The only way to travel to Isla Mujeres, spare sailing a private yacht, is to take one of three ferries between Cancun and the island. Not only is this an inexpensive form of travel, but it is a really great way to get into the groove of an island vacation.
Cancun is where most people hop on a ferry headed for Isla Mujeres. Magaña Express offers the ride for 35 pesos, which is give or take $3(USD) depending on the current rate of exchange, and boats leave every half hour beginning daily at 5:10 a.m.in
The most recent ferry service to hit the scene is Ultramar, which can be found at Gran Puerto just two blocks down from the Puerto Juarez Dock. Neither service is faster than the other, but Ultramar does offer a more modern setting and allows pets, which Magaña Express does not. The pier itself is outfitted with a McDonalds, and an Oxxo convenience store. Meanwhile, the boats are new high speed catamarans with individual seating and air conditioning.
Ultramar ferries run every half hour from 5:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., then every hour until midnight, and the first crossing from Isla Mujeres to Cancun is at 5:30 a.m. The trip takes about 20 minutes and costs 80 pesos, or about $6.20(USD) each way. You can also buy a round trip ticket for double the price.
Although it is not recommended (and not allowed by many rental car agencies in Mexico), if you have a rental vehicle you'd like to bring to Isla Mujeres with you, you can take the Punta Sam Car Ferry out of Punta Sam. A slow moving barge, the trip takes 45 minutes, and because they are generally fully booked it is recommended that passengers arrive one hour in advance of departure time.
Ticket prices are as follows:
|Van/Sports Utility Vehicle||293 pesos|
Bellow, you'll find a typical schedule.
|Punta Sam to Isla Mujeres||7:15 a.m.
|Isla Mujeres to Punta Sam||6:00 a.m.
A slightly less frequent water-crossing happens aboard a water taxi from Playa Linda in the Hotel Zone. Depending on the time of year, there could be up to eight crossing a day for about $15(USD) round trip.
Check the following chart for ferry details.
|(998) 877-0065||1.5 mi. (2.4 km) Northwest of Isla Mujeres|
|--||1.8 mi. (2.9 km) Northwest of Isla Mujeres|
|--||2.2 mi. (3.5 km) Northwest of Isla Mujeres|
|--||Downtown Isla Mujeres|
|Location Served||Dock A||Dock B||Company||Frequency|
|Cancun||Isla Mujeres Car Ferry||Puerto Juarez Dock||Magaña Express||many times per day|
|Cancun||Isla Mujeres Car Ferry||Punta Sam Car Ferry||Punta Sam Car Ferry||several times per day|
|Cancun||Ultramar Isla Mujeres Dock||El Embarcadero||Ultramar||several times per day|
|Cancun||Ultramar Isla Mujeres Dock||Playa Tortuga Ferry Dock||Ultramar||several times per day|
|Cancun||Ultramar Isla Mujeres Dock||Puerto Juarez Dock||Ultramar||several times per day|
|Cozumel||Playa Caribbean Dock||Cozumel Ferry Terminal||Mexico Waterjets||several times per day|
Be warned of anyone at any ferry piers, but especially in, that tells you the ferries have been canceled and offer you a ride aboard a private boat. Although they will legitimately transport you to the island, the service is a scam and much more expensive than ferries at between 200 and 450 pesos or $15 to $35(USD). These boats are small and not equipped to properly handle the rough waters – plus they take 50 minutes, which is more than double the time of a ride on official ferries.
With four different options for crossing to Isla Mujeres, there is very little wait time involved in traveling to the island. Combine this with the low prices and you've got a great form of transportation awaiting you when you arrive in Cancun.
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