Can I use US dollars in Mexico?…

 


We get this question a lot: “Can I use US dollars in Mexico?” The short answer is: Yes, almost everywhere.

While we always recommend using the currency of the country you are in, if you absolutely must use US dollars, here are some tips to know before you come and during:

*The banks (and shops and restaurants, etc) will not accept any denomination of dollar bills if they have tears, writing, tape, or if they are too worn. Therefore, we always recommend you check any dollars you plan to use or exchange in Mexico, as anything listed above will be un-usable.
*Do not leave US coins (or coins from any country) as tips. They have zero value in Mexico. Coins cannot be exchanged at any bank/cambio.
*Expect your change in pesos
*Bring small denominations of bills
*Be aware that if you are using denominations of dollars that are too high (ex: a $20.00 USD bill for a pack of gum, the store may not be able to accept the transaction due to lack of change). Some shops have limits of how much change they can give for a purchase
*Almost every store and restaurant will accept dollars. But, be aware that when doing so, the exchange rate is at their discretion and is usually not competitive with bank exchange rates. All shops and restaurants make their own exchange rate. Just remember that they are doing you a favor by accepting dollars. They have to take their time to go to the bank and stand in line to exchange or deposit your US dollars (perhaps at a loss as the exchange rate changes daily.) And businesses also have a set limit to the amount of US dollars they can deposit each month into Mexican bank accounts.
*Don’t forget, you must bring your passport when exchanging dollars at any bank/cambio. Always ask for small bills in pesos too!

Everything you wanted to know about the ferry to Isla Mujeres but, were afraid to ask…..

 

ultramar-ferry

One of the things we receive a ton of questions about is the ferry from Cancun to Isla Mujeres. It can be a little daunting for a first time visitor to travel to a foreign country where they may not speak the language and have to take a flight, a transfer, and then a boat to their destination. So, we started offering the Add-on service of pre-purchasing your ferry tickets when you make your transfer reservation with us. And it has been incredibly popular.

Why is this service so popular? Other than the fact that it’s one less thing to worry about on your arrival, with the increased tourism to Isla Mujeres, we have seen that the lines to buy tickets are often longer than the line to board the ferry! It can be incredibly frustrating to arrive at the ferry loaded down with luggage after a long travel day and then watch the boat leave without you because you had to wait in the ticket line for ten minutes. And now you have another 30 minutes to wait for the next boat (and if after 8:30 PM, an hour to wait). After all, you’re on vacation, who wants to waste any precious time standing in line? Hopefully, we can answer a lot of questions here about the Gran Puerto Juarez Ultramar ferry dock/Isla Mujeres route!

So, the Ultramar ferry is the main ferry transport to the island. It leaves from Gran Puerto Juarez Ultramar ferry dock in Cancun. Also referred to as simply “Gran Puerto”, “Ultramar”, or “Puerto Juarez”. In fact we have two ways to book this on our site under “Isla Mujeres” or “Puerto Juarez”-They are the same exact route.

ULTRAMAR WEBSITE

They have a web page here (that is often down if being honest!): https://www.ultramarferry.com/en

HOURS OF OPERATION

It’s important to note that the ferry does NOT operate 24 hours a day. Here is the time table for the Cancun/Isla Mujeres route. These times remain the same even on holidays:

Gran Puerto Juarez (Cancun) TO Isla Mujeres: Departures every half hour between 5:00 AM-8:30 PM. And then 9:30 PM, 10:30 PM, 11:30 PM

Isla Mujeres TO Gran Puerto Juarez (Cancun): Departures every half hour between 5:30 AM-9:00 PM. And then 10:00 PM, 11:00 PM & 12:00 AM

It’s good to keep these schedules in mind when booking your flights. We do not recommend [Read more…]

Great Parnassus

 

Hi all. It’s been a long time since I’ve Blogged. So I’m going to do baby steps first.

Dec. 2012 my Photographer Janell Ploof-Michel of J Michel Photography and I stayed at the Great Parnassus for 2 weeks. It was my 1st All Inclusive experience.

Here are a few interior pictures:

 

Buying Ferry Tickets online with Ultramar: The Results

 

Ultramar

With my confirmation print-out I arrived to Ultramar ferry 10 minutes before the next boat was scheduled to depart. There were MANY people in line to purchase tickets and a representative was stationed at a podium in the center, which I had never seen before. I showed her my print-out and she told me I still needed to wait in line to get a ticket.

