We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Save
Review Highlights
Hot, muggy and a bit buggy

We loved our driver, Hugo! He was very informative on the history, including the flora of the... read more

Reviewed yesterday
Tansy2015
,
Brighton, Michigan
Excellent tour and guide - Chacchoben Ruins

We were here in Costa Maya for a cruise port of call. We found a similar tour, but was MUCH higher... read more

Reviewed 3 days ago
fietsen1
,
Toulouse, France
Read all 2,322 reviews
  
Reviews (2,322)
Filter reviews
2,264 results
Traveler rating
2,099
122
23
6
14
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
2,099
122
23
6
14
Show reviews that mention
All reviews mayan experience tour chacchoben ruins mayan culture extreme tour tortillas pineapple great tour bacalar lagoon resort mayan family seven color lagoon cruise ship costa maya cold water tortilla making booked this tour hibiscus tea mayan home
Filter
Updating list...
1 - 10 of 2,264 reviews
Reviewed yesterday

We loved our driver, Hugo! He was very informative on the history, including the flora of the region. I appreciated the samples of leaves that were given to us to smell along our trek through the jungle to each of the structures. He also stipped off on the way back to the office at a pineapple stand and we all got some fresh sliced pineapple to sustain us.

Thank Tansy2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 days ago

We were here in Costa Maya for a cruise port of call. We found a similar tour, but was MUCH higher than what we paid through Native Choice. I am usually hesitant about booking through a non-cruise tour company, but the reviews were outstanding and I can see why.

Upon booking, Native Choice was very responsive and sent clear directions where to meet. The directions were very accurate and was not a very far walk from the pier. The only issue we had was with the bloody shopping area at the port and how difficult it was to get outside the pier due to all the people and shopping stalls. once out, it was easy to find.

Our tour shuttle was a small size, about ten to twelve of us. Our guide, DAVID, was AMAZING! He was extremely friendly, spoke clearly and was a treasure trove of information. He pretty much well talked the entire time from the point at which we left to the time we arrived at the ruins. What he had to say, however, was extremely interesting and he held our attention the whole time.

Once we arrived at the ruins, he gave us a guided tour and told us so much about the ruins. In fact, I tried to walk with him the whole time because I had many questions and he was able to answer them. The man is truly brilliant.

The tour was a little late getting back, but not to the point where we were concerned about missing the ship. I think we were all having such a good time at the ruins that we lost track of time.

For those of you who are dubious about taking a tour through a non-cruise line tour company, you can rely on Native Choice. I highly, highly recommend them and would certainly book through them again.

Thank fietsen1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

We did the native choice tour with our guide Enrique and Rito our driver. They were very informative, very knowledgeable and answered all our questions. My fiancé and I are completely satisfied with our trip today, and we are grateful to our guides for making it a memorable one. Would highly recommend this tour!!! Thank you Enrique and Rito!!

Thank neeta1919
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 5 days ago

This was exactly what we hoped. Our driver Emlin and our guide Erick were knowledgeable, responsive, flexible, multilingual and local. The amount that we learned and saw in four hours exceeded our hopes. We met with natives in the Mayan village where Erick grew up and where he returned. We toured a reclaimed Mayan ruin on our own schedule. We ate with locals. Emlin drove us through downpours as if they didn't exist. They offered us cold water and umbrellas graciously without being asked.

We were with Swiss friends so six or seven languages were shared during the trip. Erick shared Mayan, local and world wide travel experiences.

Five Stars!

Thank Camper62195203774
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 6 days ago

Everything about our experience with The Native Choice Tours was excellent. We were provided water at the meeting location before boarding a clean and air conditioned van to Chacchoben. Our tour guide was Erick and he was extremely knowledgeable and enthusiastic about teaching us about the Chacchoben Maya ruins and village. You could tell Erick was passionate about his job and enjoyed sharing his experiences with others. After a tour of the Chacchoben ruins with got back on the vans and traveled to the village. We stopped at a home in the village and had the opportunity to make tortillas with the Mayan women before sitting down to a traditional Mayan meal. We also toured the garden and learned about all of the different crops the Mayans produce. After our meal we were transported back to Costa Maya and dropped off at the port entrance. We never felt rushed or were in fear of getting back to the cruise ship on time. Everything about this tour was well planned and executed to perfection. Thank you Erick and everyone else involved.

