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The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana
Ranked #1 of 20 Hotels in Chetumal
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 24 April 2014

The Explorean Kohunlich was one of the options for my husband and me through our timeshare with Hilton. We are so glad we decided to vacation there.

We traveled from Chicago O’Hare into Cancun. Our research on how to arrive at Explorean had us looking at a variety of connecting points… Chetumal airport had no arriving flights from the States, flying into Mexico City and then transferring to Chetumal involved too many connections and possibly a night over, or flying into Belize did not logistically make sense either. However, the resort is a good 5-hour car drive from Cancun and we were apprehensive about that long of a drive.

We looked into going via ADO bus line (highly rated on Trip Advisor), but after looking at the logistics of all the transfers (arrive atCancun airport then taxi/shuttle to bus terminal then wait for the next bus (up to 2-hours), then travel on bus for, 5-1/2 hoursto Chetumal then either taxi to the resort (approximately 40 miles) or taxi to the Chetumal airport and be picked up by the resort)… the car rental idea won out.

Now all of our American friends (who had not been to this area) would say, “oh, you’re driving in Mexico, isn’t that dangerous” starting to get me concerned, but after talking to a friend who had been in the area, I was reassured that this would be quite safe. As with any area you are not familiar with, just be careful. My advice if you choose to drive is to watch for the topes (speed bumps) and do not buy from the people selling produce at these speed bumps. They sell bread, juice, and water (since you have to slow down, it gives them the opportunity to sell their product). It’s not that I don’t want to support the local community, but the sanitation of the product could be an issue.

We drove down the main road Hwy 307 to Hwy 186. We watched our odometer after we turned onto 186 (Explorean’s website said it was approximately 65 kms); it was less (sorry don’t remember the exact number, I would guess between 55 and 60 kms); however, just look for a sign on the right-hand side of the road, pointing to the left that says “Explorean Kohunlich.” Then drive down a paved, but pot-hole road for approximately 6 kms. We arrived during day light, but I could see where this road would seem like an unlikely road if you are driving in the dark (there are no street lights).

When we arrived around 7pm and greeted by Ricardo. The staff brought us a refreshing fruit drink, we checked in with the front desk, and Ricardo showed us around and to our room. Our car and luggage were taken care of after we pulled up.

The cabanas are wonderful. We were in #36. It was a little bit of a walk, but not outrageous. The cabana had an outside porch area with a hammock, couch, and chairs. Every morning the staff brought us coffee, juice, and bread; just a light snack before you head your way to breakfast. Even though we were in the “jungle, “ when we sat outside the bugs were not bad at all. We live in Wisconsin and are used to mosquitos so large they can carry you away. There were no mosquitos that bothered me at all.

The set-up of the cabana is simple, but comfortable. We sleep with the windows open and the AC running. The AC keep the humidity out, but I really wanted to breathe the warm, fresh air. One night it rained, and it was so cool listening to that rain in the jungle.

Although this is an all-inclusive, you do not pony-up to a buffet line. Instead there are meal times for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Yes, it is all you can eat; but it is sit-down and you are being served and waited on by an awesome wait-staff. There is a menu each day, but you can ask for whatever you want off the menu.

The uniqueness of the Explorean is that your stay includes a daily activity agenda for you. In fact, they emailed me several days before we left asking us what our preferences would be (check out the explorean.com website for a listing of activities). We experienced exploring the Dzibanche and Kinich-na Mayan ruins our first full day there. This was the day we met two of the three families we became friends with. The next day, we kayaked in the Southern part of Bacalar lagoon at Xul-Ha. This is when we met the third family who we became close friends with. We kayaked one night into Chabakbakam. I saw spider monkeys in the wild, didn’t see any crocodiles thought, but also witnessed a red-blood moon. We kayaked again on the Bacalar in another part, wiggled our way through Mangrove trees and exfoliated in the nature mud-baths.

