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Cabana Beach and scuba diving


HappyTexan44
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We just got back from our cruise and the Cabana Beach was the highlight.   I told daughter to soak up the luxury because we aren't likely to experience that again.   

For those that don't know, Cabana Beach is inside the Chank. area.   When you reserve the cabana the entrance fee for Chank. is included.   The prices still seem to be the lockdown prices, so it wasn't that much more to reserve the cabana.    If you are thinking about going here, I'd reserve now.  

We picked #10 which is one of the VIP ones.   We'd needed it because we originally had 8 people and the regular ones only allowed 6.   Even if you have 6 or less, if you have introverts in the group, I recommend getting a VIP one.  The area designated for just us was so much bigger.   We had the cabana and a hammock, which I think all cabanas get.   Then we also had a big day bed and a smaller day bed.   #10 was closest VIP to the rest of Chank, and that was nice.  They had nice towels for our use.

 

Food and drink prices were about what you would expect for a beach vacation where they brought the stuff to you.  We didn't eat that much, but it was good.  

 

The snorkeling near the cabanas was interesting.  I liked the stair entry.   You could sit on the stair and get your flippers on.  


We saw the free Sea Lion show, that was cute.    People lined up for photos with a sealion that they'd prepaid for, and it didn't seem worthwhile to me.   

 

On the way back from the Sea Lion show, I stopped at a scuba shop to ask about diving.  I'd looked into booking ahead but the prices included Chank admission, which we already had.   The first guy said $55 for a Discovery dive for the teens and $40 for me since I'm certified.    The max depth is 20', so a good beginner dive.  The next booth saw that I talked to the previous booth, so they offered me a better deal which was the same price but included photos.   That seemed good, so I told them we'd be back.  The third booth called me over and they offered $40 for each regardless, when I said that the last guy included photos he made a face and included that.  There was a fourth booth, but I didn't think I would get a better deal, and they didn't try to tempt me.  That was a bit of fun.  The max number of ships were in port and this was around 1pm.  One the FB rollcall people were talking about being unable to get beach reservations anywhere.   


So, I got the girls and they took care of the equipment.   One of the girls only had a face mask and had never been snorkeling, but that wasn't a problem.  Manuel was our dive guide and he took just us, which seemed to be the norm.  He did a good job on instructing the girls on what they needed to know for diving.   Daughter and I had been snuba diving on a recent trip.   This Discovery Dive was even easier since we didn't need to worry about the hose.  

 

They have a statue of Christ and another of the Virgin.   He took us to both those and pointed out a bunch of sea creatures: lobster, eel, stone fish, baby stingray.   He took a ton of photos.   Then if you are doing good and want to, he'll take you through the little cave-ish thing that beach has.   There was also a place where we went from salt to fresh water.   I am really pleased with the job he did.   

 

The only snag was with me.   They needed to use Facebook messenger to get the dive photos to me, and I had my phone but since I'd never used Facebook on it, it wouldn't let me in.   Fortunately, the other mom was able to get the photos.    

I'll upload some photos I took next.  

 

Oh, I forgot to mention.   To arrive you have to come in through the main entrance, but to leave they order a taxi to the back entrance.  

 

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18 minutes ago, HappyTexan44 said:

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Good to hear a recent update and that you enjoyed your day. Prices have certainly been steadily rising again since lockdown but probably better value for a bigger group for a group.
 

I understood they were taking you by golf cart now from the main entrance. Did they not offer that to you?
 

Some people may need to know if  it is on request as it is a long walk for those with mobility issues since they stopped dropping off at back entrance.

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They didn't offer that, and we didn't ask.   For us, we didn't mind the stroll.   

 

The other parents with us are going on another cruise in a few months and they will get a cabana for just the two of them if they can.   

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23 hours ago, HappyTexan44 said:

They didn't offer that, and we didn't ask.   For us, we didn't mind the stroll.   

 

The other parents with us are going on another cruise in a few months and they will get a cabana for just the two of them if they can.   


I realize you did not have mobility issues but it is an important factor for some people that they need to know. It has been a subject of concern in several reviews since it was changed. 
 

Seems like there is plenty of vacancies on most days over the next few months so it shouldn’t be a problem for your friends. I still feel it is better value per person for a larger group, $60 pp just for a cabana is a high price on Cozumel when there are only two people but you are correct they haven’t reached their original prices pre-Covid, but then they used to include more so they have changed their model. 
 

Although entrance to Chankanaab is included in pre-payment, (extra to the cabana rate) it is a discounted rate and does not allow access to the pool and maybe other amenities which may also be important to some that don’t want to snorkel.

 

Do you recall what the taxi fare was? I understand the fares have increased recently although I am not sure that it is an official increase. The official site seems to be down so perhaps it is in the works.

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1 hour ago, c-leg5 said:

Do you recall what the taxi fare was? I understand the fares have increased recently although I am not sure that it is an official increase. The official site seems to be down so perhaps it is in the works.


It was $30 for the 6 of us.   There were two prices depending on how many people there were.  So it would have been $30 for up to 8 people.   The lower price was $15 or $20 and I think up to 4 people.  
On the way to the Cabanas we were squished in a minivan and the way back we had a full-size van.   


 

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20 hours ago, HappyTexan44 said:


It was $30 for the 6 of us.   There were two prices depending on how many people there were.  So it would have been $30 for up to 8 people.   The lower price was $15 or $20 and I think up to 4 people.  
On the way to the Cabanas we were squished in a minivan and the way back we had a full-size van.   


