Going back a 4th time Posted Jun 28, 2012
I've been to the Gran Bahia three times - 2 times in Coba and 1 time in Tulum. For the difference in price, we prefer the Coba as it is a bit cheaper. Also, if you like to snorkel, it is best to stay in Coba because that is where you want to get in the water off the dock to ride the current down the beach by the reefs. When we stayed in Tulum, we had to hike it 1/2 mile up the beach to start the snorkeling. Went once with just my husband and the last time with our daugher who was almost 2 at the time. My daughter had a great time! There are some shallow beach-style pools that are perfect for little kids. Lots of other families brought their kids, too, so I never felt out of place. Great beaches, but it can be hard to find chairs in the shade, especially because stupid people put out their stuff early in the morning and then don't show up to the beach until the afternoon. Yes, the resort is very large. You do need to ride the little trams around, but my daughter enjoyed that a lot. Sometimes you have to wait 15 minutes for one. Not a big deal for us. A fair amount of walking is involved getting from room to lobby/buffets, etc, so might not be the best resort for a very sedentary person. We enjoyed the exercise. Food was great! You just can't imagine how good the fish is. Specialty restaurants are great. Don Pablos is awesome. Breakfast is a little strange. The syrup is very watery, so either bring your own or mix in some PB with it. The french toast and pancakes tend to be kind of old looking sometimes. I personally got eggs made to order every day. They were great. Also, my daughter has a severe milk allergy, so I was nervous about traveling to a foreign country with her. The staff was very helpful. Before I left, I worked with a high school spanish teacher to work out some phrases I could say to the kitchen staff to make sure food was safe for my daughter. They were very helpful and made separate food (like fries) for my daugher as needed. No problems on the allergy front. We're going back in April 2013 as a family again, with our now 3-year old daughter and another daughter who will be almost 2 at that time (under 2 is free to stay and free to fly on a parent's lap, which is a huge cost savings!). Would definitely recommend to families. We've thought about staying somewhere else, but get too nervous about going someplace else that might not be nice. A few friends have had problems at other places (like the Barcelo), so we are sticking with what we know is nice! Cons - can be a LONG drive from the airport if your driver has to make a lot of other stops. In a perfect world, should take you about an hour and a half, though it took my parents 3 hours. Another con is that it is usually too rough and windy to do the kayaks or windsurfing, so don't count on that. Pro - love the minibar and snacks! If you leave the maid a tip, she will leave you extra goodies like Tequila.