Cozumel is one of those ports that there's just so many places you can go and experience something different each time (beach-wise).
With all my research in the past and going here so many times, I had always wanted to head over to Paradise. It seems like a lot of people like this place and it seems perfect for us. We knew we didn't want anything that had an admission price OR an AI this time around.
HOWEVER, there was also another place that I had checked out a long time ago...Playa Palancar. I had it saved in a folder, with pictures, on my computer. I have to admit, the MAIN reason I have always wanted to go there was the pictures of the peacocks I have seen people post online before. I KNEW Sakari would just love this. She has a feddish for Peacocks and has me buy Peacock feathers for her when we go to the craft store. So this is where we decided to head this time around. I will save Paradise for our next visit.
After our bags were checked "for fruit" by the port, we made it out of the port compound and off we went in the taxi van with just the 3 of us.
It took 30 minutes to get there from Punta Langosta. I watched us pass all the beach clubs and the hubby and I was joking all the way there. Chankanaab-been there. Playa Mia-been there, Mr Sanchos-been there, Nachi Cocom-been there LOL "Do you see any we haven't been to yet?" LOL
We turned off the main road and onto a bumpy dirt road headed toward the beach.
We arrived and headed in. This place is like Mr Sanchos. Someone slaps a sombreo on your head and has you pose multiple ways and takes your picture.
At the beach, someone greeted us and tried to give us a table and chairs as we walk in. No thanks. I don't want to be in the most crowded area and it was an area that was back away from the water...which makes it hard to get to Sakari if needed. We walked on down and he followed...probably to his "line" and then another person took over. We picked out our spot that was first in line with the water and that's where we would stay all day.
Everyone knows what the first thing Sakari does...head to the beach. We can't even get our things put down before she's stripped and running to the water. It would be the very first time she would get to try out her Mermaid tail and she was ready. I was not.
I told her she HAD to wait on me. That meant me settling in first and then getting use to the water.
Once I was use to the water, I had her try out just the monofin. She did really well. So, it was time for the full blown morph into a mermaid time.
She put her outfit on and posed for daddy where he would post on his social media site that we found the happiest little mermaid in Cozumel.
This is where she would remain the ENTIRE day. Swimming back and forth all day. We would have to drag her out. She's such a fish...I mean Mermaid.
So now I will give you a tour of this place.
The water was so pretty and pretty shallow too for the most part.
There are people that do massages here as well.
I have to tell you, this area right behind the beach is so beautiful. It would be the place I would have hung out at if I didn't have a kid that won't get out of the water. Simply beautiful. It was kind of weird that there wasn't really many people back in there. I think maybe 3 people with chairs??
There was a bathroom area toward the back. It wasn't the best, but it would do. There's one thing I have noticed while in the Caribbean, you can't expect super clean perfect restrooms. You will find broken tiles, sometimes a mess, broken doors and so on it seems where ever I go. Just the feeling of walking in a restroom and sand being on the floor reminds me of some beach here at home at the park. Icky. So, I really don't pay attention anymore. If there's a place to potty, I'm fine with that. This place was decent. I took a picture of the back side of the restroom area too. lol
Walking out of the restroom and toward the main building (which is what you'll see when you first come in).
They do have a place to rent water stuff...I didn't get any pricing since I bring my own.
I took a picture of the area when you first come in. It's the area they wanted to find us a table at. I don't want to have to play superman and fly over that wall to watch my kid in the water to get down to the beach.
A few pictures looking down the beach. There was an area had a sign saying only people doing water sports could go in it. They had jet skiis for rent, but I seen the guys that worked there riding people around and just in this square area. Not my kind fun if I can't drive it myself and go more than just a beach area.
Then I turned around and headed more toward the area we were staying at. As I was walking to the bathroom, I ran across this guy (an iguana). He obviously lost a battle in his day and was missing part of his tail.
There was a shell tree (I actually think this was located on the property next door. I don't know, maybe because it said Private Property Do Not Enter or something like that...No hablo Ingles)
As you can see, there is a bit of a drop right at the sand on the beach. So those that have mobility problems, this might or might not be an issue.
They do have some lounge chairs that have thick cushions on them with the umbrella over top lined along the beach. However, if you want to use those, they are $10. We decided the table and chairs was just fine for us.
Immediately after getting there, they handed us a menu. I felt like I had just ate breakfast and wasn't even the slightest bit hungry. The hubby said he was going to order a drink so that they didn't think we were just sitting there for free. He ordered a Modelo and I had a Coke Light. They had a LARGE Modelo for $6.00 and the regular is $3.50. So hubby said he wanted the large and save $1.00. They told him they were out. So small it was for him (and it was a can). My pop was 2.50. If I was a beer drinker, I would have opted for a beer for the extra $1 I guess.