Thank kmy0606
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 1 week ago

On October 11th 2018 we arrived on Liberty of the Seas in Costa Maya Mexico.
We made the walk from the Cruise Port Area out & followed the map to find the Native Choice Tour Building. We checked in at the front desk & were told that it would be 10 minutes or so before our guide was ready to go. They gave us a bottle of water to enjoy while we waited. . After a couple minutes we were advised that it was time to go. As we had seen several 40 passenger busses load up & leave, we expected to be on a bus. We were pleasantly surprised to find that our vehicle was a new Ford Edge. There were four of us on the tour : Melin - Our Driver, Edder our Tour Guide,
my Wife, & Myself. So this was going to be avery personalized tour ! As we traveled the two hour drive to Kohunlich Edder discussed the Mayan history, & verious interesting facts about th small towns we past along the way. Whne we arrived at the runis, Edder went to the office to get our passes ( Which were included in the tour price) , & we entered to city. Due to Melin's expert driving ability we arrived early before the crowds. This made it much easier to move from one site to the next as we did not have to wait for any other tour groups. One of the reasons we chose to visit Kohunlich was that you can still climb up to the top on most of the ruins & take in the view of this large Mayan site. Many of the Mayan Ruins in other locations are now roped off & you are not allowed to climb to the top. We figured that we should do this site on our first trip to Costa Maya , & next year we will try Chacchoben Ruins or Tulum Ruins. We spent a couple hours following Edder from one building to the next while he explained the significance of each structure. He was very interested to answer our questions & spoke very good English , so we had no difficulty communicating. He pariently waited while we climbed around & shot pictures from avary angle. Edder kep a close watch on the time we needed to get in the car & head back to port so we would not miss our Liberty of the Seas departure. Native Choice also provided a baged lunch with a drink for the return trip. We stopped near a town where the lady was selling pineapples that had already been sliced & were in a zip lock bag. The pineapple alse came with a bag of Habinero spice seasoning. Edder encouraged me to sprinkle some on the Pineapple slice & be amazed at the flavor created. I was a little hesitant to try the Habinero seasoning, but I gave it a try. It was actually very good . I ended up using more & more spice on each slice & found the combination very tasty. We also did a quick stop along the road to see the Seven Colors of Blue Lagoon. As it was partly overcast when we arrived ot the Lagoon, we could not appreciate the seven colors. Melin drove us all the way to the port entrance, se we had a short walk through the port shops & then to our Royal Caribbean Ship. My wife & I were very impressed with the professionalisim of Native Choice Tours. The Ford Edge was very new, had plenty of leg room , a comfortable ride, & the AC worked perfectly ! Our driver Melin was great at getting us out and back . I believe that he has every passing zone, speed bump, & pothole memorized. Edder our Tour Guide was fantastic. If you are looking for a truly memorable experience when in Costa Maya I highly reccomend the Native Choice Kohunlich Ruins Tour. Make sure you ask for Melin & Edder & you will not be dissapointed !

