Welcome to Cenote Calavera, the ultimate HIDDEN GEM IN TULUM!
This cenote is not your typical underground pool, it’s more like a natural wonderland.
In this blog post, we will share EVERYTHING you need to know to prepare for your trip.
Cenote Calavera is located in Mexico, specifically just outside the city of Tulum.
Overall, it is quite easy to find the cenote, it shouldn’t take you more than 15min by car depending on where your journey starts.
Geology of the Cenote
Have you ever heard of a cenote? It’s a natural swimming hole found in the Yucatan Peninsula.
These underwater caves were used by the ancient Mayans as a source of fresh water and were even believed to be sacred.
But how were they formed?
The cenotes were created millions of years ago when a meteorite struck the earth, forming a massive crater. Over time, the crater filled with water and eroded to form the stunning caves we see today.
So next time you take a swim in a cenote, remember that you are SWIMMING IN MILLIONS OF YEARS HISTORY!
Fun Fact: Cenote Calavera means “skull cenote” in Spanish, and if you look down into the water you’ll see two eye sockets and a nose that resemble a skull!
Don’t worry, it’s not haunted, just an incredibly unique feature that makes this cenote stand out from the rest.
There are three options we recommend when visiting the cenote (the last one is DEFINITELY the best one).
As we said before, the cenote is only 15 minutes away from the city centre of Tulum.
Even better, a lot of taxis are available around Tulum so getting there shouldn’t be a problem.
HOWEVER, coming back by taxi can be a challenge, you might need to walk a bit on the road to find one.
If you plan on going by taxi then we suggest you get the number from the driver or organise a pick-up time.
If you are going to spend a couple of days in Tulum and want to explore outside the city then renting a car should be a no-brainer.
A car gives you a lot more freedom to move around without the hassle of planning your entire journey around other means of transport, they can be so TIME CONSUMING.
Everywhere we travel, we book our car through RentalCars.com. We couldn’t recommend this enough, the website compares prices of different companies so you are guaranteed to get the best deals.
Book A Tour with a Local
We booked this tour below and it was the BEST DECISION EVER!
After the tour we felt like we got to experience so much more than what we would have initially done ourselves, especially our guide gave us so much more historical insight.
Are you unsure of what you want to do in Tulum? No worries! Just contact YourTulum and they will make you a personalized proposal!
They can mix a variety of activities, such as:
- Expeditions: they take you on tours with their certified guides so you can explore deep into the JUNGLE, walk by Mayan TEMPLES, snorkel next to marine life in their own ecosystem, or swim in an underground cenote LIKE CENOTE CALAVERA TULUM!
- Catamarans: Want to sail around the Caribbean Sea? no problem! A private yacht or catamaran is definitely a luxury experience. The experience includes an onboard CHEF, swimming next to AMAZING natural REEFS, and so much more!
- Culinary: Want a culinary chef to make you an amazing, authentic Mexican dinner in your villa? YourTulum offers it!
Best Maya Tours
The first tour that we recommend is visiting the world of UNDERGROUND cenotes! The best tour agency for a private snorkeling tour in the underground cenotes is definitely Best Maya Tours.
You’ll start your day by exploring the ancient ruins of Tulum with an expert guide who will share insights into the history and culture of this fascinating site.
After your tour of the ruins, you’ll make your way to a nearby underground cenote CAVE SYSTEM for an exhilarating snorkeling and speleological experience. You’ll end the day in a local Mexican restaurant for lunch. All transportation is included. Check out the tour here.
- Pick-up and drop-off in Tulum
- Visit to three cenotes: Casa Cenote, Grand Cenote, and Cenote Zemway
- Snorkeling equipment
- Bottled water
- Tour guide
Check out this tour – Karmatrails.
Another tour that we ABSOLUTELY RECOMMEND is the tour with the local travel agency Kay Tours. They not only take you to the cenotes, but you can also go to the Tulum Ruins and go KAYAKING and ZIP-LINING in Tulum. All of this is included with transport and lunch. Check out the AMAZING tour here.
You can also book this activity with Viator where you will not visit just one cenote but THREE cenotes. If you start calculating the transport costs and entrance fees to all these places, you will quickly realize that these tours are of great value. Click here for the tour.
Things To Do
Now that you know how to get there, the most important part is knowing what exactly you can do there!
Cenote Calavera is the perfect place to spend a day with friends or family.
Here is a list of the main activity you can do in Cenote Calavera:
Swimming: This is probably the most obvious activity and the reason why you are visiting the cenote!
Snorkelling: On-site, you can rent snorkelling gear and explore the diverse marine life.
Cliff Jumping: If you want an adrenaline kick, this activity is for you! The largest hole is 3 meters above water, making it a popular site for cliff jumping.
Scuba Diving: For experienced divers and ff you have a certification, you can dive and explore the cenote’s depths.
Best Time To Visit
If you want to avoid waiting in line to jump in, the best time to visit Cenote Calavera would be in the morning.
Peak time starts at around 1pm!
On the bright side, the cenote is open EVERYDAY from 9am to 5pm.
Best time to visit Tulum
You might be wondering when exactly is the best time to travel to Tulum.
Tulum is a tropical location so actually all year round BUT we will give you our THREE BEST OPTIONS:
Between November and December: This is right after hurricane season. It’s a great time to go if you just want to enjoy the warm weather without being bothered by too many tourists.
In March and April: The temperatures are perfect and it’s not as hot as during summertime. But this is also one of the most popular months for tourist visits.
In May and June: This is another great option because although it’s quite hot, there are less tourists compared to other months so prices could fluctuate.
BONUS: If you want to swim with whale sharks, add Isla Mujeres to your itinerary. You would have to plan your trip between June and September to increase your chances.
Where To Stay
Casa Malca has a great location right on the beach with stunning ocean views, this luxurious hotel is the perfect place to enjoy some rest and relaxation.
Ambre & Epices Jungle Hotel & Spa is one of the best options for a mid-range hotel in Tulum. This place is situated in the middle of the jungle, surrounded by beautiful nature and with exceptional service.
Harmony Glamping Boutique Hotel and Yoga retreat This is one of the most unique glamping experiences you can find in Tulum. Located on a private beach and surrounded by lush vegetation, this boutique hotel offers luxury accommodation with all the comforts you could think of.
The best part? The yoga classes and meditation sessions they offer to help you reconnect with your inner self!
Booking.com is our favourite website to book our hotels when we travel. They have so many different options, we always find a hotel that fits our needs wether its low budget or luxury. On top of that, they also offer other services such as taxi bookings from the airport and flight tickets.
It’s a wrap for this guide!
Hopefully, by sharing our experience, you know exactly how to plan this trip!
If you have any burning questions drop us a comment and we’ll do our best to help!
When is the best time to visit Cenote Calavera?
The best time to visit Cenote Calavera is in the morning before 1pm when there are fewer tourists and the way the light falls into the cenote makes it a magical experience.
How far away is Cenote Calavera from Tulum?
Cenote Calavera is only 15 minutes away from the city centre of Tulum by car.
Should I book a tour with a local for cenote calavera tulum?
We highly recommend booking a tour with a local. It is definitely worth it and you’ll get to experience so much more than what you would have done on your own.
How deep is Cenote Calavera Tulum?
The depth of Cenote Calavera ranges between 5 and 10 meters.
What should I bring to cenote calavera Tulum?
We suggest you bring a swimsuit, towel, sandals, insect repellent, sunscreen and a camera to capture the moment! There is no restaurant nearby so pack your own snacks and drinks too.
What time is it in Tulum Mexico?
Tulum is in the Central Time Zone (CST) so it is currently 6 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).