Cozumel was a port we visited on our very first cruise way back in 2005. It was a back – to – back 2 week cruise that had this as one of its ports of call. It has grown quite a bit in the last 12 years. Today there are 3 ships anchored here (Celebrity, Royal Caribbean and Carnival) but from what we have heard, they can now accommodate as many as 8 ships at once. I’m not sure I’d really enjoy being here with potentially 24,000 other tourists.
The last time we were here I went deep sea fishing and my dear wife took off on a junket to see the ruins at Tulum. Today we are content with just wandering around the more central area of ‘downtown’. The immediate area, as soon as you’re off the ship, is much the same as most other Caribbean ports – basically shops for clothing, trinkets, liquor and food. Taking a cab to the ‘downtown’ area is $8 per couple and about an 8 minute ride. When it’s 30 degrees, both are acceptable.
So…what do you get downtown that’s different from right off the ship? Not a heck of a lot, really. However one thing that you can appreciate is that anything you might actually want to purchase is noticeably cheaper here. For the Exact Same Item.
I know some ladies have an affinity for purses, some for shoes, others for bling. My dear wife easily fits into at least one of these categories. However, I am not without my own weakness. I like hats. One I saw when we had just got off the ship would have made a very nice addition to my collection. At an initial price of $35 I smiled and started to walk away. Lame as it is, that immediately brought the price down, as if by magic, to $25. Thanks, but no thanks.
The same hat, color, size, manufacturer and all the labels was found downtown for $12. At that point all I could say was Muchas Gracias Señor.
This day was begun late simply because we had no reason to hurry. The offset to that is we were walking around in much of the heat of the day. Stopping at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville seemed more than a little apropos and timely. Some tilapia ceviche with chips and salsa, coupled with a pair of margarita’s completed our restoration.
The few hours spent window shopping (albeit in open air markets – no windows) wound down with a few purchases (a bottle of Mexican Breakfast – coffee flavored tequila, some Mexican coffee beans to go with, my hat and a magnet for mother) and a slow return to the ship. Poolside awaits where both the food and the drinks are much cheaper.