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Cenote Dos Ojos (“Two Eyes” in English) is certainly the most filmed and photographed cenote of the Riviera Maya. These two neighboring cenotes, connected by a very large cavern zone, are part of one of the most famous underground river systems in the world. With its caverns full of crystal clear water, stalagmites and stalactites, Cenote Dos Ojos is a must do for any snorkeler looking for a singular experience.
The Cenote Dos Ojos (opened from 8am to 5pm, everyday) is located near Xel Ha Park, about 30 miles/50km south of Playa del Carmen and 12 miles/20km north of Tulum. All the group taxis (known locally “collectivos”) which travel non-stop along federal route 307 stop there (« Xel Ha » stop, under the bridge). If you’re coming by car (or by private taxi), you’ll have to park (or be dropped off) at the entrance. Buy your tickets at the main gate and walk 15 to 20 minutes through the jungle to reach the Cenote.
You can also book a day tour including a visit to Cenote Dos Ojos with a local tour operator. You’ll have a large choice of excursions, as tour organizers are particularly numerous along the Riviera Maya.
Given that several stairs have been installed on the wooden decks bordering the cenotes, water entrance is particularly easy.
Cenote Dos Ojos is made of two sinkholes of approximately 70m in diameter, connected by a 400-meters long passageway. When the water level is high enough, you can swim through a narrow passage to reach the “Bat Cave”, much darker, and inhabited by hundreds of bats.
The visibility through the water is amazing and offers wonderful light effects. It is quite likely that you have never seen so crystal clear waters in your life. The cenotes are not full of fish, but the area, including the jungle, offers nice opportunities of wildlife sights (bat, motmot bird, snake, iguana, tarantula, fox and many other species).
The water temperature is perfect for snorkeling, at a constant 76-77°F/24-25°C throughout the year. Stalactite and stalagmite are spectacular, but also highly fragile, and can be broken by a passing swimfin. Don’t touch anything, and watch where you are going, especially when your way lies through narrow passages.
Roof of the caves is very low in some places: e careful when you go back up to the surface. In any case, free diving should not be practiced in the cenote without a certified guide. Do not use chemical insect repellent or sunscreen lotion, which pollutes the water of the cenote and kill wildlife.
Two restaurants (Restaurante Dos Ojos and Restaurante Juanita), serving local Mexican food, are located next to the main parking area (around 150/200 pesos per person for a meal and drink).
These spots are accessible to anyone with basic snorkeling skills, and feeling comfortable in the water and with his snorkeling gear. You will enter the water from the shore (beach, pontoon, ladder, rocks) or from a boat. The water height in the sea entrance area is reasonable, but you will not necessarily be within your depth. Moderate currents can occur in the area, even when the sea conditions are good. The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas of the spot does not exceed 200 meters.This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.
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Snorkeling spots are part of a wild environment and their aspect can be significantly altered by weather, seasons, sea conditions, human impact and climate events (storms, hurricanes, seawater-warming episodes…). The consequences can be an alteration of the seabed (coral bleaching, coral destruction, and invasive seagrass), a poor underwater visibility, or a decrease of the sea life present in the area. Snorkeling Report makes every effort to ensure that all the information displayed on this website is accurate and up-to-date, but no guarantee is given that the underwater visibility and seabed aspect will be exactly as described on this page the day you will snorkel the spot. If you recently snorkeled this area and noticed some changes compared to the information contained on this page, please contact us.
The data contained in this website is for general information purposes only, and is not legal advice. It is intended to provide snorkelers with the information that will enable them to engage in safe and enjoyable snorkeling, and it is not meant as a substitute for swim level, physical condition, experience, or local knowledge. Remember that all marine activities, including snorkeling, are potentially dangerous, and that you enter the water at your own risk. You must take an individual weather, sea conditions and hazards assessment before entering the water. If snorkeling conditions are degraded, postpone your snorkeling or select an alternate site. Know and obey local laws and regulations, including regulated areas, protected species, wildlife interaction and dive flag laws.
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