My husband and I spent a week at Mayan Beach Gardens in early February, on the recommendation of our daughter who goes there whenever she gets the chance, and we agree that it ranks with one of the best and most relaxing holidays we’ve ever enjoyed. .
This boutique off-the-grid hotel, managed by proprietors Marcia and Kim and their staff, is located on the road to Mahahual, alongside a sand beach fringed by the Mesoamerican reef. Several of the rooms have decks which overlook or lead directly onto the beach. We had the “Uxmal” room, which we loved – open and airy, with views east and south over the ocean from the hammocks on the shaded deck. The décor is simple and elegant with delightful quirks – like the conch shell in place of a tap spout (metal rusts quickly in the salt air).
It’s worth the long trek from Cancun airport to enjoy strolling along uncrowded beaches and the excellent swimming conditions – warm, clear water inshore of the reef. There’s plenty to see within a few hundred metres of the shore, although the most impressive elkhorn corals and fish shoals are on the far side of the reef breakers. The hotel also offers a selection of kayaks, for above water exploration and quick access to a good snorkeling spot.
It’s well worth opting for the meal plan, as the food is good value, freshly prepared and delicious. All meals are served in an open-air dining room and are Mexican cuisine with an emphasis on fresh fruits and veggies. A selection of house cocktails, spirits, beer and wine are available at the bar. You will not go hungry. Dinner is a beautifully-presented three course meal at a communal table, where you can enjoy meeting other guests and Kim’s dry humour.
While I could have spent the entire week between hammock and ocean, there are other cultural and outdoor activities within striking distance of the hotel, and Marcia is a fund of information about these.
Highlights of our stay included:
• Joining Marcia on a swimming expedition across the reef to the “fish aggregation point”
• Tortilla Tuesday – learning to prepare torillas, sopes, empanadas etc from scratch in Marcia’s kitchen.
• Tequila tasting, with tapas – a history and tasting of pulque, mescal and a selection of sipping tequilas
• Fresh tortilla chips and salsa with most meals, as well as an amazing seafood soup presented in a coconut
• A visit to the Dzibanche Mayan ruins - it was just us, the birds and a great big sky. A far cry from our experience of the crowds at Chichen Itza.
We're already planning to revisit as soon as we can.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Secluded off the grid solar powered beach front Inn, nestled on sandy white beach on the Mexican Caribbean. Walk for miles in either direction, swim or snorkel from shore. This is the closest Hotel to the Sian Ka'an Biosphere- maps and independent traveler's guidance are available. King sized beds, fans and large bathrooms in each room. Hot Breakfast included. To protect the tranquility and quiet of the hotel, only children over the age of 12 are allowed during the months of January, February, March and April. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Mayan Beach Garden Hotel Mahahual
- Mayan Beach Garden Mahahual, Mexico - Costa Maya