Hope this can help somebody out there, just as I've been helped so much by others here.
Wife and I have been leaving the kids home with grandparents for a week every year for about 12 years to go down to Mex., Jam., Costa Rica, etc. Always stayed at an all-inc. resort. After returning from the Now Jade in Jan. of this year, we decided to take the kids to Puerto Morelos for March Break.
Mar. 15 - Arrived at Playasol condos. This was really our first choice for accommodations since it is very close to town and we had snorkelled the beach there the last couple of years and saw turtles, rays, cudas. Our kids (son 14, daughter 10) loved the snorkelling. Playasol itself is very nice - pool, on the beach, clean rooms, well maintained.
On Sun., the 20th, we hired a taxi to Chichen Itza. Put our own tour together as follows : 6:00 a.m. pick up; C.I. at 8:00 a.m.; 11:00 a.m. leaving C.I.; lunch in Temozon; Ek Balam at noonish; 3:00 p.m. leaving E.B.; back at condo at 5:00ish. The early start allowed us to miss the crowds at C.I. There is a cenote at E.B. to cool off with a swim (X-CANCHE). Our taxi driver was the best - very good english, courteous, professional, prompt, helpful, informative, safe and fast on the roads - I really can't say enough good things about this person. He was great. Hired him also to take us to airport for flight home.
His name is "EL MAGO", Alejandrocazares@gmail.com, ph.#9981001953.
Restaurants - I'll list them and give our thought, based on the food, atmosphere, and price:
Tacos.com, Petitas, Pesquera, Pescador, Ojo de Agua, Spagatini - all very good.
El Tio - our favourite. Great food.
Loncheria Mimi - another place with great Mex. food.
Don't know the name of this place, but at corner of Ninos Heroes and the main road is the little place cooking "Mayan lunch" - delicious.
David Lau's - it was just o.k.
One place that was recommended to us that we didn't try was the conchinita behind the 7-11 on the Colonia side.
Bought our groceries and booze at Martin's - for a one week stay we didn't see the need to go out of town to save a couple of bucks.
Fresh fruits and vegetables from the market Wed. morn.
Used atm next to Martin's for pesos. Ended up getting 11.80-11.90 pesos to $1. Cdn. from various withdrawals during the week. Cambio next door to atm was offering 11.20 pesos for $1. Cdn. Substantial savings using atm.
We are planning on staying off of the resorts for our future trips (for now, at least), wherever our destination may be. It was a more authentic experience, and we were sort of getting tired of the resorts. Buenes tarde.