Cenote Cristalino, Yuacatan, Mexico

Cenote Cristalino: sacred for the Mayas and for the senses!

I can’t write much about Cenote Cristalino. It is simply put, one of the most beautiful places I have ever been at.

In a surrounding that could be out of a travel agency brochure or movie, you have crystal clear water, so transparent that you see the fishes going around so gracefully, without the need to use a snorkel. It’s like a swimming-pool, brought to you by Nature itself.



Cenotes (natural sinkholes like this one) are very common in the Peninsula de Yucatan in Mexico and, in a way, I regret not spending more time over there to visit other cenotes.

One day, we shall be back and do the “Ruta de los Cenotes” and enjoy some more!

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  • Saiqa Says

    I’m visiting Cancun in March and was wondering how I would be able to visit this cenote?

    • Zara Says

      Cenote Cristalino is closer to Playa del Carmen than Cancun, but possible to go there from Cancun – maybe 2/3 hrs drive. If you don’t have a car, I’d suggest taking a bus from Cancun to Playa del Carmen – 2 hrs. Then in Playa ask for the “colectivos” (shared vans operating as small buses) that goes to Akumal. On the way to Akumal just tell the driver you want to go down on the Cenotes – that’s about half hr out of Playa Del Carmen. There are 3 entrances for different cenotes, this one is just one of them. You have to pay to enter (USD 5 or so) and it is really worth it! You can also take taxi from Playa. Once in Cancun ask around and there might be other closer Cenotes also beautiful… But chances are that closer to Cancun they are also way busier which spoils a bit the idyllic feeling of this kind of places. Let us know how it goes! :)

  • Nick Says

    Hi, this sounds amazing and our hotel is close by. I was wondering, whil researching our trip, we saw photos of underground cenotes, almost like caves. Isnt that the true cenote experience. The one a cristalino appears to be open air. Thanks

    • Zara Says

      Hi Nick,
      There are different kinds of Cenotes, some open air like Cristalino and others with caves connecting underground (where you can also scuba dive, etc). I wouldn’t say that one is the “true Cenote experience” over the other, just different kinds of things. There are different Cenotes close by so you can probably even visit more than one!

  • Nick Says

    Thank you for your quick and superb reply. It’s much appreciated! We will go to Cristalino as our first experience.

    Do you know the name of a nearby underground/cave cenote, so we experience both types on our trip? Thanks

  • Nick Says

    Wanted to give a short report back:

    We visited Cenote CRISTALINO – 80 peso per person entry fee. This includes a free life jacket. Snorkel/goggle option is also available for an extra 50 peso per person. Fantastic cenote. very rustic, quite, maybe about 8 or 9 locals were there. peaceful, well recommended. Almost directly across the highway 307 from the Barcelo Hotel

    Then visted Cenote AZURE. 50 peso entry. We also took up the goggle and snorkel option at 70 pesos (you get to keep the snorkel)

    Also amazing, not as clear as Cristalino, but more variety. More people. Also enjoyable

    I recommend that any trip to the Riviera Maya area includes a cenote visit. Breathtaking!

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  • Jimmy Says

    I went to Cristalino cenote last week quickly on my way back from Tulum. I was swimming in the main pool by the life guard. It was smaller than I expected. Was I supposed to get out and walk in the area to find more pools to swim in ? Just want to know if I missed other beautiful spots. Thanks!

    • Zara Says

      Jimmy, I don’t think you must have missed much. There’s basically the pool by the life guard and some more pool area towards the right (still connected, but you swim past some floating greenery) and also some more water towards the left under the rocks (sort of a cave). This is all there is inside the Cenote Cristalino area, as far as I remember. There are other cenotes right next door, but you’d need to access them from the main road, as they all have different entrances and admission tickets.

  • Lorena Says

    Hello all, I wanted to know if the Cristalino cenote was part of the Ecopar Kantuchi ecological park because on google map I can only see this ecological park and cant find the entrance for the cristalino cenote, how does it look like ? is it easy to find? Thank you!

    • Zara Says

      Hi Lorena!

      Cenote Cristalino is sort of a park on its own – there is a ticket counter at the entrance (by the road side) JUST for Cristalino. It is near other cenotes too and very well known, so you shouldn’t have a problem finding it once you are in the area.

      The entrance doesn’t look like much though – there is a little board on the road side and a shack selling the tickets. But ask any bus or taxi driver for the cenotes between Playa del Carmen and Tulum and they will know for sure – all the cenotes of that area are pretty much in a row and it is a well known place by locals, no worries!

  • Jennifer Siu Says

    Can I ask you what camera you used to film underwater? The quality is amazing

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