I had to get this post in while it is still fresh in my mind. I am spoiled, compared to Mahahual, snorkeling in Playa del Carmen or anywhere else I have been on the Mexican Caribbean and Belize does not hold a candle to Mahahul. I went snorkeling today with some guys from Austria on the beach here in Playa del Carmen.
It all started this morning when two Canadians from across the hall here, mentioned they were going to Akumal on a snorkeling trip today, and were leaving soon. I mentioned to the guys if you want to get in some good snorkeling, hop the the shuttle with them to Akumal. They said they would rather snorkel here in Playa del Carmen, if that was possible. They asked me if I wanted to go with them, so we got some snorkel equipment and directions and we set out.
We went up to 36th street on the the other side of the boats, and attempted to get in some snorkeling. I was kind of wary because of the sand and the waves, but decided to give it a shot. The two Austrians jumped in and started going out in the surf. As I was putting on my flippers, a woman walked up to me and said, ‘Snorkeling is not going to be too good today, sandy and windy, you will not be able to see much of anything”. I told her that I figured that but these two guys wanted to try, so I came with them to see what we could see.
I told her that I was used to Mahahual and the reef, and I did not know if I would like the Playa beach. Well she spoke right up and said she visited Mahahual 3 years ago, and she loved it. She then started asking me the same questions that I get from people I run into everywhere here in Playa del Carmen. She is from Canada, and lives here in Playa del Carmen in the winter. She asked about progress in Mahahual, and are people moving there and retiring, and that kind of stuff.
Well she was right. I got into the water and could not see a thing. We went out a long ways, and still nothing but waves and sand. I got about 50 yards out decided, this is not worth it, swim a mile out to maybe see one fish. In Mahahual you can go out 40 or 50 feet and snorkel and see a lot. Here nothing.
I also forgot how much sand you get when you try to snorkel in the waves. I have been back from beach for about an hour, swam in the pool had a shower, and I am still picking sand off everywhere. I remember once in Mahahual, I went snorkeling on my lunch break, and went back to work, with no sand.
Mahahual has the reef and it protects the beaches and that makes it great for snorkeling year round. I have snorkeled a lot in my life, and Mahahual is the best snorkeling I have done bar none. I have been a couple of snorkeling trips with Captain Huacho, and those are great and you get to see a lot of the reef and coral on his private trips.
Also Banco Chinchorro has excellent snorkeling and people take day trips there all the time from Mahahual. The Austrians are going to Mahahual sometime in the future, and I have set them up with a trip to Banco Chichorro to go scuba diving.
So if you are on a cruise ship coming to Costa Maya in the future, consider going snorkeling in Mahahual. There are other things to do in Cozumel and other ports. I tell people off the cruise ships here when they ask me what do I suggest they do in Costa Maya, I tell them take in the pristine beaches here, and get in some snorkeling, there is nothin else like it. You can snorkel off the beaches or rent a boat and go out to the national park.
I for one, am spoiled, and snorkeling other places does not compare to Mahahual and Costa Maya.
Stewart Rogers USA-South Carolina