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We know what you’re already thinking: Isn’t hanging out poolside at an oceanfront resort the best way to spend a weekend in Cozumel? Honestly, that sounds like heaven. But beyond the walls of your all-inclusive is a fascinating destination worth exploring. Read on to get the best out of this underdeveloped Caribbean paradise and book your next vacation right here.

Spend a long weekend exploring Cozumel, Mexico. We have it all planned out for you.

Day One

Make a beeline for Chankanaab National Park where you can snorkel next to limestone cenotes. Get there early to stake out some shade under a palapa, then explore the Maya ruins and visit the botanical gardens. Post immediately for instant #vacationenvy. Enjoy dinner at Casa Mission, an impressive colonial-style Mexican and seafood restaurant featuring live music every night of the week.

Day Two

Visit San Gervasio, an archaeological site paying tribute to lxchel, goddess of fertility and love. Lunch on lobster crepes at Pepe’s. Then, stroll Cozumel’s city center with stops at El Mercado, the island’s traditional market, and the town square, to sit under the shade of flamboyan tree. Big appetites will love Rolandi’s Cozumel, a cozy Italian restaurant that locals have frequented for the past 30 years.

Day Three

Dive or snorkel the Mesoamerican Reef, the second-largest reef in the world. Then take your pick of beaches on the eastern shore, like Punta Morena, Punta Chiqueros, Playa Bonita and Playa Chen Rio. These beaches are typically less crowded than those on the west side. Lunch at Pancho’s Backyard for fresh guacamole, famous black-bean soup, fish tacos, fajitas and the perfect margarita.

 

This article was written by Sarah Sekula from Islands and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

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Tagged: Caribbean, Mexico

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Cheap cruises
If you’re wishing for a tropical getaway this winter, put one of these cheap Caribbean cruises on your list.

Cruises can be a great way to combine the ease and relaxation of an all-inclusive vacation with the excitement of visiting several different islands. And travel deals on a variety of Caribbean cruises mean that there’s an affordable option for everyone.

A Five-night Western Caribbean cruise on the Celebrity Century starts at just$199 for the January 26 and February 9 sailings. You’ll sail to Key West and Grand Cayman — all while enjoying the $55 million in new ship features from a recent renovation.

This Seven-night Eastern Caribbean cruise won’t feel like a cheap cruise, with ten restaurants, a spa, champagne bar and much more. But book an interior room for the February 14 sailing, and you’ll pay just $499. This cruise on the Norwegian Dawn includes stops in St. Thomas, the British Virgin Islands and a private island in the Bahamas.

On this Seven-night Western Caribbean cruise, you can dine at 12 restaurants, swim with dolphins in Roatan, Honduras; explore the coral reef off the coast of Cozumel and much more. All of that comes with a cheap cruise price tag of $479 for an interior room for the February 22 sailing. This cruise aboard the Norwegian Pearl also includes stops in Belize City and a private Bahamas island.

CheapTickets resources:

Tagged: Cruise, FREE!, International

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Las vegas hotels
Even if you’re on a budget, you can make travel plans to celebrate New Year’s Eve in style. CheapTickets has unveiled the top five cities for New Year’s Eve celebrations and nearby destination alternatives for cheap New Year’s Eve hotels.

From big cities to the beach, you can join the party and save big on your travel budget by staying just a little bit further from the action. The top New Year’s Eve destinations and cheap hotel alternatives are based on hotel bookings on CheapTickets for arrivals December 27-31, 2008. Check out the average daily rates for the big cities versus the alternatives.

TOP NEW YEAR’S EVE DESTINATIONS AND ALTERNATIVES FOR CHEAP HOTELS

  1. Las Vegas Strip $154.50 / Las Vegas off-Strip $137.42
  2. New York City $256.53 / Newark, NJ $80.95
  3. Orlando, FL $93.43 / Kissimmee $75.32
  4. Cancun, Mexico $289.74 / Cozumel $165.71
  5. Miami Beach $197.22 / Ft. Lauderdale $91.81

LAS VEGAS STRIP/OFF-STRIP: If you’re planning to ring in 2009 in Las Vegas, booking one of the Las Vegas hotels off the Strip can save you up to 11 percent. Just take a quick cab ride downtown to partake in the New Year’s fireworks and live music on the Strip and at the Fremont Experience.

NEW YORK CITY/NEWARK: Newark is just a short train ride from Times Square, so you can take the train to see the ball drop and save an average of 68 percent on your hotel room.

MIAMI/FT. LAUDERDALE: Miami’s New Year’s Eve celebration is better than ever with Bayfront
Park’s free fireworks show, the annual Big Orange Festival — which
drops a 35-foot orange ball to a laser show and fireworks. Stay in one of the Fort Lauderdale hotels just 30 minutes away and celebrate average hotel savings of 53 percent.

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Tagged: City

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Cruiseblog
CheapTickets
and Carnival Cruises have teamed up to offer travel deals on cruises this fall. You can find cheap cruises to the Caribbean, Mexico and the Mediterranean. And with this CheapTickets special offer, free stateroom upgrades are available on many cruises. Check out these Caribbean cruises:

The Carnival Liberty stops in Grand Cayman, Jamaica and Cozumel during its seven-nightWestern Caribbean cruise. Onboard you can take your pick of three swimming pools, plus a separate kids pool, watch movies outside at the Seaside Theatre, or enjoy live music at The Stage. The Gold and Silver Olympian restaurants feature steak and seafood, and low-carb and low-fat Spa Carnival selections. This cruise starts at $399 for September sailings.

The eight-night Exotic Southern Caribbean cruise on the Carnival Miracle goes to St. Maarten, St. Lucia and St. Kitts. The ship’s Nic & Nora’s Supper Club evokes a 1930s New York style. The casino has 15 gaming tables, including blackjack and Texas hold ’em, and travelers rave about the Las Vegas-style shows. Interior rooms start at $579 for the December 7 sailing.

There are plenty of cheap cruises to choose from, so pick one you like and get onboard.

CheapTickets resources:

Tagged: Cruise, FREE!, International