The cavern zones are open to divers with at least an Open Water Diver certificate, 20+ dives, and the accompaniment of a qualified guide.
Cavern zone is a part of the cave where you can see natural day light, dive only in bigger passages, maximum penetration of 60 meters from the open water with a possibility of fast resurface. For higher safety, we only allow four divers per guide, and our guides are certified and experienced cave divers. Most of the cenotes intended for cavern diving have cavern guide lines, which lead throughout the entire cavern zones, for better orientation. If the permanent guide line is not there, your guide will run the line during the dive. Entrance to the cave system is always marked by a warning sign.
Mexican cenotes cannot be found anywhere else in the world and are considered to be one of the most beautiful places for diving. Conditions for diving in cenotes are the same all year round – almost unlimited visibility with a water temperature of 25-27ºC. Average depths are approximately 7-12 meters. You can find hundreds of cenotes in this part of the Yucatan peninsula, but each one is totally unique. There a superb karst formations of all sizes, shapes and colors; beautiful refractions and laser shows of natural day light, intergrowing tree roots, coral fossils and crustaceans, halocline – fresh and salt water mixing, smaller kinds of fresh water fish, shrimps, blind ceve fish, yellow-bellied turtles and many more. The jungle is in close proximity to the cenotes, with numerous kinds of plants, birds and parrots, lizards, iguanas, coatis and bats.
For the Cavern Tours, we start between 8-9 o’clock in the morning. Local cenotes are 15-45 minutes south of Playa del Carmen by car. We do every dive in a different spot, so you won’t dive same cenote twice, unless that’s what you want. Most of the famous cenotes are easily accessible. For better access, their owners made stone footpaths, wooden platforms and stairs for easier entry to the water, tables for preparing dive equipment, changing rooms and toilets. The water is usually just a few dozen meters from the parking lot.
For the cavern diving, we use a standard recreational configuration. Your guide is using equipment intended for cave diving. Before each dive, your guide will explain and sketch all the details about the given dive. Depending on the cavern line length, the dives takes 40-50 minutes each. We take a rest between every dive, exchange tanks and debrief for the next dive. We come back to Playa del Carmen from the Cavern Tours between 1-3 pm, depending on the starting time and cenote distances. Total time is around 5-7 hours.
Photo © Peter Nemeth