When we first went to Cozumel to dive in 1998, there was a cruise ship dock but it was the pier that was south of town. We would dive and then come home and walk to a restaurant for dinner. One of the places we would walk to was out along the waterfront, and we would see this lighthouse. At that time it was an active lighthouse.
In 2007, we came by cruise ship. We docked at the dock south of town. I tried to get a photo of the lighthouses as we left without success. We then came back by cruise ship and docked at the Punta Langosta dock. This is where the lighthouse is... on the waterfront, near the cruise ship terminal, in San Miguel de Cozumel on the west side of the island.
There are several lighthouses on Cozumel. The Punta Langosta station was established in 1906, but the date that the lighthouse was built is unknown. It was inactive 2000-2005 focal plane 56 ft; white flash every 5 s. It is a 49 ft cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and two galleries, painted white. It was deactivated in favor of the new lighthouse at Punta Ealetita, One website says that this original lighthouse was apparently reactivated to assist boats entering the harbor although I do not see how it could be seen since it is behind the stores that have been built around the cruise ship dock.
When we were in Cozumel the first time, I saw the lighthouse near the CG Base. At that time it was active. Now it has been OTBE (overtaken by events). The cruise ship companies have built up shops around it so that there needs to be a new lighthouse. This lighthouse is out along the shore, but south of the new cruise ship docks.
It is a cylindrical concrete light tower with four ribs, lantern, and gallery. The lighthouse was repainted white with green trim and large black lettering on the sides. Located about 1 mile south of San Miguel de Cozumel on the west side of the island. Site open, tower closed.
One of the things the founding families of Cozumel really did right was to construct a broad sidewalk along the waterfront next to the sea wall. The seawall which is frequently white washed and trimmed in aqua has cement benches built into it.
The best time for a walk is in the early evening, cool, sunset, all the shops will be open until 9ish. San Miguel is very safe even late in the evening (and despite what many cruise reps would have you believe.) Again, we just can't stress enough how safe and friendly the downtown area is. Do not be afraid to explore back in the town.
If you're a shopper, there are out of the way places to which you can walk. And where, usually, they'll bargain. (Don't expect any store on the waterfront to do this, however! The clerks aren't authorized to give discounts.)
There is often a street fair in the main square or Zólaco. Sometimes there are artists displaying their wares. Do check to see if the items were made in Mexico and not in China or Haiti.
Fondest memory: Near Christmas I saw a line up of toys along one side of the square.
Two of the photos (#2 and #3) were taken in 1998. The other three are similar scenes from 2007
The people here are wonderful. I have read some tips here and they are misleading!
The people are very friendly, they also want you to spend your money with them. They thrive on tourism and since the huricane and now the US economy tourism has suffered. If you don't want to buy what they are selling, a polite no thank-you is all that is required. Cut them some slack, they work 6 days a week to feed their families.
To the person who told people to go to Playa to shop, that is selfish and rediculous. Spend $30 on the ferry to get a tee shirt for a buck less, you want to spend time on an island paradise but begrudge them a living.
Most of all try the local restaurants the food is great.
Fondest memory: Check out the reefs, if you don't dive go snokling, or snuba, or the submarine. Remember to bring biodegradeable sunscreen.