Cozumel On a Budget
Cozumel's climate is tropical savanna. There is a short dry season between February and April, but even then there is still precipitation. The wet season is longer, but September and October are the wettest months. Temperatures are relatively stable throughout the year, but December and February are the coolest months with temperatures averaging around 73 degrees Fahrenheit.
SightsMost people travel to Cozumel for the beautiful beaches and underwater environment. There are countless dive shops in the area and plenty of white sand beaches where you can relax.
Cozumel also has some nearby Mayan archaeological sites that are worth visiting. The largest ruins in the area are found at "San Gervasio", which you can visit for an entrance fee of 77 pesos. There are a handful of other sites around as well.
NeighborhoodsCozumel is an island off the Yucatan Peninsula across from Playa del Carmen. The main town on the island is San Miguel. It's an interesting place to explore and there are many shops, restaurants and activities around town. The town has a charming character, although it feels somewhat forced in areas, as the city is little more than a tourist destination these days. You'll find hotels of all levels of quality around town, and there are a handful of hostels to choose from as well. Costs can be somewhat inflated because of the popularity of the destination, but if you're visiting during the off season you can get some wonderful deals.
If you have access to a vehicle then you can head to the east of the island which is far less developed and has many beautiful beaches. The ocean has bigger waves and dramatic rock formations as well. Do use caution while you're swimming however, as the rough waters can be somewhat dangerous. There are restaurants along the beach spaced roughly a kilometer apart.
ActivitiesThe most popular activities in Cozumel are scuba diving and snorkeling. There are many dive shops around town that offer reasonably priced dive packages, but do shop around if you're on a budget, as some offer better deals than others. Question where the dives will take place, how long they will last, and how many people will be on your boat before you commit. All of these factors can have a dramatic effect the quality of your dives or snorkeling experience.
If you're not a diver or snorkeler, there are still plenty of activities in Cozumel to keep you interested. Consider going out on a glass bottom boat tour to catch a first hand glimpse at the colorful fish below. You could also go deep sea fishing or linger on one of the beautiful nearby beaches. And there's also always a party going on somewhere in Cozumel. Just find the right club and you can party into the night.
Food and DiningAs a major tourist destination, Cozumel has plenty of restaurants that cater to tourists. There are a lot of restaurants in the city's downtown main square. Most are good and offer similar menus to each other. There are a lot of restaurants that offer local cuisine for reasonable prices. Seafood is usually fresh and excellent. There are also some international options in the area including Italian and American. Senor Frogs is the standard chain in the area that attracts tourists and those looking for a party. Casa Denis is the self proclaimed "oldest restaurant in Cozumel" and has reasonably priced Mexican, Mayan, and Yucatan specialties.
TransportationCozumel has an international airport with flights arriving from several major US cities. Most people still fly to nearby Cancun and then take a bus or van to Playa del Carmen and a ferry on to Cozumel. Ferries travel hourly. Cruise ships also frequently visit the island.
Once you're in the area, it's possible to walk around the town of San Miguel. There is no public transit out of town but it is possible to rent a car or take a taxi. Scooters are a common way to explore the island, but keep in mind that accidents are frequent. Only rent a scooter if you have experience and are comfortable in the area.