Best Playa del Carmen Cenotes

20 BEST Playa del Carmen Cenotes to Visit in 2023

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Looking for the best cenotes in Playa del Carmen Mexico? You’ve come to the right guide!

As a travel blogger that lives in Playa del Carmen, one of my favorite things to do is get out and explore new cenotes in the area.

Visiting a cenote is such a unique activity where you really get to experience the natural beauty of the region–which is unlike anywhere else in the world.

In this post, I’m sharing my top recommendations for the best Playa del Carmen cenotes that are worth visiting, as well as some even more incredible cenotes that are a located little further away. 

Ready to discover the top cenotes in Playa del Carmen? Let’s get started!

Cenote Escondido Playa del Carmen

Best Playa del Carmen Cenotes

These are the best cenotes Playa del Carmen Mexico has to offer:

MY TOP PICK

Xenotes Playa del Carmen Cenote Tour

If you want to skip the hassle of getting to cenotes on your own, I highly recommend the all-inclusive Xenotes Tour–all transportation and meals are included during your visit to 4 fun-filled private cenotes!

1. Eden Cenote

Eden Cenote Playa del Carmen
Eden Cenote Playa del Carmen
Garden of Eden Cenote Playa del Carmen

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (30 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM (Closed Saturdays)
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $200 MXN (~$10 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Cliff Jumping, Swimming, Snorkeling, Scuba Diving

Eden Cenote (“Cenote Jardin del Eden” in Spanish) was the very first cenote I ever visited in Mexico and still remains one of my favorites! 

Located just 30 minutes south of Playa del Carmen, Eden Cenote is easily accessible from the main highway and can be found adjacent to two other popular Playa del Carmen cenotes–Cenote Cristalino and Cenote Azul.  

Known as the Garden of Eden, Cenote Eden is a large open cenote with a deep swimming pool in the center, offering a few different jumping ledges for those that want to dive right in.

And for extreme thrill-seekers, you can even jump from a large tree branch protruding out over the water.  I definitely had to work up the courage but it is a thrilling adrenaline rush! 

For those that don’t want to jump, there are also wooden stairs that descend to the cenote’s crystal clear dark turquoise water.

Once in the water, you can swim, snorkel, and even get a free foot spa from the tiny cenote fish.

Plus, Eden Cenote Playa del Carmen is connected to a deep underground cavern, making it a popular cenote for scuba divers.

You can read my full Cenote Eden guide for all the details–it gets my vote for the best cenote in Playa del Carmen!

🀿 Best Cenote Eden Tours:

2. Cenote Cristalino

Cenote Cristalino Playa del Carmen
Cenote Cristalino Playa de lCarmen
Cenote Cristalino Playa del Carmen

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (30 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–6PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $200 MXN (~$10 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Cliff Jumping, Swimming, Snorkeling, Caves

Meaning “crystal clear”, Cenote Cristalino is another popular Playa del Carmen cenote located right next to Cenote Eden and Cenote Azul. 

With many different pools and bodies of water, you can explore, snorkel, or just relax in a beautiful setting.  It also has a moderately sized jumping ledge for an extra adrenaline rush!

Another cool feature at Cristalino Cenote is a cavern where you can float through a cave-like tunnel and admire the stalactites and stalagmites.

Be sure to head to the back of the cenote where you’ll find Cenote Escondido, a hidden cenote pool in a secluded natural setting. 

Cenote Cristalino is one my favorite Playa del Carmen cenotes because there are so many unique places to swim, jump, or just hang out.

You can read my full Cenote Cristalino guide for all the details!

🀿 Best Cenote Cristalino Tours:

3. Cenote Azul

Cenote Azul Playa del Carmen
Cenote Azul Playa del Carmen
Cenote Azul Playa del Carmen

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (30 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8:30AM–5:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $150 MXN (~$7.50 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Cliff jumping, Swimming, Snorkeling

Completing the trifecta of the three adjacent cenotes, Cenote Azul (Blue Cenote) is also located just 30 minutes south of Playa del Carmen. 

