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andynapril

Acapulco, Manzanillo, Ixtapa Tours?

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Has anyone used private companies (not through the ship) for this ports? I was able to find Intersol Tours in Acapulco, but that's about it. Has anyone used them? Any other recommendations?

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Last time we were in Ixtapa we went to Ixtapa Island & LOVED it. Some of the best snorkeling we've seen. Some friends that weren't into snorkeling hung out on the beach & ate lobster. I loved it there. I think we'd like to go back (taking the kids this time), but I would like to see about bypassing the ships tours & either using a private company or going on our own. Can't seem to find any tour companies in Ixtapa. I found Intersol tours in Acapulco, but would like to know if they are reputable. :)

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Has anyone used private companies (not through the ship) for this ports? I was able to find Intersol Tours in Acapulco, but that's about it. Has anyone used them? Any other recommendations?

 

I don't think that there are many "tour" things/places to see in Zihuatanejo/Ixtapa... Ixtapa is a high rise hotel beach...In Zihuatanejo, Playa La Ropa is a 3 buck taxi ride to one of Mexico's nicest beaches, a water taxi ride across to bay to Los Gatos for a little snorkeling (don't think it's like the Caribbean clear water...)..or walking around town, going to their Mercado, enjoying a Mexico town without a lot of Gringos....

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Very good to know. We'll probably use them. Thanks for the info. Did you use any other tour operators in the other ports. Not as easy to find them for Ixtapa or Manzanillo. I did find Chimal tours. Anyone used them?

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We did the Jalisco Plantation & Barra de Navidad bus tour. It was $50.00 per person for approx. 6 hours.

 

The bus was full, they had a large group plus just us folks from the ship in two's so it was a different feeling, the group always crowded together, and ate first in the restaurant, while all the rest of us waited.

 

First stop was a fruit stand. Lots of fruit, some samples, but mostly cups of fruit that you can buy, for $1.00 each and up. Unfortunaly we didn't bring any dollars, really stupid, cuz we knew better. So we couldn't buy any fruit. Next stop was a Plantation, where you walk around and look at the Bananashow they grow, and the tall coconut trees. Then you all get back on the bus and go to Barra de Navida, a small town and have lunch. We all walked to a restaurant in town and they gave us two drink coupons, for water, soda, or beer. After you ate, you had approx. 2 hrs, to shop. Or go in the water, really nice beaches, but know one was in the water or around the beaches. My husband went in to his knees, and came back all itchy.

 

Then back on the bus and back to the ship.

 

Very nice bus, clean air conditioned. It had a Bathroom. You do spend alot of time on the bus.

The Restaurant food was bad and expensive. Nothing under $8.00.

No. . . . I would not do it again. But it sure sounded good in the Carnival shore excursion book they have.

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Thanks! Good to know. I was considering that tour, but will probably look at doing something else. Thanks! :)

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I was there last week on the Carnival Spirit. Here's what I did:

 

Acapulco: Palao Island Club excursion through Intersol (independent tour company). Glass bottom boat to island-- saw fish, underwater statue. On island: lunch, open bar, Aztec dancers, small beach. Nice, fun. Kids liked the underwater statue and dancers. $12 extra charge to rent snorkeling gear, so I didn't. Otherwise, reasonable price ($50 + tips). Shipmates said Carnival's excursion cost $65, went to same place, included snorkeling, more convenient pickup from ship.

 

Zihuatanejo: Taxi to Paty's on La Ropa beach. Wonderful beach, good food, not expensive. Elvira's, right next door, was similar. Best beach on trip IMHO. Also, the little village near the tender pier is pretty and quaint, and prices are very reasonable (3 T-shirts for $10, hats for $5, beers to go for $1-2 each).

 

Manzanillo: Taxi to Scuba Shack ($12-20) for independent snorkeling tour ($45 + tips). See www.gomanzanillo.com. American guides, very helpful. Great snorkeling with a large variety of fish and some coral, also a wreck. Beach restaurants afterward for food/drinks, excellent grilled mahi-mahi! Area near the ship is industrial and not walkable-- you need to shuttle or taxi elsewhere.

 

Have fun!

Wendell

 

Has anyone used private companies (not through the ship) for this ports? I was able to find Intersol Tours in Acapulco, but that's about it. Has anyone used them? Any other recommendations?

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In Manzanillo, did you make reservations ahead of time for the snorkeling tour or did you just show up at the Scuba Shack?

 

In Zihuatanejo, do you know how far apart the La Perla and Paty's restaurants are on La Ropa Beach?

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I did make a reservation for the snorkeling tour. BTW when you reserve, they will email you a letter with directions in Spanish to show your taxi driver. The scuba shop is about a 25 minute drive from the pier, then they drive you 15 minutes more to the beach, where you get on the snorkeling boat.

 

Sorry, don't know answer to your La Perla/Paty's question. Didn't really explore the area other than Paty's and Elvira's right next door to it (very similar to Paty's). Maybe you can google their websites and figure it out?

 

In Manzanillo, did you make reservations ahead of time for the snorkeling tour or did you just show up at the Scuba Shack?

 

In Zihuatanejo, do you know how far apart the La Perla and Paty's restaurants are on La Ropa Beach?

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Thanks for your reply. In Manzanillo, is there a restaurant on the beach where the Scuba Shack is located and is it on a nice beach where a family of 9 could spend the day? Is there a nice beach closer to the ship that you would recommend?

