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12 Best Cenotes In Mexico To Visit in 2023

12 Best Cenotes In Mexico To Visit in 2023


Have you ever swam in a crystal-clear sinkhole amidst a lush jungle? Swimming in a cenote is a novel expertise, solely discovered in Mexico and one of many issues it’s best to positively check out throughout your journey.

Cenotes are principally discovered on the Yucatan peninsula in the southern a part of Mexico. The nice Mayans knew concerning the cenotes lengthy earlier than they turned a bucket-list attraction, they usually used them as a supply of water in addition to in their non secular ceremonies.

Top Cenotes in Mexico

If you wish to go to among the most superb cenotes select Valladolid cenotes or cenotes close to Tulum and Playa del Carmen. Most cenotes in Mexico are open to the general public, and plenty of supply actions like swimming, snorkelling, kayaking and scuba diving. You can both be part of one of many cenote excursions from Tulum or different cities of Riviera Maya in the event you take pleasure in a hassle-free tour or hire a automotive and go to independently.

The alternative is basically huge, as there are lots of of cenotes in Yucatan, however after studying this put up, you’ll uncover which cenotes in Mexico are really unmissable.

What are cenotes in Mexico?

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If you haven’t been to Mexico but, you’re in all probability questioning, what’s a cenote?

Cenotes are swimming pools of water that type when porous limestone bedrock collapses, and since there’s loads of limestone in Yucatan, there are numerous cenotes there. Some cenotes are a part of giant underground river methods, and others are linked to the ocean.

Cavern cenotes are the youngest cenotes the place the limestone roof hasn’t eroded but. These sinkholes are closed and resemble a cave. They obtain minimal pure mild and are darkish and mysterious, so swimming in one of many shut cenotes is a very distinctive expertise. An instance of a cave cenote is Cenote Suytun.

Open cenotes are a lot older, with their roof eroded away through the years. They are open to the exterior world, lit with pure mild, and usually coated with lush vegetation. Most cenotes in Yucatan are open cenotes, they’re enjoyable to go to and nice for swimming. Examples of open cenotes embody Gran Cenote and Cenote Ik Kil.

Best Mexico Cenotes Dos Ojos
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We even have historic cenotes which are the oldest in Yucatan. An instance of an historic cenote is Cenote Azul or Cenote Cocalitos in Bacalar, which resemble a lagoon or a lake with each roofs and partitions eroded away.

In the Mayan tradition, cenotes performed an essential position. They have been seen because the bridge between the earthly and the divine worlds. They have been thought-about sacred locations and have been used for spiritual rituals, together with human choices in some instances.

Today, visiting a Mexican cenote just isn’t solely a enjoyable exercise but in addition one of many some ways you possibly can discover and perceive the traditional Mayan civilisation.

1. Gran Cenote

Best Cenotes in Mexico Gran Cenote
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Just a couple of kilometres away from Tulum, you’ll discover some of the in style cenotes in Mexico – the Gran Cenote.

Gran Cenote is an open cenote with crystal clear emerald water, two swimming pools, and a cave. If you’re in diving, it is a good spot to do it. If you wish to snorkel, which I like to recommend doing, snorkelling gear is included in the ticket value. Just be sure to convey an ID, which is required as a deposit.

The waters of Gran Cenote are teeming with tropical fish, and you’ll even spot right here lovely tinny turtles. Just a few-meters lengthy cave connects the 2 swimming pools of the cenote, and as you swim via it, look as much as admire historic stalactites. And in the event you’re fortunate, you may even spot some bats hovering via the intricate formations.

Getting to Gran Cenote is simple; you possibly can drive a automotive, or because it’s solely a 5 km journey, you can even experience a bicycle, which is a standard mode of transport in Tulum. Since the cenote is without doubt one of the hottest cenotes close to Tulum, the most effective time to go to it’s in the morning, proper after it opens at 8 am.

