Costa Maya Chacchoben Mayan Ruins Excursion Reviews

Deep in the Mexican jungle, Chacchoben is among the most famous ruins in Cozumel. These ancient pyramids have been excavated and restored, and now stand as testament to the myths and rituals of the mysterious Mayan peoples.
These were my favorite ruins of this trip.
These were my favorite ruins of this trip. It was about an hour bus ride from the port, and the guide on our bus (Helaman) took time to explain what we were going to see. Once we got there, we had a few minutes to look at the things in the ... Read More
These were my favorite ruins of this trip. It was about an hour bus ride from the port, and the guide on our bus (Helaman) took time to explain what we were going to see. Once we got there, we had a few minutes to look at the things in the store, then started to the ruins. Helaman did a great job at each spot explaining what we were seeing, and what happened there so many years ago. I took the time to climb to the top of one of the Temples/Pyramids and it was well worth it! A great experience!Helaman Tours makes the experience come alive! Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Well organized...Ruins were awesome!!!
Well organized...Ruins were awesome!!!
Well organized...Ruins were awesome!!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: MSC Cruises
These ruins have been wonderfully restored.
These ruins have been wonderfully restored. Not too many people on the walking part of the tour, so I got some terrific pictures of the ruins. Very knowledgeable tour guide, spoke excellent English. One hour to the ruins, and another ... Read More
These ruins have been wonderfully restored. Not too many people on the walking part of the tour, so I got some terrific pictures of the ruins. Very knowledgeable tour guide, spoke excellent English. One hour to the ruins, and another hour on the bus to get back. 2 1/2 hours at the ruins. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Royal Caribbean International
We boarded our buses at the port for about an hour drive to our destination.
We boarded our buses at the port for about an hour drive to our destination. Our guide was Daniel and he taught all of us a lot about the Mayan Civilization, history and culture. He answered questions and was apologetic when he didn't ... Read More
We boarded our buses at the port for about an hour drive to our destination. Our guide was Daniel and he taught all of us a lot about the Mayan Civilization, history and culture. He answered questions and was apologetic when he didn't know and answer. We thoroughly enjoyed the excursion. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Carnival Cruise Line
We went off the beaten path here.
We went off the beaten path here. I booked an excursion with a local group called Native Choice. It was the right choice for us. It was a guided tour of the Chacchoben ruins and an opportunity to explore the local culture at the Mayan ... Read More
We went off the beaten path here. I booked an excursion with a local group called Native Choice. It was the right choice for us. It was a guided tour of the Chacchoben ruins and an opportunity to explore the local culture at the Mayan community villages inland. The first thing we were told is that the Mayans are not extinct. The culture was altered by invasions of other cultures but the Mayan people are alive and well and living in Belize. They are making every effort to resurrect as many of the old traditions as possible and keep them alive for future generations. What we saw and learned was presented by the community itself and offered an inside look that is rare and very special for just a one day journey. Our guide Joel gave us so much to think about and feel when showing us the ruins. They were very extensive and exposed a view of the realities of Mayan life historically. The drive into the countryside to the villages laid out the contemporary lifestyle the Mayan people are living. You can’t get that from a short drive around a city. The lunch and quick lesson in cooking local cuisine was fun and our hosts were so kind. The kitchen was old traditional woodstove and gave great flavor to the food. The level of cleanliness and care was impeccable. I wish my kitchen were always that clean and organized. I also wish Carnival would give back by hiring this company for their excursions, they did a great job. I wanted this to last longer. This port deserved much more time than Carnival gave it. We were feeling rushed and there was no need as the trip back to Florida left us with much time to spare. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Carnival Cruise Line
Another fun day in paradise, the trip is long but you are in a coach bus, worth the ride.
Another fun day in paradise, the trip is long but you are in a coach bus, worth the ride. The ruins are fantastic, ended up in another beach resort, with food and open bar. Perfect day.
Another fun day in paradise, the trip is long but you are in a coach bus, worth the ride. The ruins are fantastic, ended up in another beach resort, with food and open bar. Perfect day. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Erick was our tour guide of about 12 people.
