My husband and I were vacationing in Mexico and decided to take a boat ride. The boat captain suggested we go to Silver Mine when we got to the island. I found a pretty silver and turquoise bracelet that we negotiated for 800 pesos (approx $60). We asked the owner to write us a receipt which we saw him doing. We didn't realize until we left the island that there was no receipt in the bag. As soon as we got back to the states, we checked our credit card and they had charged us 8000 pesos (approx $600)!!!! I believe the tour operator was working with Silver Mine to bring in unsuspecting tourists to steal from. Save yourself the headache and don't go anywhere near the place!!!
tHE SHOP HAS THE PRESENCE OF A NICE JEWELRY SHOP AND THEY GIVE "LIFETIME WARRANTY" AND GUARANTY JEWELS ARE NATURAL AND REAL. THEY LIE. PURCHASED JEWELS APPRAISED BY REPUTABLE CERTIFIED GEMOLOGIST AT HOME PROVED ALL STONES FAKE.
ENJOY THE ISLAND AND LEAVE YOUR JEWELRY PURCHASES FOR OTHER PLACES.
What to buy: MAYBE A HAT! CAFTANS OR PURSE
What to pay: AT LEAST HALF OF WHAT THEY ARE ASKING!
It is a beautiful shop from the looks of the jewelry, but the owner sold me what was supposed to be an authentic Mexican pink sapphire & it turned out to be a CZ fake! Luckily I used my credit card that I've been a customer with for over 20 years, so I can easily dispute it, but that is aside from the fact that he is not an honest businessman at all & I want to warn as many people as I can about him. Now I need to go and check if even the silver I bought is real or worth the money! BEWARE. We loved Mexico otherwise - especially that whole Cancun/Cozumel region that has changed so much in the last 20 years for tourists.
There are three grocery stores (that I know of) on Isla. Two of them are just off the town square, and the other is farther south, in the colonia La Gloria. Both times we have been we rented an apartment with a kitchen, so we believe it is definitely a good way to visit.
BTW, when we were there in 2010, we found that Abarroteo Mirtita, (not to be confused with Bar Mirtita, on Rueda Medina, across from the ferry) one of the stores next to the town square, had the best selection of ground coffee. The other stores mostly just have instant.
I love visiting Mexico. It's a beautiful country. My husband and I recently visited Isla Mujeres and spent a wonderful week there. We shopped, we ate, loved the area. BUT we will probably never return to Mexico because of the fraud that we've encountered at the Silver Mine Jewelry Store. My husband purchased numerous items from this store. All were guaranteed authentic, not costume jewelry. He spent thousand of dollars there. We told them that we were going to have it appraised and we did. It is all fake! They are refusing to return our monies even with the return of their fake products. I will be telling everyone about this experience and I hope it hurts their business immensely. I travel widely around the world and this is the biggest fraud I've ever encountered. Silver Mine, you give Mexico a bad reputation! Shame on YOU!
What to buy: Not jewelry! Never buy jewelry in even a store that 'looks' like a legitimate jewelry store, they lie, they cheat and they steal.
What to pay: Far too much for cheap costume jewelry
Hidalgo and many cross streets are lined with stalls where you can buy anything a tourist could want: decorative plates, silver and other jewelery, t-shirts, bags, magnets, postcards, and figurines. As you walk by, vendors will eagerly encourage you to "take a look." Prices are geared towards tourists and are generally high. If you balk at a price and act as if you're going to leave, vendors are bound to ask, "okay, what price?" You can generally bargain them down a few dollars. Most vendors take pesos or US dollars, but not credit cards. If you pay in dollars, you'll most likely get change in pesos.
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What to buy: cultural contact
What to pay: 2000 euro
There are many T-SHIRT SHOPS to choose from, all reasonably priced. Also most shops carry the usual souvenirs, pottery, Mexican crafts, etc.
Overall I enjoyed the charm and atmosphere of shopping on Isla Mujeres.
Some T-Shirt Shops are as follows:
The Caribbean T-Shirt Factory
T-Shirt Shop Boutique
The T-Shirt Corner
Beach T-Shirt Boutique
You can buy beautiful hammocks on every corner of the street so to say ...you can buy them in speciality stores, in little tourist stores, on the local market, on the streets or...if you just walk around you will end up where the makers live. They will give you a lot of explanation, show you how they make it (they even use their toes)..
What to pay: A single man hammock between 15-25 dollars, a double men hammock probably around 35-40 dollars...it depends on the fabrics they use and the technique (double, triple or more knots).
I actually enjoyed browsing through the shops on Isla Mujeres. The vendors weren't nearly as aggressive and annoying as the ones in Cancun. I was allowed to browse, which I love doing, without constantly being pestered. As a result, I ended up buying my terre cotta sun here instead of in Cancun. It was priced at 150 pesos or $15.00 U.S. We bargained and settled on $10.00. I was happy and he made a sale.
What to buy: Isla Mujeres is also famous for its gold and silver jewelry. You will find many shops scattered around downtown.
What to pay: Not many items are priced. So be careful not to pay more for the item than what it's worth.
Isla has many little t-shirt and souvenier shops. It's the same type of souveniers that one would find in other Mexican or Caribbean tourist areas. You can find lots of silver jewelry and mexican woven blankets on Isla. The prices are really good for the most part. You'll want to make sure you haggle for the best prices as they original price is usually twice as much as what you can actually buy it for.
What to buy: Silver jewlery, pottery, swimware, t-shirts, sandals, pareos and blankets.
What to pay: Varies depending on what you buy. The ankel bracelets and beaded stuff is usually $1-3USD depending on how many you buy. The t-shirts are sometimes 3 for $10, however the specialty t-shirts, like Harley-Davidson, are $15-20 a piece. The pareos are $5-10 a piece.