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Up & Down the Coast

Welcome to the monthly newsletter from, your source for news, maps and travel information for the Riviera Maya and Costa Maya. If you have a news item, an event you'd like to promote, an article of interest or a comment to make, please e-mail us at Enjoy!

You can tell it is March; our newsletter is a little smaller than usual - why? Because all our contributors have been so busy with High Season. We hope everyone is having a great season, and we look forward to more stories in the near future. In the meantime, we want to thank The Akumalian for covering some fun Akumal Fundraising Events and sharing photos such as: Oscar Night, Valentine's Day, the CEA Gala and more...

What's New

From our roving reporter, Sherwood Anders: Bicycles are now available for rent at La Iguana condos! Alvar Arana has 10 bicycles (with baskets) for rent - $6 daily, $35 weekly. Stop by his office to rent yours! Rentals are for everyone, not just Iguana guests. Please let your friends and guests know about this new amenity, and feel free to include it in your Web sites, guest books or guest information! Bikes aren't just a great, fun, easy way to get around town or to get some good exercise—they help out the environment too!

And from the Akumal Council: The North Akumal community is getting together to finally complete the road from Central Akumal to Yal-Ku Lagoon.  With no tax dollars to help, a committee headed by Russ Motley is heading the fundraising efforts to have a paving stone road for all of North Akumal. So far the committee has focused on getting pledges from owners and condo associations with unimproved roads in front of their properties, but plans call to contact the remaining residents of North Akumal as well as vendors, and businesses. There will also be a "buy a brick" program with engraved paving stones so that friends, tourists and readers of Sac-Be can help and be recognized.

Get a new look at Hotel Akumal Caribe, now including free breakfast and Internet access.

Costa Maya
Mahahual Hotel

My Mahahual - by Barb Eller
We like going to Paraiso for breakfast; Adriana and her husband, Reggie, always greet us with smiles and open arms. That is what I like about this place—everyone you meet gives you a hug and a kiss. After a delicious breakfast, we continue down the road to the Mahahual Hotel ...

Following the Sac Be
Cenote Azul

Calakmul Day Two - by Lydia Linton Pontius
We woke early, before sunrise, to head out to the Calakmul Ruins. The drive from the hotel to the ruins is approximately an hour, 60 kilometers, but if you are planning to do some birding give yourself plenty of time to travel down the road. We grabbed our box lunches, bottled water, binoculars and cameras, and headed down the road with our guide, just as the birds started waking and the sun started to come up.

Next month we will stop by Laguna Bacalar again and review some resorts in Tulúm.

Of Special Interest

Renewing our FM2 Documents: A Cautionary Tale - by MARI PINTKOWSKI
Last year, we were so proud of ourselves for completing the renewal of our FM2 visas without the help of an attorney in only four visits to Immigration. We felt like we had finally learned how to maneuver our way through government red-tape in this newly adopted country of ours. But, last May many of the laws in Mexico were revised and this included the renewal of FM documents ...

Credit Score: How to Improve It - by Enrique (Henry) Saldana
There is a standard credit score requirement to obtain mortgage financing in Mexico, and that is a 680 Credit Score, either FICO (for Americans) or BEACON (for Canadians). These two terms have become a standard for lenders to determine the credit-worthiness of a client.

Also from Henry: Caveat Emptor - The fact that there is no real estate regulatory entity for real estate practitioners makes it very difficult for any individual not to feel uncomfortable in any given situation, when purchasing property in Mexico.


Sac-Be offers free listings for properties along the Riviera Maya and Costa Maya. If you would like to have your rental property listed, please complete the form on our owner's page. Or, if you are interested in learning more about other advertising opportunities, please contact us.

Soliman Bay

Casa Playa Maya - Now offering 10% off all new bookings for all 2011 and BeachSuites from $89 night per Suite plus tax.

Paul Sanchez Navarro

Tips from CEA - Paul, CEA's Director, spoke earlier about choosing a smaller hotel in his environmental tips. Here are a few other things that vacationers can do and questions to ask, which will help.

Calakmul Ruins

Video from Calakmul Ruins - Lydia Pontius films these remote ruins up close and personal.