Cenote Azul has several different pools with varying depths, as well as a smaller jumping ledge for those that want to jump right in.

Most of the pools are pretty shallow, which makes Cenote Azul the best cenote in Playa del Carmen for families.

At Cenote Azul, you can wander around exploring the different pools, dip your feet in the water for a free fish spa experience, or snorkel to admire the fish and underwater rocks. 

While this Playa del Carmen cenote doesn’t have a ton of activities, it’s a very pretty setting and there are some beautiful natural bridges connecting the pools. 

You can read my full Cenote Azul Playa del Carmen guide for all the details!

🀿 Best Cenote Azul Tours:

4. Cenote Chikin Ha

Cenote Chikin Ha Playa del Carmen

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (30 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–6PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $350 MXN (~$17.50 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Diving, Ziplines, Mountain Bikes

Cenote Chikin Ha is located about 30 minutes south of Playa del Carmen, close to Cenote Eden but further inland so it’s easiest to get there by car.

Chikin Ha is a cenote complex where you have the option to go on a guided tour and visit three different cenotes–Chikin Ha, Ta’ak Bil-Ha, and X-tabay.

X-tabay is a beautiful open cenote, while Chikin Ha is a semi-open cave cenote suitable for swimming and diving. And Ta’ak Bil-Ha is not suitable for swimming but used for ceremonial purposes.

Cenote Chikin Ha also offer other adventure activities for an added charge including ziplines, rappeling, cave exploration, and mountain bikes.

The admission price is a little more expensive but it’s more of an all inclusive cenote experience, and you get to visit 3 different cenotes.

🀿 Best Cenote Chikin Ha Tours:

5. Cenote Chaak Tun

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (15 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $40 USD
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Guided Tour, Swimming, Snorkeling, Cave Exploration

Located just 15 minutes west of downtown Playa del Carmen, Cenote Chaak Tun is probably the best cenote close to Playa del Carmen’s town center.

Its location makes it quick and easy to get to by car or taxi. Or you could even bike there from downtown.

There aren’t many developed cenotes near downtown Playa del Carmen so this is a great option if you are short on time!

Chaak Tun Cenote Playa del Carmen has two smaller cenotes and offers a 2 hour guided group tour experience rather than visiting on your own.

It’s a little more expensive but you’ll have a certified guide who will lead you as you swim through the deep underground caves and admire the stalactites and rock formations. 

🀿 Best Cenote Chaak Tun Tours:

6. Cenote Dos Ojos

Dos Ojos Cenote
Dos Ojos Cenote
Dos Ojos Cenote

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (45 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $400 MXN (~$20 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Scuba Diving, Caves

Meaning “Two Eyes,” Dos Ojos Cenote is one of the most popular cenotes near Tulum featuring two twin cenotes next to each other. 

Dos Ojos is located about 45 minutes south of Playa del Carmen in a more commercialized cenote park, which includes a restaurant and amenities. 

The cenote can be reached by public transportation but it’s about a 30 minute walk from the highway so it’s easiest to go by rental car or taxi.

The entrance fee for Cenote Dos Ojos is a little more expensive but it’s such a one-of-a-kind experience and you’ll see why it’s considered to be one of the best cenotes in Tulum.

With stunning blue water and natural cave formations, it is possible to swim and snorkel at Dos Ojos on your own but the cenote is more popular for scuba diving.  Guided snorkeling and diving tours are also available. 

🀿 Best Cenote Dos Ojos Tours:

7. Cenote Nicte Ha

Cenote Nicte Ha

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (45 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE:$250 MXN (~$12.50 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Scuba Diving

Located in the same cenote park as Dos Ojos Cenote, Cenote Nicte Ha is a smaller cenote with a more tranquil vibe.

It’s a small open cenote so it doesn’t offer the same cave-like experience as Dos Ojos–but you can definitely visit both in one day to get the full experience! 

Cenote Nicte Ha is more quiet and relaxed, and much less crowded than its nearby neighboring cenotes.

Plus, the water is covered in floating water lilies which makes for a really beautiful setting. 

