Maya Chan Beach Resort
A Great Way to Spend a Port Day!
In a Nutshell
Do yourself a favor and go. Just go. My bet is that you will not regret it. It’s the relaxing day you may not have realized you needed. The location is dreamy. The staff are kind and attentive. The owners have set it up to make it very comfortable and stress-free for the guests. Just go.
Video Review in ASL
Getting There and Back
The walk is a bit of a trek, but the people at Maya Chan send you a very clear map and instructions. If you look at Google Maps satellite or the picture below, you’ll see that the port dock is long. Great for taking photos, though! We walked quickly through the maze of shops without stopping, following the instructions and photos from Maya Chan and found the spot with no problem. They were waiting with a covered area and some seats while we signed a form, then got on the taxis to head over. You may read about the bumpy ride. Due to the reviews I read, I expected a horribly uncomfortable 40-minute ride there. It was a 22-minute ride (we timed it) and was not uncomfortable at all. The driver drove slowly and maneuvered around potholes for the second half of the journey. (The first half, the roads are relatively smooth.) We enjoyed looking out the window at the homes and people along the way. I guess if you get a driver that just runs over all the potholes, it could be bumpy, but both our drivers (along with every other car we saw) drove slowly around the holes in the road. On the way back, two women, one of them my daughter, had to use the bathroom so badly and the driver got to the port entrance and walked them to the restroom. Super kind of him! I went thinking I would stay 3 hours, then head back, but we took the very last taxi back to the ship because we wanted to stay as long as we possibly could! They got us there a good 40 minutes before sailaway, so there was no stress involved at all.
HOT TIP: Take a bottle of water off the ship or buy a bottle in the shops during hot seasons. We were there October 3 and it was a hot day! Water would have been nice for the walk and drive over.
The Seagrass and Smell
This was probably my top concern before going. I had read about the tea-colored water and smelly seagrass. I had wanted to snorkel and swim in clear water. I also have 2 boys with very sensitive noses. For example, they can barely stand our visits to Asian markets where fresh fish are in the store. One night on the ship, I ordered lobster and my son couldn’t even eat his pasta because he hated the fishy smell from my plate. Well, they both LOVED our day and Maya Chan and didn’t want to leave. You will start to smell the sea grass here and there once your taxi turns along the coastline. Then when you pull in to Maya Chan, you will smell the sulphur scent. That was the only time one of my boys complained about the smell. But once you walk in, the smell dissipates, thanks to the food cooking and the sea breeze. Something happened in our brains, even my picky sons’ brains, that shifted from thinking, “ew this stinks” to “that’s seagrass.” And it just wasn’t gross or disturbing at all the few times the smell wafted through. We were in a spot near the hard-working men who mucked the seagrass all. day. long. and we rarely smelled it. Those men were doing hard labor all day to keep the seagrass off the beach and out of the swim area as much as humanly possible. They were amazing. At one point, the wind was blowing my son’s kayak too far past the beach and right toward the piles of seagrass. One of the men raking stopped, ran out to the water, and helped push his kayak back in the right direction. Again, they were simply kind and worked very hard to ensure we were having a good time.
HOT TIP: Take a rash guard if you’ll be in the ocean so you won’t have to use sunscreen, which can be harmful to sea life. Pack sunscreen for when you’re on the beach. We packed bug spray as they recommended, but ended up not needing it on the day we were there. (October 3) Better safe than sorry, though!
The Water, Activities, and Amenities
The water is tea-colored for sure. That’s just the natural makeup of the beaches there. We kayaked pretty far out and got to bluer waters. The staff will advise you which way to paddle out so that you have the easiest time getting back. They are super helpful. Kayaks with a clear window in the bottom, SUPs, snorkel gear, life vests, water shoes, floating chairs, floating platforms, and cornhole are all included and there for you to use! There isn’t a lot of sea life unless you go way out to the reef where you won’t really be visible to the people at the beach. I really had wanted to snorkel, but we had SO much fun swimming in the pool, relaxing in our thatch-roof palapa, floating on the platforms, and kayaking, that we didn’t even have time to snorkel nor did I miss it. They also have fresh water showers so you can shower off before getting in the cool swimming pool (my boys’ favorite spot and a gorgeous place to relax), and over near the entrance. Those showers are “island private” with a chair and pegs to hang your dry clothes on while you shower. We appreciated being able to clean up a bit before our drive back to the ship.
HOT TIP: Take a change of dry clothes so you can ride back and walk more comfortably and even take some time in the shops if you wish. We wore our swimwear off the ship and packed a clean change of clothes for the trip back.
The Food, The Drink, The Service
Just wow. The staff are what truly shines at Maya Chan. They were helpful from the moment they met us at the port. Once arriving, they served us drinks, chips, salsa, and guacamole along with their signature drink. They continued to bring drinks to wherever we were for the duration of our stay. We all loved it, but my younger boys really enjoyed having drinks brought to them in the pool! They will even bring drinks to you out in the ocean!
A woman was cooking a variety of tacos that ended up tasting as divine as it smelled. My favorite were the pork and chicken. My husband liked the beef best. The side of rice and beans were also delicious. I tried the traditional Mayan fermented fish taco, too. Not my taste, but I wanted to try a traditional dish and I could tell the fish was very good! (I just couldn’t get my mind around the fermented aspect.)
This was the first time I really drank with my older kids (ages 18 and 19) which was fun! I’m not a frequent drinker, but these drinks were SO good. I had 3-4 throughout the day, felt just the right amount of tipsy, and didn’t have a headache the next morning! My younger kids enjoyed the Oreo shake and endless Shirley Temples.
HOT TIP: They have drinking water available all the time, too! We packed Liquid IV packets just to make sure we stayed hydrated among the sun, ocean, and alcohol.
GO! Yes, be prepared. Yes, read the reviews. You’ll read about long, bumpy rides and seagrass, but don’t let that deter you from going. It was SO much fun. I read and heard vloggers say they didn’t want to leave. Now I understand.
Thank you so much for this detailed review!ReplyDelete
I heavily relied on other's reviews, so wanted to take the time to make one, too!! Glad you enjoyed it!Delete
Thank so much for all this info! Headed there in a couple of months!ReplyDelete