[Read more…]

Ultramar Ferry: Should I buy my Tickets in Advance?

 

Ultramar

We get asked often about purchasing Ultramar ferry tickets in advance, opposed to purchasing them at the booth upon arrival to the dock. I have always said that it is fast and easy to buy your tickets at the dock so there is really no need to pre-purchase them online, however, I thought we should test this out and see which method of buying tickets is the best.

[Read more…]

Isla Mujeres Artist Fair

 

1235418_543542412391407_1478686386_n

The Isla Mujeres Artist Fair is on the first Thursday of every month from 4pm to 7pm in the Zocalo (town square) on Isla Mujeres. Local artists, food vendors, musicians & Isla’s non-profits celebrate the creative arts with locals, tourists, foreign residents & our neighbors from Cancun.

[Read more…]

Top Three Casinos in Cancun

 

dubai palace casino

If you’re planning a trip to the Mexican Caribbean, try going to different casinos in Cancun, one of the newest additions to the endless things to do while on vacation. In the past, there were local gambling laws that prevented different casinos from opening up in Cancun.

[Read more…]

The BEST Snorkeling in Cancun

 

Well, actually the best snorkeling is not in Cancun at all.  It is just south of Cancun, about a 30 minute drive, to the little town of Puerto Morelos. Here the reef is very close to the shore and very shallow, which makes for perfect snorkeling conditions.

Trina Snorkeling on the reef

Trina Snorkeling on the reef

I’ve snorkeled in Cancun, Puerto Morelos, Playa del Carmen, and Akumal countless times over the years and I have to say yesterday I had THE BEST snorkel experience. I met with the boat owner who introduced me to our guide, Paz. Paz is very passionate about the ocean, sea life, snorkeling, and he made sure that everyone on the boat had good time. He gave personalized attention to each snorkeler, ensuring that everyone was comfortable in the water and that they could see the amazing underwater world that he so loves.

All of the snorkel boats in Puerto Morelos are the 8-12 passenger panga boats. I like being in smaller groups when snorkeling, so this worked out well for me. They have to use the smaller boats because the large boats cannot get close to the coral reef. Once in the boat, Paz fitted each person with snorkel gear and gave us instructions about the coral, safety, and general snorkeling etiquette.

Coral Reef in Puerto Morelos

Coral Reef in Puerto Morelos

The boat ride from the dock to the reef only took us less than 10 minutes. When we reached the reef there were 5-6 other boats there with snorkelers in the water. Paz said that we would avoid the others by swimming against the current for a few minutes then drifting back along the reef. This worked out very well for all of us.

I was amazed at the sea life we saw and the condition of the coral reef. It is so vibrant and alive! The schools of fish are brilliantly painted by mother nature and I felt thankful to be in her presence. We saw fish of every size and shape and color, one fish in particular caught Paz’s attention because it literally sparkled! I don’t think the photos do it justice, you have to see it for yourself.

Fish on sandy area by the reef

Fish on sandy area by the reef

We snorkeled for almost 2 hours on the reef in Puerto Morelos. I was so impressed with this snorkel trip that I am adding it to my list of featured tours.While taking underwater photos we came upon an angel ray. This was the highlight of the trip. I was able to follow it at a pretty slow pace for several minutes. Just amazing.

So the video quality is terrible, but about half way through is where I started following the ray. I’m sorry about that, I will try to get better quality underwater video soon.

 

 

If you have your own transportation to Puerto Morelos, the snorkeling is only $49 per person. If you are staying in Cancun it is just $50 for round trip transportation (1-10 people). Book your Snorkel Trip today!

 

 

Tips for First-timers from Seasoned Cancun Travelers

 

Travel TipsAfter my mom’s first trip to Cancun to visit me here in Cancun, she told me there were many things that she would do differently on her next trip. I thought, WOW, I should really have these things on my website as tips for first-time travelers!

So what are the things everyone should remember when packing, planning and traveling to Cancun or the Riviera Maya? Well, I’ve lived here too long and I am not really “on vacation” here, so I wondered who would know best about these things? Former vacationers to Cancun of course! So to my customers that have been to Cancun AND bought the t-shirt, I asked for their advice on these topics and any other things they thought first-timers might find helpful:
• Things to bring on the plane with you
• What to pack
• Do I need pesos?
• Getting around Cancun and the Riviera Maya
• Whether to go All Inclusive or not
• Is Cancun safe?
• Can you drink the water?

