10 Jan 2020
Tulum is a beautiful place to hang on the beach, but it is also surrounded by subterrain caverns, lagoons and caves that are a must see.
If you are unfamiliar with cenotes (say-note-tay) then you need to check these off the beach location out! They are a sneak peak into the diverse ecosystem of the Riviera Maya and a ton of fun. They are fresh water systems that are cooler than the sea, are are shallow and a great place to start snorkeling if you are a beginner. Cenotes are a great family adventure if you have little ones just starting to getting their feet wet and learning to swim.
Gran Cenote is a popular snorkeling place, so we encourage you to go early. This cenote has some incredible rock formations on one side and a shallow sandy bottom on the other. The resident turtle is fun to search for, and the amenities at this cenote make it easy for a full day of fun. Located 8 kms down the Coba road just west of Tulum.
This is an estuary just north of Tulum Town in Tankah Bay. The fresh water from inland cenotes meets the Caribbean Sea in a km length ‘c’ shaped lagoon. The brackish water, a mix of fresh and salt water, is the perfect breeding ground for salt and fresh water fish, mangrove and in days gone by manatees. Kayak, dive with a guide, snorkel or just chill on the rocky entrance to this mesmerizing lagoon. Located 10 kms from Tulum Ruins just 2 kms from the main highway.
Carwash Cenote – Aktun Ha Cenote
This cenote is all about the fish and algae layers and less about the limestone formations. If you are hoping to take a cool dip with few people around, this is the place to be. If you are hoping to spot some fresh water fish, this is definitely the place to be. Carwash is filled with little cenote mollies that live under the top algae layer. When snorkeling (or diving with a guide) the top algae layer makes this cenote look green but actually filters the fresh water underneath giving you the clearest fresh water of all the cenotes.
Cenote Dos Osos is not to be confused with Cenote Dos OJOS (next on our list). Just opened up to the public a few years ago, this cenote is more local, full of families, rents kayak and paddlesboards, and has a restaurant on the premises. It is a large open cenote and perfect for a day off the beach. You can t miss this cenote south of Tulum. The entrance has two large bears at their gates. Osos = bear in English.
This is probably the most famous cenote on the coast with the crowds to match. Dos Ojos means two eyes in English, which is two openings to the cavern. This fresh water cavern located deep in the jungle has incredible limestone formations, is snorkel friendly and popular with divers. We love this location but we not fans of the crowds. You need to weigh out your options and decide what is best for you.
We are happy to hear your favorites! :)