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Progreso Suggestions

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My sister and I will on the Triumph in October and one of our stops is Progreso. None of the excursions really appealed to us but we were interested in maybe doing some shopping.

Does anyone have any suggestions for someone not doing an excursion in Progreso? Or maybe where we can do some shopping for an hour or so before getting back on the ship?

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we've been to Progresso 3 times. we really enjoyed the Mayan Ruian's.

We also did a tour to Mederia. Mederia is about a 45 minute bus ride there & about 45 minutes back. I think there is a Shopping tour Carnival offers. If you are just wanting to shop for an hour & get back on the ship .... I would stay there at the pier and shop at the pier have a drink and get back on the ship.

 

Have a Great Cruise. We really enjoyed the Triumph :D

Edited by flc

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We were there for the first time in January. I would say either do an excursion or stay at the cruise terminal shopping area. I would never advise someone to stay on the boat if they've never experienced the port for themselves at least once, but it was a pretty unimpressive stop, IMO. I'm sure you know that you get bussed from the cruise terminal shopping area to the station in town; takes about 10 minutes. Then, you get to walk "the gauntlet", as we called it, of booths set up by vendors. If you make it through there unscathed (not physically, but definitely mentally :rolleyes:) you can walk to the beach. Once there, you enter "the gauntlet, part deux". The vendors are RELENTLESS and annoying. Sorry to those who liked Progreso--to each his/her own. But I hated the constant "Hey Lady" salesmanship. Not to mention the hassle of trying to get a bus back to the port. We watched a half dozen empty buses pull out of the station/dropoff area, and were told they were taking people to excursions. They really didn't seem too excited about taking us back to the ship.

 

You said you mostly wanted some shopping time; if you stay at the cruise terminal shopping area, you don't have to bother with the bus fiasco, just the annoying salespersons. The prices didn't seem too much different from those in town. Have a good trip!

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My sister and I will on the Triumph in October and one of our stops is Progreso. None of the excursions really appealed to us but we were interested in maybe doing some shopping.

Does anyone have any suggestions for someone not doing an excursion in Progreso? Or maybe where we can do some shopping for an hour or so before getting back on the ship?

 

Autoprogreso (the company that shuttles you from the port) offered us some excursions on the shuttle. They said they were 50% off of carnival prices. Shopping in Merida was either $25 or 30 per person. The place they shuttle you to has a bunch of vendors as well. They also offer this on their website for $10/person.

 

http://www.autoprogreso.com/Merida2En.html

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Ride the double-decker bus. Cost about 3 bucks. I love the beach because I see items for sale that I never see anywhere else. You always get free wait service at the beach and food and drinks are really inexpensive. I always get a $20 message. which can cost even less if 3 or 4 of you schedule together.

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The buses will drop you off in the shopping area with relentless vendors, as someone else said. We walked towards the water, ignoring everything, turned right and kept walking until people stopped yelling. It didn't take long and we ended up at Resturante Pelicanos (adorable yellow building). Had a cute shaded area with tables on the beach and we were able to have a table for food and drinks but swim and lay on the sand too. Had great service and enjoyed the local flair. It was simple but we had a great time.

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Progreso is not a spectacular port, but it's a good one. There is plenty to do here. The buses that take you from the ship into town (for free) will have excursions that they will offer. We have taken one of those: Uxmal Mayan Ruins-great excursion; great ruins which you can still climb on. Cheaper than the ship's tour to Uxmal, & our bus was half empty--plenty of room to spread out.

 

If you don't do any tours, then go ahead and go into town & do some shopping. I have been to this port 4 times, and I have never found the vendors to be that annoying. Sure, they are hoping to get sales, & they'll try to talk to you as you go by, but they aren't that bad. I have gotten a few great deals there on souvenirs. Don't buy anything in the shops right by the ship until you check out these vendors in town.

 

Then, take the very short walk down the street to the beach & hang out there. Again, there will be people walking by, hoping to get you to buy a massage or hair braiding or whatever little item they're carrying. A simple "no thanks" is all it takes to get them to move on, even if you end up saying it to many different people. My last time in Progreso, my group of 5 were offered a table with umbrella for $15. We moved on, and the next guy offered a table with umbrella & beach chairs for free. We took that. He was, of course, expecting us to at least order some drinks, which we did. It came out to a very cheap excursion. For the money we paid, it was a great day in port. The beach is not the best, but again, it was cheap. And the town has always felt safe.

