Cenote cave diving playa del carmen
The Wonders Of Cenote Cave Diving
Those who enjoy the thrill of discovery that is part and parcel of the SCUBA experience are continually on the lookout for the next experience that will live in their memories for years. One of the experiences that are growing in popularity is the opportunity to explore the unique underwater environments of the Cenotes of the Yucatan Peninsula’s Riviera Maya.
Cenotes were formed by the erosion of limestone by acidic rain that, over millennia, gradually led to the formation of underground caves. These caves are fed by rivers that flow through the limestone. In time the weight of the roofs and the continued effects of that slow growth of the caverns has led to the roof collapsing. The result has been some of the most visually stunning lagoons, many deep in the jungle.
These lagoons are continually fed by above and below ground freshwater streams and rivers – however, there is another source of the water which fills them – and one that has divers in search of adventure flocking to plunge into one of the many Cenotes which dot areas such as the Playa Del Carmen. That other source is saltwater which flows up the course of the underground rivers and contributes to filling the Cenotes. This leads to the formation of a zone in the Cenotes called the ‘halocline’. This is a zone where the salt and fresh water meet. For those diving the Cenotes the Halocline is clearly visible – and one of the most fascinating sights available to SCUBA divers.
For experienced cave divers, Cenotes are also often the entrance to vast underwater cave systems – some well worth exploring. For instance, the Sistema Sac Actun is the longest underwater cave system in the world.
The attractions of the Cenotes are almost too many to mention. With more than 7,000 to choose from in Yucatan, the diver (or snorkeler) is spoiled for choice. The Cenotes boast unique ecosystems with exotic fish species and flora. the settings of the Cenote are as close to paradise as possible. Colorful birdlife and dense jungle shelter these unique natural features. The waters are often crystal clear and visibility is incredible.
For the ancient Mayan culture in the Yucatan Cenotes were revered as places of worship. It was here that they could commune with Gods and receive the blessings of the clear blue-tinged waters.
Today divers from all over the world are rediscovering the wonders of the Cenotes. Cenote cave diving in Playa del Carmen is an experience that should be on every divers bucket list.