We went from Wed-Sat last week (me, hubby & 2 kids - 7 & 2).
We typically have stayed south end of the island, but thought it might be nice to stay near downtown as this would be our first ever trip without a car rental.
Arrived at the airport at 11:40am. Carry on only, so no wait & through immigration and out the door quickly. Here's where it got sticky. I had wanted to book a transfer, but my DH loves to find the cheapest way to do everything possible. So we took the ADO bus downtown Cancun for 35 pesos each (they only made us pay for 2) and then from there a taxi to Gran Puerto (puerto juarez) for $5 & took the Ultra Mar ferry (very nice with ac on bottom & open deck on top) for 35 pesos each one way. NOTE about the ADO bus, if I were going to Playa del Carmen or Riveria Maya, I would use this route in a heartbeat. Very nice buses with tv's & air.
Arrived and walked the couple blocks to the hotel which is just around corner from North Beach. Posada del Mar got lots of recommendations so we went there. I really liked this hotel for location and quiet. Kids wanted a pool so this was good for them too.
Spent day one in pool, at North Beach, & walking around downtown.
Day two, morning by the pool & then lunch was the chicken guy on the last street when going to North Beach. Love this place. $8 gets you a whole roasted chicken, with a large stack of tortillas, rice & beans. This fed 3 of us as one of them is really picky and ate mostly peanut butter & cheese sandwiches (you know the type).
DH went to get our 24 hour golf cart rental around 1pm so we would have to return it the next day by the same time. Everywhere was sold out! He tried 5 different places until a guy on a scooter asked him if he needed a rental & told him to hop on and he would take him. This was quite comical as my hubby is 6"3" & this guy was about 5"2". He looked funny on the back. Anyway, we got the last one at Ciros & it was $55 for 24 hour rental.
Went to Turtle Farm & drove around the island for a bit. Stopped at Playa Lancheros for a bit, it was really busy. Then stopped at Playa Indios which I had always liked because it was so quiet. I don't know what happened here, but we were the only ones there and the workers were laying in hammocks :) The beach is nicer there than at Lancheros, but it was completely dead and the shops were gone. Anyway, on to Garrafon de Castilla hotel to snorkel.
We typically go there to snorkel as we have stayed there in the past also and don't want to do the AI option at Garrafon Park. Garrafon de Castilla Hotel is $4 per person to enter & then you can rent snorkel equipment (we have our own). Nice place to relax & spend the day. They have lockers, a beach club, showers, chairs, food, drinks, etc. And you are in the same water as the park.
Drove around after that looking at stuff and back to the pool until about 11pm.
Next day, up & out to go look at some other hotels that we wanted to stay at in the future. Visited Punta Piedra, Mar y Sol, Gaviota, Marina de Isla Mujeres, Villa Vera, Zamas (nice beach club) and a few others. This was fun. Bought some mole from a local lady that we like to visit. Her place is called Gloria's Loncheria and it is really good. Very busy, just a kitchen & tables out of a modified garage. Her place is in front of the lagoon, near the park on a side street.
Went to North Beach and rented 2 chairs & umbrella for $5. Very nice and relaxing, although I was bummed about the loss of sand even though I knew it had happened. Almost all day there, back at hotel and straight to the pool. My kids love water.
Later, time for shopping. Little guy crashed in stroller about 8pm after eating pizza and I picked up a few misc things that I liked, while my son got a shark tooth necklace. He liked bargaining so it was great fun for him. We stopped by the Cuban place and man did they have good food. For $6.50, you got a Cuban Torta (six inches), fried banana, beans & rice & a margarita. We split the meal as I wasn't very hungry. Ordered 2 mojitos to go and they were so good. They have 2 for one mojitos all day.
Saturday, mainly picture taking and walking around as we had to catch the ferry back for our flight at 2pm. Took a taxi from the ferry to airport for $22.
I really miss being there and am already trying to work out another short trip in August before Champion takes Cancun off their destination list in September.
Sorry for the length, but it was lots of fun!