Erick was our tour guide of about 12 people. We were the youngest in the group, but the rest weren't exactly geriatric. They were quite young-at-heart. Erick gave us some history en route, which was fascinating. The ruins were ... Read More
Erick was our tour guide of about 12 people. We were the youngest in the group, but the rest weren't exactly geriatric. They were quite young-at-heart. Erick gave us some history en route, which was fascinating. The ruins were thoroughly explained to us, Erick kept things incredibly informative, and we traveled at our own pace. The terrain was suitable for the less-than ideally mobile, but was not wheelchair or stroller accessible. We saw a spider monkey, got to explore the ruins, and learned a whole lot about ancient Mayan culture. On the way home, Erick let us stop at a local pineapple shack to buy some local pineapple and pineapple juice. Oh, so happy! The other tour groups had massive amounts of people, ours was small and more intimate. I highly recommend The Native Choice. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
The ruins themselves were actually pretty cool.
The ruins themselves were actually pretty cool. There was plenty to see there, and we even got to see a spider monkey up in the trees. The port of Costa Maya is incredibly run down and now that I've already seen the ruins, I ... Read More
The ruins themselves were actually pretty cool. There was plenty to see there, and we even got to see a spider monkey up in the trees. The port of Costa Maya is incredibly run down and now that I've already seen the ruins, I can't think of any reason I'd need to get off the ship in this port. Disney should re-think stopping in CM. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Disney Cruise Line
I loved this excursion!
I loved this excursion! It was so well done: air conditioned motor coach, bag lunch, knowledgeable guide, great archeological site, plenty of time to explore and take pictures. Our guide Lisbeth was fantastic! She kept us laughing during ... Read More
I loved this excursion! It was so well done: air conditioned motor coach, bag lunch, knowledgeable guide, great archeological site, plenty of time to explore and take pictures. Our guide Lisbeth was fantastic! She kept us laughing during the hour long bus ride to the ruins. All the while teaching us about Mayan history and culture. The ruins were really well cared for and the grounds surrounding them were well manicured. My kids liked the tour, it kept their attention. We even got to experience some of the natural wildlife. They saw leaf-cutter ants cutting a path through the grass and spider monkeys swinging from the trees above our heads. It was amazing! Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Carnival Cruise Line
this is a great tour if you have never seen ruins before, it was only 4 hours and for us that was ...
this is a great tour if you have never seen ruins before, it was only 4 hours and for us that was long enough. It's an hour bus ride to and from so you can rest or listen to the tour guide. We had Diana Garcia Reyes and she did a ... Read More
this is a great tour if you have never seen ruins before, it was only 4 hours and for us that was long enough. It's an hour bus ride to and from so you can rest or listen to the tour guide. We had Diana Garcia Reyes and she did a great job and kept it interesting. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Costa Maya is basically an effort to create a cruise line stop where nothing much existed before.
Costa Maya is basically an effort to create a cruise line stop where nothing much existed before. There is a small fishing village near by, but I have to assume that they are more touristy than fishing these days. As you drive through the ... Read More
Costa Maya is basically an effort to create a cruise line stop where nothing much existed before. There is a small fishing village near by, but I have to assume that they are more touristy than fishing these days. As you drive through the town near the pier, you can see streets laid out that are completely unoccupied, I think they hope that they will be the next Playa de Carmen eventually, but right now, not much there. We did another mayan ruins tour plus lunch/beach break. Alot of time in the bus to get us to the ruins and back. Good tour guide along the way and at the ruins. But I think we enjoyed the ruins in Belize more. With all the time on the bus, not a huge amount of time left for the beach break after. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
OMG!
OMG! If you have even an inkling of interest in ancient Mayan culture, do NOT miss the Chochoben ruins. I booked with Native Choice and was not sorry. We were a small group of 12 and got a wonderful tour and feel for what life was like ... Read More
OMG! If you have even an inkling of interest in ancient Mayan culture, do NOT miss the Chochoben ruins. I booked with Native Choice and was not sorry. We were a small group of 12 and got a wonderful tour and feel for what life was like 2,000 years ago. Maybe I have to qualify this by saying I speak fluent Mexican-Spanish, so we got a little preferential treatment, but even so, it was amazing. The jungle is totally cleared and there are 3 pyramids to see and a plaza. Smart idea to wear bug spray. One warning would be that the steep stairs are very slippery and dangerous to climb but the view from below is just as good. The highlight of the tour came when the van halted along the highway and we bought FRESH pineapple from native women. They gave us a special smoke-flavored chile powder to sprinkle to enhance the sweetness. It tasted like PURE sugar. Also, the honey tapped from jungle trees is s'psd to be excellent but I don't like honey so I can't comment. We ended the tour happy and on a sugar high. I will never eat canned pineapple again!!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
Shore Excursion Provider: Holland America Line
Better than anticipated.
