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“Excellent Tour of the Tulum Ruins”

The Native Choice Tours
Ranked #1 of 27 Tours in Mahahual
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Costa Maya Shore Excursions for guests from all cruise lines.
Reviewed June 19, 2013

My husband and I took a tour of the Tulum ruins after exiting a cruise ship through Native Choice. From the moment we met with the tour guides, we were completely taken care of. Our guide for the trup, Sylvia, was very knowledgeable, friendly, and gave us the opportunity to enjoy every bit of the tour while also keeping track of the time so that we weren't late to return to our trip (we had to ferry back to Cozumel). I would definitely recommend this company to others considering taking a tour of the Mayan ruins, especially those with cruising time commitments!

Thank destwedding62610
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 17, 2013

We booked this tour (Chacchoben Maya Ruins tour) before we left and I was a bit nervous about not using the cruise tours. Turns out there was nothing to worry about. We had a short walk to the meeting place away from the hubbub to meet our tour bus. They had cold bottled water waiting for us, checked us in and loaded two small bus loads of tourists. It's an hour or so ride to the ruins but we were entertained and learned a bit about the locals. Frine was great at sharing lots of different types of information... historical, current events, flora, fauna, and cultural to name a few. Our group was a mix of ages from 9-62 and Frine did a great job addressing the interests of everyone. She did a great job leading us through the park and sharing information about our surroundings. We arrived just as three huge tour buses did and yet Frine timed everything so it was like we had the place to ourselves. Very skilled tour leader! Thank you for a great experience!

Thank Hanumaven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2013

We did the "Chacchoben Extreme Tour" through Native Choice Tours off of the Carnival Dream in May 2013. It was, hands down, the best thing we did all tour. Although I think that calling it an "extreme" tour is very misleading, it was so much fun. First, we had the bus ride out to the ruins. We stopped on the way at a little stand selling fresh pineapple (there were tons of them), and we got to try a native pineapple called the "honey pineapple" because it's so sweet. Our tour guide put this mixture of chili powder and salt onto the pineapple (apparently that's how they eat them there) for this really cool spicy/salty/sweet flavor. I loved it. DEFINITELY try this. On the way there, our guide told us a history of the city and gave us a lot of information. She was super sweet and super awesome. I wish I remembered her name!!
Once we got to Chachobben, we transferred to another tour guide who walked us around the park and the ruins. Pictures definitely do not do it justice, as it's absolutely gorgeous. I learned SO much about Mayan history.
After our tour, we took the bus to the Bacalar Resort (http://www.bacalarlagoonresort.com/) on the 7-color lagoon, where we got lunch and drinks (all included in our ticket). The resort was absolutely gorgeous and the food was amazing. Definitely some of the best food we had all cruise. Very fresh and authentic tasting. The bartenders were ex-pats from Germany, but they made a mean Piña Colada. They also had really good margaritas. We swam in the lagoon, and my boyfriend rented one of the kayaks and paddled around (also included in the ticket price). The resort is actually privately owned and you can stay at one of the many Cabanas they have on the premises. We took a business card and are definitely planning on visiting in the future. It was so pretty and definitely unforgettable.

1  Thank Sydney G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 10, 2013

We visited Costa Maya as one stop of the four ports of call from the Norwegian Dawn. This was our first cruise, so I tried to find tours using local (top rated) tour guides, intresting sights and activities that included more of the local culture. My family consists of my wife and I and three kids ages; 22, 20 and 17. If you have a family, you'll know that findings an excursion or activity that is intersting to all the family members is sometimes difficult.
We decided to try the "Mayan Experience" tour as it seemed to meet all of our needs. Although we did exciting excurions in each port of call (zip lining/monkey zoo in Rotan, cave tubing in Belieze and the mini-sub adventure in Cozumel), the "Mayan Experience" was, BY FAR, our favorite excursion of our cruise! Its very rare to have all 5 of us feel this strongly about the same event!
OK, so what did we do? Well, it started out by easily finding the meeting place outside the port and being greeted by very friendly folks with ice cold bottles of water. We used local tour guides on all our excursions and this wasn't always the case. We were driven to the Chacchoben Mayan ruins in very comfortable van. Our tour guide, Joel, was probably one of the main reasons why we all enjoyed this excursion so much. Not only did he point out all the sights, but he explained the "whys" and "how" things were done during the temples construction and explained, exactly, how Mayan's were so good at astronomy. Joel really felt and expressed the passion as he is Mayan and proud of his heritage and culture.
This is when our trip became unique. After the ruins we were taken to a local village for a traditional lunch with a local family. Everything was fantastic! There were three generations there to greet us and truly made us feel like we were guests. The food during other excursions was, shall we say tollerable. On the other hand, the food at this local family was delicious...right down to the hibiscus tea! I know this sounds trivial, but the table was set with real plates, silver ware, glass drinking cups and embrodierd cloth napkins! I'm willing to bet even seasoned cruisers don't see this level of detail too often...if at all. After a fabulous meal we were treated to a Mayan dance, in cosume, by the grandmother and grand kids. It was an absolutely wonderful and insightful day!
I can't say enough positive things about the "Mayan Experience" tour and "The Native Choice" tour company. I only wish other tour company's would hold themselves up to this level of passion, knowledge and commitment.

2  Thank AlF447
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 19, 2013

We sailed into port on the Carnival Dream May 16th. After debarking the ship, we made our way to the Native Tours desk where we were greeted by Kacey. We were early and Kacey asked us to wait a few more minutes because another group of people were supposed to be coming. About 10 minutes after our expected departure time, she apologized for the wait and informed us that we would no longer wait for the other party. We loaded up into the modern van and headed out to the Choccoben ruins site. Kacey is very articulate and has a very broad depth of knowledge. We learned a great deal of information concerning all types of topics.

At the ruins site, Kacey led us around and was able to provide a very detailed narrative concerning all the aspects of the site. Of the three ruins sites we visited on our cruise, Choccoben was the most interesting due in equal parts to the site itsself and the narrative Kacey provided. While at the site, we were joined with two other couples who were going to the Blue Lagoon after Choccoben. When we left the ruins site, we stopped by the "pineapple town" where we were able to purchase some fresh pineapple. I will tell you that this is not to be skipped or missed. The pineapple was the best I have ever tasted by a long shot. In fact there is no comparison to any other pineapple I've ever had. My wife also got the chili powder separate which she said was an amazing combination of sweetness and spiciness. We also purchased some fresh,cold pineapple juice and ice cold coconut juice. Both were delicious and I just could not get over how there wasn't even a hint of acidity or tartness in the pineapple.

We headed to the Blue Lagoon site where we were served an amazing Fajitas lunch with open bar. The food was just flat out delicious. Following lunch we went down to the lagoon and everyone changed and hopped in, except for me. I chose to relax in a covered hammock and smoke a cigar I'd been saving for an occasion such as this one. We were the only people here and it felt like we were absolutely special for all the beauty of the locale and attention we received from the staff.

On the way back to the port, Kacey continued to answer questions and provide an unbelievable amount of information to us. We have nothing but good to say about our tour and Kacey. I am sorry that I cannot remember the drivers name but he handled the vehicle and the road conditions with absolute ease as well as making sure we arrived where we needed to be on time and safely. We have been telling everyone about Native Choice since we left Costa Maya.

1  Thank Chiminee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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