Cenote Calavera Tulum

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Cenote Calavera Tulum - 2023 Guide Everything you need to know

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If you’re considering a journey to the mesmerizing Cenote Calavera from Tulum, then this article is for you! You’ve heard about its beauty and have seen it on social media posts – now get ready for what you need to know when visiting. 

Cenote Calavera
Cenote Calavera

Here I will dive into all of the important details that’ll make your experience worth every second. Don’t explore Cenote Calavera without reading this first!

For those who crave adventure, Cenote Calavera is the perfect destination! Although it may not be as large as some of its more popular counterparts nearby, this cenote in Tulum offers an unparalleled experience and undeniable beauty.

Here’s a complete travel guide to Cenote Calavera that covers where it is located, how much you can expect to pay for admission, and what activities are available when you arrive. Don’t miss out on one of the most underrated natural wonders in Mexico!

Cenote Calavera is nothing short of remarkable. The aquamarine waters, the vivid greenery and the captivating ambiance, are enough to make this destination a top-pick amongst travelers worldwide!

Whether you’re into swimming, snorkeling or cenoting – there’s something for everyone here…including plenty of hammocks for those who just want to relax in peaceful bliss. Not forgetting about photography enthusiasts as well – Calavera offers many unique visuals that will take your breath away! Even though I found it quite enjoyable myself, I did run across some things that not all reviews may have mentioned before.

To ensure your visit runs smoothly like mine did – here’s my comprehensive list and guide on EVERYTHING you need to know prior going to Cenote Calavera!

One of the greatest aspects about Calavera Cenote is that it’s not as well-known compared to other cenotes around Tulum. So, if you’re fortunate enough (be sure to come early in the morning!), you can have a glorious swim all for yourself!

Visiting this particular cenote is absolutely one of best activities during your stay in Tulum; don’t miss out and make sure to give this place a try!

Cenote Calavera
Cenote Calavera

Visiting Cenote Calavera: Everything You Need to Know

Cenote Calavera is a cenote that goes by many names, such as “Skull Cenote” and the “Temple of Doom Cenote,” which perfectly fits its persona seeing ‘calavera’ means skull in Spanish.

This particular cenote has an impressive shape resembling a human skull from above with two small holes representing eyes, and one large hole for a mouth. It’s no wonder why this destination has been widely popularized.

Path to Cenote Calavera

Cenote Calavera is connected to the superbly renowned Sac Actun Cenote, housing one of the longest subterranean rivers not just in Mexico but around the planet. Its water nourishes many cenotes near Tulum and forms part of a system of over 6,000 cenotes found solely within Yucatan Peninsula—an unending source for exploration that can keep you occupied for months!

Cenote Calavera is brimming with halocline water, a combination of saltwater and freshwater. This cenote’s proximity to the ocean allows for the natural influx of seawater into its depths. Interestingly enough, due to specific gravities, these various waters do not mix in this environment but rather live side-by-side – much like oil and water might when placed together!

How to Get to Cenote Calavera?

If you’re staying in Tulum, you’re in for a treat. Cenote Calavera is just a ten-minute drive from the center of town. Cenote swimming is one of the best and most unique things to do around Tulum, and this spot is a must-see! If you’re staying in the main town, it’s about an hour’s walk to the cenote. So if you’re feeling up for it, go for it! Otherwise, I would recommend renting a bicycle or taking a taxi from the main town.

Bicycles can be rented for an approximate daily cost of 150 MXN, from the hostel or a bike rental store in town. If you’re near Tulum Beach, there are also various bicycle stores located on the main road.

To save money, consider splitting cab fare with friends; it should only cost around 100 MXN to get to your cenote destination within 10 minutes! Don’t let any drivers attempt to overcharge you – insist upon paying no more than 100MXN for this short drive.

If you have your own rental car, then driving to the cenote is a great option. You can park in the gravel parking lot out front. The Yucatan Peninsula is said to be one of the safest places to drive in Mexico, so it’s definitely worth considering.

After taking QROO 109, look out for the towering wooden sign that says “CENOTE” in capital letters. This will be on your right side, so you don’t want to miss it! If you happen to drive past Gran Cenote while searching for the white sign then unfortunately, you’ve gone too far.

