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superdoc09

Progreso Biking & Cenote Snorkeling

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Hi,

My husband & I are visiting Progreso in Sept thru the Carnival ecstasy cruise line.

We wanted to do the new Biking & Cenote Snorkeling Expedition offered by the cruise line.

Has anyone done this before ? Is is worth the money ? Also is there an option to book this independently or do we need to book it via cruise line only ?

Thanks in advance.

-Bhav.

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Hi superdoc09.

 

Did you happen to do this excursion? I have a stop in Progreso in May and am thinking of taking it.

 

Thanks!

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I live here - could you be more specific on the location of this tour? If it is the cenote/bike tour I am thinking of, it is located in Temozon, just outside of Valladolid, for those of you with maps and Google.

 

The drive to Valladolid will be about 2 hours or a little more, and the same back. Not sure if this much driving is worth it; also keep in mind that it will be VERY hot and biking will be a sweat-fest although the cenote swim will be refreshing.

 

My two cents. :D

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The Cuzama cenotes are great and are about 1.5 hours drive away from Progreso. I was there today and swam in all three - fantastic, as usual!:p

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Carnival's website says the drive is about an hour to the drop off site.

 

We were looking for something different so we went ahead an booked the excursion. I'll post my reviews after!

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Hi,

My husband & I are visiting Progreso in Sept thru the Carnival ecstasy cruise line.

We wanted to do the new Biking & Cenote Snorkeling Expedition offered by the cruise line.

Has anyone done this before ? Is is worth the money ? Also is there an option to book this independently or do we need to book it via cruise line only ?

Thanks in advance.

-Bhav.

 

 

 

I booked this one for my family. We go end of march so I will let you know when we get back...

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I went on this excursion in February.

 

It was a lot of fun. The sites were beautiful, the biking was a nice change after eating so much heavy food...and, well, speaking of food, the lunch they give you is AMAZING. Better than anything on the cruise - that's for sure!

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Thanks so much for posting! I'm very glad to hear a positive review and looking forward to my excursion in May!

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We just got back from a trip on Carnival Ecstasy and did this tour. Here are our comments:

1) It leaves early - docked at 7:00 had to be off ship and at end of pier at 7:30.

2) Things to bring: towel, sunscreen, sunglasses, change of clothes (maybe), water shoes if you have them (they do provide some), your own snorkeling equipment (they provide some but if you have your own :-)) We wore our swimsuits under our clothes and it worked fine.

3) The ride to the village where you pick up the bikes in about an hour - the guide talks about Progeso while driving but it hard to hear in the back. These are 12 passenger (approx) vans

4) When you get to the bikes there is a restroom. You pick up a life vest, snorkel/mask, water shoes, bike helmet, and bike. They do have bikes for shorter and taller people at a different area a short distance away. The van follows the riders so you do not need to carry anything with you on the riding portion of the trip.

5) You ride to a meeting point (actually where you have lunch) and then they give you instructions and split the tour group up. In our case they divided it by cruise ship as both Ecstasy and Triumph were in port. That also means a smaller group is in each cave at a time. You see both caves - the groups switch - one group goes to one cave first and then the other.

6) The bike ride portion is rough. Dirt path with some smaller and larger rocks. Tennis shoes or closed toes hiking sandals are probably a good idea. The ride was pretty warm - not very much shade - I can imagine in summer it would be hotter. The path is dusty. The ride is not difficult though. Our DD (17) did not have any problems. There were other kids probably 12/13 boys that also seemed to have fun - they were not with our group but we talked to them at lunch.

7) The first cave is more like a clear pond - shallow to about 15 feet deep. The water is cool. Once you get off the bike you have to walk to it - the path is rocky so the water shoes are a good idea to wear. You can leave some stuff in the van and then there is also a table, and then just take your snorkeling stuff with you. There was a Mayan elder that spent quite a while describing local healing plants before we went in the water - this was actually very interesting.

