Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
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#86579 - 05/20/04 10:24 PM First timer ..quick questions
ncseatrout Offline
My girlfriend and I will be staying at the Costa Maya from May 27 - June 3..we're getting ready for the trip and had a few question..much obliged to anyone who can help !

1) assuming we should drink bottled water only....is it readily available at a reasonable price ? Do most places use bottled water for ice cubes or do you need to worry about ordering drinks w/ ice ?

2) We both plan on getting certified in Scuba and figured on using the Belize Academy of Diving shop right at Costa Maya..anyone have any input-postive OR negative ?

3) Any other suggestions/comments on what to bring, where to go, etc ?

ANY feedback would be appreciated !

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#86580 - 05/21/04 01:29 AM Re: First timer ..quick questions
scubalover Offline
I found that water was avail everywhere in the 5-gal water dispensers. You may even have one in your room. The resorts usually purify their water for restaurant use, and would assume the same with the ice cubes. If you choose to buy a couple bottles and refill them, they aren't expensive, I think $2 BZ (US$1) for a quart bottle.
Regarding diving, I can't specifically speak for BAD, but am sure you will be treated right. You'll love the diving!

As far as what to bring... as little as possible. A few pair of shorts, t-shirts/tanks, 1 pair of shoes is too many (hehe), and you may want to consider bug spray. If there's a constant ocean breeze, it's not a worry.. .but when the breeze stops, the bugs appear. Also.. take a laid-back approach and you'll have the time of your life. It's island time and that's all about slowing down and enjoying the atmosphere.

If you get a chance, go south to the cut and check out the Hammock House, there's live music on Friday nights. Try their wraps for lunch/dinner. The mango curry is fabulous, as well as the southwestern one.

Enjoy! laugh

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#86581 - 05/21/04 03:57 AM Re: First timer ..quick questions
wannaBEthere Offline
Don't forget a note pad and pen! We expect a trip report. (that was the small print you agreed to when you registered on this board!)


laugh
_________________________
"The truly happy person is the one who can enjoy the scenery even when he must take a detour"

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#86582 - 05/21/04 03:11 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
JohnB Offline
BAD IS GOOD. You can be cert in 4 days!!!Craig and Tracy are nice, they will take care of you.

Listen, Listen: Pack 1/2 as much as you think! Very laid back place, you will be in bsuit or shorts all the time. My wife and I brought 1 bag each and still brought back clean clothes.

Don't get meal plans, there are to many rest in town to try and cheaply!!! Must try Portofino,Mata chica and Capricorn for dinning and in town try Carumba's.

Your 6.5 miles from town and will need to take water ferry every where you go, look at it as fun.

Most places provide a form of bottled water for you. Yes you need to use. Hope this helps!

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#86583 - 05/21/04 06:42 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
sweetjane Offline
take a hat, bugspray, and sunscreen. no need to pack anything nice or fancy, including makeup, dress clothes and jewelry. it is totally a "kick back" place. no shoes is status quo.

and this whole board would be disappointed if i didnt tell you to pack ziplocs. on the water taxi, you WILL get wet. keep your money in a ziploc. pack shampoo in a ziploc. upon return, pack rum & marie sharp's in a ziploc (twice my rum leaked but my stuff was dry!) last day's wet suits are also ziploc candidates, as well as any seashells and other smelly souviniers. i could go on and on, but....

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#86584 - 05/21/04 06:58 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
Islenutt Offline
One more tip to go along with the ziplocks.
I put a small piece of the new sticky Glad wrap under the caps of shampoo etc.. I still put things in ziplocks just in case, but the Glad wrap really worked!

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#86585 - 05/21/04 07:11 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
sandytoes Offline
Costa Maya will provide drinking water and dispenser in your room.

If you plan on going into town, buy Costa Maya's prepaid water taxi coupons. They are $4.00 each way. We used the Costa Maya taxi every time and never got wet. It is a quick 20 minute ride. I have heard that if you use the Island Ferry it is $10 each way and you may get wet.

Zip lock bags are a great idea. Bring large and small. There were no food storage containers in the Costa Maya rooms, so we used zip locks when we cut up fresh pineapple, for bread, cold cuts, etc.

When you arrive and are waiting for the CMR shuttle to take you to the resort, you will probably have some time to spare. You can take this time to get groceries. CMR is planning on putting in a convenience store, but as of Mid April it wasn't ready. There is no place near CMR to get groceries.

Water shoes are also a good idea to protect your feet from sharp rocks if you want to go swimming, snorkeling or kayaking off the dock or shore.

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#86586 - 05/21/04 09:57 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
ncseatrout Offline
FANTASTIC input - ALL of it..thanks !

Will certainly try the various restaurants and the Hammock House sounds great on Friday night (Thanks Scubalover !)..Ziplocs are also something we hadn't thought of but will take for the myriad of uses mentioned...again, ALL GREAT FEEDBACK ! (This board is PHENOMENAL when compared to other msg boards..it's amazing how OFTEN people post here vs. other boards..thanks again to all who replied !

Two other questions..

1) What's the voltage and outlet-type at Costa Maya..will we need adapters ?

2) Any suggestions on what tours to take ? We both like history and wildlife so we thought the boat ride through rainforest to ruins would be great..any thoughts/feedback on this tour,the cave tubing tour, or others ?

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#86587 - 05/21/04 10:54 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
scubalover Offline
Electricity is the same as US... no converters/adapters necessary!
And ziplocks... what a great idea. Our rum leaked a bit and the hammock we brought home got a little wet, but that was it! I pack all our clothes in those space saver bags, and took a collapsible ice chest with bubble wrap and wrapped bottles to bring home. We filled the ice chest with wine and stuff on the way down, and rum and cinammon bread on the way home. laugh

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#86588 - 05/23/04 01:56 PM Re: First timer ..quick questions
sweetjane Offline
the tours to the mainland are all day events. pick what you want to do. personally, if i want to do the nature thing, we split the trip 3 days mainland, 5 days island. so i never did a tour out of AC.

that said, i understand the lamanai tour is really cool. i think you boat quite a bit to see the birds etc, then visit the lamanai ruins.

if you can get this link, here is a collage i made of mainland pics i took myself:

http://www.pbase.com/image/3737764

good luck!

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