AN ECO-FRIENDLY & SUSTAINABLE RESORT
Half Moon Bay is a designated marine preserve for Akumal sea turtles and other species. We have created an ecological program which exceeds governmental standards for keeping our pristine natural habitat protected and intact.
Del Sol Beachfront properties documents its progress bi-monthly, teaches ecology classes to their team, and invite guests and community to learn from practices including: composting, recycling, water conservation, using biodegradable soap and energy-saving lights, waste management, daily beach cleaning, a sea turtle protection program, a public recycling center, and a self-imposed audit by Mexico’s EPA.
Akumal was once a sprawling coconut plantation owned by Don Argimiro Arguelles until 1958 when it was discovered by CEDAM (Club de Exploracion y Deporte Acuaticos de Mexico), an exclusive dive club. Akumal became the headquarters for this group of divers who were in search of underwater treasures. Pablo Bush, one of the founders of CEDAM, bought thousands of acres of land around Akumal. This tropical coastline was only accessible by boat until the mid 1960s.
Cancun was founded in the late 1960s, which brought more attention to this isolated and exotic Mexican coastline. Yet Akumal still maintains its tranquil way of life, with pristine beaches and world renowned coral reefs and local residents – the Akumal sea turtles. Staying at this property will bring you closer to this beautiful tropical environment.
Akumal is situated between the beaches of the Caribbean and the inland jungle, creating an opportunity to see a wide array of tropical flora and fauna. The jungle is full of palm trees, bromeliads, and orchids, supporting animal life and providing the local population with many resources. The Mayans have long utilized these plants for food, medicine, and building materials. Examples of local architecture can be seen in the “palapa” style thatched roofs that are still used today.
Update on Sargassum
As you may be aware, the Riviera Maya and Caribbean coastline have been recently affected by unseasonable amounts of seaweed, or sargassum, this year.
Property owners have been limited to manually removing the large quantities of sargassum from Half Moon Bay in wheelbarrows. Heavy machinery, which compacts the sand, is strictly prohibited on the shores of this designated marine sanctuary.
Simply getting rid of the sargassum also removes large quantities of sand, causing heavy erosion and loss of essential beach structure. When the sargassum reaches shore, it dies and begins to decompose, sometimes causing an unpleasant smell when the wind shifts. Once the mounds of sargassum dry out, the decomposed matter mixes with the sand, stabilizing and replenishing the beach as well as adding nutrients to the beach habitat.
The presence of sargassum does not need to negatively impact your holiday. Here are some suggestions of activities to enjoy when the seaweed is present:
- Visit nearby Adventure Parks (XelHa, Xcaret, Xplor are all a short drive away).
- Visit the ancient ruins of Tulum and Coba.
- Within walking distance of the condos is Yal Kul Lagoon. For an entry fee of about $10 per person you can snorkel and swim and experience beautiful marine life.
- Go for a leisurely boat ride with Akumal Dive Adventures. They will take you to YalKul Chico for snorkeling, swimming and linger at this hidden cove.
- Highly recommended are the informative and fun day trips to the Sian Ka’an Biosphere, Valladolid, or Chichen Itza with Namaste Tours.
FAUNA IN THE JUNGLE HABITAT
The abundance of plant life supports an amazing variety of animal species in the Akumal area. Many mammals live in the jungle including spider and howler monkeys, coatimundis or tejons (a furry brown mammal with a long nose and a striped tail), foxes, opossums, raccoons, tapirs, anteaters, porcupines, armadillos, deer, jaguars and tepescuincle (a strange nocturnal animal with the body of a small pig, a face like a rabbit, and the teeth of a beaver). There are occasional sightings of foxes, tejons, opossums, raccoons, and tepescuincle on the road to the lagoon. The best time to see wildlife activity is after dusk or at sunrise.
Many species of native birds depend on both ocean and jungle life for food, making Akumal an amazing place for bird watching. Some of the birds commonly seen in the jungle are the grackle, Yucatan flycatcher, Yucatan whippoorwill, orange oriole, the beautiful quetzal, parakeets and rare sightings of toucans. The ocean views from Del Sol offer great opportunities to watch seabirds including pelicans, frigate birds, plovers, gulls, sooty terns, and egrets.
Tarantulas, lizards, snakes, and crocodiles also call the jungle home. Fortunately these creatures tend to stay away from the beach and populated areas. However, you will see plenty of rock iguanas sunning themselves around Akumal. At night you might hear a chorus of geckos. These are harmless, transparent lizards that are usually found in pairs. Besides bats, geckos are one of the biggest consumers of mosquitoes and other small insects.
The Caribbean supports a wide variety of sea life including lobster, octopus, stingrays, colorful reef fish and sea turtles. Keep your eyes on the ocean in front of Del Sol Beachfront, as sightings of parrot fish, turtles, and rays are a daily occurrence. Perhaps the area’s most famous inhabitants, turtles, give Akumal its name. In Mayan, Akumal means “the place of the turtle.” You are likely to encounter these gentle Akumal sea turtles if you snorkel amongst the turtle grass, their favorite hang-out.
Every year between May and October, loggerheads and green sea turtles emerge from the ocean to lay their eggs on the beaches of Half Moon Bay and surrounding areas. These Akumal sea turtles lay approximately 70,000 eggs every year. This is an area of primary importance for the turtles, and the people of Akumal take great pride in making sure the turtles’ nesting sites and beaches are preserved. The best time to view these turtles laying eggs or nests hatching are at night during the full moon. The shy hawksbill turtle also calls this region home, favoring areas near the reef. Turtles are beautiful serene animals that should be enjoyed from a distance and never touched.