If you would like to leap on a tour this personal Cenote Tour takes you to three totally different cenotes in a day together with the Gran Cenote. It is the right day journey.

Opening instances: 8:00 am to 4:15 pm

Entrance ticket: 500 pesos ($28)

2. Cenote Suytun

Best Cenotes in Mexico Suytun Cenote
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Cenote Suytun is a cave cenote which incorporates a round platform proper in the center of its cave. At round noon, the platform will get illuminated by a lightweight beam coming via a small opening in the cave ceiling, creating a unprecedented sight! 

This picturesque cave cenote has captured the hearts of Instagrammers worldwide, and it’s not arduous to see why. If you wish to take a photograph of the platform, put together your self to attend in a queue.

Apart from taking the Insta well-known picture, be sure to discover the cave and its hanging stalactites and stalagmites that fashioned over hundreds of years. If you wish to swim, you’ll be required to take a bathe and put on a life jacket.

Cenote Suytun is positioned 8 km from the centre of Valladolid. If your itinerary doesn’t can help you keep a few days in this space of Yucatan, you possibly can e book a tour beginning out of your resort in Cancun or every other Riviera Maya city.  Combine a go to to Suytun with Chichen Itza and the city of Valladolid for a day filled with fascinating sights. 

This is an ideal cenote tour that features Valladolid and Chichen Itza as nicely. Check Availability right here.

Opening instances: 9 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 150 pesos ($8.40)

3. Cenote Azul, Bacalar

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cenote Azul Balacar
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Being one of many high sights of Bacalar Lagoon, Cenote Azul is without doubt one of the high cenotes to go to in Mexico. It boasts a wonderfully round form, and as it’s an historic cenote, it extra resembles a lagoon or a lake than a cenote.

Cenote Azul has a darkish blue color due to its depth, which reaches an unimaginable 295 ft. Swimming in this cenote is a unprecedented expertise, and it’s very refreshing. If you’re not a robust swimmer, be sure that to hire a life jacket and luxuriate in floating in its waters carefree. Alternatively, you can even discover this massive cenote on a kayak.

Bacalar lies in Quintana Roo, a 4-hour drive south of Cancun. You can discover Cenote Azul 4 km south of Bacalar downtown, and one of the best ways to get there’s by rental automotive. It can be attainable to get to Cenote Azul by taxi, or in the event you’re up for some cardio, you can even stroll or cycle. A Cenote tour can be a simple approach to discover these superb pure wonders. This personal tour takes you to Bacalar Lagoon.

Opening instances: 10 am to six pm

Entrance ticket: 25 pesos ($1.40)

4. Cenote Oxman

Best Cenotes in Mexico Oxman Cenote
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If you’re in search of a cenote the place you possibly can spend a enjoyable day, Oxman is ideal. It is an open cenote with lush vegetation rising on its partitions. 

Cenote Oxman is thought for its Tarzan gown swing. Grab onto the handles and swing to the center of the pool to leap into the cenote. The first bounce is somewhat scary, however belief me, it would be best to do it repeatedly!

Also, convey your snorkelling masks (or hire it out) to discover the underwater world of the cenote, which is inhabited by vibrant fish.

Cenote Oxman boasts incredible services. In addition to the cenote entrance, you can even take pleasure in their solar loungers and pool. There can be a restaurant, and in the event you’re wanting to remain right here for lunch, be sure that to decide on a ticket that features their buffet lunch.

Hacienda Oxman is positioned a 6-km drive from downtown Valladolid. You can drive right here or take a taxi. It can be in style to cycle right here and go to two different close by cenotes alongside the way- Cenote Dzitnup and Saamal.

Opening instances: 8 am to five am

Entrance ticket: 150 pesos ($8.40)

5. Laguna de Kaan Luum Cenote 

Best Cenotes in Mexico Laguna de Kaan Luum Cenote
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Laguna de Kaan Luum is without doubt one of the distinctive locations to go to close to Tulum and a very good vacation spot for nature lovers.

