No Shuttle Required

Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico
May 24, 2021

Where to stay? Hmmmm?? With our planned escape to Mexico’s Xcaret park, the decision to stay at the Occidental Xcaret was an easy one with the park located literally next door …….. So no shuttle required.

As for the resorts rate we got an all inclusive deal of $169 a night, which was per room and not per person, that fit nicely into our traveler’s budget. We also got a discounted airfare of $300 from LAX to Cancun which made us feel like we’d won the lottery!

Since we planned multiple park visits it was nice that it took only 5 minutes to walk from the hotel lobby to the park’s ticket booth.

The ticket booth was also where we would get our wrist bands scanned and sign the “WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE IF YOU DIE” waiver.

As far as the Occidental Xcaret’s property goes, it’s located on a large chunk of land that encompasses several Mayan ruins with numerous paths and trails.

With lots to explore here Allan definitely came in handy as my “Human GPS” because I get hopelessly lost.

Being directionally challenged aside, it was fun roaming the resort and discovering all sorts of “mutant like” jungle critters that we couldn’t identify in addition to the domesticated deers, monkeys and innumerable iguanas the size of our cat.

Also throughout the property we saw multiple open air buildings housing the guest rooms and time shares. We stayed in building 19 which included its own concierge personnel who were very helpful in giving us directions and restaurant suggestions.

Our two favorite Concierge Hombre’s we referred to as “The Jeff’s” aka Pavel and Geoffrey, because each morning we would pop downstairs and say “Hey Jeff” not knowing which guy we were talking to. Ok so to our defense these guys really did look the same from behind…. and then throw in the mask. “The Jeff’s” were pretty cool though and didn’t seem to mind our lack of facial recognition and laughed at the joke.

On the resort there are 11 different restaurants which includes the snack bars. The food was good but not great with the exception of the seafood restaurant El Pescador, so needless to say this wasn’t our foodies paradise. It was a bit challenging too because the restaurant’s weren’t opened on the same days, making that concierge information even more useful.

Due to the COVID-19 restricted occupancy the resort wasn’t crowded making it easy to spread out when visiting the restaurants, swimming pools and lagoon.

My only complaint was the checking in process which may have been complicated by not purchasing the UXX (Unlimited Xcaret Experience) beforehand due to a glitch in the hotels booking system.

The UXX pass is a must which allowed us unlimited access to the Xcaret park. Unfortunately instead of paying $199 a piece the price had now increased to $250 at check in. So when I slapped down that $500 for our passes I felt a tad cheated and Allan’s face may have turned a bit green.

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About Marla

Allan and I are two frugal minded nomads from Orange County, CA. who love to write and travel. Our mission is to travel the world on a budget and so far nothing has been off limits. Our quests have led us to walking across Spain, hiking in Portugal, cycling through France, cruising Russian waterways and even riding a couple camels in Egypt. In so doing we’ve been introduced to a large community of travelers who thrive on diverse cultures and broader perspectives. The COVID-19 pandemic had put the world on hold as we burrowed down in quarantine, but now after tippy toeing out of our cloistered confines we’ve been excited to hit the road again discovering more new and unexpected places.

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