So a couple of us from American Realty took some time off from selling condos this last weekend to explore some of the different attractions around Playa del Carmen. One of the many perks to living in paradise…. 🙂 One of the places we checked out was Gran Cenote down near Tulum – about 40 min away from Playa.
There are an insane amount of cenotes in the area and each one has a little different flavor, a little different energy… this creates a unique and individual experience at each one.
**Local Tip – if you hate crowds, don’t go exploring cenotes on a Sunday. It’s Mexico’s family day out so you get a ton of locals plus the tourist crowd. Not that it’s bad but given a choice, I like to experience the cenotes with fewer people and kids around if possible. That’s just a personal preference tho…
The Gran Cenote
The Gran Cenote is a little further from Playa than many of the other popular ones but it’s definitely worth the trip. It’s a large cenote and one of the more mellow ones in that there is no rappelling or cliff diving type activities so it is great for a family outing. With an abundance of area open to the outside, there are lot’s of places to lay out or just view the natural beauty of one of natures most unique creations.
As you walk down the stairs from the outside world into the underground water world of the Gran Cenote, you can’t help but be struck by astounding natural beauty surrounding you. The perfectly clear water with magnificent rock formations are unlike anything anywhere else in the world. This particular cenote has some animal life in the form of turtles and a few small fish.
There is something peaceful about seeing a turtle lazily swim by you as you float in the water under massive stalactites in an ancient cave that was carved out over millions of years. It has a way of connecting you with the Earth and nature in a special way. They say that cenotes are powerful centers of spiritual energy and were revered by the Mayans for thousands of years.
The water is a bit on the cold side so all I can say is just jump in. Do it quick and the shock will wear off in a couple minutes and you’ll be fine for the rest of the day.
The caverns extend deep into the earth and although we were just swimming, these are very popular places to scuba dive as well if you wish to explore further than the light and water will allow….
Post Gran Cenote
So, swimming around in ancient caves really gets me hungry so after we got done in the cenote, we headed down the road a couple minutes into Tulum. I know a great little French bistro tucked away on one of the side streets off the main road. It’s called Le Bistro – the chefs are from France and just have a tiny little place with a couple tables that you would miss if you blink – but they have some of the best crepes I’ve ever had.
A couple Crepa Parisiennes with a cappuccino topped the day off nicely… I don’t know what the next adventure in paradise will involve but one thing I do know is that I will never run out of things to do while living in the Riviera Maya.
I’ve heard good things about Cenote Dos Ojos… but whether it’s a cenote, parasailing, kiteboarding, snorkeling, swimming with whales or sea turtles, or any of the other myriad of things available, I know it’s always an adventure here….