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Progresso is one of our favorite ports - authentic Mexico. You won't find a Starbucks or chain restaurants there but that is part of why we love it so much. If you have never seen the ruins if swam in a Cenote (blissful on a hot, humid day) take an excursion and experience it. There's open market shopping at the bus pick up to take you back down the long pier and it is easy to catch a free ride there. The beach massages are cheap and actually pretty good! Super easy to find (look for the white tents). The vendors are everywhere but a simple "no thank you" sent them along.

 

We love the Triumph - one of my favorite ships - enjoy!

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Been to Progreso 7 or 8 times. We have been to the Dzib x 2 and Uxmal Mayan ruins, Technotel twice, Reef Club, Xcambo ruins and have tried to just stay on the beach in town but the vendors were so unrelenting that we couldn't relax. As soon as one left and I picked up my book along came another and another. This year we are going to the El Corchito Eco park which is new for us. If anyone has been there please comment on it as I can't find out a lot of info.

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Was just in progreso two weeks ago. We did the uxmal and hacienda excursion through carnival. Loved it! I'm not a huge history buff, but the ruins were great and we could climb them, which was quite the adventure. The hacienda served a Mayan snack which was quite tasty. There is a cenote on the property. Can't swim in it, but it was nice to look at.

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I love Progresso, one of my all time favs. If you have never been there, I would highly recommend a tour to Merida through AutoProgresso. Merida is a large and cosmopolitan city. It has a European feel to it. It would be a top ten city in the US based on population, so it a big city with a lot of history , great people , and not commercialized like so many other Mexican ports. Whatever you do, please don't stay on the ship!

 

 

Sent using the Cruise Critic forums app

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If you need to buy some inexpensive stuff, then Progreso is the place to do it.

 

You can also look at the web site for AutoProgreso.

AutoProgreso does Carnival's tours, but you can book directly with them for much less.

There is a lady in the little shoping area before you get on the bus who represents Autoprogreso and she is very helpful, but not pushy.

 

Or ride the two dollar bus that is now $4, I think.

And go to the flea market, just ask them where it is.

Most of the silver is now fake, but there are still some actual handicrafts.

 

When we first went to Progreso they would get one cruise ship a week.

Things have changed, a bit.

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The buses will drop you off in the shopping area with relentless vendors, as someone else said. We walked towards the water, ignoring everything, turned right and kept walking until people stopped yelling. It didn't take long and we ended up at Resturante Pelicanos (adorable yellow building). Had a cute shaded area with tables on the beach and we were able to have a table for food and drinks but swim and lay on the sand too. Had great service and enjoyed the local flair. It was simple but we had a great time.

Question, when you say the buses drop you off in the shopping area, is that at the end of the pier or a few blocks in town? We just want to get off the pier, walk the beach a bit and return to the boat.

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The first time I went to Progreso you were dropped off at an open air market when you first came into town. The past 5 or 6 cruises they have dropped you off at the central bus station which is maybe 4 or 5 blocks past the beach. Either way, it's a straight, easy walk to the beach or end of pier.

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I hope that this post will provide you with an overview of expectations when visiting the port of Progreso. First thing you need to note is that Progreso is not overly commercialized or touristized as in many other ports. Progreso has been able to retain its identity as a Mexican fishing port. You will truly feel that you are in a different country.

GET OFF THE SHIP - Your pier is 4 miles long. There are Free ship to shore shuttles running all day and $10 Taxi rides. The free shuttles will drop you off at one of two random stops in Progreso - either the covered shuttle terminal, which is 3 blocks from the Free beach; or the tented artisans market which is 1 block from the Free beach.

BEACHES - The only beach actually “in” Progreso is free. Loungers, Jet-skis, banana boats, and sea kayaks are available to rent. The coast along Progreso is all sand and there are NO reefs in or near Progreso. If you are looking for ocean snorkeling, I would recommend doing that in Cozumel. There are a few all-inclusive and pay-as-you-go beaches within 10-40 minutes from Progreso that are offered by Carnival or other local tour operators:

- Silcer Club = 10 min

- Sian Ka’n = 15 min

- Technotel = 35 min

- Reef Club = 35 min

SHOPPING is plentiful and both USD and MxPesos is honored on cruise days. If you pay in USD, there is a chance that your change will be in Pesos, so bring small bills. Taxes are always included in the price. Feel free to barter prices, however be reasonable and respectful as this is the main income for many of the people.

Authentic hand carved wooden pieces can be found at the Artisan market. Martin will create masterpieces as you watch - - authentic!

Good quality leather pieces and authentic Mayan textiles can be found at The Leather Store Bolom Balam store. A portion of all proceeds of sale is donated towards school supplies for the local poor.

