shangri La, but I know Capitan Lafitte is pretty far out of town. That's fine if you don't need the diversion of town, but you would have to drive or take a taxi a lot. The beaches at PDC get pretty crowded depending on the time of year. There's no shade, but there might be at some of the smaller beachfront places - but there are not many small beachfront places in PDC.
Having taken account into what you are looking for and where you've been, I'd say Akumal, Cozumel, with Playa a possibility. Cozumel is a little more family-oriented, while PDC gets a bit wild at night. Akumal has literally no night-life - unless you count live music at a local restaurant.
I've been to most of the places you mentioned, and our personal favorite in Mexico is Cozumel, but that's partially because we are avid snorkelers/divers.
Any of the places suggested would be great, and the people there are so friendly, you'll have a great time.

 
Old Jun 17th, 2002, 05:51 AM
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mary
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I adore Playa del Carman and Cozumel. Haven't been to other areas of Mexico but hope to someday. I love the culture and history and everything there is to see and do.
 
Old Jun 17th, 2002, 08:11 PM
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Liz
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Shangri-la Caribe is where we stayed. I couldn't remember the name. We loved it. We had the meal plan--breakfast / dinner and they have a beautiful outdoor restaurant. We also had a car so we could go to Akumal, Tulum, overnight at Chichinitza, and to Ixcaret, all of which are fabulous.It's a great place to explore.This year we are doing what you are planning, in reverse. We have explored the Caribbean along the Yucatan, Belize & Honduras, so we're going to the Virgin Islands for a change.Have a great time!
 
Old Jun 17th, 2002, 08:19 PM
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fran
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Liz, we are leaning toward Shangri La Caribe. Do you recommend the "Caribe" or the "Playa" section?
 
Old Jun 17th, 2002, 10:56 PM
  #11  
Lenleigh
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Fran -

If you are looking for Playa Del Carmen info, look on the Latin American Board under Mexico. There are many posting of playa. I have some pics at the link below from my recent trip.

http://community.webshots.com/user/lenleigh
 
Old Jun 18th, 2002, 06:03 AM
  #12  
eileen
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Here's another vote for Shangri-La Caribe. We have been to lots of places in the Caribbean and went to PDC in April, stayed four nights at Shangri-La and three at Royal Hideaway -- both places were great and an enjoyable contrast! The beach at Shangri-la was the best I saw in the PDC area, I wouldn't recommend El Faro because it is on the crowded part of the beach and a lot of the beach has eroded there (the same for Gran Porto Real). I did not like PDC as much as the Caribbean but it was much more economical than the Caribbean and it was certainly a nice vacation. Last year we stayed at Point Grace on Provo so we kind of got spoiled -- Grace Bay Beach just cannot be beat, in my opinion!
 
Old Jun 18th, 2002, 09:18 AM
  #13  
marcy
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Can I make a suggestion Fran- There is a resort called 'Robinson Club' it is located in TULUM. It is an all inclusive, it is a german owned property (there will be lots of german tourists speaking german) BUT, it had absoutely the BEST beach, BEST infinity Pool, and MOST WONDERFUL Food of any resort I have stayed in. People dont know about it b/c its German-owned, but it has the most beautiful grounds. Every night was a differnet 'gourmet' theme dinner. IT was truly the best AI i have been to.

And I have been to Cancun, PlayA del Carmen, Hautulco (another good one in Mexico), Anguilla, St. Barts, the Bahamas etc....One of the reasons I loved Robinson Club, was its location-Tulum,about 2 hours from Cancun, absoutley the most UN-TOURISTY location, with the best beach. Definitely take a look at it. The beaches were beautiful.

The otoher place which I would highly recommmend is the Gala Resort Hautulco, in Hautulco, Mexico, similar to Tulum, it is very beautiful and un-touristy, when we were there, Danny Bonnoducci and his wife were there!

Anyway you are choosing among all good things! Have fun!
 
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