My first impression
of Costa Maya as I disembarked was to ask Patty; “Is this place – Costa Maya of
the Mahuhual – a cruise ship port fantasy or well-developed resort that’s
keeping it pretty real?”

Mahahual came into existence in 1959 when the nation of
Mexico gave land to fishermen from other regions to develop in the Yucatan, a
wild and untamed territory that did not even have official statehood.  In 1974, Mexico created the State of
Quintana Roo with Chetumal as the capital located one hour to the south.
Government bureaucrats adopted Mahahual as a holiday getaway.  A few hotels, restaurants, bars soon
sprouted and changed a sleepy fishing village into a tourist town that a decade
ago passed Puerto Vallarta in popularity.

The Breakaway docked and we disembarked to walk a long pier,
developed after Hurricane Dean, to the village and town. 

The southern view of the Costa Maya shoreline from the

The northern view of the coastline from the pier.

The cheery Costa Maya village entrance sign greets visitors.

The visitor enters the large Expedition Plaza and gateway to
the beach, pool, shopping, dining and nature areas.

The is pathway is to one of two seaside beaches.  Several of our cruise ship stewards
said Costa Maya was their favorite rest stop because beautiful beaches were
five minutes and a $4 cab ride away. 

An elevated walkway to observe local exotic birds nesting in
the canopy provides a great view of the spacious and attractive poolside area
below it. 

A swim up bar and a poolside café cater to visitors needs
and desires.

The base of the elevated walkway to view birds of the
Yucatan contains a group of Flamingos.  See the following chart for describing the variety of local
birds in the aviary.

Chart describing variety and location of birds in the

Retail vendors offer a broad and colorful array of gifts for
tourists to buy.  Patty was on a
mission to find New Orleans Saints logo adorned crafts for her grandsons who
are big fans of the team.  She made
a huge effort to find two hand-painted wooden plaques for a reasonable

The tequila map shows where the Mescal plants are cultivated
and processed. 

Chocolate is also cultivated in the Yucatan and sold by

A group portraying Mayans in traditional dress performed for
the visitors as they returned to the cruise ship.  The performers were spirited, athletic, proud and
beautifully costumed.

The final photograph of our visit to Costa Maya and Images
of the Western Caribbean Region voyage and tour is a collection of local
flowers in pots hanging above a leather goods store.  My guess is that represent the area’s native flowers.

We spent the next day and a half at sea and returned to New
Orleans to drive home to Atlanta. 
It had been an excellent cruise, vacation and sampling of western
Caribbean locations and cultures.