🀿 Best Cenote Nicte Ha Tours:

8. Gran Cenote

Gran Cenote
Gran Cenote
Gran Cenote

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (1 hr from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–4:45PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $500 MXN (~$25 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Caves

Gran Cenote is another of the more popular Tulum cenotes located less than 10 minutes outside of downtown Tulum. 

It has a smaller open swimming area with beautiful turquoise water, as well as a cave you can float or snorkel through and admire the rock formations.

Snorkeling gear and life jackets can be rented for an additional cost, and there are some amenities like bathrooms, changing rooms, lockers, and snacks for purchase.

It’s not huge so it can get crowded with tours coming through–I would definitely recommend getting there early to beat the crowds!

🀿 Best Gran Cenote Tours:

9. Cenote Taak Bi Ha

Cenote Taak Bi Ha
Cenote Taak Bi Ha
Cenote Taak Bi Ha

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (50 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9:00AM–5:00PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $350 MXN (~$18 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Caves

Cenote Taak Bi Ha is an absolutely beautiful and less well known cave cenote located adjacent to the Dos Ojos cenote park.

After a short hike, you’ll go down some steep stairs to arrive at a closed cenote with stunning stalactites and rock formations.

It’s an underground cavern and there are lights illuminating the bright turquoise water and surrounding natural pools.

Taak Bi Ha Cenote is one of the best Playa del Carmen underground cenotes, making perfect for swimming, snorkeling, and relaxing on a hot day to escape the heat.  Guided tours are available but not required. 

You can read my full Cenote Taak Bi Ha guide for all the details!

🀿 Best Cenote Taak Bi Ha Tours:

10. Casa Cenote

Casa Cenote Tulum
Casa Cenote Estuary
Casa Cenote Kayaks

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (50 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $150 MXN (~$8 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Kayaking, Paddleboarding, Scuba Diving

Casa Cenote is an open lagoon-type cenote located about 50 minutes south of Playa del Carmen. It holds a special place in my heart because it’s where I got scuba certified!

Different from traditional cenotes, Casa Cenote Playa del Carmen feels more like a long lazy river–making it perfect for floating, kayaking, and standup paddleboarding

It’s also a very popular destination for scuba divers, as it’s relatively shallow and there’s even a unique halocline–where the fresh and salt water meets.

Casa Cenote is also surrounded by lush mangroves and is located close enough to the beach if you want to head over to the ocean to spend the rest of your day. 

You can read my full Casa Cenote guide for all the details!

🐊 When visiting Casa Cenote, be sure to be on the lookout for “Panchito”, the small crocodile that lives there!

🀿 Best Casa Cenote Tours:

11. Cenotes Casa Tortuga Tulum

Cenote Casa Tortuga Tulum
Cenote Casa Tortuga Tulum
Cenote Casa Tortuga Tulum

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (45 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $650 MXN (~$33 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Cliff Jumping, Swimming, Snorkeling, Ziplines

Cenotes Casa Tortuga is a group of four cenotes located just outside of Tulum. It’s more of a commercialized cenotes park, with a single entrance fee.

The cenotes offer a variety of activities, including swimming, snorkeling, cliff jumping, and ziplining.

The cenotes are named Wisho, Campana, Tres Zapotes, and Jaguar, and each cenote has its own unique features.

Wisho is a semi-open cenote, where you can admire bats and fossils as you float through caves. Campana is a smaller semi-open cavern cenote with stalagtites and stalagmites.

Tres Zapotes is a large open cenote with a series of interconnected pools and jumping legdes. Jaguar is a semi-open cavern cenote where you can admire impressive tree roots and fossils.

Cenotes Casa Tortuga is little bit more commercialized but a great way to see multiple types of cenotes in one day.

🀿 Best Cenotes Casa Tortuga Tours:

12. Cenote Carwash

Cenote Carwash
Photo Credit: Bernard DUPONT, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (1 hr from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–6PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $300 MXN (~$15 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Jumping, Rope Swing

Cenote Carwash is a large, open-air cenote located on the road from Tulum to CobΓ‘. It offers visitors a unique and refreshing swimming experience in a pond-like setting.