DONATE TO THE LESS-FORTUNATE - The Leather Store Bolom Balam will accept donations of new and gently used school supplies, toys, shoes, backpacks etc.which will be distributed to the Maya poor. Contacts are Richard or Erick. Location: 3 doors down from the corner of Calle 80 and Calle 21 (on Calle 80) and only 1 block from the beach. (Red dot on map attached).

MASSAGES - pamper yourself to an inexpensive massage, either on the beach, in a tent-like setting, or in an air-conditioned room for approximately $15-$25 USD. You will be glad that you did! Massage locations are on the map attached.

LOCAL SIGHTSEEING - sightseeing double-decker buses will take you around the fishing village of Progreso for about $5. Hitch a ride at each shuttle station & at the statue at the entrance to the free beach.

RESTAURANTS are plenty. Local Mexican and expat owned. Most restaurants are Yucatecan cuisine and have bilingual menus and staff (on cruise days). Some serve meals/drinks under shade palapas on the beach. Look for 2 for 1 deals, Free tequila shots, $1 Beers and $10 buckets of beers. If you are hankering more “familiar food”, there is a Dominos Pizza (1/2 block from the beach) and Subway (across from the beach). Want to fancy it up? try MayaKa or Crabsters restaurants directly across from the beach. Remember, as in most ports, the restaurants closer to the beach are more expensive than ones a block or two away from the beach. If you are looking for cheap authentic eats, I would recommend visiting the Farmers Market - the big Green Building about 3 blocks from the beach (see map attached).

MANGROVE KAYAKING - La Ria Kayak and Padleboard is only 5 mintues away and is a bargain at $15-$20 USD. Single and double kayaks available. A quaint and affordable on-site restaurant specializes in fish, shrimp and tacos. Hop into a Taxi, ask for “La Ria Kayak”.

 

EL CORCHITO NATURE RESERVE - is about 5 minutes from Progreso. This is a small nature reserve where you can stroll the paths, swim in mangrove water springs, picnic in the shade and enjoy the local wildlife of raccoon, coati, and birds. Note that these are “surface mangrove springs” (NOT to be confused with the cavern Cenotes that Yucatan is famous for.). Note that during Easter and the summer months, El Corchito may be crowded with local vacationers. Hop into a Taxi and ask for“El Corchito”.

SCOOTER / ATV RENTALS - There are limited scooter and ATV rentals located on the main road Calle 80 just outside of the shuttle terminal of the artisans market, a block of the beach . . one at La Corona de Pancho Villa restaurant, and the other across the street a few doors down near the Dominos Pizza. (See blue dots on map)

 

Enjoy - - Progreso - so much to experience !

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I hope that this post will provide you with an overview of expectations when visiting the port of Progreso. First thing you need to note is that Progreso is not overly commercialized or touristized as in many other ports. Progreso has been able to retain its identity as a Mexican fishing port. You will truly feel that you are in a different country.

GET OFF THE SHIP - Your pier is 4 miles long. There are Free ship to shore shuttles running all day and $10 Taxi rides. The free shuttles will drop you off at one of two random stops in Progreso - either the covered shuttle terminal, which is 3 blocks from the Free beach; or the tented artisans market which is 1 block from the Free beach.

BEACHES - The only beach actually “in” Progreso is free. Loungers, Jet-skis, banana boats, and sea kayaks are available to rent. The coast along Progreso is all sand and there are NO reefs in or near Progreso. If you are looking for ocean snorkeling, I would recommend doing that in Cozumel. There are a few all-inclusive and pay-as-you-go beaches within 10-40 minutes from Progreso that are offered by Carnival or other local tour operators:

- Silcer Club = 10 min

- Sian Ka’n = 15 min

- Technotel = 35 min

- Reef Club = 35 min

SHOPPING is plentiful and both USD and MxPesos is honored on cruise days. If you pay in USD, there is a chance that your change will be in Pesos, so bring small bills. Taxes are always included in the price. Feel free to barter prices, however be reasonable and respectful as this is the main income for many of the people.

Authentic hand carved wooden pieces can be found at the Artisan market. Martin will create masterpieces as you watch - - authentic!

Good quality leather pieces and authentic Mayan textiles can be found at The Leather Store Bolom Balam store. A portion of all proceeds of sale is donated towards school supplies for the local poor.

DONATE TO THE LESS-FORTUNATE - The Leather Store Bolom Balam will accept donations of new and gently used school supplies, toys, shoes, backpacks etc.which will be distributed to the Maya poor. Contacts are Richard or Erick. Location: 3 doors down from the corner of Calle 80 and Calle 21 (on Calle 80) and only 1 block from the beach. (Red dot on map attached).

