Three years and $20 million dollars later … we have a water park and I have to tell you, I’m excited. And what a water park the Lost Mayan Kingdom appears to be. Last week, the owners had their official unvieling of their project, and all the important people were in town to see it. Of course the political muckity mucks were all here, but more important, cruise line muckity mucks were also here, and those are the people we needed to impress, and impress is exactly what Mahahual did. They chose this week to unviel, as this was also the week for the 22nd Annual Conference of the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) that was being held in Cozumel. The port owners took advantage of that opportunity and flew 25 representatives from 19 cruise lines, including Royal Caribbean International, Pullmantur Cruises, Disney Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises, to name a few, into Mahahual airport for a tour of the town, port facility and of course the water park. What they saw was really unique and will surly help push the Costa Maya back to it’s pre-hurricane Dean ship volume.
The park is set up around the theme of a Mayan jungle excursion, in search of the Lost Mayan Kingdom. Visitors arrive to an entry designed to look and feel like an old abandoned 1950’s era coffee shipping port. Restrooms made to look like shipping crates and even an old abandoned customs area, give the entry an authentic old world feel. When you step out, gift shop and vendor areas are made to look like an old Mexican hacienda carved into the Yucatan jungle. The park’s theme centers around a mythical entity of a jaguar that supposedly watches over the Lost Mayan Kingdom, and sights and sounds of his watching over the park are throughout. There are caverns and waterfalls, and inside them are camps, where the jaguar has been staying. After working through the jungle, you finally arrive at the lost world, with its 9 story pyramid as its center piece. Each level of the pyramid has something different and is like a Mayan museum, with slides coming from the top. All totaled, the park has 9 water slides, from body and tube slides, to harness type that combine zip lines with water dunks. A full zip line system runs throughout the 20 acre jungle park, and allows guests to zoom over the entire area. There is even a cenote, with a tube lazy river that flows over the length of 4 football fields. And how about a self-guided botanical tour of the many plants in the area, with detailed info as you stroll. There is even a children’s mini-water park area for small kids, as well as an adult cenote with 3 jacuzzi.
The Lost Mayan Kingdom water park is the newest piece of the tourism dynamo that is Costa Maya. The park will open for business in mid November, but will also hold several ceremonial openings in December and January. The local paper said there would be a one day free admission for locals but I’m told that there will actually be 3 free days for locals. Besides local jobs and income the park will bring, it will also increase public transportation service between Chetumal and Mahahual, something we need very bad in Mahahual. Today, there is no tourist quality transportation between us and the capital, and now with the expanded airport and flights from other domestic locations coming in, that will change. ADO is already discussing how they can service that route daily, and as those flight begin in the next few months, the demand to get to Mahahual will justify that service. Just another piece in connecting Mahahual to the rest of the tourist world!
Yes, the park really is going to be a very fun addition to the Costa Maya area and the town of Mahahual. All that sounds just fine, but that is not what has me so excited. On the contrary, the coolest thing in the entire water park has nothing to do with the stuff I just mentioned. No, the coolest thing the park is going to be the MICRO-BREWERY!! That’s right, the water park will have a craft-brew pub. My goal now is to find out who the manager of that place is, and he or she is about to become my new very best friend in all of Mahahual. I can’t really go into a water park for a beer. Might get expensive. But that don’t mean I can’t talk the manager into selling me a six-pack out the back door every now and then. So whoever you are, Mr or Ms Brew Pub Manager, please find me and name your price. I’ll pay whatever for a “Lost Mayan Stout”.