We have been to Cozumel many times. We have been on Carnival, Norwegian, Princess, and Royal Caribbean Cruises and we love it when Cozumel is one of our ports of call.
Over the years, we have landed upon a few favorite things to do in Cozumel.
When you are there, you won’t want to miss these things!
Here are the best things to do in Cozumel, Mexico:
1. Visit Chankanaab Adventure Beach Park
The first time we visited Chankanaab Park was in April of 2011. We were amazed at how quiet, beautiful, and big the park was.
We have been to other beach parks in Cozumel (like Palancar Beach) that were crowded with people fighting for beach chairs and they were playing Eye of the Tiger so loud that you couldn’t think straight. Those parks have beach chairs lined up four rows deep and if you get there too late, you have to look over rows and rows of heads just to see the ocean.
It’s not like that at Chankanaab Park!
Not once have I had to fight for a beach chair at Chankanaab!
Chankanaab Park has the BEST beach in Cozumel.
Chankanaab is located inside Cozumel’s National Reef Marine Park. It is one of those parks that has it all.
Sea lion show that is included in your admission
Manatee and Crocodile Exhibits
Swim with dolphin tours
Massages on the beach (yes! It’s SO nice!)
Hammocks on the beach
An inlet for swimming
A playground for kids
Bathrooms & dressing rooms
Life vest rentals
And my all-time FAVORITE- a restaurant ON THE BEACH that will deliver your fajitas and drinks TO YOUR BEACH CHAIR!
While you are snorkeling at Chankanaab you will notice all of the underwater statues and the beautiful fish. We especially love watching the Stoplight Parrot Fish.
Here is our typical day at Chankanaab:
When we get to the Cozumel cruise port, we tell our cab driver to take us to Chankanaab. They take us straight to the entrance to the park where we pay for admission. Then we calmly stroll to the beach passed the sea lion show, the dolphins and the manatees.
When we get to the beach, we find our favorite beach chairs under a shady palapa.
Once we get settled in, a server from the restaurant on the beach strolls by and quietly asks us if we would like anything to eat or drink.
This is it. The moment I have been waiting for. We order chips, salsa, fajitas and Mexican cokes. All of the sudden, I’m in paradise.
I can close my eyes right now and feel the warm, Cozumel wind on my face and I can smell those wonderful fajitas!
After we enough the fajitas, we snorkel, soak up the salty air and catch the sea lion show. Timothy has even swam with the manatees!
If you want to check them out (and I know you do), you can find them here.
2. Restaurante Del Museo
If you are in Cozumel, DON’T miss this! This is the best restaurant in Cozumel (other than the one at Chankanaab Park)!
Timothy researches everything before we go on a trip and, one time, he found this restaurant in his searching.
What attracted us to Restaurante Del Museo was that it is located on the second floor of a museum and it overlooks the ocean.
When we arrived, we couldn’t believe the view. It’s a small, uncrowded restaurant with a view of the turquoise ocean.
The restaurant is open-air so you feel the warm, salty air while you eat.
And the food is AMAZING. Timothy and I ordered a sampler platter to share. We were a bit overwhelmed by the size of it. It was a lot of food for the price!
We had grilled chicken and beef with guacamole, chips, salsa, salad, fresh tomatoes, delicious cheese and anything else a person could fit on a platter. It was enormous and delicious.
While we ate and enjoyed the warm breeze, we watched fishermen bring their small fishing boats in with their catch. It was so fun to watch them.
It was a moment I will never forget. It was definitely worth the visit!
Restaurante Del Museo was the best kept secret in Cozumel until now!
You can check them out on Trip Advisor here.
3. Kaokao Chocolate Factory Tour
This was such a fun experience and I can’t wait to go back!
At this little chocolate factory, you learn the “bean to bar” chocolate making process.
After you have a fun, brief history lesson of Cacao and how the Mayans made “chocolhaa” (hot chocolate), you get hands-on and use a chocolate mill to make your own chocolate.
We still have the chocolate we made there that day! The sight of it takes us back to Cozumel each time.
There was a total of 6 of us on this tour and that included Timothy, our 3 year old and myself.
They keep the tours small which means you don’t get lost in the crowd!
After you make your own chocolate, you get to taste many different types of chocolate made at the chocolate factory. This part was a lot of fun…as you can imagine!
To be clear, their website says “This tour is not recommended for children under the age of 12, however they are accepted (regular fee apply).”
Our three-year-old was a quiet and obedient child. She did not disrupt anyone and she enjoyed helping us turn the chocolate mill.
I wouldn’t recommend this tour if your kids wouldn’t enjoy a calm, quiet lesson on making chocolate.
Chocolate Tour Includes (per their website):
- History of Cacao (Origins and trajectory until our time).
- Cacao in the world nowadays (varieties and production).
- Explanation about the Chocolate-making Process (from the tree to the bar).
- Make your own Chocolate Mexican disc from scratch (from the bean) to take home.
- Discover and taste the Mayan drink made in a traditional way in front of you with cacao beans and the original ingredients.
- Kaokao’s several chocolate samples.
- View our Chocolate making kitchens through windows.
- Wireless Internet.
- Cup of Mexican coffee, roasted locally.
- Purified water.
It is definitely worth taking a cab to the Kaokao Chocolate Factory!
Cozumel Island is one of our favorite places to be!
Cozumel has many perks. Chankanaab, Restaurante Del Museo, and Kaokao Chocolate Factory are definitely in our top three perks!
If you find yourself at the Cozumel cruise port or if you fly in, you won’t want to miss any of them while you are there.
If you have any questions or comments, just fill out the comment box below. I would love to hear from you!
All the best,