Costa Maya Shore Excursion: Chacchoben Day Trip - Reviews

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mlj9290

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

Great tour! We went directly from our cruise ship and had no trouble finding the pickup spot. The guide gave us lots of interesting historical information about the ruins and walked us around the site at a leisurely pace, we had plenty of time to take pictures and ask questions.

Paul C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

Aaron drove. And he drove very well. Roberto provided commentary. But what commentary! If you asked a question, you had to prepare yourself for an answer that would comprise the better part of a week at college. We have seldom, if ever, found a more prepared tour guide. His command of the material, the scope of his knowledge, and the manner in which he illustrated his answers on a scratch pad was absolutely amazing. And, on the return, we stopped at a roadside stand and Roberto provided each of us with a plastic bag containing fresh pineapple slices. Yummy!

What you see of Chacchoben is smaller than Chichen Itza or Kohunlich as we remember them but none-the-less quite interesting. There were adequate places to sit while Roberto explained things and that was greatly appreciated by this 82-year-old. The rain held off for the bulk of the actual tour but was intermittent during the drives to and from the site. But at our return, it turned into a gully-washer and we had to walk from the excursion company to the ship in a driving rain, arriving at our cabin completely soaked. The device, that's supposed to be available to carry passengers to and from the ship is always going the wrong way slowly, is completely useless, and the pier is the longest we've ever endured. And the facility, at the end of the pier, is arranged so that you have to walk past the maximum number of shops. At one point, there is a shortcut that is very convenient. However, there's a junker of a truck parked diagonally in the space so that you cannot get around it and you have to walk another quarter of a mile conveniently passing fifteen or twenty more shops to get to where you're going. The exit, from this facility, is not easy to find but, once you've found it, the tour company office is quite nearby. This arrangement is nothing over which Viator has any control, obviously. Still, it dramatically affects your enjoyment of a tour, particularly when you arrive at the ship's entrance with a stream of water running down your back. But, as a bonus, I found that my Canon 7D, Mark II, camera was, indeed, waterproof! In short, we loved the tour. But we hated the process of getting to and from it.

Yanki A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

The guide was excellent and so the tour. We really enjoyed it.

Liz B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

Excellent tour, our tour guide Gustavo was really knowledgeable and made our trip very enjoyable. If you are making a stop in Costa Maya, I definitely recommend this tour.

Ronald W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

well worth the cost. robertoguide was very good and made the trip more interesting and personal. highly recommend. got back to the dock in time for boarding. only problem was the need for better guidance to tour office. avenue out of port area leads to street with divider in the center. you need to go on the left side of this divided street. costa maya tour people in the port area directed us to the end of the divided street and then left,which was incorrect.

tbteravest

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

Fantastic Trip! Juan Carlos was very knowledgeable! He even stopped and bought us fresh pineapple to try. Plenty of time to enjoy ruins and make it back to ship without any issues. Highly recommend!

Nicole L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2018

We had a wonderful time on this tour despite a bus wreck that delayed our return to the ship by hours. Juan Carlos was a wonderful and knowledgeable guide, we received much more information about the Mayan culture than friends of ours that took the ship's excursion. We also had more time to explore the ruins. Juan Carlos had organic Chic-lets for us to try after showing us a Chic-let tree and telling us the history of the gum and how it came to America. On the way back to the ship we were treated to a roadside stop with fresh pineapple with a smoked chili powder that was amazing. Arron was our driver and he did a wonderful job of handling a difficult situation and keeping us safe. On the way back to the ship they received news that there had been a bus wreck on the only road in and out of the port. After finding out that the road could have been closed up to 5:00, Juan Carlos and Arron set about getting the information needed to re-assuring us that the ship would indeed wait for all buses and tours to arrive back at port, they then took us to a small market to use the facilities and when it became over crowded with other waiting buses I was so thankful to find our friends among those other buses they took us to a smaller town down the road to another smaller Mayan ruin that we actually got to climb. Juan Carlos was in the process of translating food orders at a local restaurant for us when the road opened up. The bus wreck was a terrible tragedy, including multiple deaths and injuries, but I appreciated how Juan Carlos and Arron kept their heads and even though distressed for their fellows, they gave us the exact amount of information we needed to soothe our worries without sharing details that were distressing and frankly none of our business. Going so far as to kindly warn us to avert our eyes if we needed to before we came upon the still active wreckage site. I have family members that will be visiting Costa Maya in June and I will absolutely make sure they book Juan Carlos for this tour.

jenacc

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Great tour with Roberto. We stopped at a butterfly preserve on the way which was beautiful. The tour of Chacchoben was informative and the structures are amazing. This is a great tour.

