Silvia and Greg

Visiting Cozumel on a budget - stingray villa

Visiting Cozumel on a budget

With millions of tourists flocking over to witness the sheer beauty of this Caribbean jewel, it’s no wonder that Cozumel is a somewhat tourist trap. But who says you have to break your bank to experience this ultimate trip? Interested in finding out how to visit Cozumel and experience its wholesome splendor on a budget? Keep reading!

Ditch the excursion packages:

Shore excursion packages tend to rip you off; loading a plethora of activities with a very tight time-frame. Plan your own day! Walk past the pier dotted with shore excursion vendors and opt for a cab straight to the beach instead. Avail the free entry at Playa Azul Beach Club and Restaurant situated on the northwest side to the island. Pay only for the drinks and food that you like. Avoid the infamous Rocky Playa San Francisco that is overflowing with tourists.

Hostel Dorms to the rescue:

While luxurious, boutique hotels are certainly opulent, they are often unnecessarily expensive! Why not spend your days in a true backpacker style to match your budget? Cozumel is home to a plethora of quaint dorm hostels, private rooms and Airbnb’s starting from $10-12 a night! Talk about a steal! Try the local delicacies such as scrumptious street tacos for only 30 Pesos/USD 2.5 for three tacos. Wash them down with a cold one, a mouthwatering margarita or a coffee under USD $1.32per cup.

Explore the real Cozumel!

You didn’t come all the way to this island to explore what everyone does, did you?! Head over to San Miguel- the main town instead of the tourist shops out the waterfront. The history buffs amongst you will squeal in delight over the Mayan ruins of San Gervasio. The best part? You can enter the sites for only $5 with free entry for kids under 10.

All this and so much more await you on this glorious slice of paradise for everyone with a budget! Happy travels!

Simple Tips to Learn Spanish in 3 Months - stingray villa, Cozumel

Simple Tips to Learn Spanish in 3 Months

Just like any other language, learning Spanish needs dedication, commitment, and perseverance to learn. While most people would laugh in your face if you tell them you want to learn how to speak Spanish in 3 months, we’re here to tell you that nothing is impossible! If you’re motivated enough, you will find no problem in learning Spanish. Let’s look at a few simple tips to achieve this goal, shall we? Keep reading!

Assemble your resources and map out a plan:

Do you find it easier to learn in a classroom-style environment? Why not enroll in a language class for 3 months or lesser? You can find several colleges offering inexpensive language classes or local community programs too! Buy a basic Spanish dictionary and download one on your smartphone too! Mobile applications like ‘Duo lingo’ and several others make learning a language fun and quicker. Learn the basics first. The internet is full of free resources and DIY guides; befriend technology for the better! Just start somewhere.

Practice 24/7:

Practicing what you learn is key! Try conversing with friends, family or even your dog in Spanish. Stand in front of a mirror as you sound out your basic vowels, verbs, and grammar initially. Start having mini conversations with someone who knows the language or even better, a native!

Cultural immersion:

If your budget allows, the best way to learn Spanish would be to fly to a country where the people speak Spanish. If that cannot be done, surround yourself in a similar environment. Spanish music, films, and Spanish-speaking people are a great tool to acquaint yourself with the language at a lightning-fast pace.

Formulate a game plan and set your goals; in 3 months you will be easily conversing in your newly acquired language. Pretty cool, huh?

Vacation rentals vs all-inclusive hotels – Which Do You Prefer? - stingray villa, Cozumel

Vacation rentals vs all-inclusive hotels – Which Do You Prefer?

Planning a trip to the glistening Caribbean jewel nestled amongst sandy white beaches and gorgeous blue seas? Torn between accommodation options; all-inclusive Hotels or Vacation rentals? We got your back! There are several factors you must consider before booking your stay in Cozumel.

