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Dr. Alfredo Barrera Marin Botanical Garden
Ranked #8 of 28 things to do in Chetumal
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Attraction details
Owner description: One of the largest botanical gardens in Mexico, this attraction features wild orchids and a forest of cacti populated with wild deer, spider monkeys, parrots and other birds.
Reviewed 5 September 2012

I went with a group of people here and did some ecology field work. Such a diverse area with beautiful wildlife including spider monkeys! There are also a lot of bird species about which was wonderful. The people who run the place are extremely friendly and I would reccomend this place highly if you have an interest in wildlife.
The layout is great too and you can learn a lot about different species.

1  Thank luce l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 24 June 2012

This would be a great introduction to forest trees and ecology for those starting to explore the Yucatan natural environment. We know others have done pretty well birding here, but we were there in the mid-day lull of a quite warm, muggy day, so we didn't see too much. Many plants are labeled and a trail covers the whole preserve (you can do shorter loos). It's a bit expensive at 100 pesos each, but as a non-profit it helps support them.

3  Thank Tim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2012

I spent a beautiful morning exploring the gardens, visiting the melipona honey bees and taking pictures of spider monkeys. I appreciated being able to visit a patch of natural habitat in an area that is so highly developed. The staff were passionate about their jobs and enjoyed sharing their knowledge of local species. A great time.

2  Thank Shark_Girl_Anna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2012

There were no colorful flowers, no birds, no spider monkeys! The paths are broken by the 2005 Hurricane....well it is 2012, seven years later...Mr. Alfredo Barrera Marin, founder of the Botanical Garden, would be very disappointed to see how the place is being kept today. You as a tourist actually wonder: Where are the government dollars? What does the Mexican government do with the U$S 48.00 charged to every tourist leaving Mexico? Actually we were very surprised to read in a local newspaper that the government lady in charge of the Mexican Immigration-Migration Department has been investigated and charged with crimes against humanity, by the World Human Rights Organization! Shame on her! The Botanical Garden charges an entrance fee of $10 US dollars....at this point it is not worth it, they need lots of government involvement to improve the place back to its glory days, because it would be a very didactic place to bring children.

1  Thank Valijaslistas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 February 2012

Very few people know of this botanical garden, and as far as I could determine not one single Yucatan tourism operator knows of this attraction, or offers it as a tour.

But the site is known to some naturalists, especially botanists and birders. This is one of the largest Botanical Gardens in Mexico, and protects the only patch of forest between Cancun and Playa del Carmen.

Our group of 24 visited in mid-January 2012, on a private bus charter from Playa del Carmen. The drive took about 25 minutes. The entrance to the gardens is situated right on the main Cancun highway, just before the 320 km marker, if you are driving from the south. This is just south of the town of Puerto Morelos. If driving from the north the gardens are 1.5 km south of the Pemex gas station in Puerto Morelos. The entrance, on the east side of the highway, can be easy to miss, so watch carefully. Here is the location on a Google Map:


The gardens are open Monday through Saturday, 0800 - 1600. There is a $10 U.S. admission fee. If you wish a guided tour of the gardens the fee is $15.00 U.S.

There is a short trail with a good surface that leads to a short loop trail, and most of the garden's formal plantings are located along that route. There is a much longer, 4 km, rougher (but very walkable) loop trail that winds through forest and mangrove, and passes by a small Mayan site, and also two observation towers linked by a hanging bridge. The trails are almost always in the shade, so this is a fine site to visit on a hot day.

Some of the site's attractions also include Medicinal Plants, Epiphytes and Orchids (though winter is not the main flowering season), a traditional Mayan house, and a "Chiclero" camp where you can learn how Chicle was harvested to make chewing gum.

Spider Monkeys are resident in the area, as are many different bird and butterfly species. And there a many native plants.

There are washrooms near the entrance, and a small gift shop at the entrance hut.

The site was badly damaged in 2005 by Hurricane Wilma, so don't be distressed if some of the signs appear in rough shape.

As there is a mangrove nearby, the mosquitos can be troublesome, so bring some DEET repellent. There is some available at the entrance hut if you forgot yours.

Here are two useful web sites regarding the gardens. The first is in English, the second in Spanish.



Note that the second site has not been updated in some time. The times and fees given earlier in this review are up to date.

This site is NEVER crowded, and is worth the trouble it might take to visit it. We are glad we went. If you love nature, you will enjoy this site.

Blake, <http://blakemaybank.com>

for the Maritimes Travel Club

7  Thank Accentor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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