8) Then you ride to the next stop maybe two miles away - with the van following. The next cave is more of a cave, - a 2 story opening and then you swim in as it narrows towards the back - still probably 10 feet tall - you have to walk to this one as well, Note: there are bats in this one. This one is much deeper but the water is so clear. There is this really cool ledge in the back that you can sit on. (one person at a time)

9) Then you ride back to the lunch spot. Picnic tables, thatched covered roof, wood floor. Very nice - open air! They serve Mayan tortillas with black beans, shredded chicken - almost like tostadas. Plus some other stuff - they also serve this tea that tastes like punch. You can also buy beer and soft drinks - I think the beers were $2 and soft drinks $1. You have plenty of time to eat and this was very nice - they serve you.

10) Then you ride back to where you got the bikes and turn all the equipment in.

11) Then you take the van back to the ship - you can get off in the town but we chose not to. This was probably the worst part - the bike ride was warm and the van was also hot (it was about 12:30) and the air conditioner did not work all that well - we were in the back of the van - no windows that opened so it was a little unpleasant for the first 15 minutes and did not get that much better.

 

Overall, I would do this again and the exercise did feel good after the food on the ship! On a scale of 1 to 10 I would rank this an 8 or maybe even a 9.

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Thanks so much for the wonderfully detailed review! Except the van ride and early start, I am looking forward to this excursion even more!

 

If you had wanted to, would there have been time to visit the market? It seems like the excursion might take up the entire port time?

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We were back in Progeso at about 1:15 - it is probably another 15 minutes to the ship - we were back at the dock by about 1:30. We were supposed to be back on board by 2:30 - so yes the trip took most of the port day. You would have about an hour in the actual town - they said that there are shuttles and taxis to take you out to the dock area but I did not see them. If you were familiar with Progreso you could probably stay in the town for an hour. At the end of the dock area before you walk through the gates there are a lot of small shops and bars. We did actually get a drink and some souvenirs there before we got back on the ship. The prices seemed reasonable -the bracelet I bought was $1 and it was the same the next day in Cozumel. So if you were interested in a few souvenirs you could purchase them there.

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Great! Thanks so much for taking the time to provide such great information. We have two weeks till our crusie and can't wait!

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The Cuzama cenotes are great and are about 1.5 hours drive away from Progreso. I was there today and swam in all three - fantastic, as usual!:p

 

Since you live in Merida now I have a question for you. What is your advice for the best cenote to visit and the best way to get there while in port at Progreso?

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My wife and I are doing the Combo tour through progresso on June 1. The tour includes the ruins in Dzibilchaltun, which has a cenote for swimming. It concludes with a tour of Merida.

 

We did the Uxmal tour with them last year and had a great time. This is a very good company with very good prices. The tour guide we had was very knowledgeable and friendly. They are very easy to deal with and very good at what they do.

 

We mostly wanted to swim in a cenote so that is why we are doing this tour this time. I'll let you know how it was when we get back.

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We LOVED this excursion! Everything was as epslate described. Although only our boat was in port that day so there were 14 of us, all mid-20's to early-30s. I would definitely do this excursion again!

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Since you live in Merida now I have a question for you. What is your advice for the best cenote to visit and the best way to get there while in port at Progreso?

 

There are hundred of cenotes in the Yucatan and it would be presumptuous of me to say which one was best - the Chunkanan (also called the Cuzama) cenotes are the most popular right now as there are 3 fantastic cenotes in a row, reachable only by a horse-drawn platform on narrow gauge Belgian rails.

 

To get there, get private transportation either through Yucatan Connection or others.

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Thanks for the review. This was the only Progresso excursion that looked good to me. I'm looking forward to it.

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Extremely aggressive horsefly-like biters!!

 

My husband and I just returned from our cruise to Progreso and Cozumel. This was probably my favorite experience of the 5-day trip, but I highly recommend really strong bugspray. The guides asked us whether Carnival made this suggestion to us because, afterall, you are going into a heavily wooded/jungle type area. No, we had no idea, though maybe we should have figured this given the nature of the trip. The guides seemed surprised it was not recommended (along with sunscreen, etc). I figure this is because they don't want to scare you away from this excursion. There is nothing to be scared of, but it would be much more enjoyable if you're not getting bitten constantly. I did some internet research, and I think June-August is the worst time for the flies, so maybe other travelers do not have this problem at other times of the year.