Ankur R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Amazing Tour of the Ruins. Skip the overpriced Shore excursions from Cruise Ships and book through VIATOR. Roberto was absolutely fantastic and his knowledge and passion of the Mayan Culture was evident from the first conversation. The tour location was very easy to find and the transportation was in a comfortable van. Soda and water was also provided. Ruins are about 40 min and includes a stop at a butterfly conservatory. 5 stars all the way.
TIP: You can also add a beach stop after the ruins.

Paul D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Juan Carlos and Aaron are a great team and made the tour very informative and interesting. Unfortunately there was a very bad traffic accident while we were at the Chacchoben ruins that held up our return for about 3 hours and we were well taken care of by our crew. They took us to another lesser site with Mayan ruins to wait out the reopening of the road for our return to the port. It ended up being a much longer day than we had planned but everyone on our bus van with 12 passengers agreed that we were very well looked after by Juan Carlos and Aaron.

vantoadio

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Juan Carlos is a fabulous tour guide! His English is fluent with little accent so we could keep up with all the amazing facts about the Mayan civilization. He made this trip interesting for my teenagers not an easy thing to do. I am so glad we took this tour!! the hospitality of the Mayan Trips company with drinks, safe and comfortable van ride, and waiting patiently not only for us who got lost but another group that was late as well.

viator1

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

My family including three 19 and 20 year old kids, had a wonderful time on our trip to Chacchoben. We can't say enough nice things about our tour guide, Juan Carlos. On our drive to the ruins, Juan Carlos shared the history of the nearby town and began to share his extensive knowledge of the ruins. While at the ruins, we explored the site learning about the history of the people that built the structure. It was truly fascinating visit made extra special by a wonderful guide.

Our driver, Louis, shuttled us to the site roughly 45 minutes from the port. He was a very safe driver and made us feel comfortable. We were in a late model Toyota van with another family. The welcomed air conditioning worked great.

On the way to the ruins, we stopped at a small butterfly farm for about 15 minutes. The information that was shared was interesting. While they did have a tip jar to help fund their activities, we didn't feel pressured to donate although we did decide to leave a small donation.

The icing on the cake for the tour was our quick stop for freshly picked pineapple at a small town on the way locally famous for pineapples

Richard S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Our whole group really enjoyed this tour the van ride was great in a new van with the air conditioning that worked in a seat for everybody didnt feel packed in there at all took about one hour to get to ruins our guide Carlos was excellent during the tour answered all my questions and his English was impeccable very knowledgeable

Samuel G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

This tour was absolutely excellent. One thing I would recommend is clearer directions to get to the tour operator. It is true that they are a block outside of the port gate. What is not clear until you get there, however, is the size of the port and how long of a walk it is to get off of the pier and to the gate. We were a few minutes late - luckily, the tour operator was sitting on the sidewalk with our name on a whiteboard. We signed in and got going. The tour was conducted in a late model Toyota van in very good shape. There was a driver and a guide in the front seat, and seven of us tourists in the van. It was much better than some of the larger bus tours and allowed for a more intimate and educational experience with our guide. The guide, JC, was absolutely fantastic. He spend the entire 45 minute ride to the ruins explaining to us the Mayan culture and their customs. In addition, he taught us how to interpret the Mayan calendar and their entire numeric system. Once at the ruins, JC guided us away from the crowds and to the smaller ruins in the back first. While there, we were entertained by a family of monkeys in the trees remember, you are actually in the jungle. We circled back to the larger ruins in the front once the larger tour crowds departed. The ruins themselves are impressive, as are the large mounds of unexcavated ruins we encountered throughout the tour. This is an entire city in the jungle that will be an excavation site for years to come. The tour operator provided complimentary soft drinks in the van, and even stopped to purchase pineapple slices for us on the roadside on the way back. I cannot thank JC and the tour company enough for a fantastic day. I would give it 6 stars if the site would allow.