These are some of the responses I received.

  • Plan at least one day-trip out of the hotel to see a historical site.
  • Try one of the downtown Cancun restaurants one evening.
  • Try scuba diving or snorkeling. The underwater world is amazing.
  • Bring less than you think as far as clothing.
  • The public buses are safe and an affordable mode of transportation.
  • If you are drinking, take a taxi (barter taxi price before you get in).
  • Don’t buy souvenirs at the airport (they are over-priced).
  • It’s always good to have some pesos just in case, but make sure you spend them before you leave. You can use pesos for tips.
  • Use sunscreen even if you think you don’t need any.
  • If you buy liquor at the duty free shop at the airport be prepared to transfer it into your luggage if you do not have a direct flight.
  • Be patient at the customs area..don’t get overwhelmed.
  • Pack cotton clothing, its cooler.
  • Sunglasses are a must. If you forget yours there are lots of people selling them cheap.
  • If traveling with kids, bring them something to snack on and toys to play with on the plane.
  • Bring a book, cross-word puzzle or ear buds to plug into the planes TV system.
  • Bring chewing gum to help with ear pressure during take-off & landing.
  • USD are fine to spend in Cancun, you don’t need a lot of pesos.
  • Don’t bring anything larger than $50 dollar bills as they are harder to spend / break.
  • Pack one nice outfit because some restaurants have a dress code.
  • Ride the bus anywhere in the Hotel Zone for less than $1 USD.
  • Cancun is safer than most cities in the United States.
  • Drink bottled water, it is available everywhere. Almost all restaurants serve bottle water.
  • Turn off your data roaming! If you forget the charges you incur will be astronomical. Even if you don’t use it, your phone will still retrieve data and charge you for it.

Also, check out my Packing Checklist for more info.

Do you have a travel tip to add to our list? Email me!

Orphanage in Cancun Finds Support from Expat living in Cancun

 

I was first introduced to the orphanage in Cancun, called Casa Hogar Para Niños Esperanza, which means “House of Hope for Children” by my friend TJ Carter. TJ is an expat living in Cancun. He has become increasingly involved with the orphanage and raising funds for their needs. He helps with organizing events for the kids, day-to-day medical and educational needs along with finding sponsors for weekly grocery shopping trips.

casa-hogarTJ has started a group of like-minded people eager to help the less-fortunate kids, which he is calling FOCH for Friends of Casa Hogar. On the website and facebook group, TJ has inspired many other to become involved. His ongoing mission is to provide food, clothing, education, love & cultural entertainment to these kids. His work is much needed since the orphanage receives ZERO government funding.

Sponsors and the kids from Casa Hogar recently went on a field trip to Crococun Zoo and as you can imagine the kids LOVED it. Check out the photos here.

Friends of Casa Hogar are looking for sponsors for the weekly grocery trips and for monetary pledges. To find out more about Casa Hogar and how you can help, please visit http://www.friendsofcasahogar.org/ or on Facebook here.

Shopping in Cancun: Guide to Cancun’s Shopping Malls & Markets

 

In addition to the crazy nightlife, pristine beaches and turquoise Caribbean water, Cancun also offers some great shopping too. Shopping in CancunWhether you want to shop in Cancun’s Hotel Zone or if you prefer the downtown markets, this guide will help you in your shopping journey.

In the hotel zone be prepared for higher prices and high-end stores. There are a few places to buy souvenirs in the hotel zone, however the prices are about double for the same items in the downtown markets.