Monkeys in Calakmul

Video of Monkeys - Lydia Pontius films monkeys playing in trees near Calakmul.

Lolha Burger

Video from Cheeseburger in Paradise - Watch Lol-Ha's famous burger disappear.

March 2011 - #38

Community News

Akumal child with drawing

Update from the Hekab Be Library by Eleanor Zucker - As a non-profit organization that exists solely through donations, fundraising is an important part of the library's activities. On Friday, March 11th, HB board members, staff and volunteers put on a silent art auction at the Lol-Ha Snack Bar during happy hour. Featured items included 3 paintings by Oscar Romero, a Chicago-based artist who spends part of the year in Akumal, a painting by local artist Sergio Gamboa (proprietor of Boonil Naj in Akumal), and earrings by local jewelry maker Margarita Herrera Erosa (proprietor of Nak'az Nah in North Akumal).


Our contributing writer Henry Saldana and his wife are trying to find a home for this adorable street dog named Beethoven. He is neutered and very loveable. If you are interested please contact

Libby is a feral 5-month-old kitten we rescued from outside Walmart, and she needs a special home where she will be an inside cat and given a lot of patience. No one wants to adopt her because she is scared and does not like to be touched, however there must be someone out there who will give her a chance: contact Coco's Cat Rescue.

Costa Maya Living advertisement

6TH ANNUAL CEA FESTIVAL REACHES $10,000 US GOAL - CEA Staff want to thank everyone for their support in making the 6th Annual CEA Festival a success.

CEA also took time out to remember those who passed on this last year, and formally recognized two individuals who have supported conservation efforts in the region: Charlene Powell for her endless work to help raise awareness about respecting all wildlife and helping to raise funds for CEA over many years; and Zubet van Dongen for her tireless struggle to protect nesting and hatching sea turtles on Tankah's beaches, south of Akumal. Photo of Charlene

Coco's logo

Coco's Cat Rescue Newsletter - They're getting ready for their 2nd anniversary party on April 3.

Calendar of Events
salsa lessons

Every Thursday - Hekab Be Salsa Lessons, 6 p.m.

March 18 & 19 - Extreme Control's Demo Day - King of the Beach - at Playa Paraiso. March 20 at Ziggy Beach.

March 20 at 7:45am - BuyPlaya Run for Ak Lu’um - participants will run, walk or stroll the 5 kilometer course leaving from the Parque Leona Vicario, making a loop through the hotel zone in Playacar and finishing in the historical Parque Fundadores on the shores of the Caribbean.

April 3 - Coco's Cat Rescue Fundraiser and 2nd anniversary party, starting at 8 p.m., at The Blue Parrot in PDC.

October 31 - November 6 Living Yoga: Practicing Pathways to Bliss

November - Third Annual Women In Wellness Retreat. Dates TBA. This year we plan to take a road trip to Calakmul and combine that with the always-fun retreat in Akumal. If you are interested in participating or presenting, please contact Lydia at

REMINDER: If you have any events coming up in 2011, please send us the information so we can get it posted on our Events Calendar.

Make your own Special Event any night by having a Romantic Dinner for two on the beach at Lol-Ha.

Daily - Yoga en Akumal now has yoga 7 days a week. Stop by to check the schedule.

New Feedback

Thank you all so much for your continued support, feedback and encouragement!

"GREAT issue of Sac Be, Lydia! I especially enjoyed learning the history of the Hotel Laguna. I've always wondered about it. I thought the place looks more '50s than '70s, but I guess 1950s US = 1970s Mexico."
Abrazo, Caroline at

"Great newsletter as usual."
cheers, Carol and Alan at

Ask Sac-Be - If anyone has more information on this, please let us know.

"For some time I have been interested in the Lake Bacalar area. The question I have asked several times is if there are boat rentals or fishing guides available? Also, what species of fish are present in the lake? If you could ask the author or someone else familiar with the area, I would appreciate it. This might be a future article that would be of interest to fellow anglers who vacation in the area."
Thank You, William Brandt
"P.S --love sac-be articles and look forward to every issue."

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