Cancun Journals

From All-Inclusive to the Real Mexico

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A January 2002 trip to Cancun by JesusW

Quote: You can be locked in an all-inclusive resort or go out and meet the real Mexico, passing through the ecotourism alternative.

From All-Inclusive to the Real Mexico

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Overview

Quote:
Cancun is known worldwide for its gigantic, all-inclusive mega resorts, but there is another face in this tale, the Real Mexico one. You can spend a week locked inside your resort and never step outside (I have done this in the past), or go out and discover the town. What for? Food, drinks, entertainment, beach, pools, etc. A lot of people prefer the no-brainer all-inclusive option, but there is a whole great world outside for you to explore, and I'm not talking about the tours offered by your resort, which more or less are "sterilized" for your convenience. I'm referring to experiencing the real local food that is very tasty; safe; and especially important, cheap. You may pay for a plate of shri...Read More

Club Med Cancun

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Hotel

Quote:
Once it was known as the "antidote to civilization," but now Club Med is known by another name in the all-inclusive jungle. These guys invented the term all-inclusive, and in the beginning, it was great. You didn't have to take care of anything and there was no money inside the village, no time schedule, no telephone calls, and no TV to hypnotize you, but, as of late, Club Med has been forced to change due to clientele demands. One of the things that hasn't changed (too much) is the wide offerings of sports available. You have everything, from sailing to water skiing, from tennis to wakeboarding, and from basketball to snorkeling. The sad thing is that, in the past, it used to be free (included in...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 25, 2005

Club Med Cancun
Punta Nizuc
Cancun, Mexico 77500
52 99 8881 82 00

Avalon Bay

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Hotel

Quote:
This is an all-inclusive hotel, but it feels like a cheap eco-lodge. The property is so-so, with lots of gardens and a convenient location on the north part of the island. The parking lot is not big enough, as it was designed with the fly-in tourist in mind and the architect never thought you would like to rent a car to visit the zone. Rooms are old and need maintenance, even the locks of the doors seem very archaic and unsafe. The bathroom is spartan but not unpleasant. It was my sister who got the "deal" over the Internet and the phone. In paper and on the Net, it looked so good, as she got a very good price, with air and ground transfers included. Having an all-inclusive seemed like a ...Read More

Member Rating 1 out of 5 on April 25, 2005

Avalon Bay
Blvd. Kukulcan Km 6
Cancun, Mexico 77500
01 800 713 8170

El Cejas

Restaurant

Quote:
This is a great place to eat with real food, real flavor, and real Mexican atmosphere. The restaurant is located in the middle of Mercado 28, the local market in Cancun. That may turn down a few fancy guys, but is better for the rest of us, as here you will find real people with great food. El Cejas (the guy with eyebrowns) is the nickname of the owner, a Mexican guy with a great touch for seafood. Ask your taxi driver for the Mercado 28, and the rest will be simple enough. Enter the market through any door--it doesn't matter which one--and walk to the middle of the building. When you see lots of people happily munching on their fish or shrimp, raise your sight, and you will find a hand-pa...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 25, 2005

El Cejas
Mercado 28
Cancun, Mexico
998/887-1080

Public transportation

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Story/Tip

Quote:
In Cancun, you really don't need a car. Of course, it's more convenient to have your own car so you can set your own times and schedules, but to enjoy this city, a car is not mandatory. Distances are long, and if you are in the middle of a sunny day, walking doesn't seem like a good idea, but the public bus system does work efficiently and cheaply. There are many towns and cities in Mexico where you won't see any tourists riding in the public buses; in Cancun, it's quite the contrary, as this is an efficient service and very safe. Basically, if you are staying in the tourist strip or island, there are only two ways to move: toward downtown or the opposite direction, which takes you to the ...Read More