The cenote is named for its proximity to a former car wash that used the cenote’s waters to clean cars.

Visitors can spend a few hours at the cenote, enjoying its lagoon-like environment and taking advantage of the fun jumping platform and rope swing.

Plus, Cenote Carwash is located close to Cenote Zacil Ha and Gran Cenote, which makes it easy to go cenote hopping and see multiple cenotes in one day.

13. Cenote Zacil Ha

Cenote Zacil Ha

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (1 hr from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 10:30AM–5:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $200 MXN (~$10 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Jumping, Swimming, Snorkeling, Zipline

Located just next to Cenote Carwash, Cenote Zacil Ha is a beautiful cenote located just outside of Tulum.

The cenote is named after the Mayan word for “clear water.” Cenote Zacil Ha is a great place to swim, snorkel, and there’s even a small zipline for an extra charge.

Cenote Zacil Ha is a smaller open cenote with bright turquoise water that is refreshing and clear.

The cenote is surrounded by lush vegetation, and there are also hammocks and lounge beds available for rent.

14. Cenote CorazΓ³n del ParaΓ­so

Cenote Corazon del Paraiso

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (1 hr 10 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9:30AM–4:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $200 MXN (~$10 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling

Cenote CorazΓ³n del Paraiso is one of the best cenotes in Riviera Maya, located just outside of Tulum and a little over an hour from Playa del Carmen.

The cenote is named for its heart shape, which is visible from aerial shots.

A platform was constructed in the middle contributing to its heart shape so it’s not completely natural!

But nonetheless, its small size makes it intimate and it has a small jumping platform. Or you can just swim and snorkel in middle of the pool.

15. Cenote Yax Kin

Cenote Yax Kin

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (40 min from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 10:30AM–5:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $120 MXN (~$6 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling

Cenote Yax Kin is a beautiful cenote located near Tulum, and about 40 minutes south of Playa del Carmen. It offers crystal-clear waters and a serene natural environment for visitors to enjoy.

Cenote Yax Kin is one of the best Playa del Carmen cenotes for families looking for a unique and inexpensive outdoor activity.

The cenote features several levels of depth, allowing both kids and adults to swim safely. The whole family can enjoy swimming in the crystal-clear waters and relaxing in the natural surroundings.

Plus, Cenote Yax Kin also provides lounge chairs, palapas, picnic tables, and grilling areas where you can prepare your own lunch.

Best Cenotes near Valladolid

If you want to visit some truly amazing cenotes, you need to head to Valladolid, which is a colonial town less than 2 hours away from Playa del Carmen, and a must-visit destination on any Yucatan itinerary

Near Valladolid you can find some of the most stunning other-worldly cenotes, which are honestly some of the best cenotes in Mexico–trust me you will be blown away!

16. Ik Kil Cenote

Ik Kil Cenote
Ik Kil Cenote
Ik Kil Cenote

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (2.5 hrs from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $180 MXN (~$9 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Cliff Jumping

Located near Chichen Itza, Ik Kil Cenote is one of the most impressive cenotes in the entire Yucatan peninsula.

I visited Ik Kil Cenote on the Chichen Itza tour and was blown away by its sheer size and natural beauty!

It’s a massive cenote descending hundreds of feet underground with cascading plants all the way down to the water’s surface. 

Upon arrival, you are required to shower to remove any sunscreen, and then you’ll descend down a winding staircase to the bottom of the cenote.

At the bottom there are wide wooden ladders to enter the water or you can take turns jumping from a few different levels. 

Cenote Ik Kil

The cenote is extremely deep so you’ll definitely want to wear a life jacket unless you want to tread water the entire time! 

It’s really stunning just to float and admire such a massive underground hole–the views looking up are incredible!  

Ik Kil Cenote offers very well-maintained facilities including showers, bathrooms, and changing rooms. 

I would recommend visiting early as it can get very crowded with both large groups and even private Chichen Itza tour visitors.

