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Costa Maya Holidays

Costa Maya is located on the Yucatan Peninsula in the Caribbean Sea approximately 100 miles south of Playa del Carmen nestling on Mexico's border with Belize. The area is generally undeveloped but has been growing quickly as a tourist destination benefiting from white sand beaches and a turquoise sea. It is hugely popular with cruise ships due to the construction of a large cruise pier.

Spanish is the official language, but you will find English spoken within the main tourist areas. The area is hot and tropical with average daytime temperatures in the 80s so care should be taken and sun screen liberally applied! Take note that the rainy season starts in late May and ends in early November with September through to October offering a risk of hurricanes.

Cruise ships have been influential in the area's development creating an artificial Mexican coastal village including a shopping village, outdoor amphitheatre, restaurants and bars and a swimming pool as well as a makeshift beach. Nevertheless the area is surrounded by stunning natural scenery and the area is rich in natural resources and has been shaped by deep historic and cultural influences.

Costa Maya has the highest concentration of Mayan archeological sites and the largest existing Mayan population in Mexico. Trips can be taken into the heart of an authentic Mayan town, with visits to a Mayan family where you can participate in their daily activities. Close to Costa Maya are the recently discovered ancient Mayan ruins at Kohunlich and Chacchoben, with structures that date back to 500 A.D.

Costa Maya is sheltered by the second largest coral reef system in the world, the Meso-American reef, making it a world class dive site with well preserved waters, wrecks and a plethora of marine life. The pristine waters offer on average 100 feet of visibility and are home to more than 60 types of coral and more than 500 species of fish.

Just beyond Costa Maya's boundaries is the seaside village of Mahahual formerly a simple bay for fishermen, now there are seaside huts serving fresh ceviche, white sand beaches with shallow surf (perfect for families) and a myriad of souvenirs on offer. The few fishermen living in the village have transformed their homes into restaurants and bars with others offering snorkelling tours.

At present it remains charming with electricity being a recent addition and still having a limited water supply but it is rapidly changing, developing more and more of the facilities demanded by the modern tourist. With the focus on cruise ship passengers there is an emphasis on facilities for day trippers hence the night life is relatively unsophisticated and may simply mean sipping a few cocktails in a beachside bar.

If you don't arrive by cruise ships the resort can be reached by flights into Cancun International Airport from which the transfer time is approximately 4.5hrs. Whilst you can hire a car and Costa Maya does have a petrol station it is often out of 'gas'!

There is no doubt that despite its ancient roots the area feels quite new which is largely due to Hurricane Dean which destroyed much of the area in 2007. Consequently most of what is on offer has a relatively fresh feel to it. Since the area was developed with tourists in mind it is in generally a friendly place where tourists are warmly welcomed.