Music with a Cause: Island Time Music Fest 2019

Isla Mujeres is about to throw one amazing party. In 2019 they will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Island Time Music Fest, which is back with an amazing line up. Taking place from February 18th to the 23rd of 2019, the island will light up with artists from Nashville, who will liven the island with their music. The festival goes hand in hand with the annual fishing tournament, but most importantly, it brings the joy of music and mixes it with a great cause: the children of Isla Mujeres.

Raising Funds for Children

Island Time Music Fest

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Who said good times and goodwill did not mix? The Island Time Music Fest is actually a branch of the Fishing Tournament, where both music lovers and fishing aficionados are able to interact with musicians in Isla Mujeres in a very intimate scenario. In the meantime, they are raising funds for the children of the island, more specifically for the Little Yellow Schoolhouse and its local, special needs children.

The festival was launched when the need for special needs children became evident in the island. Over 10 years, they have raised enough money to expand the school, hire full-time teachers and enroll over 50 students.

Island Time Music Fest 2019 Line Up

island time music fest

This year, attendees will be able to discover the story behind many popular hit songs by the stellar line up. You can expect to see:

  • Maggie Rose
  • Love and Theft
  • Natalie Stovall
  • Nick Norman
  • Lewis Brice
  • Joal Rush
  • Them Vibes
  • Rob Hatch

These renowned musicians will entertain the island over five days, while fishermen visit neighboring waters for the perfect catch – and, of course, the big prize. So, whether you’re a music fan, a fishing enthusiast, both or neither, we highly recommend you visit Isla Mujeres during this time. Not only will you be able to enjoy the Island Time Mustic Fest and all its activities, but you will also get to experience the beautiful and paradisiac island that Isla Mujeres is.

It’s Time to Consider the Riviera Maya

And, if you’re still on the decision-making phase of your retirement in Mexico, you might want to consider investing in the Riviera Maya. You can swift through our thousands of listings in Cancun, Playa del Carmen or Tulum. Retiring in the Riviera Maya allows you to be a short ride away from some paradisiac hidden gems. So, stop dreaming and start searching for your perfect retirement home.

It’s Whale Shark Season!

Foto: internetFoto: Internet

The whale sharks have returned once again to Quintana Roo. Whale shark season runs from June to September, until the time has come for them to move to their next destination.

In the meantime, you have the chance to live one of the most stunning experiences in life, swimming next to them and being able to see them in their natural environment.

Whale sharks are the largest fish on the planet and with a life span of 70 – 100 years they can reach up to 40 feet long (12 meters) and weigh an average of 5 tons, though larger and heavier have been spotted.

Surprisingly for such a large mammal their mouths are filters feeders, meaning that they cannot bite or chew so their diet consists mostly of plankton which makes them completely harmless to humans.

Related: 10 Interesting Facts About Whale Sharks

In the Yucatan Peninsula you can take advantage of this annual gathering of the whale sharks at Holbox or at Isla Mujeres.

With a past record breaking number of 400 whale sharks arriving off the Yucatan Coast at one time, it’s one of the largest known gathering of whale sharks on record. You are almost guaranteed not to be disappointed.

The Island of Holbox is located on the north coast of the Yucatan Peninsula and is separated from the mainland by a shallow lagoon.

This Island is well known for its fishing and rural qualities but every year for the few months the whale sharks appear the little fishing village is bursting with people wanting to welcome the whale sharks back.

It is good to consider that with the new toll way to Merida, you can get to Holbox in 1 hour and 30 minutes, for 90 pesos each way.

Related: 10 Things to Do in Merida

Foto: Internet

Isla Mujeres (Spanish for Island of Women) is approx. 13 kilometers off the Yucatan Peninsula coast with easy access to the Island from Cancun, which makes this island a great day trip for tourists.

Isla Mujeres is usually a quiet place, but with the whale sharks yearly visit this little island of under 13,000 inhabitants is booming during their short visit.

You can find many tour operators located around the tourist areas both in Holbox and Isla Mujeres (or even on-line).