We wanted to snorkel, so the staff helped us plan an excursion to Mahahual. We went with the three families we had become friends with. It was 2-1/2 hours from the resort, but so worth it. It was the best snorkeling ever. Itzae, one of the managers, helped us coordinate the activity. He did a great job. He not only took care of booking a boat to take us out to the reef, but afterwards, he had lunch ready for us in a private, canopied table.

I took a Spanish class (a whole 8 sessions) before I left for this vacation. I was by no means proficient, but I was grateful that I took the class (it helped me with the pronunciation of words). Most of the people (staff and customers) speak Spanish. A few of our new friends spoke English and were our gracious interpreters. Some of the staff spoke English, the managers, tour guides, and wait staff all did… but not all do. Nonetheless, they all were so helpful. I brought along a pocket-size dictionary and did pull it out a few times. I learned to say, “estoy aprendiendo Espanol” when attempting to say anything.

Thank you to our new friends and the wonderful staff at Explorean (Marcos, Ricardo, Itzae, Javier, Enoc, Daniel, and many others) for one unique and awesome vacation. I hear that there will be a new Explorean resort in Cozumel. My husband and I plan on going there next based on the great time we had in Chetumal.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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12  Thank GottagetoutofWisc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 26 April 2014

Dear GottagetoutofWisc

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

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116 - 122 of 642 reviews

Reviewed 23 April 2014

I went with my family to Explorean from April 17th through April 21st. My overall rating for this resort is oustanding. The food is great, the service is excellent, the tours to the mayan ruins are incredible, the kayak excursions are fabulous, We have been in Quintana Roo many times but this trip is probably the most exciting experince we ever had.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Miguel P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 26 April 2014

Dear Miguel P

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

Let’s get the logistics out of the way. If you are coming from the USA but not via Mexico City you will find that Cancun will be your only option for flights and not Chetamul. This will mean you need to find a way from Cancun to Explorean Kohunlich. We chose to rent a car from National Car Rental in Cancun and drive the 5 hours to the resort (307 to 186 to http://tinyurl.com/lt5gt7n). You can also take the ADO Bus which we heard was very nice but you would need to get from the Airport to the bus terminal in Cancun and then the Bus terminal in Chetamul to the resort. We looked at the drive as an adventure in which we would be able stop and see things along the way. The Dos Ojos Cenotes near Tulum are beautiful so either stop on the way down or back up to Cancun (Swim suit and snorkel). The roads were in fantastic shape and very easy to navigate except the road off 186 to the resort. The road off 186 to the resort has lots and lots of pot holes. I made a game out of trying to not hit any pot holes. The drivers go crazy fast and will pass you at any time if you are slower. If someone comes up fast behind you pull over into what looks like the bike lane so that they can pass you. You will run into many Topos(speed bumps) along the way and they are sometimes not easy to see. We flew over one! Do not buy from the vendors near the topos you’ll never know what you are getting. Most places take both Pecos and dollars but not all so get Pecos. We had no issues with National Car Rental but we did go full boat on the coverage (as you should do) so it was a bit expensive.
The resort is so beautiful and fits so well into the landscape. Large thatch roofs with fantastic views from every direction of the jungle. Someone is always there to welcome you or to address any concern. They take your luggage and car so you have no worries about parking or logistics. You are greeted with a fresh juice and a soft seat. They run over things related to resort and the activities they have planned for you (All normal activities are free…yes free and awesome). They personally walk you to your hut and show all the features of hut. Most all the employees speak some English but that does sometimes prevent complete understanding from both parties, so make sure they understood what you asking for. The staff at every level and position treats you like royalty. The wait and bus staff in the restaurant are warm, inviting and responsive, in fact they will likely become a friend and you will miss them as soon as you leave. Everything is always very clean and comfortable. Our cabana was a great size with a very large shower and bathroom.
The activities of the ruins, kayaking and others were in a word “Super”. They take care of everything and plan everything to the smallest detail. The guides answered every question and made sure everyone was happy. The area is so beautiful and without these activities I would not have known how beautiful and bountiful the land truly is. We made so many wonderful friends on this trip because of these activities. We will be back and back and back and we have a friend in Mexico called Explorean Kohunlich.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Doclane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 28 April 2014

