We rode the passenger ferry from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel. We arrived in Cozumel at the Muelle Fiscal dock, which is one block from the town’s main square. The trip took about 30 minutes and the round trip ticket was $16 a person.
From the moment we stepped off the ferry we found ourselves among the hustle and bustle of Cozumel. There were crowds filling into the shops and restaurants, lots of traffic in the streets, and tourists everywhere. There were a few cruise ships docked in the island and a lot commotion everywhere.
The island of Cozumel is 28 miles long and 11 miles wide. Driving a car was relatively easy (besides that we got stuck with a stick shift that looked as if it was 40 years old – so ask questions before renting). Outside of the city we followed the paved roads and make one big loop around the edge of the island (except the northern part due to hurricane destruction). The Eastern edge of the island is beautiful with aqua blue-green waves crashing into rocks, but not a place to swim. On the east side, civilization is far and few between. As we rounded the southern tip of the island we come to Punta Sur which is a nice place to stop (read review for more info). As we go up the western edge of Cozumel the island is much more urban with restaurants, huge resorts, crowded beaches, and boats cruising around in the water. The side of the island is the priciest place in Cozumel or the Riviera Maya we explored.
Overall, we enjoyed Cozumel, but one day there was enough. The scenery was stunning (especially the west side), everything was more expensive than in Playa del Carmen. In addition, the crowds in Cozumel were significantly larger than in Playa.