Watch your budget

All-inclusive hotels complete with amenities such as concierge service, room service, and prime central location are the way to go if you have a more flexible budget. These hotels will offer the best vacation experience with pools, cable and strong internet connection. The added breakfast is always an added plus too. Is your pocket not too deep? Fret not! Cozumel is a natural beauty and what better way to explore it by staying in scenic vacation rentals such as Airbnb or several others. These vacation rentals are cost-effective, providing a better average per night. Check your savings and decide!

Travelling with family or friends?

They say all trips taken with friends are irreplaceable memoirs; we couldn’t agree more! If you’re planning a luxurious getaway with 2-3 close friends, a hotel will be your best bet. Return to remade beds, air-conditioning, and pampering after a day full of laughter with your buddies. Those of you traveling with kids or bigger groups would fare best at a vacation rental. Why stay confined in a hotel room when you can rent the entire house? Pre-book to avail the best deals online with amazing discounts and inexpensive and raw entertainment.

Duration of your stay:

Vacation rentals are the perfect option if you’re staying for more than 2-3 days. Per night average is better, and they tend to be more cost-effective too! Airbnb hosts and others offer discounts for people looking for a week or 10-days! Hotels save up the hassle of settling into an apartment or vacation rental for short stay. Let your itinerary decide this one for you!

The alligator guards the golf course - stingray villa, Cozumel

Our Favourite Golf Course on Cozumel

Unique and fancy, but wholesome and fun, Cozumel is a land that has so much to offer. One would almost end up being confused about what to take and what to miss. But worry not, we’ve got your back! For those who have a knack for golfing, believe us, Cozumel is just the right spot for you.

Fancy this! You’re out on vacations in Cozumel with your entire family. Some members sit by the river Maya and enjoy some fresh waves rolling back and forth, and the ones who are in for golfing, can go and have a time of their lives. Interesting, no?

The Cozumel Country Club (on Cozumel’s north shore), is a complete package. With lush green vegetation and facilities unparalleled, there is no place else you would rather want to go to. Cozumel Country Club is a local and tourist favorite. This state-of-the-art club is a masterpiece that will make you have the best of your trip to Cozumel. Adorned with bright white sandy heaps, the greens that remind you of a green palace, and lakes surrounding the Nicklaus Design Group courses holes, this is a paradise for any golf lover. Home to Mexico’s first Audubon International Cooperative Sanctuary Golf Course, they also offer tours for bird watchers. So, what are you thinking about? Pack your bags and head to the Cozumel Country Club and savor a few moments of an intense golf session followed by an amazing refreshment time. With eighteen holes and a lavish ambiance, this one is not for you to miss.

Another top-notch golf course near the Mayan River is El Camaleón Mayakoba. The constantly changing views of this golf club account for its name, and well suited, we must say! Surrounded by different ecosystems such as the Mayan Jungle, the mangrove wetlands, and Caribbean Sea coastline, this one is breath-taking. Whether you have a huge budget or one as tight as your jeans, Cozumel has something for everyone!

Spices and chilies for cooking on Cozumel Mexico - stingray villa

The Local Market on Cozumel

Back in the old days, the old men said, if you really want to know some people, their culture, and their way of living, visit their markets. Nothing truer has been said. Cozumel being a part of Mexico has streets and local markets that you would not want to head back from!

Looking for the local delicacies and produces of supreme quality? Head to Mercado Municipal and Voila, welcome to a Mexican paradise! Nothing extravagant, but everything simple, top quality and homely, the Municipal Market is our top favorite. Whether you’re looking for fresh vegetables, tortillas and other manufactured products, we vouch for this one, you will love it!

While the Municipal Market is open every day, the best timing to visit it is early in the morning. Bring your family or friends along and devour some freshly made, oven hot tortillas that you would never ever forget. Want to quench Asian food in Cozumel? Even that is sorted. The area around the municipal market has some fine Asian restaurants.

Imagine, you head out to the market and are looking for some different things to try, but do not understand the products. That is when the local vendors smile at you and try to explain every product to you. Sweet, right? The visit to the Municipal Market is a cultural experience. Their faces twitched in a smile and warm welcomes coupled with hearty amounts of snacks available, we know you love it already. Local produce and relatively stable prices are guaranteed. Heads up because no more ripping you off!

