History of Cozumel
Part of what makes our Cozumel
beachfront rental home so unique is the rich and varied history of the
island and the people who make their year round home there. Originally settled by the Maya over 2,000 years
ago, from 300-900 AD the island of Cozumel was one of the biggest religious
sanctuaries in the Yucutan. Religious pilgrimages were
common, and by 1200 AD it was a key link in major Middle America
trading routes, acting as a sort of clearinghouse for middlemen.
In 1518, the Spanish explorer
Juan de Grijalva came to Cozumel, and he was followed a year later by
Cortes. The Spanish occupation of Cozumel was to
ultimately prove disastrous, for although the Mayas accepted
Spanish domination more or less peacefully, the majority of
their temples were destroyed by their conquerors. A
prolonged smallpox outbreak between 1519 and 1570 decimated the
Cozumel population, so that only a handful of survivors remained
of the island's 40,000 inhabitants.
The Spaniards eventually
abandoned Cozumel as a port of call, and it became home to
pirates during the 17th century before eventually being
resettled in 1848 by slavers and refugees from the Yucatan caste
wars. By the mid-19th century, Cozumel's economy was
booming and San Miguel and El Cedral were thriving.
The depression of the 1930s
affected Cozumel's economy badly until World War II, when a U.S.
airbase was established there for the purpose of hunting
U-boats. In 1961, the famous French explorer Jacques
Cousteau brought fame to Cozumel waters by proclaiming it a
scuba diving paradise. Very quickly, Cozumel became a
Mecca for scuba divers who journeyed their from all over the
world. Even today, the Palancar reef is famous for its
variety of indigenous life and beautifully colored fish, crabs,
coral, nudibrachs, and all manner of aquatic life.
Today Cozumel is one of the most
popular tourists destinations in the Caribbean today. The
temperate climate, lovely ocean breezes, and the friendly people
make it a vacation destination second to none. This makes
is the perfect place to take a vacation in a
Cozumel rental beachfront home.