Sakari the mermaid was out swimming and man, I have to tell you, she is DARN GOOD at swimming like a mermaid. She has been practicing this move for 2 years now and she has it right! She did so well.
Quite honestly, I think this mono fin helped her swim even better. She's a good swimmer and can swim with regular fins, but she just knows how to put her legs together and move the flowing way to make herself go really fast. I went out with her and she actually took off from me! I didn't have my fins with me and thought I could keep up with her...not.
Most of the time my view of her consisted of bubbles from her fin passing me up. She was wearing me out. This newly turned 50 year old had to take a break and get another ice cold drink. Sakari continued to swim.
I decided to head to the bathroom and along the way I found some interesting things. I had to go back and drag Sakari out of the water.
Now before we went to this beach, I had told her we are going to a beach with a huge surprise. I told her I wasn't allowed to tell her what it was.
So, by telling her I found the surprise and jumping up and down like a fool to get her all excited to come out of the water, she came out, morphed into a human and ran with me.
"Now mommy, you know these are the girl peacocks. You can tell by their color and only the boy peacocks have the really long green and blue feathers."
They were everywhere around the entrance at this point. But no boy peacocks.
She was so excited that she got to see peacocks and AT THE BEACH!!! She said she wished they had a boy one, but she was still happy.
We came back to the table and decided we had worked up an appetite and checked out the menu.
I just noticed it said "WE DON'T ACCEPT CREDIT CARDS, CASH ONLY" so if you ever plan on going here, keep this in mind.
The waiter kept pointing out "Dis US, Dis Peso" over and over throughout the day. I'm not sure why. I can read...LOL But he would continue to say it every time.
Sakari got her a cheeseburger and fries. The hubby ordered fajitas and I always opt for something that has a little bit of everything on it. I'm having an issue finding a picture of it and will have to check my computer again. I always take a picture of our food. I'll look for it later.
I was unable to find any pictures of our food. I can't believe it. I always take a picture. Weird. I do know that I ran out of space on my disc, so maybe I deleted by mistake. Oh well. Just know that the food was definitely yummy and I ate it all and so did the hubby. Sakari ate about half of her cheeseburger and had to get back to the water before she turned into a human.
I have to say, she was drawing quite a crowd by now. Everyone was talking and coming down to see the mermaid. Several people took pictures and had their kids take pictures with her. Now normally I would think twice about allowing people to take a picture of my child. However, she's already plastered all over here, so...I guess no harm. She is recognized every where she goes already. LOL
We took a picture of us, since it doesn't happen often and I honestly hate having my picture taken.
***I have to talk about something else here first before I go on*** For Christmas Kendra's finance got me the absolute BEST present a mother in law could ask for...like seriously. He knows me so well and he ended up getting me a snorkeling mask with a built in camera. I could not wait to try this thing out. Prior to leaving, my son Kolin, read over the directions and found that the camera had 4 settings. For each setting, it would flash a certain color from red, blue, green and purple. The color of the light indicates what setting you have it on. Now he went over this with me and explained to me what each color did. I have to admit, I was busy putting the batteries in the camera and trying to figure out how to turn it on that I didn't pay as close attention as I should have. I couldn't even figure out how to turn this thing on...how was I going to learn to operate it? He took it from me and looked around, hitting buttons, then figured out how to turn it on. Sigh. In my defense, it wasn't a button that it took to turn it on and also I didn't have the manual in my hand either...even though he said he didn't read anything about how to turn it on in the manual. He was busy learning the colors. LOL
I was excited to be able to try this new set of goggles out on this cruise. Sakari got to try her mermaid tail here at Palancar and I got to try my goggles here for the first time.
Since I had decided to not pay attention, I turned the camera on and headed out to the water. Honestly, there's not much snorkeling here at all. There's a spot out just a little ways that had a bunch of fish hanging out but it was nothing more than some concrete and steel in the water that they had made a home out of.
So the following VIDEO is what you will see here snorkeling...
I really wanted to see more than this snorkeling, but I guess you had to head out on a boat or tour. It was really hard fighting the waves all the way out toward the buoys they had set up. It would pull you on down the beach. So, I decided to walk down the beach to the end (by the rental center) and go out then drift back down. This provided to be a waste of time and there wasn't anything to see.
