Cozumel, which is Mexico's largest Caribbean island, is one of the most popular cruise ports to visit on a Caribbean cruise. Culture and culinary tours, snorkeling and catamaran sailings are all in-demand excursions, yet the classic beach bar visit continues to reign supreme for many cruisers -- and Mr. Sancho's lands at the top of the list.
Mr. Sancho's is one of the most popular beach complexes just a few miles outside the Cozumel cruise port. This paradise beach club destination offers multiple pools, a beach area with loungers, a water playground, a dining area, a spa and shops.
Mr. Sancho's in Cozumel offers both all-inclusive and a la carte options, though the two areas are kept separate from one another. Passes to Mr. Sancho's paradise beach club sell out on days with lots of ships in port so, if you're interested, plan to book ahead.
The all-inclusive adult day pass for Mr. Sancho's Cozumel provides all alcoholic drinks (except shots), all food from the buffet and menu, pool bar and beach access, along with the use of ocean kayaks.
Add-on options for purchase include aquatic park access, snorkeling and towel rentals. Onsite add-ons available at an additional cost include spa services, mariachi singers, henna tattoos, private cabanas, hair braiding and so forth.
When you arrive, you are assigned a waiter who will take you to a table with loungers nearby. In theory, your waiter will be available to bring you food and drink all day long. Your day pass also allows you to enjoy the pools and swim at the beach.
It's important to note a day pass at Mr. Sancho's Cozumel does not include transportation. There is no provided shuttle from the cruise terminals to Mr. Sancho's, so once you leave the cruise pier, you will need to take a $17-20 taxi ride to get there and again on the way back. There are no ride share programs in Cozumel.
We arrived at Mr. Sancho's looking for a day of relaxation and perhaps a dip in the ocean. A drink, a book, a beach -- all sounded perfect.
Reality proved different. Our first disappointment came when we realized the loungers didn't have umbrellas; while the tables are shaded, the loungers are not. We did our best to drag the loungers close to our table so we could sit without massive sunburn; we were somewhat successful. But then other travelers arrived next to us with loud speakers in tow. So much for that nap.
The second disappointment came when we walked down to the beach to take a dip. Under the water, we found more rocks than sea life. Be sure to bring your water shoes if you plan to swim in the ocean, or you'll be buying these as a last-minute souvenir.
Finally, we found that the waiter system doesn't necessarily work if your assigned person isn't on top of things. We found ourselves having to flag people down for food and drink or get it ourselves at the buffet. Our waiter also didn't know the Wi-Fi password (each one he gave us didn't work), so we just gave up.
That said, who needs Wi-Fi when you have unlimited drinks and good company? After doing a bit of exploring, we discovered the main scene is at the adult pool, which has a swim-up bar. There are loungers too, and from what we saw, many people never left the area. By mid-afternoon, the pool was packed with happy partiers.
Families were having a blast as well. The children's pool had many kiddos splashing around with their parents watching, drinks in hand. Parents with older children paid extra so they could swim out to the water playground, which includes giant inflatable slides, trampolines and other toys.
A day at Mr. Sancho's is worth it if you're looking for a cheerfully noisy, all-inclusive option that is safe and familiar for Americans.
Keep in mind the cost of transportation there and back. Cruise Critic members have shared average costs of transporting groups big and small. Guests can expect to tack on at least $17-20 each way for a regular taxi, though large groups requiring a van will spend considerably more.