Our vacation in


At The
Barcelo Maya Beach/Garden Resort

( red STAR marks the spot)

Donna & Dave

January 25 - February 8 - 2003

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We traveled with Conquest, via Sky Service and arrived on time. We paid the $10.00 each way
for reserved seats. It is a good idea as sometimes you get to the airport a little late and end up not
sitting together on the trip home. We had a few Coronas in the parking lot while we waited
for other passengers. It was a one hour drive to the resort.

We arrived at the resort arout 10PM, and being quite dark and tired we did not see much until morning.
We were greated with a welcome drink and no line up for check in. We had requested and building and floor
ahead by email, but did not get it. We requested a change and moved a few days later.
We moved to building 5 , at the opposite end of the beach/pool. It turned out to be the best as we
were steps from the business center, golf, tennis, lobby and breakfast/lunch/supper area.
The weather was perfect the whole two weeks. We didn't have to look far for chairs
on the beach. We liked to feed the fish just off shore. They were small "Angel like" fish

The sand is like flour and the ocean just the right temperature. We were always close to
the snack building and pool bar for Cerveza and Tequila. Whenever there was a line up at the
pool bar or the self serve beer tap had run dry, we just went in to the snack building,
there are two taps there. Don't forget your big mugs. Don't bother with insulated ones
unless you take an hour to drink a beer.




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Same thing around the pools, lots of chairs. We were told the resort was 100% full.
We never had a problem with bar line ups as there was self serve beer dispensers
at the pool bars and in the snack buildings. There was always self serve bottles of Tequila
and Rum too. We remembered to bring our 20 oz mugs. The Barcelo photographer was
always around snapping pictures that were available for purchase in the Photo Shop.
50 Pesos each or 70 with his animal props. We didn't find the pools too cold.

The hammocks were great to swing in the shade when you wanted a break from the sun.
We did not encounter one mosquito the whole trip, but... use the highest number sunscreen you can get,
the sun is hot!




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From top to bottom - then left to right.
Busines Centre, Rates, there are 4 computers connected to the Internet.
In this same room there is the Library. There is a side entrance to
this building to the Mini Golf.
Excerise Room, Hair Salon and Massage building (top center)
Tennis and tennis rules. Dive Shop (top right) Showers (bottom right)
All the above are next to Building #5




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Although the resort is called the Barcelo Maya Beach/Garden Resort, it is really
just one large resort. The two names do not mean that one is near the beach and the other a garden
Each one is in the same area. What is called the "Beach" side has buildings 1, 2, & 3.
The "Garden side has the other 2 buildings, 4 & 5. Each side is a mirror of the other.
Two large pools, resturants, snack areas, etc. The ONLY difference is if you are in buildings 1,2,3
you check in and out at the Beach side reception/lobby and buildings 4 & 5 at the Garden reception/lobby
As I can see, it depends on what tour company you are with that dictates what side you are on.
The whole resort is used by all guests, there are really no "sides"

You receive 2 card keys when you check in. One must be inserted in a box on the
wall inside you room to activate the lights. The only converter you need is shown here.
For some reason the plugs are recessed and you will need one. They supply them free at the reception desk.
You also receive two towel cards at check in. Each card will cost you $20.00 US if you loose them

The safe in your room is very easy to use. With the safe door open, just insert your room key
in the slot then remove it, enter in any 4 digit pin and you are set. The safe is bolted down in the closet.
There is a sticker on the box with full instructions.

The wrist band is your "pass" to all you can eat and drink

Taxi rates are quoted in Pesos.

"Silence" sign in all the buildings as voices and slamming doors echo throughout the halls.

If you are coming from Canada and plan to make calls home, set up a Bell
calling card before you leave. It will cost you far less in tolls. Use only the Latta-Tel or Tel-Mex phones
There are none of these phones at the Barcelo Maya.
We had to use them when in Playa del Carmen or other side trips.

I received my phone bill a few days after getting home, there were two calls to Canada from Mexico on it.
I understand the charge is $2.05 a minute for prime time, but the bill was much higher. I called and was told
there was a $2.99 per call charge. There was no reason for the charge, it was just a charge. When I complained
they quickly offered to remove it. I will have to call again when I receive my next phone bill with two more calls
on it, to have the "per call charge" removed. Just when you thought Bell Canada was different from the rest.

Tips: We tipped 1 dollar US to the maid (extra to the maid), bartenders, and waiters. We also didn't forget
others like, the towel girl, etc.

The mini bar guy was around every day. We never had to call for restocking.




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We went on the "Coba Jungle Safari" tour.
We brought along from home, candy, clothes, and shoes. Also a Poloroid camera.
These were very well received in this Mayan Village. One little girl is wearing the
red shoes we picked up at Zellers for $1.00.