Dear Doclane

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2014

Truly enjoyed our one week stay March 2014. Loved the tours/activities and the fact that there were no TV's or Internet. Although hard to imagine….emprace it! I went with my husband and we bought a 'Go Pro' camera before we took off (SO glad we did!). We had a great time exploring this isolated area. Food was fantastic and all the staff was great! Do NOT hesitate to head down here. We rented a car from Cancun (drive took approx 3.5 hours so be prepared!) it's a straight shot with NO issues, so please don't have any reservation in doing so. It's one main highway so there is no getting lost. Just follow the signs to Kohunlinch and you will turn down this LOOOONG path (seemed like forever) you start to think there's no way there could possibly be a resort down this long road…but there most certainly is. This is a trip of a lifetime and only inspired us to take more fun adventures!!

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Ilyana8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 4 April 2014

Dear Ilyana8

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2014

We went to The Explorean on October 2012 and now again in March 2014.. We like the hotel because it has a set of interesting and enjoyable activities that makes you forget your daily troubles. The hotel is all included, and today the hotel´s activity may consist that the hotel´s guides may take to you to visit some Mayan ruins (Kohunlich, Dzibanché or Kinichná) or they can take you to go kayacking in some lagoon (Chakambakam, Bacalar or Xul Ha).
The hotel has also offers private tours, which we took in 2012 to the archeological ruins of Becan, Xpujil or Oxtanka (which we have taken). Other options may include a visit to the beach of Majahual (March 2014)

For me the most important advantage of The Explorean is that this hotel combines ecotourim with cultural or archeological tourism. In the area there are many Mayan ruins and many protected natural reserves that are worth visiting.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Javier_Morales_01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 28 March 2014
Google Translation

Estimado Javier_Morales_01

Para nosotros ha sido un verdadero gusto poder haber sido participe de esta aventura en la selva llena de msitisismo y de lugares asombrosos.

Será un placer poder tenerlo de vuelta en esta su casa.

De antemano agradecemos sus comentarios y quedamos plenamente a sus ordenes.

Saludos

Enrique Moreno
TheExploreanKohunlich

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Reviewed 18 March 2014

This all-inclusive resort is a truly unique experience. You are in the middle of the jungle. The excursions are high energy and fun - biking to ruins and through the jungle, kayaking, swimming in a lagoon, repelling. Get ready! The food is excellent and always available. The staff is committed to service.

Room Tip: PIck a bungalow close to the main area
See more room tips
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank KingWillATL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 21 March 2014

Dear KingWillATL

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 February 2014

Small resort was just what we wanted, perfect for a unique getaway. Staff was great and accommodated our adventurous needs. Rooms are perfect and right next to the wild life.

A bit of a drive from Cancun but that was part of the adventure and gives you time to hit up places along the way.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank to_Icarus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrique M, Director General at The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana, responded to this reviewResponded 15 February 2014

Dear Caleb R

On behalf of all our staff we want to thank you for choosing The Explorean Kohunlich for your recent Vacations, It has been a pleasure to serve you during this trip to our wonderful Mayan Jungle.

We are looking forward to seeing you in your next trip to the Mayan World.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for your future holidays, we will more than happy to host you again.

Best Regards!

Enrique Moreno
General Manager
The Explorean Kohunlich

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana

Address: Km 5.6 Chetumal Road | Escarcega, Chetumal 77981, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Chetumal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 20 Hotels in Chetumal
Price Range: £171 - £400 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Explorean Kohunlich by Fiesta Americana 3.5*
Number of rooms: 40
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Also Known As:
Explorean Kohunlich Hotel Chetumal
Explorean Kohunlich Chetumal

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