A relaxed Island
Isla Mujeres is a 5 mile island across the Bay of Women from cancun. There are plenty of things to do here, such as explore, play in the water, swim with dolphins, visit a turtle sanctuary, salsa dance;P, or build sand castles! You can still see the remains of an enormous estate, "Hacienda Mundaca" built by a lovesick pirate hoping to win the heart of a local girl. Entrance is 1usd to see the ruins and some local wildlife.
For sunbathing, windsurfing and swimming, get to the north beach, and for "pretty decent" snorkeling, El Garrafon National Park, on the island's southern tip is best. Park entry is around 10 usd.The bathrooms are clean and renting equipment, including towels, is easy. Or you can lie on the shady beach in a hammock listening to local musicians. We skipped this, but it seems like it may be a good family day.
Or you might want to check out Puerto Morelos which also has a coral reef that has been declared a national park, and a bit more intact. You can book a two-hour trip to the reef for around 20usd. Well, I am home. It's a cold winter....I think of just 2 weeks ago lying on the beach getting a massage...*sigh.
If you walk down the street toward the south beach, right as the road ends, walk a little bit and you will see a canopy and massage table. The cost is 25 usd for half an hour and it's great!
Cycle Isla Mujeres
You will probably end up staying at the north end of the island, I recommend renting a bicycle for the day and riding all the way to the south end of the island, about 7kms each way. Here you will find a much more rugged coastline and even a view of Cancun in the distance.
Car ferry to Isla Mujeres
If you have a car already, you can take it to Isla Mujeres on the car ferry which runs from Punta Sam (about 3 miles north of Cancun). The cost at the time of writing this tip is about $15.00 US for car and driver, plus $2.00 US per passenger. There really is no need for a car there, but if you have already renterd one, and Isla is just one stop on your journey, you can do it.
For the best brick oven pizza around, its woth it to eat at Rolandis on Av. Hidalgo. Friendly staff, decent prices and out of this world 'za! My wife wanted to eat there every night!
The deserts were KILLER! The bannana split had us waddling back to our room at Elements of the Island.
Great spot for a good meal, a cold beer, and to sit back and people watch. I liked the red peppers w/ Capers, and the Calzone I had was good too!
They also Deliver!
This is a very large, clean and popular white sand beach at the north end of the island. It is very close to the majority of accomodations and the water is wonderful for swimming.
You will also be able to play beach volleyball here (at Bujo's) and enjoy some fantastic sunsets.