Just back from 1st Trip to Cancun

Old Jun 27th, 2002, 08:38 AM
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Just back from 1st Trip to Cancun

We just returned from our first trip to Cancun - me, wife, 16 yr old daughter, 12 year old son. I have many opinions I will be happy to share with you, but thought I would through the important ones out there:

We stayed at Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach. Fabulous hotel. Pool and beach are almost perfect. Very close to most of the action. Only complaint - you won't see any waves. That can be good and bad, but a little bit of a bummer for my son.

Best part of our trip: we totally shunned the organized tours. We hired a small boat to take just the four of us, and the "captain", on a 3-hour tour. No, not the Minnow. We spend 45 minutes snorkeling about 1 mile north of Cancun, about 45 minutes water skiing off of Island Mujeres (Spelling?), and then spend some time wandering the beach on the island. In my opinion, this is the only way to go. Expensive, but well worth it. The snorkeling may not be as good as Cozumel, but it was excellent as far as I am concerned. We were going to go to Cozumel, but the kids were content with 45-60 minutes in the water, so the journey would not have been worth it.

My only complaints about Cancun: tough to find a reasonable meal, and the streetside tour hawkers are very annoying. But we got used to it.

Everything they say about the ocean water in Cancun is true. Snorkeling off the coast and jet skiing just of the beach were incredible experiences none of us will soon forget.

We also went to Xcaret. There are cool things to see there, but it is way over priced, and a little too crowded for our style. But that may be just us. We like to do our own thing - we didn't put one foot on a tour van or bus over 8 days in Cancun!

Our favorite restaurant was Savio's, Italian joint near the Convention Center. $10 per serving, but the food and service is great.

I could go on and on, but will leave it at that.

Old Jun 27th, 2002, 01:51 PM
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thanks for an interesting report! Glad you liked the FA Grand Coral Beach...Do you think its a better location than JW Marriott? (I think my teenagers might like a few more waves, though)? Did you use the buses? We will probably rent a car for day trips there -- did you do that? The snorkeling sounds like fun!
if you have any more observations, would love to hear them. Thank you.
Old Jun 28th, 2002, 09:19 AM
bun rieu
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We are leaving for Cancun in two weeks and would like a recommendation for a car rental or take tours to places like Chichen Itza and Tulum... to save some money,
we will be there for 8 days with 6 people in our group.
Old Jun 28th, 2002, 10:12 AM
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What was the weather like while you were there?
Old Jun 28th, 2002, 10:37 AM
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Some additional items:

Weather: The first four days were extremely cloudy with massive thunderstorms at 7 pm. I actually liked it, but the wife and daughter really wanted some sun. The last four days were perfect. The rain was not an issue except for three evenings, and perhaps a couple of hours one afternoon.

Rentals: We rented a car for our trip to Xcaret. Be careful if you get gas. They will likely try to rip you off. Make sure the pump is on 0 when they start. We used Executive car rental, and we were not impressed. Can't add much more then that. It's hard to leave the FAGCB for a whole day.

In the Cancun area, the food bill can add up quickly. We were more interested in spending as little as possible, and saving our money for water sports activities. So we got by on two meals a day. Restaurants I recommmend - prices for a family of 4: La Disteria (Mexican, $70, but excellent food), Savios (Italian, $50, excellent food and service), and, if you want to save some money, Johnny Rockets in the La Isla mall. We also ate at TGIF, Rainforest Cafe (the pasta is pretty good), Hard Rock Cafe, and Planet Hollywood. All meals ended up around $50, and none were that impressive. Just passable. The FAGCB has great food, especially the buffet, but the cost will kill you. When we ate there, we would stuff ourselves and then not eat again until dinner. Sounds terrible, but it's just a matter of priorities: hamburgers or wave runners.

I can not over-emphasize how much we enjoyed our family trips out into the Carribean. Skip the tours, and spend the extra money to do it alone with your family. Ask around, negotiate the prices, and you won't be disappointed. Pablo at the FAGCB is great. Tell him Mark sent you!
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