Yesterday afternoon we ventured off to explore Isla Mujeres and have some fun. It wasn’t a perfect day, being mostly cloudy with rain threatening but the forecast didn’t show things getting any better so we seized the opportunity and set out. We called our new friends Tracy and Steve aboard S/V Saga Sea who we just met in person although we’ve been conversing online for some time. Gotta love that Internet.
After landing the dinghy we walked downtown, where Tracy canvassed the Golf Cart vendors on the main avenue to compare prices (she’s good at that) and we secured our wheels for the afternoon.
Golf Carts are popular and plentiful here, most likely due to the small size of the island, and after a little paperwork we were off. Traveling south on the eastern side of Isla Mujeres we enjoyed the view along the way of the ocean and several beautiful villas that provide vacationers with housing on this popular getaway island.
Our first stop was Punta Sur (South Point), the southern-most tip of Isla Mujeres where the few remains of a small Mayan temple stand. This promontory also boasts the distinction as the eastern most point in all of Mexico and was the site of rituals by the early inhabitants of the area. These days there is little left of the building as it is completely exposed to the affects of the wind, sun and sea, and today’s weather drove that point home for sure. Probably as compensation for the amount of ruins available, numerous trails have been constructed and several artsy statues have been placed on the point. Combine that with a killer Banana Split at the gift shop and you have an enjoyable visit.
As we started up the west side of the island the water was not as easy to view, probably because the protected shoreline is more “popular” (read that “expensive”). We passed several more nice looking villas and visited a museum (that was closed to host a wedding) and the remains of a plantation owned by a local slave trader turned pirate.
The rest of the trip gained us the lowdown on some local points of interest, namely a marine supply house (really, in a small house) and the island’s major grocery store that from the outside looks like a warehouse membership chain. We hear that membership is not necessarily a prerequisite as long as you have Pesos to spend.
Driving through traffic, especially in the congested downtown area, kept me on my toes for the duration of the trip and the walk back appeared to convince everyone to settle down for a quiet evening aboard. No partying tonight.