They usually offer boat trips out to spot these amazing creatures or even to take you swimming with the whale sharks, the experienced tour guides and divers have been doing these tours for many years and will be able to give you the best advice when swimming with the largest fish on the earth.

Be sure to shop around to get the best price and value for your money!

And remember, here at Top Mexico Real Estate

We make it happen!

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Weekend Getaway to Isla Mujeres

Living in Mexico and looking for the perfect place to escape to for the weekend? Have we got the perfect place where you could spend your weekend: Isla Mujeres! The gorgeous island off the coast of Cancun is home to over 12,000 people who can enjoy views of Cancun when the skies are clear. This small Caribbean island has much to offer to tourists who dare go on a getaway weekend to enjoy a new side of paradise.

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How to Get There

Getting to Isla Mujeres is quite easy. Ferries leave from Puerto Juarez, Punta Sam or Gran Puerto, all located in the Benito Juarez municipality. Ferries depart to and from Isla Mujeres every half an hour from 5 AM to 12 AM from Gran Puerto through Ultramar, but make sure you check schedules prior to your trip so you don’t get stranded on the island for an extra night! The other two companies run at different times, usually once an hour.

You can expect to pay $70 mxn for a one-way ticket, and if you want to cross with a car, moped, bike, or van, you can do so departing from Punta Sam and at an extra cost of $82 to $256 pesos.

Where to Stay

Isla Mujeres is lined with hundreds of gorgeous beach town hotels – from budget hostels to luxury hotels. Additionally, the real estate options are gorgeous and many home owners rent their properties by the day, week or month. Because the island is so small, staying in a condo or hotel in the center is perfect as you can walk or go by golf cart to the beach. If you would rather stay by the beach, the options are endless, also depending on which side of the island you want to stay at. The north part is where the arenales (sand banks) are, creating a beautiful view of white sand and crystal clear blue waters.

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What to Do

The options of what to do in Isla Mujeres are endless. Snorkeling and scuba diving are the most common activities – you can’t say you went to Isla Mujeres without dipping a toe in the ocean! Amongst the most popular things to do is swimming with the great whale sharks (although this can only be done during Whale Shark Season) and visiting the underwater museum. You can also visit the natural reef park Garrafón, take a tour to visit the best snorkeling spots, go fishing, and much more.

As soon as you step off the ferry, dozens of people will approach you selling their tours. The best thing to do is rent a golf cart to be able to move around the island and discover its amazing nature.

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Shopping and Eating

There really is no tourist experience without some shopping and fine dining! Isla Mujeres has a great boulevard by the beach offering an array of shopping options. Most shops offer beautiful Mexican crafts such as sarapes, clay art, carved good, paintings, hammocks, typical dresses, shoes, and others. You will also find dive shops, restaurants and jewelry shops.

As to eating, the top recommended places are Mango Café for delicious breakfast, tea and coffee. Lunch can be had at Q’Bravo where enchiladas suizas and guacamole are recommended highly. Additionally, most (note: not all) restaurants in Isla Mujeres are affordable, as is everything in general, compared to Cancun or Playa del Carmen.


Isla Mujeres is small but has a lot to offer, so plan out your weekend getaway before getting there so you’re not trying to see it all and end up seeing nothing. Snorkeling and scuba diving tours usually take up quite some time from your day, so if you’re wanting to also explore the island, find the hidden gems, visit the parks and see the local life, you need to organize your times.

Bring money! Although it is more affordable than other places on the Riviera Maya, it is still a highly touristic destination and money will be spent. Whether you’re paying for tours, beers, meals, or just shopping, it’s always better to have money.

Most importantly, remember to be open-minded, enjoy the local laid-back lifestyle and make new friends!

Tune back for another great Weekend Getaway trip next week!

Top Mexico Real Estate is an American-owned company in Playa del Carmen catering to thousands of Americans and Canadians wanting to own property in paradise. Feel free to contact one of our Top Buyer Representatives if you’re interested in purchasing a vacation, retirement or permanent home in Mexico! If you fell in love with the area there are many Isla Mujeres real estate options to choose from.

And remember, here at Top Mexico Real Estate

We Make It Happen!

The Island of Women – Experience the Treasure of Isla Mujeres!

