Snorkeling Around Tulum

Though you may not expect snorkeling to be a popular pastime in Tulum, which is best known for its Mayan ruins, indeed, there is a rather unique form of snorkeling that is becoming popular here: cenote snorkeling.

Nearly every tour guide and dive center in the Tulum area offers cenote snorkeling as one of their excursions, bringing their guests to spots like Dos Ojos Snorkel Cave and Tajma Ha where they can explore the fresh water caverns created by sink holes.  While there is no coral reef and the fish aren't always a big and vibrant as out in the sea, there are stalagmites and other interesting architectural structures to see. 

Some tour guides will also take you out to the sea by boat to nearby spots like the reef of Tanhak Bay which is rarely crowded so the coral has been given a great opportunity to grow and flourish, as has the numerous species of fish that live there.  If you've got your own snorkeling gear, you can pick any beach in the area and have a great experience.

Snorkeling Sites

If you're ready to experience what's down below you might enjoy Cristal Cenote. Clear waters surrounded by lush green scenery, this picturesque site is also fun for snorkeling thanks to tons of tiny fish that swarm about. This snorkeling site is located easily reached by taxi West-Southwest of central Tulum.

Dos Ojos Cenote is another snorkeling spot you might enjoy. Two pools of water allow for double the snorkeling opportunity at this cenote. It is dark and cavernous, making a flashlight absolutely necessary, and there are parts of the cavern where the water is just inches from the roof giving you little room for error when it comes to finding pockets of air to breath. This site is not for everyone.

A third location to consider is Escondido Cenote. A stunning and large open cenote surrounded by jungle, this spot is the epitome of tropical paradise snorkeling.

A few key details for 4 of the most popular places to experience snorkeling in this area are listed in the following chart.

Snorkeling Sites Near Tulum
Site Location
Escondido Cenote 5.1 mi. West-Southwest of Central Tulum
Cristal Cenote 5.4 mi. West-Southwest of Central Tulum
Regina Cenote 5.8 mi. West-Southwest of Central Tulum
Dos Ojos Cenote 9.0 mi. Northeast of Central Tulum

Snorkeling Services

If you looking for a business that offers snorkeling excursions, rentals, or other services, you should check out Acuatic Tulum. In 1993 owner Alex Alvarez set up shop just a short distance away from the Tulum Archaeological Zone and quickly became the first provider of PADI recreational dive courses in Tulum. In addition to being a renowned dive center they also offer guests the chance to snorkel with them on a tour and rent equipment so they can go out on their own. They are located in the heart of Tulum.

A second place catering to snorkelers is Scuba Tulum. If you've always been intrigued by the mystery and beauty of the Mexican cenotes, this dive center has the opportunity of a lifetime for you: snorkeling tours that visit three of the area's most intriguing cenotes.

A third company worth contacting is Dos Ojos Snorkel Cave. In Spanish, Dos Ojos means "two eyes." This unique site is named for two cenotes which connect via a cavern that has flooded with water and now serves as a popular snorkeling and dive site. They're located in northeastern Tulum.

Check the table just below for a summary of 4 companies that provide snorkeling related services.

Snorkeling Services In Tulum
Name Type Phone Location
Acuatic Tulum Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service (984) 871-2508 Central Tulum
Dorado De Playa Maya Snorkeling Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service -- Central Tulum
Dos Ojos Snorkel Cave Snorkeling Tour Operator -- 8.8 mi. Northeast of Central Tulum
Scuba Tulum Snorkeling Tour Operator (984) 115-2336 Central Tulum

For more information concerning snorkeling, including tips and suggestions for both "old pros" and beginners, read this extensive guide to snorkeling in the Caribbean.

Snorkeling in Tulum is like nothing you'll ever experience, whether you choose to visit the cenotes, hit the reef, or if you've got the time, do both.  


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