Better than anticipated. Large site with several structures. One site still is covered with trees and vegetation.
Better than anticipated. Large site with several structures. One site still is covered with trees and vegetation. Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
In Costa Maya, we went to see the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins with Native Choice.
In Costa Maya, we went to see the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins with Native Choice. I am glad we did this, because there isn't much to see or do in Costa Maya outside of the port area. Our guides were Ivan and David. They were funny, ... Read More
In Costa Maya, we went to see the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins with Native Choice. I am glad we did this, because there isn't much to see or do in Costa Maya outside of the port area. Our guides were Ivan and David. They were funny, informative and knowledgeable about the area and the ruins. It was easy to meet up with them just outside the port. We loaded into a tour bus (I would say about 40 people total), and the drive there was just under an hour I'd say. We all got bottles of water on the bus. Ivan told us about Costa Maya and nearby Majahual, the culture and the people who live there. The ruins themselves were very cool to see; we had never seen ruins before. I didn't realize how many pyramids and different structures there were at the site. Some of them we could climb, which I was happy about. David and Ivan broke us down into smaller groups, so we could see and hear better. The tour itself took about two hours. We were in David's group, and he was great. Very interesting. Gorgeous area, too - tons of huge palm trees. Very lush. There are some little shops and touristy things at the entrance to the ruins. We didn't buy anything. If you even so much as looked/got close to something, the shopkeepers would try very hard to get you to buy. They were a tad aggressive, and you could bargain with them on prices. We just kept saying, no thanks, no thanks. On the way back, our bus stopped by a little roadside shack for fresh pineapple. Women and children set up these little huts to sell pineapple, coconuts and other fruits. The pineapple was amazing! For $1 we got a thick slice with chili powder to dip it in. So yummy! Back in the port area, we had a little bit of time to walk around and check out the shops. I got some sweet cowboy boots at Rogers Boots. Was first told $280, but negotiated down to $95. They are very comfortable, nice quality boots. And I've gotten so many compliments on them since I've been home! Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Costa Maya, chacchoben ruins.
Costa Maya, chacchoben ruins. The tour was ok. bus ride was only an hour each way, and the guide ends up selling you local made trinkets on the bus....for cheap...buy them...they are cool. the beach they bring you to, was great, the staff ... Read More
Costa Maya, chacchoben ruins. The tour was ok. bus ride was only an hour each way, and the guide ends up selling you local made trinkets on the bus....for cheap...buy them...they are cool. the beach they bring you to, was great, the staff were awesome. I tipped one guy $20 for all 6 of us, and he kept bringing us "orange juices" by the ride home, everybody was in great spirits,and it became karaoke on the bus. Read Less
Sail Date February 2013
Shore Excursion Provider: Carnival Cruise Line
Superb guide and a very interesting and worthwhile excursion.
Superb guide and a very interesting and worthwhile excursion. Chacchoben is very different from Lamanai in Belize and so very well worth seeing as well.
Superb guide and a very interesting and worthwhile excursion. Chacchoben is very different from Lamanai in Belize and so very well worth seeing as well. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
Shore Excursion Provider: Oceania Cruises
Got up early to leave the boat at 7:30 AM for our exploration of the Chacchoben Mayan ruins on ...
Got up early to leave the boat at 7:30 AM for our exploration of the Chacchoben Mayan ruins on December 21, 2012 - the supposed last day of the Mayan calendar! We walked down the long pier at Costa Maya, through the cruise ship tourist ... Read More
Got up early to leave the boat at 7:30 AM for our exploration of the Chacchoben Mayan ruins on December 21, 2012 - the supposed last day of the Mayan calendar! We walked down the long pier at Costa Maya, through the cruise ship tourist strip mall, and boarded our bus for the one hour drive to Chacchoben. 'Lisbeth', our tour guide, provided lots of useful information on the history, culture, geography and climate of the area. We were well-informed before we arrived at the ruins. Lisbeth's expert descriptions and volumes of information regarding what we were seeing on the tour was invaluable. The ruins are fascinating, and it was extra-special to be climbing the temples on 12-21-12. After an uneventful bus ride back to Costa Maya, we walked around the tourist strip mall for a few minutes before re-boarding the ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Disney Cruise Line
Interesting tour, but I liked Tikal and Lamanai better.