1  Thank Richard O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 1 week ago

We were in Costa Maya on a cruise ship, and decided to use this independent tour company rather than one sponsored by the cruise line for a couple reasons: 1. The near perfect 5-star rating of the company, and 2. The authentic Mayan meal was unique to this company, and not available on other tours. The Mayan Experience tour itself was, indeed, an A+ tour with Julio, our native-born Myan guide who was very knowledgeable, with excellent English language skills (he grew up speaking Mayan), and tour guide education and experience to make it a very worth while experience. The lunch was a wonderful, full multi-course meal cooked on-site in the outdoor kitchen of a small family compound in a really small village, from foods produced in their own garden in the compound. Julio took us on a tour of the garden, sharing interesting information about many plants we don't find in our backyards. He also explained the 7 or 8 different dishes that had been prepared for us, since the cooks did not speak English. I also appreciate the fact that we had a small group tour, just 6 people, all from cruise ships.
The price was quite reasonable, at just $75 per person for a 5.5 hour trip, including about 2 hours round-trip transportation in a comfortable van. Which brings me to the "but..." portions of this review. Because Native Choice does not buy into the cruise port, it is a bit difficult to get to their location. They do provide a very good and accurate graphical map along with well-detailed instructions on how to navigate the maybe 1/3 mile route through the port and the town to get to their office. Taxi's are available just outside the enclosed port area that can get you there in 5 minutes, if you don't want to walk. Also, to follow the map you have to exit the port area through doors marked, "Emergency Exit Only" (but nobody bothered us). The port area is designed to make it difficult for cruise customers to "escape" into the town. At the end of the tour, Native Choice dropped us off right at the port entrance, eliminating most of the walk. However, they were not allowed to pick us up at that point. We had no difficulty following their map, but some others did. I suspect the benefit of this inconvenience to us, the customers, is lower prices for really high-quality tours.
We did have one other inconvenience. The good news is that when I reserved the tour online, they only required a $30 deposit by credit card, and included a reasonable cancellation policy. The balance of our tour, $120, was to be paid on our arrival. The bad news: their credit card system, which relies on an internet connection, was not completing the transaction. They blamed it on internet issues,though my T-Mobil system IPhone was registering a 4-bar cellular signal. So, we had to pay cash for the balance which left us with very little remaining cash, and no convenient atm. So, best NOT to depend on using a credit card for your local balance payment.
Despite these inconveniences, we are very happy with our tour experience from Native Choice. They were also very conscious of our need to return to the ship on time.

1  Thank d47b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We booked a tour through our travel agent. The office was two or three blocks from the cruise port exit. We were provided water and took a one-hour ride each way to and from the Mayan site of Chacchoben. The large van was air-conditioned, but had no toilet. There were clean toilet facilities in the office and at the ruins.

The ruins consisted of three beautiful structures and surrounding vegetation. Our guide was knowledgeable and articulate. We learned about the structures, Mayan culture and also some of the vegetation.

To best see two of the structures involved climbing steep stairs for a minute.

There is a snack bar and gift shop. Prices are not low, but you can bargain by requesting "un descuento (discount)".

This was worthwhile and enjoyable.

Thank ebinde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

BOOK IN ADVANCE! Chaccobean Ruins $55 Lasted 4 hours I think I took a entire college course in 4 hours. This is a amazing tour extremely interesting... Get to walk on the Ruins. I will remember this experience forever. MUST DO TOUR. They will drop you off in town Mahaul(sp) if you want at end of tour. Walk along boardwalk where you can get a massage in from one of 100 message therapist lining the beach it is only $20 my wife said it was wonderful (remember to bring a bathing suit to change into for the massage). Boys and I enjoyed a local brew at one of 50 places to eat and drink along the boardwalk. The town is just one street board walk that stretches for about ½ mile along the sea. You will need to get a cab ride back to the ship which is $8 up to 4 people. Great experience. ONLY IMPROVEMENT NATIVE CHOICE CAN MAKE THIS EASIER....You will need to walk 1/2 mile to the NATIVE CHOICE OFFICE to get the buss for excursion . It would be VERY NICE if NATIVE CHOICE had one person with a sign to direct you to the office, or have removable street signs that direct you 1/2 mile walk to the office. They have 20 people standing around at the Office handing out water and talking to guests . One of them could hold a sign for 1/2 hour when the ship passingers are looking for thier office. It is a simple walk once you fined your way out of the tourist port shops ... there are no side walks and this office is in middle of a nowhere street.

Thank 111familyman111
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Very easy ongoing tour made with a lot of professionalism from Fabiola pur guide and Tacho our driver. We walked from the cruise ship to their offices (10 minutes walk) with the directions given - very easy. The tour started at 8am on time in a private air conditioned car for 10 people. Fabiola gave us all the time a lot of detailed and interesting pieces of information about the mayas and anything else. We arrived at the site first and visited the ruins the best way as we were alone with all possible explanations from Fabiola. This was very interesting and Fabiola was very extremely knowledgeable on mayas culture and the ruins we were visiting as well as on the plants we crossed path during the tour. This way of doing tours is really the right way as you avoid the massive crowd with big buses. We then drove back, stopped to taste local pineaple and dragon fruit - also a stop at the light house in Mahahual for some nice pictures. Again thank you Fabiola for your time and energy as well as the safe driving done by Tacho (who during the tour was carrying water bottles for us in case - what a service!)

Thank geegee06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews