Here we went cave tubing and it was fun but not great. The drive out and back was fun with a lively and entertaining band of guides who kept telling us they were "just keeping it real for you". That seemed to be a trademark phrase. We hiked to the top of the river, carrying life jackets and tubes, then linked up in groups of about six to a guide. They seemed to hold us back to answer questions and show us cave formations, I assume the 45-minute trip could be done in a third the time if you were allowed to just float along. My only complaint here was that the headlamps provided were out of date and dim compared to the very bright LED lamps the NCL excursion had. They traveled in larger groups and had to wear hard hats which was amusing but without being able to see much the experience was lackluster overall. There were some "rapids" that required you to keep "Butts Up", another catch phrase of our tour guides (cave-tubing dot com).
At the ruins we had our own guide who was very knowledgeable and patient as I asked him many questions. The other groups seemed to be 40 or more people per guide so I was very glad to have booked privately. The ruins are interesting and some are mostly as they were found - overgrown and partly buried. There was a fair amount of climbing and hiking but nothing strenuous and with our own guide we moved at our own pace and lingered where we wanted. We booked this via the internet from costa maya tours dot com.
We missed NCL's private island, Great Stirrup Cay due to rough seas and had to lounge on deck instead, until even that got too chilly. I don't mind days at sea so I wasn't as disappointed as my wife.
We were greeted by dancers in island costume who danced as the ship docked. We walked past the main areas and found our van driver holding up a sign for us. He missed another couple who had booked the excursion but it would have been crowded with 14 on that small boat as well as cramped in the van that took us to and from the port. The tour company was upset about this mistake and booked the couple for the afternoon tour instead.