Cancun is undoubtedly one of the most visited vacation destinations in the Mexican Caribbean, but Cozumel continues to grow in popularity with American tourists as well. To get to Cozumel, tourists can fly into Cozumel International Airport if that’s the intended destination, but for those in Cancun that want to get to the island paradise, it will take a trip to Playa del Carmen and a ferry ride. The distance from the Cancun Hotel Zone to Playa del Carmen is about 45 miles and takes a little over an hour by car, and then the ferry ride to the island takes about 45 minutes.
The main draw for tourists in Cozumel, especially American tourists, is the beautiful Caribbean beaches and the opportunity to enjoy water sports and recreation. While the island is only 32 miles in length and a mere 9 miles wide, there are numerous white sand, coconut palm-lined beaches to enjoy on the island. But the beaches are not the only thing worth visiting the island for, and here we’ll list a few other reasons to visit Cozumel.
Snorkeling and Diving
Another thing Cozumel is well-known for is snorkeling and diving, and there are numerous places to see jaw-dropping underwater scenery. Chankanaab National Park, Columbia Reef, Villa Blanca Reef, Palancar Reef, and Cozumel Reefs National Park are just a few of the spots to delve into the underwater world of beautiful coral and diverse marine life. There are numerous tour companies that can put together the perfect experience, and some even offer nighttime snorkeling tours, which is a completely different experience altogether.
Diverse Natural Beauty
Underwater is not the only place to explore nature in Cozumel, as diverse natural beauty surrounds and inhabits the island and can be found everywhere. Punta Sur Eco Beach Park, Faro Celerain Ecological Reserve, the Mayan Bee Sanctuary, and the Cozumel Pearl Farm are just a few of the places that offer a look into the natural side of Cozumel. In fact, half of the island is protected land, and there are four nature reserves within that land, and there are a number of cenotes on the island as well.
Culture and History
As small as the island of Cozumel is, visitors don’t have to go far to see Mayan Ruins, as there are a number of small archeological sites on the island. There is also a mixture of Caribbean island culture and modern and traditional Mexican culture that combine to provide a very unique, authentic experience. The mix of cultures is evident in the food, the shopping, and the general vibe of the island itself.
The island atmosphere is much different from the vibe that can be found in mainland cities like Cancun or Playa del Carmen. There are numerous beach clubs on the island, some with pools, beach bars, and oceanfront restaurants. The atmosphere is much more laid-back in Cozumel too, and the villages are more traditional and charming than some of the other popular vacation destinations in the Mexican Caribbean.
The island of Cozumel is, for all intents and purposes, one giant beach made up of several smaller beaches. Playa El Cielo is known for its crystal clear water and white sand beach, Playa Chen Rio has calmer waters and is ideal for families, and Playa Palancar is a sight to be seen, with its long stretch of white sand beach and turquoise waters. And these are only a few of the many beaches visitors can choose to spend their time on when visiting Cozumel.
Cozumel has more to offer than can be simply explained because it is an island paradise like no other. You have to see it to understand just how special it is and why it is so worth visiting during your next Mexican Caribbean vacation.
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