View Full Version : Tulum Ruins Tour
02-12-2009, 03:29 PM
Hi all! :)
Sorry another question - I am in full hyperactive planning mode today! :banana:
Has anyone done the Tulum Ruins tour - do you know what time it gets back to the Magic? The website says the tour is 7 hours long, but not the actual departure / finish time.
If you have done it what did you think? I really want to see the ruins, but it sounds like quite a long day!!
02-12-2009, 07:31 PM
Think we left the ship about 9:30 a.m., walked from ship down pier to the ferry - 45 min ferry ride (and it was rough seas), off ferry - all got stopped to have family pictures taken, lined up into our tour groups, 5 minute or so walk to the parking lot (no stopping along the way) where the buses were parked.
About a good hour bus ride, short stop at a roadside store - what I call a toursit trap - you could use the facilities - purchase trinkets - as we boarded the bus we got our lunch - Subway sandwich, chips, muffin and water, and then maybe 30 minutes to the ruins.
Our tour came with wrist bands to ride up to the ruins,
up the stone stairs
through a stone tunnel and the ruins
This is the only ruin that was built by the ocean - they still don't why for sure
Our guide spent sometime telling us about the ruins which was pretty good
You get some time to walk down about 3 flights of stairs to the ocean, walk the ruins some more, there was one little gift shop had some ruin merchandise, bottled water and bottled pop, restrooms, a line of street vendors - very pushy vendors - and at your appointed time, back to the bus for the ride back to ferry. Our ferry ride back was very very rough and I think we were back on board the ship between 4 - 5. After the ferry ride back, we didn't feel that good to explore anymore
Hope this helps
02-12-2009, 07:55 PM
I'm not the OP but thanks for the full description. I'm thinking this probably isn't appropriate for my mobility challenged DH and our 9 yo DD. I think the length of the travel will do her in and we will get whiny girl. Shhh don't tell her I said that. :rolleyes1
02-12-2009, 09:28 PM
That's a great description of the day. We went on our last cruise, and really enjoyed it. Our guide's stories and history of the "Mayans Peoples" were very well-informed and interesting. The scenery was absolutely gorgeous, the ocean breezes were refreshing, and the whole thing was just really a great experience.
Now, to clarify, we were four adults (age-wise, even though I act like I'm 14).
The two downsides, for us, were as follows:
1. Our bus was filled to the brim with precious little darlings who were in NO mood to ride a 45 minute boat, an hour bus, only to get out, stand in line, and look at old buildings that they couldn't climb on or touch. One of them had sat in front of us at the show the night before, and couldn't even sit still for 45 minutes of flashy lights and Disney characters. So the history and culture of an ancient civilization were not high on his list of priorities. He was miserable, everybody around him was miserable, but we were pretty sure his parents were dipping into his Ritalin, because they just looked stoned the whole day.
2. Once you arrive at the ruins, the tour group leaders take you around to each building and give you a detailed explanation of what each is. Which is fine for the first four or five, but eventually, we just sorta wandered away for a self-guided tour thing. He was wonderful and insightful, but very ... thorough. EXTREMELY so.
I would highly recommend this excursion to adults or older teens who are into ancient cultures and stuff like that. I do not believe the tour would meet ADA standards. Between the boat, the long trek to the bus, and the terrain of the actual ruins, I think it would be very difficult for a mobility challenged person to easily navigate. If that's a major disappointment, between the four of us, we took probably 200+ photos, which I'd be happy to share.
02-12-2009, 09:34 PM
I really appreciate this feedback, we were also seriously considering this tour and not I am not sure it is the right fit for us this time around. Thanks!
02-12-2009, 09:54 PM
i agree about the walking, the only way up to the ruins was a flight of stone stairs - not sure if you can tell with the picture but they were rough - no hand rails but you could use the stone walls going up
For the stairs up and down to the beach - think of 3 flights of wood stairs - they did have hand rails - so many stairs, a platform turn slightly more stairs - another platform etc
Not much shade either
We didn't have any children in our group - my daughter (17) was the only one under 18 - but this was the tour she really wanted to do and she thought it was worth it and would do it again
We both thought our guide was good but he did get a little long winded
He was nice and didn't talk much on the bus ride back to the ferry pier - most of us napped or enjoyed the scenery back
We did have a nice bus that did have a potty at the back
The ferry also has potties too
02-12-2009, 11:39 PM
Thanks very much - thats all really helpful!:thumbsup2
02-13-2009, 05:32 AM
I have additional pics of the Tulum ruins in my DCL blog..address is below in my signature..=)
I loved the ruins tour, it did make for a long day that usually I spend just laying by the pool on the Magic.
The bus trip was comfotable, lunch was pretty good...Subway, eat fresh....the bathroom break as they called it was just an excuse to stop at a touristy place but it was all good. The ruins were beautiful, to think something that old still stands, it really was one of the highlights of my 9 previosu DCL trips.
The only downside was the nauseating ferry boat trip to and from the mainland. It was like Star Tours at WDW on crack..hehe You know its bad when before you leave you are told people will be wlaking around with barf bags if u need them. Other than that I enjoyed the trip, I see some people say the guide was long winded....ours was great and he was part Mayan so he was really passionate about the history and culture of the Mayans. :)
02-13-2009, 06:30 AM
Okay, I think we will wait until DD is a teenager and DH wants to hang around the hot tubs. Looks like we will be doing something else. Thanks for the honest descriptions!:thumbsup2
02-20-2009, 11:28 AM
I really wanna do the ruins tour but after reading this am a little concerned...about the ferry...I get mtoion sickness fairly easily (thankfully the ship doesnt bother me) but small boats often have an adverse effect on my stomach...Is it always bad or is it just during certain times of the year?
02-20-2009, 01:12 PM
We did not do the Mayan tour with DCL, but with Carnival. But, it sounds remarkably similar. Only our guide completely sucked. He didn't know a thing about any of the buildings. In fact, we overheard 6 different guides talk about the buildings, and all 6 had a different answer! So, I don't know if that is still the case, but we really thought that they all seem to be making something up! Maybe I am the only one, but I really was expecting to enjoy this trip a whole lot more.
02-20-2009, 01:38 PM
I did this tour on an RCCL cruise last May, and it sounds very similar to what people are describing with DCL. (There are probably a few tour companies that all of the cruise lines use, and they most likely do the same thing.) I agree that it is not for children; they would be really bored. We really enjoyed it, although even in May it was very, very HOT at the ruins. We're not people who have a lot of trouble with heat, but we had no energy to walk around and check stuff out on our own after the guide was done. We just sat at the top of the bluff and enjoyed the view and the breeze before walking back to catch the tram down to the bus. If you wear swim clothes, however, there is a beach down below the cliffs.
As for the boat ride over, I'm not one to get motion sickness, but if I were I think I would have been feeling pretty bad. It was up and down, up and down the entire time, even though the water didn't even seem rough. At least it was air conditioned, so heat was not an issue there, but it would be a miserable ride for someone with a sensitive stomach.
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