Explore the fascinating cave world and learn appropriate techniques for safe cave diving in one of our TDI courses:
TDI Cavern Diver: duration aprox. 3 days
TDI Intro to Cave Diver: duration aprox. 5 days
TDI Full Cave Diver: duration aprox. 8 days
For already certified cave divers the Cenotes open a whole new underwater world.
Enjoy professionally guided cave dives and discover the uniqueness of the mile-long cave systems.
The word Cenote originates from the Mayan word "ts'onot" and means "holy spring". Due to the collapse of the limestone ceiling a hole was created and the result is a cave filled with fresh water. These openings may get in contact with groundwater and ultimately end in the Caribbean Ocean.
Since there are no rivers on the surface of the Yucatán peninsula, Cenotes were the only fresh water supply for the Mayan population. They played an important role in their mythology whose ceremonies were held there. They believed that Cenotes were the portal to their underworld,the Xibalba. It is believed that these cave systems were the reason for the development of the Mayan civilization on the Yucatán peninsula.
In Cenotes next to the sea, fresh water layers on saltwater, but does not mix. The density interface between the fresh and saline waters is called halocline, which means a sharp change in salt concentration over a small change in depth. Mixing of the fresh and saline water results in a blurry swirling effect due to refraction between the different densities of fresh and saline water.
On the Yucatán peninsula you will find over 3,000 Cenotes. They have an average depth of 10-20 meters, a few even exceeding 100 meters. The Cenotes in Yucatán are probably part of the largest continuous underwater cave system worldwide. The two longest systems, Sac Actun (215 km) and Ox Bel Ha (187 km), are accessible through more than 130 Cenotes. The total length of explored cave systems in Yucatán is 915 km.