July 2005, Copacabana Beach Resort, Puerto Aventuras, Mexico

This has been our most memorable beach resort trip.  The resort was located in Puerto Aventuras on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.  I say was because the Copacabana never really recovered from Hurricane Emily's visit.  The resort looks about the same in recent on-line photos but it is now 
named the Catalonia Royal Talum.  We had picked the Copacabana Beach Resort because a number of Trip Adviser reviews highlighted it as having the best beach on the Yucatan - and for the first few days (prior to Emily) I did not doubt the reviews as the beach was very nice.  Although this trip had problems it also had some very good high points.

The first problem we encountered was that only Trent's suitcase made it straight to the airport in Cancun from Denver.  The other three suitcases visited New York prior to rejoining us in Mexico a couple of days later.  So, after checking in at the Copacabana we visited the town of Playa del Carmen, which was a little north of the resort, and bought swim suits, flip flops and such at store similar to a Walmart.  This allowed us to swim the next day but we were still missing all our supplies, clothes and snorkeling equipment.

The second problem - which made the first seem minor in hindsight - was Hurricane Emily.  Hurricane Emily was the second category 5 hurricane to materialize in July of that year.  It had weakened to a category 4 when the eye went right over our beach resort, but, it was still very damaging.  While it appeared that all of the other resorts in the area evacuated their visitors to points inland (schools, etc).  The Copacabana management chose to keep us there.  Since all of us survived, it was okay by me.  The stories we heard later from other tourists at the airport that had spent much of their trips inland in hot steamy high schools sounded much worse than ours (once we got past the night of the storm).  And it was quite a sleepless night.  The photos do not do it justice because the memory card I switched to during the actual hurricane failed and I have never been able to retrieve the images.  

Here is a little about the Hurricane that I found on line:

Some 60,000 tourists had to be evacuated from such famous vacation spots as Cancun, Cozumel, Playa de Carmen, Tulum. The hardest hit area in this region was the coastal town of Puerto Aventuras, which is located some 60 miles south of Cancun. This is where the eye of the storm came ashore on Sunday afternoon, July 17, 2005. Maximum sustained winds at this point had mercifully dropped to just 135 mph as the storm encountered some difficulties from dry air intrusion, slightly more hostile upper level wind conditions, and interaction with the plateau of the Yucatan.  (http://www.hurricaneville.com/emily.php)

Images - Click on them to see larger versions

Before Hurricane Emily

The Beach

And the Pool

Just a Boat  and Clouds
Chitzen Itza

Hurricane Preparations

Discussions and Planning
Hurricane Emily - (need to recover failed images)

Taking Shelter in the Disco

Another in the Disco Shelter

Hurricane Emily Image (NASA)
After the Hurricane

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