There are a lot of changes and improvements currently going on in Costa Maya Port, Mahahual, Mexico. The plans and permits for the new water park have been finished, and grading and construction is starting this summer. The new water park is being built next to the port and should be another great attraction for Costa Maya Port and the cruise ship lines. Also more tours and excursions have been added to accomodate the cruise ship lines for the future. For those of you who are new to this blog, or are reading this because of a cruise you may have in the future, I am including a brief description of Costa Maya Port and the history.
It is the first Western Caribbean port designed exclusively for the cruise ship industry and is strategically located just hours from Cancun on Mexico’s southern Yucatan Peninsula. Resembling an ancient Mayan city, Costa Maya is able to accommodate three ships at once, with the capability to dock Oasis and Epic sized ships, and entertain visitors at a destination that showcases the ancient and colonial heritage of the Mexican Caribbean with all of today’s modern conveniences.
Set against the deep turquoise sea, Costa Maya is comprised of three grand pavilions, artisan and costamaya shopping areas, a beach club, saltwater pools, fine restaurants and bars, and all the resources necessary to explore the surrounding jungle and coral reefs. It is the region’s most complete and diverse port of call, providing cultural, natural and archeological excursions. Costa Maya is one of ten ports in the Western Caribbean and is the winner of Seatrade Insider’s Port of the Year.
An all-inclusive destination with options for every traveler, Costa Maya creates an experience that begins as soon as passengers step off their cruise ships. From the pier, visitors are transported to a state of the art Mayan entertainment complex that features:
70,000 square foot shopping center and bazaar showcasing crafts made by local artisans and other unique items, including silver, leather, fragrances, jewelry, pottery, liquor and a variety of souvenirs.
The southern Yucatan is a region shrouded in rich history and culture. Costa Maya, an ancient maritime trading post of the Mayan empire, affords visitors the opportunity to explore the natural wonders and jungle that surround the port. Bi-lingual experienced guides lead exciting and informative expeditions into the surrounding landscapes. When it comes to shore tours and marine adventures, Costa Maya’s selection is unrivaled.
The addition of the new Mayan themed water park will add another great venture for cruise ship tourists to enjoy, and also provide a new destination for Mexican Nationals to enjoy when they visit or vacation in Mahahual. The eco-friendly water park will have lazy rivers, water slides, zip lines, aquarium and Mayan cultural awareness activities. The park should be completed by the fall of 2015. I will provide more information about the new water park as it becomes availiable. I have heard the proposed name, but at this moment it is wanting for approval. The park will not only improve tourism, but provide a lot of jobs for the Mahahual community.
Also the tour and excursion system inside the port has been totally revamped. In the past most of the tour companies were independants, and this caused a lot of confusion and conflict at the port. Because of all the different companies vying for tourist dollar there was a lot of unfair practices and confusion amongst the cruise ship tourists. There is no more yelling at tourists and trying to get attention, like there is in other ports of call. Companies were constantly under cutting their prices to get customers, and a lot of unfair business practices were occuring. Also a lot of these companies were unreliable, and that also caused problems for the average tourist.
Now there are no more independants inside the port, and the port tours and excursions are now under one company, Groupo Cancun. This way tourists can charge their shore and excursion fees to their cabin on the ship, and also avoid a lot of problems like have occured in the past. In the past most of the independants only took cash, which is not convienent for a lot of cruise tourists going from port to port in different countries and locales. Also a lot of tour companies had no way to accept credit cards, which also was not convienent to the average cruise ship passenger. This new system will allow every passenger to experience all the excursions and tours in Costa Maya, all they have to do is charge it to their cabin on the ship.
This system started this summer, is already shown to help provide a better service for the cruise ship tourists, and so far people are pleased with the results.
Also with all the tours being run by Groupo Cancun, all excursions are run by professional tour guides, and all busses and vans are modern and have air conditioning. You will also be brought back to the port for your departure time with no problems, unlike sometimes in the past.
So to sum up Costa Maya Port is undergoing some big changes. The result is that the port has already seen an increase of about 20% over the last two years for the upcoming season and port officials are confident this is just the beginning of what will prove to be a huge increase in cruise ship volume or the next two to three years, as new contracts become available.
Thanks for reading,
Stewart Rogers USA-South Carolina