So, if you are in for a truly credible shopping spree mixed with a spin of witnessing true Mexican hustle-bustle, you know where to go. Head out to the municipal market and make your trip to Cozumel an experience to behold.

An Art Gallery on Cozumel Mexico - stingray villa

A Very Interesting Gallery on Cozumel

Ever experienced a moment of sheer mesmerism and being lost in an artwork so deeply? If not, we hope you do, because like all surreal experiences, this one is surreal as well as unique. Cozumel having a rich art background, also has some of Mexico’s best art galleries. Thanks to the Mayans, art in Cozumel is like Olives in Spain.

Galo’s art studio is our absolute favorite to visit while in Cozumel. An easy access and a walk away from the heart of Cozumel, Galo’s studio is a must-visit. The intricately designed artwork and the passion shining through the pieces of art, are a site for sore eyes. Open all day, this art gallery/studio is one where you will find some of the best art in Cozumel. Run by a couple, the owners are sweet, kind and ready to help you. For those thinking that they know nothing about art, do not despair! The owners will guide you through detailed memoirs of artwork to make your purchase easier.

Are you thinking about how expensive this art must be? Well, well! Galo’s art studio has a range of artwork. So, whether you want to delve into your pocket and spend lots on the artwork or simply buy a piece or two, Galo’s Art Studio has its doors open for everyone. Interestingly, this one is not just confined to paintings, it embodies some of the finest carvings, engravings and fine art that you will ever witness.

Catchy, edgy and fascinating, each artist has something distinct to offer. Choose your favorite piece of art, and see the owners pack it with love and care. Once you have a glimpse of it, you’ll know! There is no way the art can be damaged while carrying. So, what are you waiting for? Head to Galo’s art studio and get ready to adorn your house with some exquisite masterpieces.

Beautiful vegetables to use in a cooking class - stingray villa, Cozumel

Cooking Classes on Cozumel

It was once said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Nothing truer has been uttered. But while food (we mean good and authentic food), is a must, one must know how to cook well to savor every bite of that food. And if tortillas and spices come into your mind when we say “Food”, you know where to head. Cozumel! Cozumel has some of the finest cooking classes and yes, you will have the time of your life.

So, whether you want to impress your significant other with some self-made Mexican delicacies or want to learn authentic Mexican delicacies for yourself, rush to Cozumel now. Learn how to cook in Cozumel Cooking Class with Josefina. A well-tailored and complete package to suit your needs and wants, this one is worth a shot. Book yourselves with Josefina and witness live cooking and instructions of Mexican foods such as tortillas, guacamole, salsa and so much more!

Categorized in small groups for an avid learning procedure, Josefina puts in special attention for every individual and makes even the most confusing recipes simple. Keen to get a hands-on experience of a traditional culinary scene? Give in to your cravings for learning and book yourselves an experience worth your time and money.

Fun and amusing, this class will not only teach you how to cook but also aims to make you understand the importance of fresh ingredients. Run to the local market with Josefina and fetch fresh ingredients. After a careful instruction period, try the dishes on your own. And guess what? Josefina includes a recipe book in these cooking classes. Awesome, right?

Worried about being naïve in cooking? Take a chill pill! A thorough and detailed expertise by Josefina will teach you everything, the basics, the tricks, and the quick fixes. Book yourselves now and make the best out of your time in Cozumel!

Beautiful Catholic Church on Cozumel Mexico - stingray villa

A Magnificent Church on Cozumel

Isn’t there something calming and so peaceful about churches? And aren’t truly magnificent churches like gold to glitter? Cozumel being a wholesome space for everyone, and anyone has some of the finest and the most magnificent churches. But there is one that has our heart, and we vouch for it; it surely steals your heart too.

