Xcalak can be described as a scuba divers' paradise.....and it is. Even snorkelling from the shore is great. If you stay at Casa Carolina, you can dive or get certified (NAUI) with Bob. He also is linked with the local dive shop XTC, who can certify you with a PADI license or take you on a discover scuba dive, no certification necessary. XTC has daily dive trips around the local reefs and about 4 trips a week to Banco Chinchurro, a reef protected by the government. XTC is the only dive shop whose boat is allowed to go there in Xcalak. At Banco Chinchurro you can see Reef sharks, Nurse Sharks, tons of fish, and Rays. Bob and XTC are well equipped and knowledgable and I felt very safe and well informed on all of my dives. I cannot wait to go back!
Good for: Families
Keep your eyes open if your lucky you will see the kid running out to the beach with a spear! and If he is lucky he will return with the snapper or lobster you tried to order !
Favorite Dish: whole fried fish, you got to eat the eyes and the fins taste like potato chips, don't knock it til you've tried it.
Tierra Maya is a small hotel in Xcalak. They have an amazing amazing Mayan chef who cooks the most outstanding regional Mayan food....I really considered kidnapping him and bringing him back to NYC, because the quality and taste of his food would surpass a lot of restaurants here and make him a fortune, and then I could have it whenever I wanted(hahahahaaa).
Seriously, the food was so fresh and flavoured perfectly, I was in heaven. You have to go to Tierra Maya by noon and give Tom (the owner) your reservation for dinner that night and tell him meat, fish, or vegetarian. I ate the vegetarian two nights in a row and was blown away.
Favorite Dish: They make the most amazing breads as well, everything tastes so good, and there is not a set menu so it is a suprise everytime, but a more than pleasant one.
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It was announced that AeroFerinco will begin weekly Saturday flights from Cancun to Majahual and Xcalak starting on March 18th. I haven't confirmed this and their web site doesn't include any information as of 5/21/00.
There are no regularly scheduled daily flights to Xcalak, however, the airport is open to private planes.
You can get there by bus although it can be complicated. When you get to Cancun, you'll have to head downtown to the bus station by either cab or shuttle. When you get there, catch one of the ADO buses to Felipe Carrillo Puerto. Disembark there and catch one of the regular buses to Limones. Disembark and catch the bus to Xcalak.
The above scenario is really an over-simplification of what's involved. The arrival of your airplane has a bearing and so does when you get to Limones. If you don't arrive in Limones by mid-afternoon, you'll miss the Chetumal to Xcalak bus that stops there.
I've heard that you could hire a cab in downtown Cancun for about U.S.$125.00 to take you to Xcalak - I've never done it. A cab might also be substituted for a bus on one of the other legs of the trip. Bus to either Felipe Carrillo Puerto or Limones and hire a cab from there.
Buses leave Xcalak every day at 5:00AM and 2:00PM. They stop in Limones and then head south to Chetumal. If you are heading north, you'd get off in Limones and catch the next one heading north.
The trip itself is really adventurous: Simply drive like two hours straight, turn left in Limones, another time straight forward for about an hour. Turn right in Mahahual and drive the last part of the trip simply straight ahaed.
A little more detailed it looks like that:
After you arrive in Cancun, pick up your rental car and head south on Highway 307. It's about one hour to Playa Del Carmen, about two hours to Tulum, and just short of three hours to Felipe Carrillo Puerto. When you get there, stop at the Pemex station in the middle of town and fill up with gas. A little south of there on the right is a fairly big grocery store if you need to pick up anything.
Head south again on Highway 307 toward Limones. After you go through Limones, take a left towards Majahual and go straight towards the Caribbean Sea. About 10 kilometers west of Majahual take a right. You'll be heading to Xcalak and will get there soon.