If you have a holiday and vacation planned for the island of Cozumel just off the coast of Mexico then you should make sure that you check out all the fantastic shopping experiences that are available there. The island’s history stretches all the way back to one hundred years BC and has a vibrant and rich cultural heritage and the traditions of that hugely influence the type of local goods that you can buy. Don’t leave the island without making sure you explore all the shops and local shop keepers who have some superb crafts on offer – below is a short guide as to what you can expect when in Cozumel.
First thing you will notice is that the expensive shops are in the downtown area of the island – because this is where all the tour operators tend to send the tourists so you won’t find great bargains in this area. For the best deals and most authentic Mexican produce you should instead head towards the ocean side of the side walk as this is where the more independent shop keepers have their stalls.
Shopping Experiences in San Miguel
There’s no doubt that the busiest shopping center in Cozumel is the San Miguel area. This is an eight block area in the Plaza del Sol and there many different items you can buy. So for example, want to pick-up authentic Mexican hand-crafted silver jewelry and leather items – then this is the best place. There is also lace clothing and decorative ceramics and metals available to purchase – all made my hand by the islanders themselves. Don’t leave the San Miguel area without buying at least one Mexican Yucatecan hammock – they are renowned as being the planet’s most comfortable and beautiful hammock you can buy.
Don’t Forget to Barter and Negotiate
Part of the fun when shopping in Cozumel is the ability to barter with the backstreet vendors. It’s possible to get price reductions on your purchase if you want to. The backstreets are where you will find more unique items to buy and the local shopkeepers there are more inclined to let you negotiate than the ones on the standard tourist track.
Jewelry Shopping in Cozumel
Cozumel is also very well known for the sale of jewelry, but please be wary when buying. This because it is not unknown for a lot of the shops to over-price the items, which then lets the shop keeper give you what appears to be a huge discount – when in reality it probably isn’t. If you want to protect yourself against losing out then make sure you have a price in your mind before entering the shop and know what the true value of gems stones and metals should be in the real-world.
Getting to and From the Cozumel Shops
When shopping in Cozumel it is best to hire a car because some of the better places are spread quite far apart. Car hire is relatively cheap on the island, but if you do decide to get a car, ask for one with a navigation GPS device built-in… which has also had a recent navigation DVD map update applied to it with Central American routing – otherwise you might get lost!
Robin S has travelled extensively through Mexico and has written for numerous travel websites and blogs about her adventures. In her professional time she is one of the GPS experts behind this Nissan Navigation Update website which offers advice to Nissan drivers on how to get the most from their GPS and Sat Nav product.