Mexico’s Costa Maya port sits on the country’s Caribbean side, just north of the border with Belize. Built specifically for cruisers, the port facilities include pools, a beach club, shopping, restaurants and bars. It’s a bit theme-park-esque, so unless you’ve already been to the surrounding attractions, head outside the port to see more of the Yucatan than another swim-up bar. Most popular are the Mayan ruins of Chacchoben; alternatively, stay closer to the port in the fishing village of Mahahual, a five-minute cab ride away.
The ruins are located 45 miles (75 km) northwest of Costa Maya (don’t confuse the ruins with the town of the same name, 9 miles (14 km) to the north). A shore excursion with port pickup is the most convenient way to get there; it’s about a one-hour ride.