🀿 Best Cenote Ik Kil Tours:

17. SuytΓΊn Cenote

Cenote Suytun
Cenote Suytun
Cenote Suytun

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (2 hrs from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 9AM–4:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $200 MXN (~$10 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Photography

Located near Valladolid, Suytun Cenote is hands down the most instagrammable cenote in the entire Yucatan region.

It’s an almost fully enclosed cave and has an iconic standing platform directly centered below the light beaming down from a hole in the ceiling.

There are stairs leading down to the bottom of the cenote and you can admire the incredible stalactites looming above.

Cenote Suytun is more shallow so it’s better suited for snorkeling rather than diving. 

It’s definitely beautiful but you will likely be fighting the crowds for the perfect photo op!

🀿 Best Cenote Suytun Tours:

18. Zaci Cenote

Cenote Zaci
Cenote Zaci
Zaci Cenote

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (2 hrs from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–5:30PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $150 MXN (~$8 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Ziplines

Located in the heart of downtown Valladolid, Zaci Cenote is another one of the best cenotes in the Yucatan region.

With its central location, visiting Zaci Cenote is one of the best things to do in Valladolid, and very accessible without having to worry about transportation. 

The cenote is a massive sinkhole that is half enclosed so you’ll get to experience the cave-like setting plus some sunshine and lush green vegetation. 

Since the water is so deep it’s not the best place for snorkeling, but rather a great place to swim, cool off, or jump into the water. 

19. Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman

Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman
Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman
Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (2 hrs from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 10AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $150 MXN (~$8 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling, Ziplines

Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman is a huge and impressive cenote located near Valladolid in the YucatΓ‘n peninsula of Mexico.

This cenote is characterized by its underground cave style, featuring a collapsed cave with an open roof that allows natural light to illuminate the clear waters below.

The cenote is part of Hacienda San Lorenzo, a beautiful complex that dates back to 1746 and was formerly an agave plantation.

One of the highlights of Cenote San Lorenzo Oxman is its rope swing, which allows visitors to make a fun and dramatic entrance into the cenote.

Plus, the sight of hanging tree roots cascading down into the cenote adds to its enchanting atmosphere.

🀿 Best Cenote Oxman Tours:

20. Cenote Xkeken (Cenote Dzitnup)

Cenote Dzitnup
Cenote Dzitnup
Cenote Dzitnup

πŸ“ LOCATION: Google Maps (2 hrs from PDC)
πŸ•’ HOURS: Daily from 8AM–5PM
🎟 ENTRANCE FEE: $230 MXN (~$13 USD)
🀿 ACTIVITIES: Swimming, Snorkeling

Cenote Xkeken, also known as Cenote Dzitnup or Cenote Xquequen, is another popular cenote located near Valladolid.

It is situated deep underground and is known for its stunning rock formations and unique swimming experience.

Cenote Xkeken is often visited in combination with another nearby cenote called Cenote Samula, as they are located next to each other.

Visitors have the opportunity to swim in the crystal-clear waters of Cenote Xkeken and admire its impressive rock formations.

The underground setting adds to the cenote’s unique charm and provides a tranquil and refreshing environment for swimming.

Cenote Dzitnup is not as well-maintained as other cenotes but its dramatic underground rock formations are so impressive.

🀿 Best Cenote Xkeken (Cenote Dzitnup) Tours:

Cenote Tours from Playa del Carmen

Another great way to visit cenotes close to Playa del Carmen is by going on a cenote tour, which saves you the hassle of getting there on your own. 

Playa del Carmen cenote tours are a great option if you’re looking for an all-inclusive experience with round-trip transportation, a tour guide, and food and beverages included.Β 

Below are the best options for a Playa del Carmen cenote tour:

Xenotes

Xenotes Overwater Ziplines
Xenotes Cenote Snorkeling
Xenotes Cenote Kayaking

⭐️ RATING: 5 out of 5 stars (with more than 600 5-star reviews)
πŸ•˜ DURATION: 9 hours
🎟 HOW TO BOOK: Check prices and availability here β†’

Xenotes is a Playa del Carmen cenotes tour by Grupo Xcaret where you can visit four different types of cenotes (open, semi-open, ancient, and cavern) in one day.

