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Isla De Mujeres: This Isle Near Cancun in Mexico Has the Best Snorkeling Spots and Excursions Around

Updated on March 26, 2011

The Cancun Strip and Isla Del Mujeres

One of the best locations anyone can travel to is Cancun and Isla Del Mujeres, on the east coast of Mexico. It has grown fairly rapidly over the years, and has quite a number of fine hotels and resorts on the strip by the water with more of them on the way! Because of its position close to the United States, it’s a very popular vacation spot with Americans. The Mexican Peso is also a very good deal right now, and you should be able to get a great exchange rate compared to some other countries.

Most visitors will pick a hotel right on the beach to be able to fully enjoy the beautiful water and incredible beaches of the Cancun and Isla Del Mujeres area, and there are plenty to pick from! Once you have the right resort for your stay, the concierge desk should be able to provide you with some great options for excursions outside the hotel such as snorkeling, parks, Tulum, Mayan ruins, or even a great catamaran party boat! Many of these party boats will leave right from the shore of the hotel or at the private dock by the beach. The hotel may have special deals with the catamaran owners so that their guests can receive different prices than others.

The Island of Women, or Isla Del Mujeres...

The great thing about getting on a party / snorkeling boat is the camaraderie you enjoy with the other passengers, and of course the unlimited rum punch which the first mate passes around after the snorkeling is done! But I’m getting ahead of myself… One of the best places to snorkel in the Cancun area is Isla Del Mujeres, or the Island of Women. It’s a great little tourist destination and most people can catch a ferry across the strait to the island, but the catamaran party boat will dock at one of the piers and let you explore it for a little while before or after the diving. Isla De Mujeres has many great restaurants, cafes, and quaint shops that you will enjoy, and the shop owners will try and lure you in with discounts and special prices… There is plenty to do on this island, and one whole end is the Garrafon Natural Reef Park with some fantastic snorkeling! In fact, it’s some of the best snorkeling that you can do anywhere…

You can also get your picture taken holding a captive shark, which they keep in the little enclosed bay close to the boat dock. It’s worth the small fee they charge if you are interested in showing the folks back home that you can handle a man eating shark and still keep your hands… Just be sure not to give him a kiss on the lips, which you might regret!

Isla Mujeres Snorkeling

Party Catamaran to Isla Del Mujeres...

The snorkeling from the catamaran is fantastic, and they usually will give you a drift dive where you just go with the current, and the catamaran meets you down current and picks you up without having to do the extra swimming to head back! The water is shallow enough so you can swim to the bottom if you want, and the reef and tropical fish are top notch! It is in very good condition, and not dead like some of the reefs I snorkeled in Jamaica. Bring an underwater camera if you can, even the disposable ones sold at the hotel work great! The catamaran first mate may also make his rounds and snap a good underwater picture of you, so be prepared. I think you’ll consider your Isla Del Mujeres snorkeling trip as one of the best you’ve ever taken!

After you are all out of the water and dry, the crew starts passing out the free rum punch and the real party begins! You will really enjoy this part of the trip, as the captain takes it slow on the return trip to the mainland and if the conditions are right they will even unfurl the main sail! One of the most memorable options they gave us was to take a ride on the spinnaker! In very windy conditions they can strap you in and you’ll go on a wild ride up and down as they dip you into the water. I can honestly say that it was one of the best times I’ve ever had, and we probably would never have been given that opportunity in the United States due to “safety concerns”. So come down to Cancun and Isla Del Mujeres for some of the best snorkeling and fun that you’ll ever have!


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    • GetitScene profile image

      Dale Anderson 5 years ago from The High Seas

      We stayed on Isla Mujeres some years ago. We toured the island on a golf cart and hand a grand time of it. This is my wife's favorite travel destination.