Isla Mujeres

Mujeres provided an abundance of surprises and lots of unexpected fun; as a result it’s probably one of my favourite places in Mexico thus far!

We stayed in Poc.Na Hostel which is probably the first Lonely Planet recommendation I have been to that has truly lived up to the hype and more importantly kept to it’s reasonable price-tag! The atmosphere in the hostel was great and it seemed to have everything that your average backpacker could want: a happening (beach) bar, friendly staff, sufficient breakfast, good locker storage, free activities and of course the compulsory hammocks (plenty of them as well)! They even had live music in the evenings and gave a free cocktail to every guest! I promise I’m not selling for them, this place sells itself!

The usual order of business on the island is to pick up a golf cart and whiz around; so yeah of course that’s what we did, joined by a couple of crazy Aussies! The beaches were of course incredible all the way around Mujeres, I don’t think I could ever get tired of looking at the oh so crystal clear blue Caribbean sea!

The highlight of the golf cart tour though was without a doubt our accidental stumble upon the “Floating Island” at the very end of our day. It was so good we returned the cart late and had to pay a fine but so completely worth it! We saw the signs and turned around and while looking out over the island we heard a cry of ¨Hello! Would you like a tour?!” from Richart Sowa; the very man who imagined and engineered the idea for a fully sustainable floating island made (almost) entirely from trash!

He was a character to say the very least and had plenty of stories to tell us as he toured us around his fantastic house! As well as his own bedroom, fully functional kitchen and bathroom it has some astonishing additions including a “bath/pond” he also has the capacity for up to 5 more people to come and stay with him on his little chunk of paradise! He even had a separate floating bed which was stayed on by none other than The Idiot Abroad; Karl Pilkington! Richart advised us that Joyxee Island and its previous counterpart Spiral Island (which was destroyed in a Hurricane in 2005) have featured in documentaries such as Ripley’s Believe It or Not and MTV Cribs! Apparently he’s also currently having talks to begin a documentary focused entirely on the Island and the building of another smaller one.

It was a little disconcerting walking around the edges of the “island” as we bobbed around on over 100,000 plastic bottles underneath us! He’s obviously a very environmentally conscious man, worried about the build up of waste we are creating and from his wacky and bizarre imagination {or trips ;)} he had the epiphany to create something epic!

I also did two more great Scuba-Dives in Mujeres via Dive Life with Shyla & Lalo who are both incredibly friendly and run a fantastic dive operation! Lalo took myself, Glen & Rick out to two different dive site; MUSA and Machones. MUSA (Museo Subacuatico de Arte) is an “underwater museum” which was created to entice underwater explorers and as a result ease the traffic at the local reef systems, it also acts as a whole new artificial reef system and is home to an abundance of marine life! My favourite (and creepiest) sculpture in the tour is the “Silent Evolution” which is a group of 200 statues modelled on real people! The second dive site, Machones 2, was a beautiful coral reef located very close to the MUSA site. Check out Shyla’s site, Diving Isla, for much more on Scuba-diving in Isla Mujeres!

Checking out a Ray!

VW Beetle @ MUSA

Underwater Photo Credit: (of myself & reef) Ranmor Photography; thanks very much for the photo’s Ran!
(Of MUSA) Shyla at Dive Life/Diving Isla; Thanks so much for the great dives and permission for the photo’s!


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