Wayne T P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Very informative. Fascinating. Our guide kept it moving, without bogging down on unnecessary details. But answered everybody's interests.

Trevor P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

We very seldom book excursions outside of the cruise ship sponsored trips, but in this case we did.
At first we wondered as we had a little trouble finding the location outside the compound, but soon we were on our way in a very comfortable small bus. air conditioned as well. Our guide was Juan Carlos, and driver was Aaron Perez. What nice guys, Treated us like gold. Juan Carlos turned out to be a walking Mayan history book.He was absolutely fascinating. If you are taking this trip, ask for these two guys, They will make your day!

watsoncpa

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Our tour guide, Juan Carlos was very informative and passionate about the subject matter. Answered all our questions. Very entertaining and engaging. Driver was Luis and he did a great job as well
Vehicle was clean. They provided bottled water and we stoppped at a butterfly farm.

Dianne O E

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2017

Our tour leader, Juan Carlos was very informative and enthusiastic about both the Mayan ruins and the butterfly farm we went to afterward. Would definitely recommend this tour!

Carole V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

Wonderful experience. Staff was very friendly. Guide was very knowledgeable. Might skip the butterfly farm though. Cost is about half of what I would have paid with the ship. We were a group of 9. Van very comfortable. Driver even cleaned van while we were at ruins. It had gotten dirty at the butterfly farm since it has rained there the night before. Carole

Ckboerger

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

We were very glad we chose this tour. One of the reasons was it was short and 1 person had already been to other ruins. Even if we hadn't seen the actual ruins it was worth because of all of the information that Juan Carlos delivered!! Very interesting and he was so knowledgeable! Nice walking to the awesome sites and comfortable pace. Loved the small group!! He and the driver stopped for some fresh pineapple for us, too! Delicious!! This was the first time 2 of us had ever done a tour that was not a cruise ship tour, but I would now do it again!

Larry S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

This was a great tour given by a very informative guide. Daniel was knowledgeable and a very nice kind gentleman. He explained different things and answered questions for the 45 min ride to the Ruins. We even stopped for some fresh pineapple on the way back to town! I thought we would be herded into a big bus with 20 other people but to our surprise we were taken in a 9 person mini van with snacks, water and soda to drink. It was a very private tour and we were able to ask lots of questions. I highly recommend this tour if you have a small group!

Ardeth W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

Juan Carlos took great care of us. We were given water as soon as we arrived at the tour office and twice more during the tour. A stop at a butterfly farm was included. Very interesting. The tour at the ruins was great. On the way back, we stopped at a pineapple stand and had fresh pineapple. Viator exsursions are much better than ship excursions. Highly recommended.

joyceattaway

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

Our guide Juan Pablo made the short trip to the ruins interesting and informative by giving us a brief history of the Mayan people and an introduction to their calendar system. Once we arrived he was very patient with two of us that were mobility challenged, allowing us to proceed at our own pace. We never felt rushed. Having a small group of 8 helped, too. The pyramids were not as impressive as Chichin Itzel, but were impressive nonetheless. The more adventurous of us climbed one of them and got some excellent photos to share. The walk at the ruins was not strenuous at all, but people with mobility issues should be made aware that it is about a half mile walk from the cruise ship to the pick up spot for the van. Oh, and on the ride back our guide and driver treated to some fresh-picked pineapple! Delisioso!

Bill F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

Guide was very informative, friendly and funny. Would recommend to others.

Douglas S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2017

What a great excursion! Our guide was Gustavo and he did a wonderful job. His English was excellent and he was both very knowledgeable and accommodating of any requests. Our only challenge was navigating our way out of the shopping area at the cruise dock and to the location for pick up Once we made to and through the security gate we were fine.. The ruins were great and the crowds small. My wife and I shared a van with a mother and here two adult daughters from another cruise ship that was in port. Bottled water and sodas were provided. we purchased very inexpensive but very good food from local vendors at the ruins. On the return trip we stopped at a roadside stand that specialized in home made habanero based hot sauces that could be tasted and Gustavo stopped at another roadside stand and purchased a bag of fresh sliced pineapple for each guest. The was a great tour and a good value and would recommend it to any travelers stopping to visit in Costa Maya.

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