In light of this glorious travel Tuesday I would like to highlight a day trip destination worth putting on your to do list this coming season!  If you have never been to the quaint charming Island just out of Cancun, called Isla Mujeres, then you are going to want to give this a shot! You will not be disappointed!

Travelers from all over will be arriving to the Riviera Maya right around Christmas time.  Some will stay a week and others will stay months! In any case, if you are a frequent traveler to Playa del Carmen or other areas of the Rivera Maya then you may want to take advantage of day trip or weekend getaway ideas…after all, there is so much beauty to see all over Mexico!

The Island of Women!

Isla Mujeres (The Island of Woman) is known for its amazing turquoise and crystal waters perfect, for anyone that loves to swim, snorkel, dive or even just stare!  The town is quite small but is very sweet and has an attractive, beachy, laid back Mexican feel.  You can walk around to shop or visit some delicious restaurants or bars.  If you like to be more of a site seer then renting a golf cart for a couple of hours is fairly inexpensive and a great way to explore the Island quickly!

The beaches on Isla Mujeres are some of my favorite in the whole Yucatan Peninsula; mainly because the water is just incredible.  There is no doubt that all of the Riviera Maya has beautiful turquoise water but each area still holds its own “special something”!

How to get to Isla Mujeres!

Find the most convenient transportation to Cancun either by bus, taxi or collective, and then hop on the Ferry which will get you to the Island in about 15 minutes.  If you want something a little bit more organized and fun, book a catamaran party boat during the day. The Catamaran ride will send you off with a lot of fun and music, and includes snorkeling, time in the town for shopping and site seeing, then relaxation and lunch on one the Islands exclusive beach clubs.

Night time dinner cruises and Party Boats

If you had enough sun you can certainly enjoy Isla Mujeres even under the stars. There are various dinner and party cruises for night owls. Enjoy a nice ride with fun and dancing before you arrive to the private beach club, where you can enjoy a fantastic buffet along with a steak or lobster dinner. You can book a tour with a local tour agent which will include transportation to Cancun. If you are already staying or living in Cancun you can provide your own transportation.  Make sure to book ahead as there is a high demand in prime season.

I always recommend exploring other areas outside your ultimate destination.  It gives you the chance to appreciate different kinds of beauty that you would never otherwise know.  This beautiful country of Mexico is way more than just beach and sand. It is filled with history, charm and nature!

We would love to hear from you!  Share with us your favorite destination or excursion in the Riviera Maya and we will feature your story.  Like our facebook page and feel free to send us a message at

Mexico’s Two Caribbean Islands are Among the Best in the World

There are experiences which are created and planned – like Disney World.  Some of these have their charm, but what you experience is exactly what a team of marketing experts in an office building somewhere (these days perhaps in Hong Kong, or maybe Beijing?) decided you will experience – nothing more, nothing less.


Other experiences are not planned or created – they simply happen.  The place you are, the people your with and what you see and feel while you’re there is well beyond the control of any corporation or travel agency.  Yes, planning is an important part of getting there and making the most of your visit, but the experience itself is defined by your own personal reaction and many random factors shaped by geography, nature and cultures that have developed over centuries.


Isla Mujeres and Cozumel – Top Islands in Mexico and the World

This is the case with two of the world’s favorite islands, Mexico’s two Caribbean islands, Isla Mujeres and Cozumel.  Recently, both have been ranked among the top islands in the world, for example, Isla Mujeres in TripAdvisor and Cozumel by Scuba Diving magazine. (Here is also a nice blog post of a traveler sharing their experience on Cozumel.)


They share the wide, soft white beaches and turquoise water of the Caribbean Sea – some of the most beautiful in the world.  They share the heritage of the ancient Mayan people and the warm, welcoming culture of their descendants.  They share warm, sunny weather all year round, and excellent diving access to the world’s second largest barrier coral reef.


Retire in Mexico - Islands

And, by geographical luck, they are located about an hour away from each other.  Either can be accessed quickly from the Cancun International Airport


Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres is a tiny island just of the coast at Cancun.  Coming directly from the bustling city of Cancun (where the ferry leaves) – which is quickly becoming the largest on the Yucatan Peninsula, and a cosmopolitan hub for travel and international events – the difference is like day and night.


