6 Must See Cenotes Near Tulum

Tulum Mexico’s hidden gem, with secret cenote. Most beautiful + best cenote in the Tulum area of the Yucatan peninsula. | herlifeadventures.blog | #mexico #mexicotravel #mexicopacking #wheretostay #hiddengem #mexicovacation #travelhacks #travelguide #adventuretravel #traveltips #northamerica #traveldestinations #travelexperience #bestbeach #cenote #beautifulplaces #adventure #explore

Tulum is a Mexican town on the Caribbean coastline of the Yucatán Peninsula. We spent 4 days in this gorgeous area known for its beaches, well-preserved ancient Mayan ruins, and CENOTES!

There are over 3,000 unique cenotes throughout the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico. A cenote is a freshwater filled Mexican sinkhole. The word Cenote is of Mayan decent originally called dzonot or ts’onot, meaning well.

Must see cenote in Tulum. Scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking and more! Quintana Roo Mexico | herlifeadventures.blog | #mexico #mexicotravel #mexicopacking #wheretostay #hiddengem #mexicovacation #travelhacks #travelguide #adventuretravel #traveltips #northamerica #traveldestinations #travelexperience #bestbeach #cenote #beautifulplaces #adventure #explore

History of the Cenotes

The cenotes played a crucial role in the development of the Mayan civilization as the main freshwater source inland. The cenotes are mostly found in the crater area that formed from the meteorite impact (the same meteorite responsible for the dinosaur extinction in this area). 

Know Before You Go

  • Keep in mind that most cenotes are swim at your own risk. If you are not a strong swimmer, it is recommended that you rent a life vest if available.
  • Mexican dive laws don’t necessarily align with other countries laws. Some cenote dives can be dangerous for inexperienced divers- dive your experience level, and if you feel you can’t dive, opt for snorkeling or swimming instead, like I did!
  • Do not wear sunscreen or insect repellant in the cenotes; the chemicals are damaging to aquatic life
  • Bring cash to cover the entrance fees
  • Most cenotes are remotely located and can be difficult to get to. When you arrive, some may have limited or no concessions for food/drink so plan accordingly
Xcaret Park

Tulum Mexico’s hidden gem, with secret cenote. Most beautiful + best cenote in the Tulum area of the Yucatan peninsula. | herlifeadventures.blog | #mexico #mexicotravel #mexicopacking #wheretostay #hiddengem #mexicovacation #travelhacks #travelguide #adventuretravel #traveltips #northamerica #traveldestinations #travelexperience #bestbeach #cenote #beautifulplaces #adventure #explore

Insta Worthy Caleta Tankah

The “secret cenote” was magical. The colors of the cenote are absolutely breathtaking. Maybe I’m a bit biased this being my first cenote encounter and all… but Caleta Tankah was my favorite cenote we visited.

Must see cenote in Tulum. Scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking and more! Quintana Roo Mexico | herlifeadventures.blog | #mexico #mexicotravel #mexicopacking #wheretostay #hiddengem #mexicovacation #travelhacks #travelguide #adventuretravel #traveltips #northamerica #traveldestinations #travelexperience #bestbeach #cenote #beautifulplaces #adventure #explore

Best Cenote for Diving – Dos Ojos

Of the 6 travelers in our group four of them were certified while myself and one other were not. While the divers explored the cenotes below the 500 meters below the surface, I snorkeled around the surface! There wasn’t a ton of fish to see, but the rock formations above and below the surface were incredible.

Kayak or Dive at Casa Cenote

As with most cenotes, Casa Cenote offered scuba diving and snorkeling. But what the others didn’t have, this cenote did! This time as the diving crew submerged below the water, I kayaked! It was great, because the water is crystal clear and following them was easy. We all were able to see a gator in the water just a few ft away, I have never been more thankful for being above the water.

Family Friendly Grand Cenote

Located a short drive from Tulum this popular cenote will amaze you. Contrary to it’s name, the Gran cenote is actually several cenotes connected by wooden walkways. The water is crystal clear and colorful! To keep it that way, they require everyone to rinse off in an outdoor shower before entering the cenote. This is a great family spot, as there are lots of green space and picnic areas.

Zip Line at Xunaan-Ha Cenote

 For $100 pesos you can zipline yourself into this adventurous cenote until your heart’s content. Xunaan-Ha cenote is located down a long bumpy dirt road in the small town of Chemuyil, just a short drive from Tulum or Playa Del Carmen. This cenote is not as crowded as the more popular surrounding cenotes such as the Gran. 

High Dive at Car wash 

The last and final dive the travel crew did was in the car wash cenote. We asked where the name came from… and it is exactly as it sounds. Due to its close proximity to the roadway- this cenote was once used to wash the locals cars!

What cenotes did you explore on your Yucatan adventure?!  Share in the comments below!

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26 thoughts on “6 Must See Cenotes Near Tulum

  1. A perfect post for when I go t Tulum. I’m not a swimmer but I look forward to experiencing everything else about the cenotes. Your hidden gem of Caleta Tankah sounds fascinating and warrants a visit.

  2. Mexico has wonderful Cenotes and I have seen such type of thing in Oman and loved it. You have listed splendid Cenotes near Tulum and all are worth visiting. Caleta Tankah is really Instagrammable place.

  3. Our family visited this part of Mexico a few years ago and swam in a cenote (I’m afraid I don’t remember which one), but it was so much fun. The water was so cold and so clear, but unlike anything else I’ve ever done. When we return we will have to check out some of these other options.

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