There are many animals dwelling in this space, together with agoutis, jaguars, and badgers. Additionally, you possibly can see parrots, woodpeckers, and iguanas which are vibrant. 

In the center of the lagoon, there’s an 80-metre-deep cenote, which you’ll be able to spot from a raised viewing platform. The water in the cenote has an intense blue color as a consequence of its profound depth, and sadly, swimming inside it isn’t allowed.

The lagoon itself provides incredible swimming situations in its heat, shallow waters. Don’t overlook to convey your snorkelling masks and a rush guard to guard your physique from solar publicity, as carrying solar cream is strictly forbidden.

The finest approach to get to Laguna de Kaan Luum is to hire a automotive or scooter and make your manner independently. The lagoon is positioned a brief drive away from downtown Tulum, however since it’s tucked away from the primary street, deep in the jungle, it’s best to keep away from taking taxis or public buses, which is able to drop you off on the primary street.

Opening instances: 9 am to 4 pm

Entrance ticket: 300 pesos ($16.75)

6. Cenote Ik Kil

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cenote Ik Kil
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Situated close to the New World Wonder Chichen Itza, Cenote Ik Kil is a well-liked vacationer cease but in addition some of the picturesque swimming holes in Mexico. It is an open cenote with lush vegetation and lianas rising on its partitions and cave ceilings completely eroded away.

Taking a refreshing dip in the cenote’s cool water is an actual deal with after touring Chichen Itza below the blazing Mexican solar. The cenote has a most depth of 150 ft, and life jackets are obligatory if you wish to swim. And in the event you dare, there’s additionally a 5-meter excessive leaping platform, which is certain to provide you an exhilarating adrenaline rush.

Since Ik Kil is positioned close to the Chichen Itza Archaeological Site, most excursions cease on the cenote after a go to to the Mayan ruins. This implies that the cenote is somewhat busy more often than not, however nonetheless, completely price it. If you want to take pleasure in it with out the crowds, select to go to in the early morning or late afternoon.

Opening instances: 9 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 150 pesos ($8.40)

7. Cenote Zaci (Zacil-Ha)

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cenote Zaci
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If you’re in search of the most effective family-friendly cenotes in Mexico, Cenote Zaci, positioned close to Tulum, is ideal. It is a small, open cenote, and what makes it an incredible cenote for teenagers is that it’s only 3 meters deep. The cenote Zaci additionally boasts a enjoyable zipline, which you let go of if you’re in the center of the water for an exhilarating bounce, and likewise a 3-meter excessive leaping platform.

The cenote services embody solar loungers, a pool and a restaurant the place you possibly can seize a lightweight lunch and a chilly drink.

If you’ve got an area in your itinerary, mix a go to to Cenote Zaci with Gran Cenote, cenote Calavera or Car Wash Cenote, all of that are positioned shut by.

You can drive to this cenote independently or, because it’s solely 8 km away, get right here by taxi. Get the variety of the taxi driver so to name them to select you out if you’re prepared to return.

Opening instances: 9 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 200 pesos ($11.20)

8. Cenote Cristalino

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cristalino Cenote
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Cenote Cristalino, because the title suggests, is thought for its crystal clear water, excellent for snorkelling and scuba diving. The cenote pool is sort of a large aquarium, stuffed with tropical fish of various species and colors. There can be a cave-like tunnel which is enjoyable to swim via and a leaping platform for thrill-seekers.

The lush jungle surrounds the cenote, so be sure to discover the entire website as a result of there are two extra hidden swimming pools with shallow turquoise water to be found.

Avoid visiting the cenote in the course of the weekend, when the cenote will get actually busy with the native households flocking right here to spend their free time. Also, be sure that to take a look at the neighbouring Cenote Azul, which is equally beautiful.

