Isla Mujeres Restaurants, Clubs, Shopping and Attractions

Isla Mujeres, "the Island of Women", got its name in 1517 when Spanish explorer Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba came southwest from Spain searching for slaves and gold. Instead he found a sparsely populated island with mysterious stone statuettes of semi-clothed women. The most common theory says that the island was a shrine to Ixchel, the Maya goddess of fertility. Francisco's comings and goings had little effect on life on Isla Mujeres; it remains a tranquil place for tourists, occasional pirates (including Jean Lafitte) and sea turtles.
Around Isla Mujeres
Today, Isla Mujeres is a bohemian outpost amidst the hustle and bustle of the Caribbean. Isla's big draw is its beaches and calm, jewel-like waters that fade from fluorescent lime green at Playa Norte to pale turquoise at the very snorkelable Garrafon reef. Isla Mujeres is 15 minutes by boat northeast of Cancun across the multi-hued Bahia de Mujeres. Just five miles long and less than a mile wide, it's an ideal reconnoiter by bicycle.