You’ll also get to experience a variety of different water activities like rappelling, ziplining, kayaking, swimming, and cliff jumping. 

Round-trip transportation, a certified tour guide, breakfast, and a picnic lunch are included in the admission.

I personally went on the Xenotes tour and can’t recommend it enough–it’s the best Playa del Carmen cenote tour and the easiest way to visit a cenote for the first time!

You can read my full Xenotes review for all the details!

Rio Secreto

Rio Secreto Playa del Carmen
Rio Secreto Playa del Carmen Cenote Tour
Rio Secreto Playa del Carmen Cenote Tour

⭐️ RATING: 4.5 out of 5 stars (with more than 200 5-star reviews)
πŸ•˜ DURATION: 5 hours
🎟 HOW TO BOOK: Check prices and availability here β†’

Rio Secreto is one of the most popular things to do in Riviera Maya where you can swim through an impressive underground river with over 1 kilometer of stalactites and stalagmites.

At this totally unique natural attraction, you get to trek through underwater caves and cenotes, as well as participate in additional activities like biking and rappelling.

And with it being underground, Rio Secreto is an all-weather activity and makes for a great rainy day activity in Riviera Maya.

It really feels like you are in another world! You can read my full Rio Secreto review for all the details!

Cenote Zapote Eco Park

Cenote Zapote Playa del Carmen Cenote Tour
Cenote Zapote Cenote Zipline
Cenote Zapote Water Zipline

⭐️ RATING: 5 out of 5 stars (with more than 80 5-star reviews)
πŸ•˜ DURATION: 6 hours
🎟 HOW TO BOOK: Check prices and availability here β†’

Located about 30 minutes north of Playa del Carmen, Cenote Zapote is an eco park near Puerto Morelos along the famous “Ruta de los Cenotes”.

Visiting Cenote Zapote is a full day adventure park experience offering both cenotes and some of the best ziplining in Playa del Carmen.

At the eco-park, you’ll get to visit three stunning cenotes, as well as zipline through the jungle, explore the park on bikes, and cruise around on ATVs.

The three different cenotes offer all kinds of fun including overwater ziplines, extreme cliff jumping, and cave exploration.

You can read my full Cenote Zapote guide for all the details–it was such a fun day!

Private Cenotes, Zip-Lines, Canoes & Mayan Village

Kayaking on Playa del Carmen Private Cenotes Tour

⭐️ RATING: 5 out of 5 stars (with more than 350 5-star reviews)
πŸ•˜ DURATION: 4-6 hours
🎟 HOW TO BOOK: Check prices and availability here β†’

Perfect for families, this top-rated Private Cenote Tour from Playa del Carmen is the best way to experience cenotes and outdoor adventure activities in Riviera Maya without the crowds.

You’ll get to go snorkeling, canoeing, zip-lining, and swimming in a secluded cenote in the middle of the jungle β€” all at your own pace.

Plus, a visit to an adjacent Mayan village and delicious lunch are included in this Playa del Carmen private tour for an added Mayan culture experience.

Private Dream Underground World Tour

Playa del Carmen Underground Cenote

⭐️ RATING: 5 out of 5 stars (with more than 200 5-star reviews)
πŸ•˜ DURATION: 3-4 hours
🎟 HOW TO BOOK: Check prices and availability here β†’

This top-rated Dream Underground World Private Cenote Tour gives you the unique opportunity to explore the natural wonders of the underground world near Playa del Carmen and Tulum.

You’ll visit the Cenotes Sac Actun underwater cave system, where you can swim and snorkel at your own pace in crystal clear waters while learning about the area’s ancient geology from a knowledgeable guide.

Next, you’ll explore a private cave at Dos Ojos Cenote, one of the most iconic underground cenotes near Tulum.

And since it’s just a half-day tour, it’s perfect for those short on time.

More About Visiting Playa del Carmen Cenotes

Here is more info on visiting cenotes around Playa del Carmen:

What is a cenote?

Cenotes are freshwater swimming holes that are formed when limestone collapses to create an underground sinkhole. 

Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula is known for its incredible cenotes as there are literally thousands of cenotes in the region and more and more are being discovered each year.  

When you visit a cenote, you can typically swim, snorkel, or just hang out in a beautiful natural setting.

Many cenotes also offer the opportunity to jump into the water from high ledges for an extra thrill.

And with their expansive network of underwater caves, cenotes are also popular dive sites for scuba diving.

Why visit Playa del Carmen cenotes?

The Riviera Maya is known for its beautiful beaches (which are no doubt amazing!) but visiting a cenote is an activity that really allows you to experience the natural beauty of the Yucatan peninsula. 

Cenotes were once revered by the Mayans as a way to communicate with the gods so experiencing a cenote is truly a unique way to connect with the more ancient culture of the region. 

In my opinion, visiting a cenote is one of the best things to do in Mexico and really shouldn’t be missed!

Plus, cenotes are a great option for a cloudy day and one of the best activities to do when there is a large amount of seaweed on the beaches. 

Best time to visit Playa del Carmen cenotes

Generally speaking, the best time to visit a cenote is during the week.  Cenotes can be very busy on the weekends (especially Sundays) with many Mexican families visiting. 

Sometimes cenotes can even reach capacity and additional visitors will be denied entry.  I would recommend getting there as early as possible to beat the crowds.

Playa del Carmen Cenote

What to Expect When Visiting Playa del Carmen Cenotes

Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect when visiting cenotes near Playa del Carmen:

Arrival

When you first arrive at a cenote, there will usually be a small building where you’ll pay the entrance fee and collect your lifejacket (if available). 

From there you’ll usually descend down stairs or walk through a wooded area before arriving to the main cenote.  It’s a completely natural setting so you can expect an uneven and rocky path. 

Once you arrive to the swimming area, there will usually be stairs to enter the water.  Be careful they can be extremely slippery! 

Many cenotes also offer jumping ledges for an extra thrill.  I’m slightly afraid of heights but I almost always go for the jumping option when I visit cenotes. 

Be prepared the water will usually be VERY cold–it won’t be long until your teeth are chattering! 

I would definitely recommend wearing a rash guard for extra warmth, especially if you’re visiting during the winter months. 

Eden Cenote Playa del Carmen

Entrance Fees

The entrance fee for each cenote will vary but you can expect to pay from $100-$500 pesos (~$5-$25 USD).  If it’s a guided tour it may be more.

Be sure to bring cash in Mexican pesos as credit cards will likely not be accepted. 

Once you pay the entrance fee, you will be given a wristband that grants you access to the cenote.

Activities

Depending on the type of cenote you visit, there will be different activities available.

Most offer the opportunity to jump into the water from high ledges, swim, float, or simply dip your feet into the water, experience a fish spa, or snorkel. 

Cenotes are also extremely popular for scuba divers so you will often see divers or their air bubbles coming up from under the water.

Cenote Cristalino Fish Spa

Amenities

Some cenotes are much more touristy and will have full amenities such as a restaurant, snacks for purchase, lounge chair rentals, showers, lockers, changing rooms, and well-maintained bathrooms. 

However more commonly you will just find minimal amenities such as bathrooms and life jacket or snorkel gear rentals.

Lockers

Some cenotes have lockers where you can pay a small fee (around $50 pesos) to store your personal belongings.  However many of the smaller cenotes do not have lockers. 

Most people will just find a secluded place to leave their belongings near the cenote. 

I would recommend not bringing any valuable items with you and you’ll just have to do your best to keep an eye on your belongings while you’re in the water. 

Rules

Cenotes are protected areas and it’s very important to abide by the rules of each cenote. 

There is usually a list of rules (in both English and Spanish) posted at the cenote entrance. 

The cardinal rule of visiting cenotes is that sunscreen is NOT permitted.  This includes both regular sunscreen and biodegradable sunscreen.

Most cenotes will require you to shower before entering the cenote to remove any sunscreen or harmful contaminants.

So if you’re visiting a cenote that doesn’t have a lot of shade, you’re definitely going to need to wear a rash guard to avoid a sunburn.

