Chetumal gives access to the undeveloped palm-studded coastal region called Costa Maya on the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. It starts some 180 miles south of Cancun and runs to the border with Belize near Ambergris Cay. It is a place where the second largest barrier reef in the world and the breathtaking coastline are backed by ancient forests. Time seems to have forgotten this remote, somewhat primitive area although development for tourism is now rapidly growing.
Chetumal was established as a Mexican port town in 1898 under the name Payo Obispo but changed to Chetumal in 1936. It is a small growing city with an international airport and has a Museum of Mayan Culture as well as a zoo.
Costa Maya is protected by the same reef that thrills divers in Belize and Cozumel, meaning that beach sand stays put and the waves are minimal. It boasts a vast array of tropical plant and animal life and only a short distance from the beach, the most prolific and unspoiled reef beckons the snorkeler, diver and fisherman. Coconut palms sprout everywhere, and birdlife, coatimundi, small wildcats and monkeys abound in the nearby jungle. From Costa Maya explore the old Mayan City of Chacchoben, the Museum of Myan Culture and the Mayan City of Kohunlich famous for its 6ft high stone masks that adorn the sides of the temple. The Mayan ruins of Chacchoben are very near the town of Limones and a bit farther south are the ruins of Dzibanche and Kohunlich, famous for its 6ft high stone masks that adorn the sides of the temple.
There are no cruises currently listed for this port of call.