Cancun Hotel Zone Shopping

  • Plaza KukulcanKukulcan Plaza at KM 13 This shopping plaza holds stores such as Hugo Boss, Harley Davidson, Señor Frogs Store, ENVY, & Oakley. On one end of the mall is ‘Luxury Avenue’, an ultra-high-end shopping plaza and contains Ultrafemme, Burberry, Coach, Fendi, Cartier & Louis Vuitton just to name a few. There are also several restaurants including Ruth´s Chris Steak House and Tequila Grill.
  • Plaza La Isla Shopping Center at KM 12.5. This is one of my favorites because the stores are a little more trendy and there is more to see and do here. Plaza La Isla Shopping CenterStores include Tommy Hilfiger, Zara, Bvlgari, Nine West, Ultrafemme, Deportes Martí, Sunglass Island, Guess, Diesel, Envy, Máximo Dutti, Liverpool, SOHO, United Colors of Benetton and Sr. Frog’s Boutique. Plaza La Isla also has some of the best restaurants in Cancun including The Elefanta, Thai Lounge, La Madonna, Italianni’s, Chili’s, Johnny Rockets, Hooters, & Planet Hollywood. Here you can also take in a movie or go through the Interactive Aquarium.
  • Forum by the Sea at KM 9 Plaza Forum by the Seais a large multilevel plaza with shopping, restaurants, and entertainment which transforms into the Party Center hub at night featuring CocoBongo and many other famous clubs. This plaza is more for restaurants than for shopping, featuring Cambalache, Carlos n’ Charlie’s, Hard Rock Cafe, Chili’s and more. Here you may see locals with animals like monkeys and bobcats. Please do not pay to have your picture taken with these wild animals. There is an ongoing campaign to stop the abuse of these animals and you can help by refusing to give the handlers your money.
  • Coral Negro Flea Market at KM 9.5. Coral Negro Flea MarketThere is store after store after store, mostly selling the same souvenir t-shirts, shot glasses, sunglasses, sand-in-a-bottle, starfish lamps and many other trinkets to take home with you. Be prepared to barter for the best price or buy two and save money. Some folks really enjoy this little dance to get a discount…try walking away from a salesperson and the price usually drops in half.

Cancun Downtown Shopping

We offer a Shopping tour to take you to any of the above plazas or any of the malls are markets in Downtown Cancun. Price is by the hour and it is very flexible.

  • Plaza Las Americas & Malecon Mall – Tulum Ave. Downtown Cancun. maleconThe original mall is Plaza Las Americas. In the past couple of years the Malecon was built on, making this new merged mall the BEST shopping in downtown Cancun. Plaza Las Americas has stores such as Liverpool, Sears, Sanborn’s, VIPS, YAK & Sports Book, Dorian’s, Chedraui Grocery Store, Zara, Bershka, Lob, Martí, Mixup, Mundo deportivo, Shasa, C&A, Versalles, Ultrafemme, Zingara, Sunglass Island, Furor, Hang Ten and more. Malecon is partially indoors and partially open air and contains clothing stores, jewelry shops, and shoe stores. There are also book stores, furniture stores, home furnishings stores, a music store, and large Mexican department stores. The open air section has a Starbucks, food kiosks, a carousel and other activities for children. Restaurants include California Pizza Kitchen, Chili’s, McDonalds (with a McCafe) and Hooters. On Sundays the mall is packed with locals.
  • Market 28. In my opinion this is the best place to do your souvenir shopping in Cancun. The prices are cheaper than the hotel zone for the EXACT same items. Handmade jewelry, t-shirts, beach bags, hammocks can all be bought at bargain prices.
    You can also find local vanilla and hot sauces at Market 28. The restaurants have a much more local flair and feature seafood and cold beer. On most days you’ll hear the xylophone players in the center of the market.
  • Market 23. Market 23This is much more for locals than for tourists visiting Cancun. Very little English is spoken at Market 23 and some days it smells quite funky. You’ll find vegetables, spices, trinkets, counterfeit or copied DVDs, and chicharon (deep fried pig skin). Market 23 is truly a Mexican market with incense & flowers, candles and religious dolls. The souvenirs at Market 23 are much more traditional than the mass-produced items at the tourist markets. Tip: It would be helpful to have a Spanish speaker with you to get the most out of the experience.

Flea Markets

If you REALLY want to get into downtown Cancun, check out the flea markets, called tiangues (pronounced tee-ON-gays). I know of two tiangues located on the street called Lopez Portillo, but I have heard of several others as well. At the flea markets you will find everything that is left in hotel rooms after tourists leave: suntan lotions, vanilla, hot sauce, cell phones & chargers, clothes & toiletries. Everything at the tiangues is VERY CHEAP. Look a little further into the markets and you’ll find girls painting flowers on customer’s toes, handmade curtains, clothes and so much more. You’ll need to be quite adventurous to visit one of the tiangues. It is one of my favorite things in Cancun.

Rainy Day Guide: 6 Great Activities to do in Cancun when it Rains

 

The most common concern that travelers have when planning their vacation to Cancun is regarding the weather. Will it rain? What is there to do on rainy days in Cancun?

If your vacation dates are between December and April, you won’t have much to worry about. This is not hurricane season and these are the driest months of the year. When it does rain, it is usually at night or for a brief afternoon shower. Rain will rarely interrupt plans during this time of year.

We start seeing more rainfall in May and more full days of rain instead of just a quick shower. Hurricane season (June to November) sees the highest amount of rainfall and tropical depressions can increase these amounts.

rainfall-cancunmap
Rainfall data courtesy of CancunMap.com

So…what is there to do in this sunshine-dependent vacation spot when it is raining? Here are some of my favorite things.

1. Visit a cenote.

cenote
Cenotes are unique to the Yucatan peninsula and there are many in the Mayan Riviera to see. They are similar to sink holes or caverns with fresh, cold water and stalactite and stalagmite formations. the weather really doesn’t affect you while you are swimming or exploring in a cenote, but when you exit you’ll be cold so be prepared with towels and dry clothes.

2. Snorkeling.

SNORKELING

Yes, snorkeling in the ocean. You are already wet, why not jump in the warm ocean? The visibility will be less then when the sun is shining, however on the plus side, there will be far fewer people. Of course this is not recommended if it is storming with lightning.

3. SubSee Submarines.

Subsee Cancun and CozumelThere is one in Cancun and one in Cozumel. These are great for the whole family to be able to see the ocean floor from the safety of the submarine. Again, visibility may be slightly diminished. Discounts on SubSee Cancun and SubSee Cozumel.

4. Museum.

Mayan-Museum30Cancun now has a Mayan Museum in the hotel zone. It is only about $5 per person and a great way to learn about the culture. Read more about the “Museo Maya” here.

5. Aquarium. Inside of Plaza La Isla Shopping Center at KM 12.5 in the hotel zone is the Interactive Aquarium. For only $10 USD you can tour the 13 aquarium tanks and see rays, pirahnas, moray eels, jellyfish, seahorses, scorpion fish and coral. It’s not a large aquarium but it is fun to see.

6. Shopping.  Cancun has several malls for you to get your shopping fix. In the hotel zone be prepared for higher prices and high-end stores. See more info about each mall here.

  • Kukulcan Plaza at KM 13 Higher-end stores like Hugo Boss, Harley Davidson & Oakley. On one end of the mall is Luxury Avenue and containsBurberry, Coach, Fendi, Cartier & Louis Vuitton.
  • Plaza La Isla Shopping Center at KM 12.5. This is one of my favorites because the stores are more trendy and there is more to see and do here. Stores include Tommy Hilfiger, Nine West, Guess, Diesel, Envy. Here you can also take in a movie or go through the Interactive Aquarium (see #5 above).
  • Forum by the Sea at KM 9 is a large multilevel plaza with shopping, restaurants, and entertainment which transforms into the Party Center hub at night.
  • Plaza Las Americas & Malecon Americas Mall in downtown Cancun. This is a large mall filled with trendy and affordable stores. It is quite close to the hotel zone and very modern.

CARM offers a shopping trip you can buy by the hour here. You can see the full list of by tours offered by CARM Tours & Transfers here.

Tip: Avoid going further into downtown Cancun if it is a full day of rain. The flooding in downtown is extreme and the driving techniques are terrible.

New Cancun Maps from MapChick

 

The famous MapChick has just released the updated version of the Cancun and Isla Mujeres maps.  These maps are really more like travel guides. If you like to do your research before heading off to vacation, these maps are a must.

mapchick cancun mapThe Cancun Map is actually a 4 map set. The large map contains all the hotels in Cancun hotel zone, downtown Cancun and Puerto Juarez. But if you think you are just getting a map, you are dead wrong. There is a whole section on tips for getting around Cancun (bus info, taxis, public transportation, private transfers) which is invaluable for first-time travelers and seasoned vacationers alike. The maps also detail favorite restaurants, popular tours , walking tours and more.  I love reading the tips they include, like Hotel Zone on a Budget, Access to Public Beaches, Should you go All-Inclusive?, and their “off-the-beaten-path” restaurant finds.