You feel like you’re arriving to a different world.  Yes, the climate and the beaches are the same, but suddenly you’re in a quiet place, a sleepy island where time hasn’t seemed to go anywhere in the past few decades.


Retire in Mexico - IslandsCozumel

Cozumel is has ferry access from Playa del Carmen.  In addition to diving in the reef, there is deep-sea fishing, boating, sight-seeing, Mayan pyramids, golf and much more.  One of the ideal ways to spend a day on Cozumel is to rent a scooter or a motorcycle (there are Harley rentals!) and just tour the island enjoying the warmth of the open air.  The freedom to simply explore and discover the jungle, the ancient ruins and relaxing beaches at your own leisure is truly a unique experience.


Cozumel also has a small city (about 80,000 – a bit smaller than Playa del Carmen.)  In this city you can enjoy the shops of knickknacks, artwork and handicrafts.  There are also excellent restaurants, including many that sell the local catch of the day – fried fish is a local specialty.


Experience Life

Yes, on both Isla Mujeres and Cozumel you can buy tours, you can plan your day and decide what you want to see.  But here, these are only tools to make it easier to find a unique experience that is shaped by the place and its culture that you will not find anywhere else.


-by Thomas Lloyd


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Would You Swim with Whale Sharks? I Did and I Loved It! Part 2

On Friday I shared a story about seeing whale sharks in Holbox last summer. (See Would You Swim with Whale Sharks? I Did and I Loved It! Part 1.)


Another trip we took snorkeling with whale sharks was out of Cancun. We drove ourselves to Punta Sam, but there are trips that pick you up from Playa del Carmen, Akumal, Tulum, etc. From there we were put into our boat groups, again, about 8-10 per boat, introduced to our English speaking guide and set off in search of the whale sharks.


After about 45mins, they had been spotted and we were all rushing to get our life jackets, fins, snorkels and masks on and dive right in. Being experienced we jumped in first, giving the others a chance to observe from the boat and show them that to do. I mean, you cant just float around in the water, you need to try to swim along side these amazing animals, and they are fast. But if you can’t swim well, don’t worry there are plenty around to look at and even just watching from the boat is a fantastic experience.


Food in MexicoOn our way back to mainland, the boats stopped just off the coast of Isla Mujeres. While the captains made lunch, ceviche (a Mexican dish of fish, shrimp, octopus and other seafood, marinated in lime, served with tortilla chips) we jumped in the water again to have another snorkel around.


After lunch and a few beers – included in the trip – we headed back to Playa. Each tour group is given a photographer, so we got to check out all the photos they took of the day in and out of the water.

Swimming with any animal is an amazing experience, but with the whale sharks, it’s a time I will never forget. It’s one of my favorite memories. Memories I’m holding onto until July when I get to go again!; Mexico’s Leading Network of Specialists for Finding and Purchasing Mexican Properties Safely


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Wouldn’t You Love to Swim with Dolphins? I Sure Did!

If you have never taken the opportunity to experience swimming with these amazing creatures, I really recommend it! A couple of weeks ago, we decided to try it out, again.

This time, we found a swim with dolphins tour that would take us by ferry to Isla Mujeres, a little island near Cancun. We could spend the whole day there. It was fantastic. So for the price of swimming with the dolphins, we got a ferry ride to the island and back, we got to swim with the dolphins and spend lots of time with them, getting our photos taken and so forth. We also got to snorkel with manta rays, see some sharks in their natural environment and relax in the pool that overlooks the dolphin area.


(This is not me, by the way!)


But wait, there’s more! It was also all inclusive, so we got lunch and drinks. Also, we could go explore the island if we wanted to. It really was an amazing experience. The whole day was like a dream. The staff were incredible, the food was great and the dolphins, well, words can not describe them.


It was a day I will never forget, and hopefully a day I can repeat again and again. That’s the beauty of living in such a naturally beautiful place. So many opportunities just waiting to be had.; Mexico’s Leading Network of Specialists for Finding and Purchasing Mexican Properties Safely

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