MASSAGES - pamper yourself to an inexpensive massage, either on the beach, in a tent-like setting, or in an air-conditioned room for approximately $15-$25 USD. You will be glad that you did! Massage locations are on the map attached.

LOCAL SIGHTSEEING - sightseeing double-decker buses will take you around the fishing village of Progreso for about $5. Hitch a ride at each shuttle station & at the statue at the entrance to the free beach.

RESTAURANTS are plenty. Local Mexican and expat owned. Most restaurants are Yucatecan cuisine and have bilingual menus and staff (on cruise days). Some serve meals/drinks under shade palapas on the beach. Look for 2 for 1 deals, Free tequila shots, $1 Beers and $10 buckets of beers. If you are hankering more “familiar food”, there is a Dominos Pizza (1/2 block from the beach) and Subway (across from the beach). Want to fancy it up? try MayaKa or Crabsters restaurants directly across from the beach. Remember, as in most ports, the restaurants closer to the beach are more expensive than ones a block or two away from the beach. If you are looking for cheap authentic eats, I would recommend visiting the Farmers Market - the big Green Building about 3 blocks from the beach (see map attached).

MANGROVE KAYAKING - La Ria Kayak and Padleboard is only 5 mintues away and is a bargain at $15-$20 USD. Single and double kayaks available. A quaint and affordable on-site restaurant specializes in fish, shrimp and tacos. Hop into a Taxi, ask for “La Ria Kayak”.

 

EL CORCHITO NATURE RESERVE - is about 5 minutes from Progreso. This is a small nature reserve where you can stroll the paths, swim in mangrove water springs, picnic in the shade and enjoy the local wildlife of raccoon, coati, and birds. Note that these are “surface mangrove springs” (NOT to be confused with the cavern Cenotes that Yucatan is famous for.). Note that during Easter and the summer months, El Corchito may be crowded with local vacationers. Hop into a Taxi and ask for“El Corchito”.

SCOOTER / ATV RENTALS - There are limited scooter and ATV rentals located on the main road Calle 80 just outside of the shuttle terminal of the artisans market, a block of the beach . . one at La Corona de Pancho Villa restaurant, and the other across the street a few doors down near the Dominos Pizza. (See blue dots on map)

 

Enjoy - - Progreso - so much to experience !

 

Since you seem to have detailed local knowledge, can you help me with the location of the river tubing in the Royal Caribbean excursion

Mayapan Ruins, Lazy River Tubing & Cave Snorkel?

 

Thanks!

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Ride the double-decker bus. Cost about 3 bucks. I love the beach because I see items for sale that I never see anywhere else. You always get free wait service at the beach and food and drinks are really inexpensive. I always get a $20 message. which can cost even less if 3 or 4 of you schedule together.

 

 

Hi,

where did you go to get the $20 message??

 

Thank you

La Toya

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The buses will drop you off in the shopping area with relentless vendors, as someone else said. We walked towards the water, ignoring everything, turned right and kept walking until people stopped yelling. It didn't take long and we ended up at Resturante Pelicanos (adorable yellow building). Had a cute shaded area with tables on the beach and we were able to have a table for food and drinks but swim and lay on the sand too. Had great service and enjoyed the local flair. It was simple but we had a great time.

 

Sounds like how I would like to spend my day in Progreso instead of booking an excursion! How long was the walk to where you set up for the day? Was it difficult finding a ride back to the ship? Last question, I hear a lot about murky water and unimpressive beaches, what was your experience?

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EZ4U2CY, Thanks for the excellent insight into Progresso, we will be there in October and really appreciate the comments. 

 

 

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On 4/18/2017 at 9:07 AM, EZ4U2CY said:

I hope that this post will provide you with an overview of expectations when visiting the port of Progreso. First thing you need to note is that Progreso is not overly commercialized or touristized as in many other ports. Progreso has been able to retain its identity as a Mexican fishing port. You will truly feel that you are in a different country.

GET OFF THE SHIP - Your pier is 4 miles long. There are Free ship to shore shuttles running all day and $10 Taxi rides. The free shuttles will drop you off at one of two random stops in Progreso - either the covered shuttle terminal, which is 3 blocks from the Free beach; or the tented artisans market which is 1 block from the Free beach.