However, it provided to be a learning experience. I thought I was taking pictures the entire time. When I would get back to our room and insert the disc to convert on my computer, I found that they were ALL vidoes. LOL Oops. I guess I need more practice. No worries, there's another beach port day coming up tomorrow.
Now there is something I do have to mention about this place. There are some drawbacks to the water. I would say about the first 15 feet out, it's nothing but rocks, crushed coral and shells. It's VERY hard to get out in the water unless you have shoes on and even then, it can be tricky. Like this stuff seriously hurt your feet. I accidentally took a video of Sakari and I "shell hunting" right at the surface. I didn't even know the camera was one, but it provides a perfect look at what you'll see along the shoreline when trying to get into the water. Ouchie!
Sakari ended up finding a friend, who couldn't speak English, and Sakari would end up calling this little girl "Amigo" then entire time. They were cute playing, trying to communicate and swimming together. She always managed to pick someone that speaks Spanish...once again, another reason I need to learn Spanish more fluently and teach her. I do constantly speak what I do know to her and teach her things. Other things she has managed to learn off watching Dora. LOL
We decided to pack up around 4:30pm. Our all aboard wasn't until 6:30pm, however Palancar closed at 5pm. So, we flagged down our waiter and ask for our bill. I had been keeping track (using my "notes" on my phone) of everything we spent.
The lady that had taken our picture when we first arrived had came around twice asking if we wanted to buy it. She was charging $12 for the picture and they turned out quite cute. Had I known that this place does this, I would factored in the cost for this. However, I didn't and didn't have the "extra" money with me to buy them. She, of course, reduced the price to $10 and told us she was leaving. I really wish I could have bought them. But, if I did, I don't think either our waiter or our cabbie would have been too happy with us.
Our waiter brought our bill to us. Once again he kept pointing out (several times) US dollars versus Pesos. Now our drinks and food for the day totaled $42.50. When he presented our bill it said $51. The hubby ask him several times if this was for the food and drinks total or if it included a tip. He replied both times that tip included. This totally confused me, but ok, whatever.
We gathered our things and headed toward the front to find a cab but got distracted by this sound. Sakari yells "It's a male peacock calling sound". Um ok, I know she watches a lot of Animal Planet and Netflix with animals movies (she's currently watching one now) but ok. If she says it's a male peacock, then it probably is. We went hunting.
We found this...
He was beautiful and hanging out with his girls. Sakari was so excited to finally see the male peacock, in the wild, at the beach. What are the chances???
It was now 5pm and I don't think there was anyone left here. Oops. I told the fam we needed to go before we got left behind.
We started walking out and the peacock did too. LOL
We made it to the entrance and there were 4 other people that were getting in a van and they told us to come on and share the ride. They were Spanish speaking (of course...just my luck) and the cab driver spoke Spanish with them all the way to their pier. After dropping them off, I think he came to the conclusion that we did not speak Spanish since we didn't join in on the conversation. LOL
So he was real informative and we talked all the way to our port. He told us that when you are growing up in Cozumel, at school it is mandatory to learn both Spanish and English. I thought that was pretty neat and didn't realize that. He did tell us that he dropped out of school in Jr high and minimum wage is $4/hr. He stated that a nurse is employed by the government and they only work 8 hours a day and make good money since it was not subject to minimum wage and was paid by the government. Then he stated that a lot of the nurses would do private nursing after hours and make a lot of money. I also ask him about the rumor that I have read several times about the 3 strikes you're out on Cozumel. This rumor is that the locals have to respect the visitors and not do anything wrong or you will get a strike. After the 3rd strike, you are put on a boat and shipped off the island...forever. I also ask about (Southwest) flying into Cancun and how to get to Cozumel to stay for a week. He stated it was 1 hour ride to Playa Del Carmen to catch the ferry over to Cozumel. Then it was a 1 hour ferry ride from Playa Del Carmen to Cozumel. He was a great conversationalist and we enjoyed our ride.
I really enjoyed this place and thought it was pretty. Of course my main reason for going here was because of the Peacocks and I knew that Sakari would love this...and she did.
There wasn't much to see here in the water...so this isn't a snorkeling place and you would probably have to go out in a boat to some place. But it was a nice place to just hang out at and kind of unique due to the peacocks. I mean how many times can you say you hung out at a beach in the Caribbean with the peacocks?
It's also a plus that there's no admission price to get in here and you just purchase what you want to buy as you go.
The food was good and we enjoyed ourselves and we can now mark this off of our "done" list.
Yes, I would recommend this place to others for a relaxed day at the beach. It's a little further down than most of the normal beaches which equals to less of a crowd.