A month prior to my trip to the Yucatan, I actively began researching tours to Chichen Itza.  All included an excursion to a local cenote (pronounced ‘sin-o-tay’).  Not knowing what one was, I googled & watched a few YouTube videos.  Underground pools of cold clean water abundant over the Yucatan – check, sign me up!

A cenote is a deep natural pit, characteristic of Mexico, resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock that exposes groundwater underneath. Especially associated with the Yucatán Peninsula and some nearby Caribbean islands, cenotes were sometimes used by the ancient Maya for sacrificial offerings.

Having done the research, I knew to backpack a bathing suit & towel for Thursday’s all-day excursion.  I read one could swim in cenotes as long as you showered off all sunblock & bug repellent – to keep the underground water clean & pure.

Scheduled only an hour stop for buffet lunch & viewing Cenote Hubiku just past Valladolid.  I can eat anytime – but the cenote was something I had to see & experience.  Changed clothes, showered (kinda), and headed down the 60 foot stairwell to the mouth of Cenote Hubiku.  Pristine BLUE water trapped inside an underground cave.  WOW!

Swallows flew in & out of the opening high above — limestone walls reverberating sounds of swallows & swimmers below.  Swimming an option?  Heck yeah.  I question why so many people on the tour were not capitalizing on this amazing opportunity.

Minutes earlier: 90 degree temps, high humidity & hot Mexican sun — honestly, I couldn’t jump in fast enough.

That said, not an ease-in situation, cannonball required 🙂   I temp adjusted quickly, laying on my back watching the swallows dive in and out of the natural window created above.

FAAANNNNTASTIC!  Highly recommended!

 

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