The 3 inserts that accompany the large map are: Attractions, Restaurants, & Downtown. These are so handy to have…just the info you need when you need it. They also give you a wonderful overview of the “lay of the land” and where your hotel is located in reference to all the places you want to visit. This makes planning your tours, meals, and sightseeing trips much easier.

Once you order and receive your maps, plan on taking some time to read the tips and familiarize yourself with Cancun. This way when you arrive you’ll already have your bearings and you’ll be ready to start taking in the wonderful sights of Cancun.

The new 2013 / 2014 Cancun Map by MapChick is only $15 USD and they will be shipped to you usually within 24 hours. Click here to  Order yours today!

The map is large, so when folding you new map, just remember top down in half first, then accordion, then in half again. I’m the worst at trying to fold maps.

Whale Shark season officially begins May 15, 2013

 

Snorkel with Whale SharksIn Cancun we have the unique opportunity to snorkel with Whale Sharks when they migrate through our area from mid-May until mid-September every year. For the 2013 season, tours begin May 15th.

Whale Sharks are not actually “sharks”. They feed on plankton and they have no teeth. The average adult whale shark is 32 feet long and weights 9 tons.

Tours leave from Puerto Juarez, just 10 minutes north of Cancun. The boats are small and usually only hold 8-10 passengers. It takes 45 minutes to 90 minutes to get to where the whale sharks are swimming in the ocean. Once there, we take turns snorkeling beside these giant fish.

The tour costs $179 per person. You should be a good swimmer for this tour since you are out in the ocean. Every time we have gone out to see the Whale Sharks we also see lots of sea turtles and manta rays too. You can book your Whale Shark Snorkel here.

April 2013 Weather in Cancun

 

April is a beautiful and busy time in Cancun. The Spring Breakers are gone. The pools are not frigid. The weather is warm, but not blazing hot like in the summer. April is Cancun’s driest month with just an average of 2 rain days, however this year has been extraordinarily dry.

High temps average 88.7 F (31.5 C) with low temperatures at 74 F (23.4 C) which is a pleasant temperature for anything you want to do outdoors. The water temp is a perfect 80 F (27 C).

April Weather in Cancun

March 2013 Weather in Cancun

 

March in Cancun is a crazy, beautiful time. The beaches are full of young bodies on Spring Break. Be prepared for crowded bars and night clubs that party until well after daylight.
The weather is all over the place…warm and sunny 85F one day and cold and rainy the next. We have put away our warm blankets 3 times, only to get them back out a few days later.

It is quite windy also. There were many days with strong winds which causes the ports to close. In Cancun there is a port authority that determines when it is too windy to allow boats on the ocean. On windy days your fishing, snorkeling and diving tours will be cancelled.

March weather in Cancun

Immigration and Customs forms Mexico and United States

 

When you leave the US or Canada for your vacation in Mexico, be prepared to fill out Customs and Immigration forms. It is helpful to know what these forms look like and what questions you will be asked.

The first two scans are your FMM, or Tourist Visa. You will be given this form to fill out while on the plane before you arrive to Mexico. This is a simple form that just requires the info directly off your passport.

When you arrive to Cancun International Airport, the first stop after getting off the plane will be at Immigration. Here the immigration officer will take the FMM form you filled out, keep the blue side and give you back the green side. The blue side is your Entry into Mexico and the green side is your departure visa when you leave Mexico. It is VERY IMPORTANT to keep the green part (with your passport) as you MUST have this to leave Mexico. What happens if you lose your FMM Tourist Visa while in Mexico. Every person must fill this out.

Also during your flight to Mexico you will be given a Customs Declaration form. Each head of household needs to fill this out. Again it asks for your basic passport info, how long you will be in Mexico, and how much luggage you have. Most importantly it asks if you are carrying 10,000 US Dollars or more, any meat, food, plants, chemicals, weapons, or merchandise for which you need to pay duty.

After you land and clear immigration, your next stop will be to pickup your luggage and go to customs. Your luggage will go through x-ray and you will hand the customs agent the form. There is a button that each person must push. If the button light turns green then you proceed to pickup your scanned luggage. If the button light turns red, your luggage will be searched.

When you leave Mexico you will surrender your FMM Tourist Visa and you will fill out the US Customs Declaration form. The US wants to know about your travel, where you’ve been and where you are going. The form asks again if you are bringing cash, meat, plants, merchandise, etc. You will give this form to the Customs agent when you land in the US.