Cenote Cristalino is tucked between Tulum and Playa del Carmen and might be simply visited from each cities. The finest to manner get to the cenote is with a rental automotive, however additionally it is attainable to take a neighborhood bus referred to as a “colectivo”. Make certain you inform the motive force the place you wish to get off, as stops are on demand.

Opening instances: 8 am to six pm

Entrance ticket: 200 pesos ($11.20)

9. Cenote Calavera

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cenote Calavera
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Cenote Calavera is without doubt one of the most original cenotes in Mexico. Unlike different cenotes that usually characteristic a big swimming gap, Calavera consists of some smaller holes and doesn’t have a staircase to entry its cave. Instead, you’ll both want to leap into the cenote or climb down an enormous wood ladder, which is a thrill in its personal proper!

The cenote gap with its ladder is without doubt one of the most photographed locations in Tulum, and if you see it, you’ll perceive why. Inside the primary pool, there’s additionally a swing, which is also a cool picture spot.

The cenote is surrounded by greenery and vibrant solar loungers the place you possibly can dry off and catch some solar. There can be a snack store, and as at most cenotes – showers, bathrooms and altering rooms.

Cenote Calavera is located simply exterior Tulum downtown, off the primary street to Coba Mayan ruins, and you’ll simply cycle to its entrance or seize a taxi.

Opening instances: 8:30 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 250 pesos ($14)

10. Cenote Car Wah

Best Cenotes in Mexico Car Wash
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Located additionally close to Tulum (in the Mayan language – Cenote Aktun-Ha), also referred to as Cenote Car Wash, is a picturesque open cenote completely price including to your itinerary.

Cenote Car Wash appears like a tranquil lake and boasts exceptionally crystal clear water, which is ideal for swimming, snorkelling and likewise diving. In the water, you possibly can spot numerous vibrant fish and small, lovely turtles. For the most effective snorkelling expertise, arrive in the morning when the turtles are essentially the most energetic.

There can be a 3-meter excessive leaping platform, which isn’t too scary hight however excessive sufficient to provide you somewhat thrill. The cenote additionally has some seating and picnic areas, that are nice if you wish to spend some extra time right here.

Cenote Car Wash is positioned on the primary street to Coba, a 9-km drive from downtown Tulum. You can get right here both by taxi, rental automotive, scooter or bicycle. Make certain to additionally take a look at different incredible cenotes in this space, similar to Gran Cenote and Cenote Calavera.

Opening instances: 8 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 300 pesos ($16.80)

11. Cenote Cocalitos

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cocalitos Cenote
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Famous for its giant stromatolites colony, Cenote Cocalitos is a must-visit cenote when travelling to Bacalar Lagoon. Stromatolites are billions-year-old fossils that are thought-about to be the oldest life kinds on Earth and the primary organisms that produced oxygen.

At Cocalitos, you should have a novel alternative to get to those fascinating organisms shut, however be sure to comply with the principles and by no means step on them.

Upon arrival, you’ll discover a big swimming gap with lukewarm milky-blue water and an unimaginable view of beautiful jungle greenery. The cenote additionally options vibrant hammocks and swings in the water. The cenote is shallow, and it’s attainable to stroll round to discover all its corners.

Cenote Cocalitos lies 4 km away from Bacalar metropolis centre, and you’ll simply get right here by taxi, rental automotive or scooter, or you possibly can simply merely stroll or cycle. Make certain you additionally take a look at Cenote Azul, which is located in the identical space of Bacalar.

Opening instances: 10 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 50 pesos ($2.80)

12. Cenote Azul, Playa del Carmen

Best Cenotes in Mexico Cenote Azul
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Another incredible cenote located between Playa del Carmen and Tulum, Cenote Azul, provides some of the pleasant swimming experiences in Yucatan.

The cenote itself is an exquisite pool of turquoise, crystal-clear water surrounded by lush greenery. In addition to the primary pool, there are additionally a number of smaller swimming holes, so be sure to take time to discover the location absolutely.