 

Both cenotes were beautiful, and I highly recommend this excursion, but I feel sure you will enjoy it more if you don't have to endure the itchy welts for the next few days like I am. :] The guides were awesome, and the food at the end was incredible.

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I just got back from Progresso and went on the Carnival mountain biking / centoe excursion. Here are my thoughts:

 

The excursion started early. We were able get off the ship at 7:15 which was when we were supposed to meet our guide. We met our guide, Gabby at the end of the pier. Gabby was awesome. Very pleasant young lady who loved telling about the area. There were 12 of us on this excursion ranging from 15 to probably around 50. We loaded into a van and drove one hour to San Antonio which was the small town where we picked up the bikes and snorkel gear.

 

We rode the mountain bikes about 2 miles to the first cenote. We rode on a gravel road. It was easy as far as mountain biking is concerned. I have snorkeled quite a bit, and the snorkeling is not that great. The cenote was pretty and the water was refreshing following the bike ride in the heat. I will say that the bugs, espescially a biting fly were BAD. I used deep woods off which I shared with the other people on the excursion which kept the flies away. Some did not use the Off, but later regretted that.

 

After swimming in the first cenote, we rode a short distance to the second cenote. At the second cenote we met a Mayan medicine man who told us about several plants used to cure/treat common ailments. We then swam in the second cenote.

 

After swimming in the second cenote, we rode about two miles back to the area where we picked up the mountain bikes. There was an outdoor kitchen where we ate. It was covered with tables and chairs and fans. Gabby told us the food that we were served was authentic Mayan food. It was AWESOME and probably the best food I ate the whole cruise. The best way I can describe it is like tostadas with beans, lettuce, and spicy shreaded chicken.

 

After eating, we loaded back into the van and headed back to the pier where we had about an hour to shop before boarding.

 

I enjoyed the excursion. I would have liked the mountain biking to have been further. Four miles round trip was a pretty short ride for me. Gabby the guide was awesome. She would answer any question we had and seemed very enthusiastic about telling us about the area.

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Great review, however I would like more information regarding the actual cenotes. Every reply on here is pretty nonchalant, no enthusiasm, but they still recommend it...? I want to be "WOWED" I've only been snorkeling once, so this will be a treat for me and my wife. I like the all caps for AMAZING describing the food, but is the swimming through the caves "AMAZING". Is it beautiful water, and underwater reefs, pretty fishes and plants. I'm not really concerned about the food, I can eat at home, I can't snorkel through caves at home though.

 

Thanks.

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We did a private tour(by taxi) to the cenotes. We hurried through the cenotes as we were worried we weren't going to make it back to the ship on time. There was a mule driven cart on a rail to take us to each cenote(there were three). It doesn't sound like the bike/cenote tour offers that, which is probably a good thing. Since there was only one rail to and from the cenotes, someone always had to take their cart off the rail(which was usually us)

 

I'm glad I did this tour...no, probably wouldn't do it again. We ended up doing it on some holiday and there were LOTS of locals there. LOL, I dragged my snorkel equipment with me, but nothing to see. They are really very beautiful, like from a movie! I swam in all of them. The one cenote you go down by ladder was the most beautiful! Here's some pics:

2662806196_b6ceaa8b3b.jpg.902d6ebb096e11ce99cae14f3b34067b.jpg

Bolonchohol_large-775431.jpg.f0c7ce8ccd18864d31c2f3750c8ab597.jpg

bolonchojol2.jpg.1d1eb63d53f9460a4afbdc7bbe346c2c.jpg

CuzamaCenote2a.jpg.1a6de210232ec5c290c1d9337cccda9d.jpg

imagesCAMV296G.jpg.85fd6ee7220adbb547265744ab04feb0.jpg

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