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The Scuba Shack is not on a beach. It's on a main road in a neighborhood called Santiago, very urban. However, there are beaches just a few minutes away. I think the one they took us to is called La Bochita? La Boquita? Something like that. Sure, a family of 9 would have great fun at that beach, it's pretty nice (although La Ropa at Zihua is even nicer IMHO) and food/drinks are not expensive. The grilled mahi-mahi, chips, salsa, and guacamole were fantastic! Friends rented a jet ski and had fun-- I didn't ask about cost. If you have snorkeling gear, the wreck is close enough to shore that it's reachable (but the snorkeling tour only costs $45 and they also take you to two other places). There was a vendor selling inflatable rings, rafts etc-- he had about 200 of them loaded on his cart, about 15 feet high-- quite a sight. There are a few other vendors and mariachis but they are polite and unaggressive, not bothersome at all.

 

This was my first time in Manzanillo (or in any of these ports) so you've just about exhausted my knowledge by now! Oh-- in Manzanillo, friends spent the day at a resort called Las Hadas-- $25 to enter, but they give you coupons for the same value in food/drinks. They said pool was chilly but otherwise, it was nice. Me, I'll take the beach!

 

Thanks for your reply. In Manzanillo, is there a restaurant on the beach where the Scuba Shack is located and is it on a nice beach where a family of 9 could spend the day? Is there a nice beach closer to the ship that you would recommend?

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In Manzanillo, did you make reservations ahead of time for the snorkeling tour or did you just show up at the Scuba Shack?

 

In Zihuatanejo, do you know how far apart the La Perla and Paty's restaurants are on La Ropa Beach?

 

They are about a 6 to 8 minute walk....

The cab to Paty's is 30 pesos and to La Perla, it's 35 pesos ...

Eat at Paty's ! Food and service are better....

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All your replies are greatly appreciated! With an age range of 17 to 76, it's not easy for the senior members of our family to know what all 9 of us are wanting to do in port! Thanks for your help in our planning.

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and La Perla is a few minutes walk but more in a taxi fare? Jut trying to get my bearings as I am pretty sure we will head to La Ropa for the day in Zihuantanejo

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and La Perla is a few minutes walk but more in a taxi fare? Jut trying to get my bearings as I am pretty sure we will head to La Ropa for the day in Zihuantanejo

 

Taxis fares are zone priced. From downtown to Paty's is in the 30 peso zone, to La Perla from downtown is the next zone at 35 pesos.....Want to do both ? Start at Paty's for 30 peso and walk to La perla and save 5 pesos....

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I speak no Spanish other than the "ola" I have learned from watching Dora with the grandkids. I have done Mexican Riveria numerous times before and had mixed results with language barriers. (Think sometime they speak more English than they let on :) ) Is there a specific kind of cab I need to take? Are there cabs that would hold 6 adults or would we need 2? And should I ask to go to Paty's at La Ropa and they will know what I want?

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I speak no Spanish other than the "ola" I have learned from watching Dora with the grandkids. I have done Mexican Riveria numerous times before and had mixed results with language barriers. (Think sometime they speak more English than they let on :) ) Is there a specific kind of cab I need to take? Are there cabs that would hold 6 adults or would we need 2? And should I ask to go to Paty's at La Ropa and they will know what I want?

 

Taxis usually hold 5 max and it's a crowded 5...I would go for 2 cabs, 2 in back and 1 up front with the driver...and what I always do is keep the front door wide open until YOU are sure that everyone in back is OK and the doors are closed. I'm always afraid that when I get into the front seat and close the door, the driver may not be paying attention to whats going on in back and start to drive away....same thing when you get out, keep the front door wide open until the back has cleared...The only taxi you don't want is a VW Bug but there are very few of them in Zihuatanejo. If the taxis at the end of the pier want more than 30 pesos, don't take them, just walk down the street and stop the next empty one...alway confirm the price, 3 fingers do quite well as either 3 bucks or 30 pesos....

You want to go to "Paty's Mar Y Mar" on La Ropa...(the Y is pronounced E...)and they all know it....Nobody asked, but I always eat a shrimp cocktail for lunch...

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Thanks. I will be there in a week. I am having trouble getting focused on everything that needs to be done before I leave.

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Sharohn - Have a great cruise, and please come back and tell us all about what you did in the ports! I've sure gotten lots of good information on this thread. Thanks to all posters here.

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Has anyone used private companies (not through the ship) for this ports? I was able to find Intersol Tours in Acapulco, but that's about it. Has anyone used them? Any other recommendations?

 

Just returned home from Spirit. We used Acapulco Rosie for a private tour for four. Our guide was Lao and he was wonderful. Nice, clean, air conditioned van with complimentary drinks.

We emailed Rosie and told her what we wanted to do. Told her we did not want to go to flee markets or personal houses. Rosie met us at the port and introduced us to Lao, then told us all that Lao was ours for the day. She had made reservations for us at La Perla, at our request. We ended up with an 8 hour tour, including the cliff diver show during dinner and had a fabulous time. Cost us $200 total. Dinner was not included in the price of the tour. Ended up actually seeing the divers twice during dinner. Food was good, but the margaritas were horrible! You can reach Rosie through email. dew_days at hotmail dot com

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