Inside the water, you’ll find dozens of vibrant fish, making it a super spot for snorkelling and admiring nature in its purest type.

This can be an incredible spot for cliff-jumping – there are a number of platforms of various heights, and the very best one is 5 meters excessive. Jumping into the refreshing crystal water is a incredible expertise in the event you dare to strive it!

Cenote Azul is positioned proper by Cenote Crsiatlino, so you possibly can go to each of them in someday. Make certain you convey money with you, as solely money cost (in MEX pesos) is accepted on the entrance. You can hire a automotive or take a neighborhood Colectivo bus both from Playa del Carmen or Tulum.

Opening instances: 9 am to five pm

Entrance ticket: 200 pesos ($11.20)

Tips for visiting cenotes in Mexico

Best Cenotes in Mexico Tips for Visiting
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Visiting Mexican cenotes is as soon as in a lifetime expertise, and if you wish to take advantage of out of your go to, listed here are some issues to maintain in thoughts.

Bring money – You will want Mexican pesos to pay for entrance on the cenotes you go to. Most cenotes are positioned remotely, with no close by ATMs, so be sure to carry sufficient money to pay for the doorway and any extras you might wish to buy, similar to snorkelling gear or lunch.

Suncream just isn’t allowed – Most cenotes forbid guests to make use of suncream and different merchandise that will contaminate the water. If that you must defend your pores and skin, go for a long-sleeved rash guard. Before getting into the cenote pool, you’ll be required to take a bathe to scrub off deodorant, physique moisturiser and different merchandise you might be carrying.

Wear a life jacket – The use of life jackets at some cenotes in Mexico is compulsory, whereas at others, it’s advisable however not obligatory. If you’re not a assured swimmer, it’s best to get one, even when it’s not required. Floating in a life jacket is definitely a brilliant enjoyable expertise!

Be respectful – Cenotes in Mexico are sacred locations, so behave accordingly, present respect and comply with the principles. 

Don’t do something that may impression the surroundings, similar to bringing plastic to the cenote or leaving any litter behind. Also, convey with you a fast-drying towel fabricated from microfibre materials, a pair of flip-flops, a cushty swimsuit and loads of water.

Cenotes in Mexico: FAQ 

Best Mexico Cenotes FAQ
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Is it secure to swim in Cave Cenotes in Mexico?

Yes, it’s secure to swim in the cenotes of Mexico. Cenotes typically have very clear water that has been filtered naturally via layers of rocks and limestone. But, in the event you’re not a robust swimmer, it’s best to put on a life jacket.

What is essentially the most well-known cenote in Mexico?

One of essentially the most well-known cenotes is Cenote Suytun, with its iconic round platform illuminated by a lightweight beam coming via its ceiling. The pictures of Cenote Suytun have gone viral on social media, and taking a photograph in its cave is a bucket-list expertise for a lot of avid Instagrammers.

What is so particular about cenotes?

Swimming in cenotes is a really distinctive expertise as you possibly can solely discover them in the Yucatan Peninsula. They are stunning pure swimming pools with crystal clear water, surrounded by lush vegetation. In addition, many cenotes are residence to distinctive wildlife, similar to bats, vibrant fish and even turtles.

Visiting Cenotes in Mexico: Wrap-up

Coolest Cenotes in Mexico
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I hope you discovered this information to essentially the most epic cenotes in Mexico inspiring and helpful. Swimming in a cenote is an unforgettable expertise that it’s best to positively add to your Mexico itinerary. From Cenote Suytun’s iconic round platform to the distinctive wildlife discovered at Laguna Kaan Luum and Gran Cenote, every Mexican cenote has one thing particular to supply. If you’re actually into exploring Tulum cenotes in Mexico be sure that to additionally take a look at different Cenotes like Cenote Dos Ojos or Cenote Manatí simply to call a couple of.

Enjoy your journey!

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