With a Mexican heart and a Caribbean soul, Cozumel is a paradise where tradition, flavor and joy come together. You will always find a friendly face and a warm welcome to make your stay an unforgettable one.
Famous all over the world for its coral reefs, there are plenty of water sports such as diving, deep-sea fishing, snorkeling, kayaking and more. Cozumel's mostly undeveloped territory at the center of the island is covered by jungle and swampy lagoons, which are home to tiny mammals and endemic birds that have never left the island. Noteworthy is the Chankanaab National Park, a Cozumel icon, and the Punta Sur Ecological Reserve. This huge protected area at the southern tip of the island includes Punta Celarain and its historical lighthouse, as well as the Colombia Lagoon, a shelter for many of the island's endemic species, as well as other endangered forms of life, such as marine turtles and their nesting areas.
Cozumel , Mexico’s largest Caribbean island, is located off the coast of the Yucatan peninsula on the eastern side of Mexico, 41 miles (71 km) south of Cancun. The island is 26 miles (41 km) long from north to south and 9 miles (14 km) wide.
With a population of a little over 75,000, Cozumel now welcomes more than 2,500,000 visitors every year and is considered one of the most important tourist destinations in Mexico.
The first Mayans settled in Cozumel from 300 AD and the name Cozumel comes from the Mayan cuzamil which means land of the swallows. The Mayans believe Cozumel to be home of Ixchel, the goddess of fertility and the moon. For this reason many Mayans sailed to Cozumel on pilgrimages.
In the 16th century the Spanish to Cozumel but by the end of the century the island’s population dwindled to only a few hundred due to fighting and diseases brought by the Spanish.
The island remained mostly deserted until the 17 th century when it became a popular base for pirates, including the famous Henry Morgan.
In the late 19th century the island became settled again and grew into an important hub for distributing chicle (natural chewing gum) from the mainland. With road transportation improving this business slowed in the first half of the 20th century and tourism became to develop later, mainly driven by an increased awareness of beauty of the island and its reefs which was caused by a Jacques Cousteau television documentary in the 1960s. Since then tourism has grown and grown and is now the prevalent industry on Cozumel.