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Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

dayton, OH
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Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

My huband and myself are going to Cancun mid- Dec and have a five year old son with us. Need help with some questions:

1) Is it better to stay in Cancun or Playa del carmen and which place do you recommend.

2) As far as transport, is it better to rent your own car or use public transport.

3) Is day trip from Cancun to cozumel feasible or should one stay there couple of nights.

4) Any suggestions for activities for five year old-

Thanks for the help-

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1. Re: Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

1) Cancun - more modern and more to do, IMO. Others may prefer PDC.

2) Mass transit hands down. It's cheap, reliable, and safe.

3) Feasible? Yes. Pleasurable? Not necessarily, especially with a young kid. If you stay in Playa it is more manageable.

4) Too much to list. Check the "things to do" section.

St. Louis, Missouri
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2. Re: Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

1) This is really just a personal preference. Cancun is livlier and most hotels are high rises (most with ocean views) Playa del Carmen more quiet and more spread out. Resorts are typically larger with more visually appealing atmosphere.

2) I personally would not rent a car in Mexico, but that's just me. Getting to and from airport, we hire a private transport. For excursions, we take the collectivo, when staying in or around Playa. Cancun has public buses that are cheap and reliable.

3)Never been to Cozumel, so can't answer.

4) This really depends on what he likes to do. Many, many water activities in the area. You could take him to Garrafon Park on Isla Mujures if staying in Cancun or Xel-Ha or Xcaret if staying in or near PDC. Crocorun Zoo is a popular attraction if staying in Puerto Morelos, which is just about 20 minutes from the airport. There is also a monkey sanctuary (forget the name) near Playa as well.....seems to be a big hit with TA reviewers. Course there are always the ruins, like Tulum but he may not enjoy or appreciate that just yet.

As for recommendations: My kids LOVED Iberostar Quetzal/Tucan in Playacar. Jungle atmosphere with wild howler monkeys in the trees, parrots, peacocks, agouti, fountains, fish ponds. TONS to see, great staff, decent pool, ice cream cart on the beach, and beautiful beach! Playacar is a gated community and has a little mini plaza within walking distance. Just hang a right after you leave the entrance and it's about a 8 minute walk.

My kids also enjoyed Dreams Puerto Aventuras. The staff was truly amazing with ALL of the kids. But, the pool is really small and beach is in a cove, so there are rocky parts and you can't walk very far along the shore. (Really the only downfall)

We also took them to Grand Palladium Riviera. It's gorgeous. Definitely has the WOW factor, but it's so huge that you really just get lost in the crowd. Really no personality there.

We've stayed at the Riu Caribe 3 times at the Northern tip of the Cancun hotel zone. Didn't take the kids though.

We would love to return to the Iberostar, but since we have a 3rd child now, our family of 5 exceeds their per room occupancy limits.

Hopefully this helps and you have a place to start. It might be a good idea if you go to a travel site like Funjet, plug in your info and then narrow down some choices based on your budget. Then come back to TA and look thru traveller photos and read reviews.

Good luck, planning is half of the fun!

St. Louis, Missouri
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3. Re: Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

I just remembered the name of the monkey sanctuary. It's called The Jungle Place. You can do a search here on TA and read all of their reviews!

Edited: 09 November 2011, 02:55
4. Re: Visiting Cancun for first time- need help

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