The high impact of shore excursions

March 22nd, 2006 by Steve Bridger filed under Costa Maya, Cruises, Sustainable tourism

Sheltered by part of the largest continuous reef in the Western Hemisphere, the Costa Maya is situated on the Mexican Caribbean some 350km south of Cancún and just south of the stunning 1.3 million-acre Sian Ka’an reserve.

I’ve refrained from mentioning the Costa Maya on this blog, pretty much because the region avoided Wilma’s punch, instead suffering driving rains and a storm surge; a mere slap on the cheek by comparison with resorts to the north.

But I believe the following warrants some attention.

Ten of the largest cruise ship operators now visit Puerto Costa Maya (aerial photo) built to "resemble an ancient Mayan city". Before leaving their…

Freedom Tour

February 10th, 2006 by Steve Bridger filed under Cozumel, Cruises, News

photo courtesy Royal CaribbeanCozumel mayor Gustavo Ortega Joaquín announced yesterday an investment of US$40m dollars to ready the island’s cruise ship piers for the next generation of even bigger vessels.

Ortega commented to journalists that the Punta Langosta pier in San Miguel de Cozumel would welcome the world’s largest cruise ship, the Freedom of the Seas, in June.

The 160,000-ton, 3,634-passenger vessel (pictured, right, at the Aker Yard in Finland) will be the largest cruise ship in the world when it debuts in May 2006.

Currently, cruise ships are mooring offshore and ferrying in passengers by tender.

Cozumel will get better cruise ship piers

January 14th, 2006 by Steve Bridger filed under Cozumel, Cruises

Ian Campbell has posted some useful information on about when the piers will fully re-open and a possible doubling of cruise ship capacity on the island.

Repair work to the three piers – a lifeline for Cozumel’s economy – began quickly, but Victor Vivas González, a representative from Cozumel’s Port Authority, has revealed ambitious and potentially controversial plans to increase the pre-Wilma docking capacity for cruise ships.

According to Vivas, the International Pier is expected to be the first to fully re-open, but not until September.

In the meantime, passengers are being shuttled ashore by large tender