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We did our first cenote dives and we're HOOKED

Discussion in 'Mexico' started by naick, Jan 26, 2019.

  1. naick

    naick Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Belgium
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    We went diving in the cenotes in Tulum and it was really marvelous. The views are indescribable - You have to see this for yourself! Our favourite cenote was Dos Ojos (see attached pîcture). We went diving with Tulum Scuba and can highly recommend them. In total we did four dives in three different cenotes.

    If you'd like to see what it's like to dive in Dos Ojos, we also included some clips in our video, see
    This our travel video from Tulum, which covers the beach, our diving in Dos Ojos, eating at Nü restaurant and visiting the Tulum Ruins. The clips about Dos Ojos are between the 3 and 5 min mark.

    Dos Ojos
    Our first cenote dive was in Dos Ojos, the so called 'Barbie route' (At the halfway point there is a plastic crocodile with a barbie doll in it's mouth). When we got there, we explored the site a bit and at 9 am there was literally noone there yet. After we a very thorough safety briefing from our DM, we went to go into our gear. When we entered the water, it was a bit colder than diving in Cozumel (Cozumel is currently 27 degrees celsius and the cenotes are about 23 degrees). Putting our head below the surface already provided us with great views of the sun rays falling in the water. We explored deeper in the cenotes and were stunned with the formations (stalagtites and stalagmites). At every point in the dive there was still light falling in from outside and it didn't feel too 'cave-like'. A very good introduction and we felt like diving more.

    After a service interval with some fruit and cookes, we went for a second dive at Dos Ojos. This time, we did the Bat route (you enter into a chamber with lots of bats, quite impressive). This was our favourite dive of our cenote diving adventure. The formations were even more impressive than the first dive. This route seemed to be more divided in 'chambers' and was darker, giving it a more cave-like feel.

    After these two dives, we were hooked and although we had only planned (and budgetted) to do one day of cenote diving, we quickly decided to do two more the next day. They were running a tour to Angelita and Calavera.

    Angelita
    For our second day of diving, we combined two cenotes in one day. First dive of the day was Angelita. It's not really an overhead environment, but more of big sinkhole. It was quite different from any of the other dives we did. The special feature here is the giant cloud of white 'smoke' that sits at 30ish meters. The cloud contains sulphur and smells a bit like rotten eggs. It looks like you have reached the bottom when you see it, but you can just dive right through. An additional feature is that there is a mountain rising up from up. The trees sticking out from that mountain combined with the smoke gives it an eery feeling. All in all, this wasn't my favourite dive. The cloud was cool, but other than that it's quite an uneventful place to dive, not that much different from diving in any of the quarries where I've bee YMMV.

    Calavera
    Our second dive of the day. After having some snacks at Angelita, we jumped into the truck (with suits still on haha) to go diving at Calavera. It's also a popular spot for people to go swimming as there is more of a cave feel to it when swimming there, with a bit opening about 4m above the water and two smaller openings (roughly 1m diameter), which allows for nice jumps. After getting ready in our gear and getting a briefing about our dive, we jumped the 4m high big hole, which was quite the experience. I never jumped from such a height in diving gear, but it was all fine! The cavern is a bit smaller, but some of the swimthroughs we did were absolutely beautiful. Our guide showed us one of the entrances to the caves that run off (we stayed on the cavern line though) and shined his light in one of the tunnels and it was absolutely stunning. At that moment, I just knew I had to go get my cave certification and return here one day to explore these beautiful tunnels.

    Now I just need to find the time and money to do the cave cert!
     

    Attached Files:

    bamafan, Kim Hunter, Mike1967 and 2 others like this.
  2. ibj40

    ibj40 Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Texas
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    After years of diving on Cozumel, about a dozen years ago we shifted over to the mainland (and more specifically Puerto Aventuras).

    On our first visit, we did two days in the ocean and one day in the cenotes, and we were hooked. We've been going back almost every year, and still have the same schedule (although one year when offshore conditions weren't favorable, we did two days of cenotes).

    Glad you did it, they are addictive.
     
    MrBigfins and naick like this.
  3. naick

    naick Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Belgium
    50
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    Nice! Any good recommendations for dive ops on Cozumel? Wasn't overly happy with the one we used.
     
  4. Rob9876

    Rob9876 Barracuda

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    I've been thinking of trying cenote diving for 1 day in our next Cozumel trip. I think I would prefer to avoid the bat cave, as I've got a bit of an aversion to bat guano.
     
    naick likes this.
  5. naick

    naick Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Belgium
    50
    24
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    Why is that, any interesting story behind it?
    Both routes are very nice, so you could just do 1 dive at the barbie line. You can combine it with a dive at another cenote like 'El Pit', which is supposed to be very nice as well. On our list for the next time we get there.
     
    Norwegian Cave Diver likes this.
  6. Rob9876

    Rob9876 Barracuda

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    I had a friend who had a brain lesion which was most likely caused by exposure to bat guano or bird droppings (he did both caving and painting around rooftops). I wasn't crazy about caves full of guano to begin with, but his story upped the ante.
     
  7. Lorenzoid

    Lorenzoid idling in neutral buoyancy

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Atlanta, USA
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    Howdy! My wife is Belgian. We enjoyed some of those same cenotes, but we also love Cozumel. Browse through some of the posts in the Cozumel forum and you will see the same five or six dive op names come up again and again as SB'er favorites. We like Aldora, but we have also enjoyed diving with Blue XTSea. Tres Pelicanos is another one that people rave about.
     
  8. naick

    naick Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Belgium
    50
    24
    8
    Wow, that's crappy. So far I'm still fine, luckily.

    Oh that's great. Do you guys live in Belgium or visit regularly?

    Thanks for the tips, I'll have a look around. We found a highly recommended op for Utila in Honduras on here. Their standard is 60min dives and pride on it. Still a bit short to my standards but hey :wink:
     
  9. Lorenzoid

    Lorenzoid idling in neutral buoyancy

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Atlanta, USA
    9,057
    5,553
    113
    We visit once a year. We enjoy the tropical diving closer to home, but my wife also has the crazy idea of getting tech-trained so she can help dive groups with ghost net removal projects in Belgium.
     
  10. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: United States
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    This would be the least of my worries diving in any of the tourist caves in Mexico.

    Maaaaaaaaybe if you find some random sinkhole in the middle of the jungle that hasn’t been seen in thousands of years and has a million bats living in it that you have to traverse through to get to the water, but the Bat Cave line is probably the furthest thing from this scenario you can imagine.
     
    Norwegian Cave Diver likes this.

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