For more information about traveling to Mexico and the paperwork you need to fill out, please visit http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information.

Daylight Saving Time – Mexico changes time 1 month after the US and Canada 2013

 

Except for the border states, Mexico daylight saving time begins at 2:00 AM on the first Sunday in April. Daylight saving time ends on the last Sunday in October. However those are different dates than in the US and in Canada. There is almost a full month of confusion between the date the US changes time and date Mexico changes time.

2013 Daylight Saving Time Dates
Set Clock ahead Set Clock back
USA & Canada March 10 November 4
Mexico April 7 October 27

Exceptions: State of Sonora and Ten Municipalities along the northern border.

Here in Cancun we are on Central Standard Time, but from March 10th to April 7th we are on a different CST than in the US and Canada. Crazy, right?

Many people are confused during this time, especially when it comes to their [Read more…]

New attractions in Cancun: Flyboard & Jetpack

 

There are 2 new and ultra-adventure activities in Cancun: The Flyboard and the Jetpack. Both use the same idea of water propulsion to lift a person into the air and across the water using Personal Water Craft (PWC) propulsion.

Flyboard
The Flyboard straps your feet onto a board much like a snowboard and your arms are strapped onto hand jets. The hose is connected to a JetSki that provides the water pressure. You maneuver by shifting your weight on the board and using the hand jets.

flyboard cancun

There are 6 locations to try the Flyboarding experience in Cancun or the Riviera Maya:

  1. Temptation Resort- Albatros Marina Blvd. Kukulcan Km 3.5 Hotel Zone
  2. Hotel Presidente Intercontinental- Marina Coco Tours‎ Blvd. Kukulcan Km 7.5 Hotel Zone
  3. Royal Resorts- Thomas More Travel Blvd. Kukulcan Km 16 Hotel Zone
  4. Kool Beach Club- Dani Sailing 28 Norte Mza 10, Lote 8 Centro, Playa del Carmen
  5. Valentin Imperial Riviera Maya- Marina Hotel Valentin Carretera Federal 307 Km 311, North Playa del Carmen (Playa Paraiso)
  6. The Royal Playa del Carmen Beach Hotel Constituyentes 2 Playa del Carmen

Basic Flight 20 minutes flight time for $100 USD, or you can upgrade to the Premium for $150 and get a full HD video of your flight. You will learn the basics of Flyboard flight with your Certified Flight Instructor. Book Now

Requirements: Minimum age 18 years, be a good swimmer and not have fear of heights, obviously.

Jetpack

Much like the Flyboard, the Jetpack attaches a water hose to a jetski with the equipment needed for water propulsion. A flexible water supply hose delivers power to the jetpack with pressurized water.

jetpack cancun

Jetpack is located at Plaza La Isla Mall Blvd Kukulcan, KM 12.5 Cancun Hotel Zone

Price is $149 for the Basic 20 minutes or upgrade to the 30 minute Premium for $199.Book Now

You must be 18 years of age to fly, however 16 or 17 year olds may fly with written consent from a parent or guardian.
Height requirement: between 5 feet and 6 feet 6 inches tall and a maximum waist of 46 inches. You must also be a good swimmer.

Mayan Museum open in Cancun

 

Mayan-Museum

On November 1, 2012, Cancun opened a new Maya Museum in the hotel zone, located at KM 16 Blvd Kukulkan. Investments of $15 million was used to launch the project; about 70% of which was obtained from the federal government through the National Institute of Anthropology and History.

The Maya Museum exhibits over 350 archaeological artifacts including relics that have never been shown as well as others that were discovered in recent excavations. The museum has three exhibition halls; two are permanent and one is for temporary venue for national and international exhibitions. One exhibit in particular is quite remarkable: a 14,000-year-old skeletal Mayan remains discovered in the underwater caves at Tulum.

Maya Museum hours are on Tuesday to Sunday from 10 AM to 7 PM, with extended hours on Thursday (7 AM to 10 PM). Tickets cost $5 USD per person for access to both the Maya Museum and Mayan ruins of San Miguelito, next to the museum. Kids under 13 and adults over 60 years old get free admission. On Sunday, admission is free to local residents with official identification.

Photos courtesy of J. Michel Photography