Interesting tour, but I liked Tikal and Lamanai better. I am not overly fond of cruise ports built for shoppers.
Interesting tour, but I liked Tikal and Lamanai better. I am not overly fond of cruise ports built for shoppers. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Oceania Cruises
Very nice tourism village with lots of shops and a swim-up bar.
Very nice tourism village with lots of shops and a swim-up bar. Booked a private tour to the Chacchoben Mayan ruins - fabulous. Very nice ruins for a first timer.
Very nice tourism village with lots of shops and a swim-up bar. Booked a private tour to the Chacchoben Mayan ruins - fabulous. Very nice ruins for a first timer. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Native Choice was excellent, semi private with only 9 of us, so much information and history given
Native Choice was excellent, semi private with only 9 of us, so much information and history given
Native Choice was excellent, semi private with only 9 of us, so much information and history given Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Disney Cruise Line
Private an for our family, very nice vehicle, had both a driver and a narrator.
Private an for our family, very nice vehicle, had both a driver and a narrator. Narrator spoke good English, had a Master's Degree in Mayan Culture, was very friendly...a different guide led our group, along with another small family ... Read More
Private an for our family, very nice vehicle, had both a driver and a narrator. Narrator spoke good English, had a Master's Degree in Mayan Culture, was very friendly...a different guide led our group, along with another small family thru the ruins - he, too, was well-educated and did a wonderful job teaching us about the history of the area. There is a small tourist area at the ruins with bathrooms,snacks for people who can't climb the ruins (altho they are not terribly physically demanding they aren't not for children or elderly). The highlight of our excursion, however, was our "Mayan Experience" - our guide took us to have lunch with a local Mayan lady in her native home, a thatched roof place in her beautiful lush garden. She let us help her cook lunch in her outdoor kitchen - it was the best food we had on the entire trip! I highly recommend that outing for people who have an interest in the culture of the Mayans. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Glad I booked with cruise line, because excursion was late coming back.
Glad I booked with cruise line, because excursion was late coming back. Tour guide knowledgeable, but soft-spoken and heavily accented so some of the information was lost. Don't do this one if it's very hot, we went on an ... Read More
Glad I booked with cruise line, because excursion was late coming back. Tour guide knowledgeable, but soft-spoken and heavily accented so some of the information was lost. Don't do this one if it's very hot, we went on an overcast day in November and it was perfect. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Disney Cruise Line
I have always heard about the Mayan ruins in history class and seen them on the Discovery Channel ...
I have always heard about the Mayan ruins in history class and seen them on the Discovery Channel but I have never seen them with my own eyes until my trip to Costa Maya's Chacchoben ruins. I was so excited that this excursion was ... Read More
I have always heard about the Mayan ruins in history class and seen them on the Discovery Channel but I have never seen them with my own eyes until my trip to Costa Maya's Chacchoben ruins. I was so excited that this excursion was available as an excursion. It was a marvel to look upon. I even got the chance to climb a few temples. However, it was too hot to really enjoy. Read Less
Sail Date July 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Carnival Cruise Line
Wonderful, interesting excursion to fascinating ruins.
Wonderful, interesting excursion to fascinating ruins. We took the adults only tour. Highly recommend it. The ruins range from being excavated to being in the condition of being covered with vegetation. Good worthwhile tour. It was ... Read More
Wonderful, interesting excursion to fascinating ruins. We took the adults only tour. Highly recommend it. The ruins range from being excavated to being in the condition of being covered with vegetation. Good worthwhile tour. It was hot hot hot and busy, but well worth it. We felt somewhat obligated to buy something from the vendors - we know that they depend on the tourist trade for sustenance - but they are a bit pricey even after negotiation. Just be aware that you will probably not get a bargain here and check it off to providing some help to a very poor population. Read Less
Sail Date June 2012
Shore Excursion Provider: Disney Cruise Line