Our guide gives out candy and tickets toward a bicycle for every
bag of garbage the kids pick up. It helps keep the village clean.
They are all waiting for her every Monday to Friday.
We were about 12 kilos over our luggage weight and was about to be charged $70.00 by Sky Service
I didn't think it would make any differece but, I explained that the reason for being over our limit was
because we were bringing down clothes etc to give away. Any over weight charges were waved and we were told
for text time to fill out a special form if we were over for the same reason next time.

From here we went on to Coba.
This is 120 stairs, a bit higher then Chichen Itza. At the top there is a small building
with a room about 4' X 12' . The other side of the pyramid in straight. There is not a lot of room at the top.
Some people were standing too close to the edge for me. Its a long bumpy ride down.
I doubt any medical attention would do you any good. Hang on to the rope as the stairs are smooth
and a few people lost their footing on the way down.




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We went on the Tulum & Xel Ha (shell haw) tour. The cost is $56.00 but we opted
for the upgrade to All-Inclusive (89.00). It was worth it. All food at the resturants and
all drinks included. We had never went snorkeling before but found that it was easy.
We spoted a Baracuda along with many other fish. At the floating bridge the Groopers
were huge, they looked about 20 pounds. This is also the spot where you swim with the
Dolphins, for an extra fee.




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We went snorkeling a few times off the Pier at the Barcelo Maya.
The equipment was free the first hour. The down side was they charged $5.00US
per hour to use their cheapie plastic blow up life vests.
We snorkeled out to the small island off the pier.

We always smuggled out bread or buns from breakfast and lunch to feed the
fish at the pier. There are always hundreds of them around. We saw the turtle once
on our second day but it was just swimming past. You can go on a snorkeling tour that
leaves from the pier daily aboard the "El Tigre".




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The food was great. Every type of food you could possibly think of. We did not have to wait.
long for food, even when it was prepared specially for us. We liked the custom omelets and pasta.
They really do go out of their way to make sure you have a great time, and we always showed our appreciation.

We did not feel sick at all during our stay. We always took Pepto tablets before each meal as a precaution.
Not sure if it helped but we have always done this on other trips with success.

No matter where you see a staff member, there is always a smile and "Hola"
Out of the dozen resorts I have traveled to, the Barcelo Maya by far has the friendliest staff.
If ever we had a request, we never had to wait long.

The entertainment building is located about the center of the resort.
We thought the evening entertainment was very good. It started at 9:45 to give out awards to guests that won
games during the day then the main show at 10:00 and ended just after 11:00.
The Michael Jackson show was as promised.
The guy is really good!.

Being in building 5, the closest to the disco, the music really wasn't that loud.




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This fountain is in front of one of the theater entrances. The snack building at the building#1 end.
Two pictures of the lobby area bar and 3 of the statues that are throughout the resort.

Every evening we went to the lobby bar for a couple of hours for drinks and played cards until
we felt like going for supper. Then to the entertainment at 9:45.




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First three pictures, top to bottom are of Tulum. Donna enjoys her last Cerveza before
going in to pack for home. Looks like I am enjoying the food here. More pictures of the coral
by the pier, and feeding the fish off the pier.




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A few thing we brought home. Everything was very expensive compared to other areas
of Mexico that we have been to. The mugs were 70 Pesos each, miniature Corona Salt & pepper
shakers 35 Pesos each. More then I would have paid but I wanted them and no one else had them.
The "Coronila" bottle, with beer was 13 Pesos. A regular can or bottle of Corona or Sol in a
regular market in Playa del Carmen was 8 Pesos. The tall blown painted glasses were 110 Pesos each
at the resort shop. The shot glass was 45 pesos. The two bottles of Tequila Donna won but we saw
Tequila for about 160 -180 Pesos.

We also purchased a large double, very colourful hammock for 25.00 US. Most items in the Barcelo Gift Shop
were comparable to prices elsewhere.

The other three pictures are the entrance to one of the resturants, the guest rooms building hallway,
and the paint yourself crafts located in the pool building where you get your towels, next to the kids area.

52 More Pictures Here

187 More Pictures Here

Here is a list of tours offered by the Barcelo.
You can contact a representative direct via email with any questions
I met two tour reps, one on the Beach side (Jose) and on the Garden side (Sandos)

  Jose - Beach Side

  Sandos - Garden Side

You can book any tour with either rep.


  The Unofficial Barcelo Maya Site

  Barcelo Maya Reviews

  Sonhad's Web Shots

  Mexican Riviera Pics

  cancun all inclusive.com Barcelo Info., Pictures and Virtual Tours

Safe Travel Information for Mexico

Mexico - Consular Information Sheet



  My other vacation sites

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Site last updated April 2004