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First Time to Cozumel

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by Wrock, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. cicopo

    cicopo Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    I'm a fellow Canuck & use pesos for local purchases & restaurants. Get them at your bank BUT don't go overboard as they only sell them; they won't buy them back (or at least mine won't). As for dive ops both are very good choices & depending on your dates we may see each other on a Tres Pelicanos boat.
  2. kmarks

    kmarks Divemaster

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Yep - Welcome to our bean to bar Chocolate Factory in Cozumel Island, Mexico.. It's a ways out from centro, but I walked to it from Suites Bahía one morning. It's on Calle 1 Sur Bis, between 80 Bis Sur and 85 Sur, about 2 blocks southwest of Benito Juarez. I think I paid $20 for a tour and demonstration that included making our own hot cocoa disk from roasted nibs. Because I was solo, I got to do the grinding the old fashioned way, with a metate y mano (sort of a flat mortar and pestle), while the others worked in pairs with a hand crank grinder like a meat grinder. The owner and his daughter were very friendly and knowledgeable and gave a great demonstration and history lesson and let us try samples of everything they make.
    rick00001967 likes this.
  3. El Graduado

    El Graduado Manta Ray

    I know this thread will deteriorate into a list of people’s favorite restaurants and the non-traditional foods now served on the island, most of which I see on this board all the time and don’t understand why American and Canadian tourists think they are so good, but here is my list of foods and drinks quintessentially “Cozumeleña” that I recommend you try out.

    guanabana ice cream, (available at many ice cream stands on the island). Also corn ice cream.

    chico sapote fruit. Sometimes available at Chedraui, the market, or local fruit stands. Must be almost mushy to the touch to be ripe.

    annona (cherimoya) fruit. Also the market or local fruit stands. Also must be very soft to the touch.

    filete de caracol, Not diced; the whole filet of conch, with garlic sauce on the side

    cochinita pibil, pig slow-baked in achiote and sour orange underground

    lechón asado, pig slow-baked in an oven

    tamales colados, tamales made with strained corn masa

    ceviche de caracol, marinated raw conch

    Noche Buena beer, still available if you hurry (it is a Christmas thing here)

    pavo en escabeche, marinated chichen stewed in its marinade

    relleno negro, burnt chiles/ground turkey/boiled egg loaf

    queso relleno, Edam cheese stuffed with ground meat and capers in sac’kool white sauce

    pavo en relleno negro, turkey in a black burnt pepper sauce

    poc chuc, thin slices of marinated, grilled pork (only if they also offer blackened, grilled tomatoes; that will tell you if it is authentic or not)

    horchata, sweet rice drink

    café de olla, coffee simmered in a clay jar with Mexican cinnamon

    frijol con puerco, slow cooked pork chunks and black beans, served “deconstructed” with chopped radish, onion, and cilantro

    cebada, barley infused water

    panuchos, open faced chicken, lettuce, cucumber, avocado, and pickled onion taco on a black-bean stuffed tortilla

    salbutes, panucho without the black bean stuffing

    sopa colado de frijol negro, silky-smooth, strained black bean soup

    licuado de sandía, watermelon blended in a blender

    helado de coco, coconut icecream with chunks of fresh coconut

    agua de coco fresca, juice of the immature coconut

    tres leches cake, a sweet and soggy three milk cake

    pay de queso de bola, savory pie made of Edam cheese

    fresh chicharon, fried pork skin

    castakan, fried pork belly

    sopa de lima, lime soup

    huevos Motuleños, eggs Motuleño stlye (a Cozumel fav)

    huevos revueltos con chaya, scrambled eggs with “Mayan spinach”

    chilaquiles, day-old tortillas in salsa (a breakfast tradition here)

    kibis, fried pork and cracked wheat rolls (Lebanese cuisine became tradition here in the every early 1900s)

    xtabentun, anise flavored liqueur (D’Artiste is my fav)

    marquesitas on the square at night

    sikil p’aac, pumpkin seed and chile dip

    whole fried boquinete, deep fried hogfish

  4. flyboy08

    flyboy08 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: NYC
    One must eat at...los Otates and Mr Taco...otates had to take down the name, but everyone knows it by this name still. Mr Taco is awesome right after the tequila shop

    There is a thread on eateries in the Coz forum...check it out.
  5. El Graduado

    El Graduado Manta Ray

    Told ya....

    Otates (or, better said, the restaurant formerly know as Otates) serves good food, but they are not traditionally from Cozumel. Mr. Taco likewise. The taco really didn't catch on in Cozumel until the latter part of the 20th century. Before that, tortillas were used as sops, "pushers" and as a base for panuchos and salbutes.
  6. Wrock

    Wrock Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada
    Oh man, my stomach is grumbling! Thanks for all the advice @El Graduado

    How about more of the things to do? Chocolate shop and taquila, are there any other gems?
  7. couv

    couv Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: 13th floor of the Ivory Tower
    It's too early in the year, but if you're back in late summertime, help out with the turtle rescue.

    San Gervasio is worth seeing.

    Drive around to the wild side (east side) of the island. It's beautiful and quiet. Have a Margarita at Mezcalito's or a limonada if you're not drinking.

    If the museum is open (its been closed a long time) it is well worth seeing.

    Sorry El Graduado, but I have to say El Coffee Cozumel has fantastic banana cake, coffee, and chilaqiles.
  8. El Graduado

    El Graduado Manta Ray

    I am always surprised at someone who travels to a new country for the first time and wants to eat or drink things they can get at home, when new foods and drinks are there to discover.

    If you want chiliquiles, try the chiliquiles negros at Corazon Contento.

    The museum is still closed.

    Get a copy of my Guide to the Mayan Ruins of San Gervasio if you plan to go there; the tour guides just spin tall tales and BS.
    couv likes this.
  9. Shawn C

    Shawn C Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Toronto
    I've always recommended getting a Mapchick map for all the areas in Mexico Laura sells them for. Lots of useful info in them and would get you oriented to the island nicely. They typically take just over a week to get to me in Toronto from the States where they are mailed from.
  10. jonhall

    jonhall Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Indianapolis
    Don't know if these are still around, but here's a few ideas:


    Jean Laffite Pirate Dinner Cruise: most fun we had on one of our trips to Coz. Great meal (lobster, but there were other choices) and fun entertainment. Had a great view of sunset and the coastline.

    El Cid La Cieba hotel: there is a great snorkeling area if you can get in (they used to do day passes with food/drink) - some do night dives there also as there used to be pieces of a plane wreck a little ways out.

    Tiki Tok Restaurant Bar: has a 2nd floor balcony with tables in the sand. View of the ocean. Was there on a night when the locals were there dancing, so we joined in for a bit.


    Xel Ha Park: basically an all-inclusive water park. Great way to spend the day - snorkeling, lazy river, hiking, food.

    Cenotes: If you haven't done one, it's pretty neat to experience.

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