Some other rules I have seen posted include:

  • No fishing
  • No diving
  • No food and beverage
  • No glass containers
Cenote Azul Playa del Carmen

What to Bring to Playa del Carmen Cenotes

There are a few things you most definitely want to bring with you when you visit a cenote and a few things that are nice to have. 

πŸ¦ΆπŸ»β—οΈ I never go to a cenote without water shoes as the ground both inside and outside of the water is usually very rocky and extremely painful for your feet.  Trust me it is not fun!

Must-haves

These are the must-have items when visiting a cenote:

βœ… Water Shoes

βœ… Beach Towel

Nice-to-haves

These items are nice-to-have and will make your experience more enjoyable:

How to Get to Playa del Carmen Cenotes

These are the best ways to get to the cenotes Playa del Carmen has:

By Car

The easiest way to visit the cenotes near Playa del Carmen and Tulum is by driving or renting a car

Many of the cenotes are located right off the main highway 307, but for those that are further inland, you will definitely need a car to get to the cenote entrance. 

You could also take a taxi but it will be more expensive and may be difficult to flag one down for the return trip.

For rental cars in Playa del Carmen, I recommend using Discover Cars, where you can see deals from both Mexican and international rental car companies and compare reviews.

↳ Search for rental cars on Discover Cars here!

Cenote Parking

Most cenotes do have a dedicated parking lot for cenote visitors and it is usually free. 

I would recommend getting there early to get a better spot closer to the cenote entrance.

By Public Transportation

If you don’t have a car, cenotes can also be visited by taking a colectivo (shared van) from downtown Playa del Carmen.

For any cenotes south of Playa del Carmen, you’ll want to get on a colectivo from Playa del Carmen to Tulum.

The main bus depot for Tulum colectivos is located near the Chedraui grocery store and Highway 307 (πŸ“ Google Maps Location).

Tell the driver where you’re going and they’ll stop at the entrance on the side of the highway.  The price should be less than $100 pesos (~$5 USD) each way and you’ll pay upon exiting. 

Colectivo from Playa del Carmen to Tulum

Visiting Playa del Carmen Cenotes: FAQs

Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about cenotes in Playa del Carmen:

What cenote is best for cliff jumping in Playa del Carmen?

Cenote Eden is the best cenote in Playa del Carmen for cliff jumping, offering a large tree branch to jump from, as well as smaller jumping ledges.

What is the least crowded cenote near Playa del Carmen?

The least crowded cenote near Playa del Carmen is Yax-Kin, which is less-well known and typically has fewer crowds.

Can you visit cenotes without a tour in Playa del Carmen?

Yes, you can visit many public cenotes in Playa del Carmen without a tour. You’ll just need to pay an entrance fee, which grants you access to the cenote and may include a life jacket or other amenities.

Can I go in the cenotes if I can’t swim?

Yes, you can still go in cenotes if you can’t swim as most cenotes offer life jacket rentals. Plus, some cenotes have shallower areas where you can stand in the water.

Why can’t you wear sunscreen in cenotes?

Sunscreen is prohibited in cenotes because it can contain harmful chemicals and contaminants that can be damaging to the natural eco-system of cenotes.

Do I need water shoes for cenotes?

Yes, water shoes are essential for visiting cenotes as the ground can be extremely rocky and painful to your feet.

Cenote Cristalino Playa del Carmen

Conclusion: Playa del Carmen Cenotes Guide

I hope this best cenotes Playa del Carmen guide was helpful and you get to experience some of these truly amazing freshwater cenotes! 

Visiting a cenote is one of my favorite things to do in Riviera Maya and so unique that it shouldn’t be missed!

My top pick for the best cenote near Playa del Carmen is Cenote Eden, which is less than 30 minutes away and offers a large open pool for cliff jumping, swimming, and snorkeling.

And if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of getting to these cenotes in Playa del Carmen on your own, I highly recommend booking the Xenotes tour!

This is an all-inclusive cenotes tour, where you can visit 4 private cenotes in one day and all transportation and meals are included.

But no matter where you end up, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience exploring these totally unique natural wonders near Playa del Carmen!

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