These Are Mexico’s Top Cenotes And These Photos Of The Swimming Holes Are So Stunning You’ll Want To Visit Them ASAP
Mexico is home to incredible natural landscapes and beautiful places to swim. But few are as other worldly nor as beautiful as the country’s thousands of cenotes – or underground swimming holes.
Cenotes are naturally occurring sinkholes that expose groundwater and trap rain as a result of collapsed limestone. They are beautiful caves that will light your spirit adventure and will transport you to an underwater world.
The word cenote derives from the Mayan word Dzonot, which means “well.” Many of the cenotes found in Mexico are located in the Yucatán Peninsula due to the flat limestone that makes up the area.
For Mayans, cenotes were considered to be entrances to the underworld. Cenotes are a source of great energy and some were used in rituals.
Here are the best cenotes to visit next time you find yourself in Mexico.
Located in Tulum, Mexico, the Dos Ojos cenote is one of the most popular cenotes in the area. The term Dos Ojos mean ‘two eyes’ and was named that due to the passage way that connects two sinkholes. The deepness of the cenote is perfect for those who want try snorkeling.
The cenote is open from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM daily. The entrance fee is 200 pesos and snorkeling gear can be rented near by.
The Ik Kil cenote is located in Yucatan, Mexico and is one of the most popular tourist attractions. The cenote is located almost 1.5 miles away from the famous Chichén Itzá. This cenote is perfect for divers.
The cenote is open 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and there is an entrance fee of 80 pesos.
Choo-Ha is located near the Coba ruins in the Yucatán Peninsula. This cenote is covered with naturally forming stalagmites. To enter, you will have to go through a staircase leading to a small hole above ground. The cenote also provides access to both Tamcach-Ha and Multún-Ha.
The cenote is open 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM daily and there is an entrance fee of 100 pesos for each cenote.
The beautiful Suytun Cenote is located in Valladolid, Mexico. The word Suytun means ‘center stone,’ which references the platform that is located at the center of this cenote. This cenote is one of the most popular cenote’s and it’s with good reason.
The cenote is open 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and there is an entrance fee of 120 pesos.
The Dream Gate cenote is just that, a dream. The cenote is located in Quintana Roo, Mexico and is incredibly popular among scuba divers. It has been featured in a number of documentaries. It’s a cenote that is recommended for experienced divers.
The cenote is open 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM daily and there is an entrance fee of $15 (USD)
Gran Cenote is located in Quintana Roo, Mexico. There are plenty of fish, turtles, and bats that are unafraid of visitors. Since this a pretty popular cenote, plan ahead and arrive early to beat the crowds.
The cenote is open 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM daily and there is an entrance fee of 180 pesos.
The Calavera cenote, located in Tulum, Mexico, gets its name because the opening to the cenote makes it appear like a skull. You can cliff jump from the opening of this cenote into the cool clear water below.
The cenote is open 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM daily and there is an entrance fee of 100 pesos.
Located in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, this cenote is recommended for divers who are a little bit more experienced than average. Your dive into Tajma Ha will take you to a cave named Sugar Bowl. The dive will take about an hour each way, but the views will be worth it.
The cenote is open 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM daily and there is an entrance fee of 232 pesos.
Cenote’s are wonderful because they occur naturally, are beautiful, and they have a lot of meaning behind them. If you plan on visiting one of these cenotes, plan accordingly and go when the weather is good such as from December to April.
If you visit one of these cenotes, please do not wear sunscreen or other lotions as they can damage the marine ecosystems located there. If you do use these products, make sure the cenote you are visiting has showers so you don’t contaminate the water.