BEACHES - The only beach actually “in” Progreso is free. Loungers, Jet-skis, banana boats, and sea kayaks are available to rent. The coast along Progreso is all sand and there are NO reefs in or near Progreso. If you are looking for ocean snorkeling, I would recommend doing that in Cozumel. There are a few all-inclusive and pay-as-you-go beaches within 10-40 minutes from Progreso that are offered by Carnival or other local tour operators:

- Silcer Club = 10 min

- Sian Ka’n = 15 min

- Technotel = 35 min

- Reef Club = 35 min

SHOPPING is plentiful and both USD and MxPesos is honored on cruise days. If you pay in USD, there is a chance that your change will be in Pesos, so bring small bills. Taxes are always included in the price. Feel free to barter prices, however be reasonable and respectful as this is the main income for many of the people.

Authentic hand carved wooden pieces can be found at the Artisan market. Martin will create masterpieces as you watch - - authentic!

Good quality leather pieces and authentic Mayan textiles can be found at The Leather Store Bolom Balam store. A portion of all proceeds of sale is donated towards school supplies for the local poor.

DONATE TO THE LESS-FORTUNATE - The Leather Store Bolom Balam will accept donations of new and gently used school supplies, toys, shoes, backpacks etc.which will be distributed to the Maya poor. Contacts are Richard or Erick. Location: 3 doors down from the corner of Calle 80 and Calle 21 (on Calle 80) and only 1 block from the beach. (Red dot on map attached).

MASSAGES - pamper yourself to an inexpensive massage, either on the beach, in a tent-like setting, or in an air-conditioned room for approximately $15-$25 USD. You will be glad that you did! Massage locations are on the map attached.

LOCAL SIGHTSEEING - sightseeing double-decker buses will take you around the fishing village of Progreso for about $5. Hitch a ride at each shuttle station & at the statue at the entrance to the free beach.

RESTAURANTS are plenty. Local Mexican and expat owned. Most restaurants are Yucatecan cuisine and have bilingual menus and staff (on cruise days). Some serve meals/drinks under shade palapas on the beach. Look for 2 for 1 deals, Free tequila shots, $1 Beers and $10 buckets of beers. If you are hankering more “familiar food”, there is a Dominos Pizza (1/2 block from the beach) and Subway (across from the beach). Want to fancy it up? try MayaKa or Crabsters restaurants directly across from the beach. Remember, as in most ports, the restaurants closer to the beach are more expensive than ones a block or two away from the beach. If you are looking for cheap authentic eats, I would recommend visiting the Farmers Market - the big Green Building about 3 blocks from the beach (see map attached).

MANGROVE KAYAKING - La Ria Kayak and Padleboard is only 5 mintues away and is a bargain at $15-$20 USD. Single and double kayaks available. A quaint and affordable on-site restaurant specializes in fish, shrimp and tacos. Hop into a Taxi, ask for “La Ria Kayak”.

 

EL CORCHITO NATURE RESERVE - is about 5 minutes from Progreso. This is a small nature reserve where you can stroll the paths, swim in mangrove water springs, picnic in the shade and enjoy the local wildlife of raccoon, coati, and birds. Note that these are “surface mangrove springs” (NOT to be confused with the cavern Cenotes that Yucatan is famous for.). Note that during Easter and the summer months, El Corchito may be crowded with local vacationers. Hop into a Taxi and ask for“El Corchito”.

SCOOTER / ATV RENTALS - There are limited scooter and ATV rentals located on the main road Calle 80 just outside of the shuttle terminal of the artisans market, a block of the beach . . one at La Corona de Pancho Villa restaurant, and the other across the street a few doors down near the Dominos Pizza. (See blue dots on map)

 

Enjoy - - Progreso - so much to experience !

Did you post the map?  I can't see it.

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On 4/18/2017 at 2:35 PM, c-leg5 said:

 

Since you seem to have detailed local knowledge, can you help me with the location of the river tubing in the Royal Caribbean excursion

Mayapan Ruins, Lazy River Tubing & Cave Snorkel?

 

Thanks!

 

Hi c-leg5: I suggest you to investigate online for Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche they have a page of their own and facebook page, you might find everything about that wrong called "lazy river tubing". Regards

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1 hour ago, Yucrux said:

 

Hi c-leg5: I suggest you to investigate online for Cenotes Hacienda Mucuyche they have a page of their own and facebook page, you might find everything about that wrong called "lazy river tubing". Regards

 

LOL sorry I don’t understand your reply but my question was from 2017!

 

I have been twice since then but I haven’t done the cenotes. 

 

If you are local -  I tried to get to xtabentun factory last time but excursion was cancelled- any chance of getting there independently? 

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