The Cathedral of Corpus Christi is a glimpse of paradise on earth. A place that makes you feel sorted out, soothe and almost surreal, this Cathedral is our favorite spot to be in whenever you need some time to rejuvenate and revamp your soul. Located in the heart of Cozumel, this is one of the most famous churches in Cozumel, so fret not, you will find it easy to spot. Adorned with lots of small and dainty pink and white incarnations on the pillars, the huge altars and everything in between is as mesmerizing as the feeling of being in there is.

Confess to the priests and let your heart and soul feel at ease. With English translations provided for the readings, the experience is more home-like and understandable. Witness a true essence of the Caribbean aspect in the church. Starting from the tall yellow-colored building of the church to entering inside and finding small shell containers for a sprinkling of Holy Water, we dare you to believe us, this is going to be a staple for your time in Cozumel.

Do you love some genuine and local spots that make vacations not just a time away from home but something to hold on to? With the finesse of the local culture and heritage, Corpus Christi is a true embodiment of “beautiful, inside-outside”! Do not forget to take your teenage kids along, because the sermons have a special address for them. Athirst to visit? Visit now if you are in Cozumel!

A girl snorkeling in the crystal clear waters of Cozumel - stingray villa

Snorkeling around Cozumel

Have a knack for the deep-sea water? Want to dive in and feel the fresh marine water. Let the North Caribbean gulp you in and give you a view of the marine world beneath our ordinary world? If you can imagine all of this, fret not fellas and have a taste of Cozumel in all its essence. While snorkeling is not an activity for the fearful, it is everything your mind lets you wander to.

Cozumel being an island is well-known for its turquoise blue, stunning waters that stretch afar. Rich in marine life, these blue waters will shun away all your summertime blues. Snorkel through the clear water of Palancar reef in Cozumel and gain an experience that you will cherish forever.

As renowned as this site is for snorkeling, it comes with its pros. A depth of eighty feet and a sea life that is almost unparalleled, you will get to see so many of the wonders of this world in one site. Enriched with an array of marine plants and decked with some visionary caves, one is left awestruck. Oh, at least we were! Believe us or not, there is so much to explore underwater, you will have to revisit, for one visit is never enough.

Swim along the Palancar Reef and witness sea turtles, some glowing starfish, stingrays and what not. Do sharks and whales amaze you? Now is the right time to explore a few of them too. With lots of colorful specks of different fish here and there, you will be as excited as a kid. A habitat to a distinct variety of sharks and so many other marine animals, this reef is a must-visit when on vacations in Cozumel. The Palancar Reef is any snorkeling lover’s paradise. Don’t forget to plan a visit to this reef when in Cozumel. So, what is the wait for?

Two glasses of wine in front of a sunset - stingray villa, Cozumel

Romantic Evening on Cozumel

What comes to your mind when you think of a romantic evening in Cozumel? All things beautiful, low-keyed, and just some time for your significant other without the everyday interruptions of life? If yes, then Cozumel is an A-lister for your romantic evening. 

Fancy this! You and your significant other are aboard on a cruise. The cruise sails and the wind blows on the two of you. You both sit together, looking into each other’s eyes and talk about love, life and everything in between. 

If you can fancy this, you can achieve it and nowhere else but in Cozumel. This island is known for its beautiful beaches and clear waters that are a sight to behold. What is better than a romantic evening on an Island and that too on a cruise? Couple dance to the rhythm of live music and let loose all life blues. 

What are cruise trips without some food, right? Dine on some delicious lobster dinner together, in the blessed sea of Cozumel. And for those worried about getting drowsy on the cruise, do not fret! With a few precautions here and there, you will be all set to sail through the memoirs of your love story. 

Add a different spin to the romantic adventures, this is a time on the beach. Whether you want to relax and lie down on the beach chairs or invest your time in some Kayaks, it is one of the most amusing options you have. Imagine getting to splash water on each other and to just lie down beside one another and relax. What is more appealing than this? For an experience as valuable as gold, visit the spas nearby and get a relaxing massage together. 

In for a low-key romantic time or a bang-on party time with your lover, Cozumel has got your back. 

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