Imagine a place where lobster is a common lunch fare, traffic lights don’t exist and you can hail a taxi on the water. Welcome to Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands, 30 miles north of Honduras. Almost 40 miles long and just 2.5 miles at its widest point, the remote island boasts white-sand beaches, pristine bays and spectacular coral reefs.
Costa Maya, located on a peninsula along Mexico’s Caribbean coast, about 100 miles south of Playa del Carmen, feels like a private island created from scratch expressly for cruisers. That’s because it was; developers created the port terminal/faux village complex not far from the Belize border solely to woo cruise lines, and everything — from the manmade malecon, a beachfront pedestrian path in nearby Mahahual, to the beach club used for shore excursions — has been created with passengers in mind.
This small island, measuring just 28 miles long and 10 miles wide, lies off the coast of the country’s Yucatan peninsula and offers incredibly diverse options for water sports-lovers, partly because of its proximity to spectacular coral reefs. Along with snorkeling, beach bumming and boating, scuba diving is one of the biggest draws to this sunny destination.
Cozumel owns a rich history. In fact, the island derives its name from the Mayan civilization that settled there approximately 2,000 years ago. According to Mayan legend, Cozumel was the home of Ixchel, the goddess of love and fertility. It’s said that when religious temples were dedicated to her, she sent her favorite bird — the swallow — as a sign of her gratitude. For this reason, the people called the island “Cuzamil” — Mayan for “Land of the Swallows.” Several important Mayan sites, such as San Gervasio and El Cedral, populate the island. Even better preserved ones are on the accessible mainland; Chichen Itza and Tulum are hot spots for daytrips and shore excursions.
This isn’t vacation days spent. This is bragging rights earned. With one-of-a-kind ways to thrill and chill, all in the same day. Like conquering the tallest waterslide in North America, and snapping a shot from 400 feet up in a helium balloon. A drink at the swim-up bar in the Bahamas’ largest freshwater pool. Or a taste of Bora Bora in the only private overwater cabanas in the Bahamas. This is Perfect Day at CocoCay — only on Royal Caribbean®.