 

Thanks, that’s certainly higher.

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21 hours ago, pr8hd said:

What was the rental price for SCUBA gear?

.

Would I be correct to assume $40 is for a one-tank/single dive?

 

That was included.   It was a one-tank dive which lasted a little less than an hour.  One of the teens just had a face mask and nothing else.   Manuel at Booth#7, our guide, took a TON of photos.   

I don't know that there was enough to see for a two-tank dive.   Unless I guess you just like hanging out underwater looking at the prettiness, which I can get behind.   But, since we had non certified, I assume they HAD to be with us.  
 

Also, he charged extra for using the credit card.   I was feeling stupid for not grabbing more cash, and it was so much cheaper than I expected that I didn't fuss.    Then at the end he'd done such a good job taking care of the girls that I'd sent DH to get a $20 to tip Manuel.  

 

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20 minutes ago, my4gals said:

What else in the park is not included with the cabana rental and per person fee?  I didn't realize the swimming pool was not included.


This was the reply I had some time ago from Chankanaab. As I understood it only those with *, included the pool otherwise I think there may be an additional fee. It has always been a grey area with some people using it no problem and others not.
 

You would need to verify directly with Cabana Beach what is and is not included and perhaps post the answer. I know people have been questioned trying to use the pool in the past that have paid for entrance with scuba/scuba which also has discounted entrance included. I am not sure if you get different colored wrist bands that are indicative of your package.

 

Thanks for your e-mail.
You can get information about our Parks and purchase Entrance tickets at www.cozumelparks.com The tickets are valid for one year from the service date, and are transferable, but not refundable. Or you can pay directly at the Ticket booth when you arrive at the Park (Schedule and fares attached).
In "Chankanaab Park" (Map attached) you have included the use of the general services and facilities: Parking lot, Beach area, Palapas, Beach chairs, Loungers, Hammocks, Life-jackets, Area for swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, Bathrooms, Showers, Mayan house & kitchen, Garden with prehispanic replicas, Tequila tasting, Sea lions show.
NOT INCLUDED: Restaurants, Bars, meals, drinks, snorkel gear, services, or activities from the concessions.
However, at "Chankanaab Park" there are Concessions for optional activities or add-ons, following you will find the list. Please let me know if you are interested in some of those activities. I will provide you with the contact to get all the information and confirm your reservations, which you must do as soon as possible to guarantee your spaces. 
Do not purchase tickets online if interested in the add-ons because some include the entries.
  • Dolphin Encounter / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, and Domestic open bar INCLUDED! *
  • Swim with Dolphins / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, and Domestic open bar INCLUDED!*
  • Dolphin Royal Swim / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, and Domestic open bar INCLUDED!*
  • Manatee Encounter / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, and Domestic open bar INCLUDED! *
  • Sea lion Interaction / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, and Domestic open bar INCLUDED! *
    *Also includes an exclusive area: Swimming pool (the only one in the park), Wet bar, lockers, parasol, beach chairs & loungers.
  • Snuba (combination between snorkel and scuba)
  • Seatrek (scuba like the old divers, walking at the bottom, with a helmet to breathe)
  • Scuba Diving (introduction or certified)
  • Snorkel package / Entrance fee, Buffet lunch, drinks, and amenities INCLUDED!  
  • Massages
  • Private Cabanas
Help us conserve nature by using only Biodegradable and coral-friendly Sunblock. In the Chankanaab Park, it is NOT ALLOWED:
  • Smoking 
  • Drones
  • Pets
  • Regular Sunblock 
  • Introduce coolers, food, drinks
  • Feed wild animals, birds, iguanas, raccoons
Please don't hesitate to let me know of any other information or help you may need.
Edited by c-leg5
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If I were interested in the pool, I wouldn't get a cabana.   I'd just claim a chair by the pool.   

 

I've been thinking about this and I think one of the things we really liked about the cabanas was that it felt like we had the beach to ourselves.  Since we are all introverts that was a welcome mental break.  They have plants between the cabanas so you don't really notice the other ones.  

 

We had to go to the bathroom when we were near the sea lion show.   As I walked into the Chank. bathrooms a woman leaving said, "Only one of the toilets has paper."  The first one I looked at had paper, but no toilet seat.   Although someone  came by to clean while I was in there.  

We originally reserved for 8 people in a VIP cabana, plus a one-hour massage and that totalled  $320.  


 

 

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1 hour ago, HappyTexan44 said:

If I were interested in the pool, I wouldn't get a cabana.   I'd just claim a chair by the pool. 


I agree if I was paying the price of a cabana on a cruise ship day that would be my main focus. However some groups with kids may like the use of a pool. The time is limited enough on a ship day which is unfortunate because there are lot of things to see and do at Chankanaab. 
 

It is unfortunate in some ways that it is attached to the park and you have to pay admission in addition. It would be nice if it was a stand alone entity.
 

 

Edited by c-leg5
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  • 2 months later...
1 hour ago, bigal3967 said:

How far of a walk is it from the entrance to the cabanas?  Do you have to walk thru the entire park to get there?


Yes. It is at the far end. Originally you were allowed in the back entrance which I think you can still leave from. You can see the location on the park map.
 

It is a long walk for some people. I understand you can get a golf cart ride. I am not sure if you need to request this. Probably best to ask direct with cabana beach if you are interested.

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