Walking to Cenote Calavera
Walking to Cenote Calavera


By Rental Car: In my estimation, this is the most straightforward route to reach Cenote Calavera. The journey is safe and brief – just 10 minutes from the core of Tulum or 15 minutes from the beach resort area. Plus, parking at Cenote Calavera won’t cost you a penny since there’s a gravel lot available for visitors!

By Bike: Cycling to our destination is certainly achievable! However, you must be cognizant that during the summer months it can become extremely humid and stuffy. Early birds will reap the rewards, as biking midday might make for an uncomfortable experience due to the humidity levels.

It should take between 20-25 minutes on a bike, depending on your starting point (and of course how fit you are!)

By Taxi: From the main area of Tulum, a taxi ride is roughly 100MXN (depending on your exact spot). If you don’t have access to an automobile it’s not necessarily a bad option and should cost no more than five US dollars. Here’s an expert tip: Grab the driver’s phone number before beginning your cenote tour; waiting around for another taxi along a bustling highway isn’t enjoyable at all!

Ticket office and parking at Cenote Calavera
Ticket office and parking at Cenote Calavera

Is there Uber in Cancun, Tulum or Playa del Carmen?

Unfortunately, no. Even though the app is functional there has been a lot of push-back from the local taxi-mafia and some violence so we would suggest against using it.

By Foot: Absolutely! Setting off early in the morning is a must. Don’t forget that Mexico’s humidity can be relentless, so plan accordingly. Also keep in mind that Qroo 109 is an expressway and although there weren’t many vehicles when I visited, large trucks may pass by quickly at any moment. How long will it take? Depending on where you start from within Tulum, 45 minutes should suffice as a reasonable estimate for your journey here.

The Current Cenote Calavera Price

The majority of blogs get it wrong when discussing the present price for Cenote Calavera, yet here is the right information. Before you make your way through the white gates, be sure to pay 100 MXN at the ticket office outside no matter what mode of transportation you take – car, bike, or on foot!

How incredible would it be to have a cenote in the backyard of your home? That’s exactly what you can experience at Calavera Cenote! With only a two-minute walk through some rocks and winding paths from the front gate, this dream is now yours for the taking. I know I wouldn’t pass up this once-in-a-lifetime chance to explore my very own personal cenote!

Early in the morning at Cenote Calavera
Early in the morning at Cenote Calavera

The Cenote Calavera Entrance Fee is currently set at a flat 250MXN, which adds up to more than $12USD. This price tag may be steep for Mexico but I still find it worthwhile. The cenote itself offers an exciting experience and many other cenotes in the area are priced similarly nowadays, making the cost of entry perfectly reasonable considering how much fun you can have there!

Other Cenote Calavera Entrance Fee Details:

  • This cenote is cash only, so be sure to bring exact pesos. This will make it easier on yourself.
  • Heads up, this cenote is particular about cameras. Even if you plan on using anything other than your cell phone for photography and filming, they will likely try to charge you an extra $200MXN. Trust me, I’m being serious!

If you plan to take photographs or swim while visiting the cenote, it will cost an additional $22USD regardless of what kind of camera you have. From GoPros to professional cameras, this fee applies and vendors selling t-shirts usually try their luck near the entrance. Frankly speaking, if they dropped this extra charge for cameras in place then chances are that people would pick up their souvenirs from them more often!

around 11 am it get crowded
Around 11 am it get crowded

Cenote Calavera Hours of Operation

Cenote Calavera awaits visitors daily from 9am-5pm. If you arrive prior to opening, the gate will remain closed until promptly at 9am–not to worry though; if there is a line of people waiting it’s likely that the owner won’t make you wait long!

What is Visiting Cenote Calavera Like

Cenote Calavera is an extraordinary destination, boasting a nearly circular sinkhole with fresh water and offering visitors wood ladders, cliff jumps, and rope swings for the adventurous. Don’t forget to bring your GoPro – this cenote is so picturesque that you’ll want to capture every moment of its beauty!

Arrive early enough and you will get the monumental experience all to yourself; there’s nothing quite like leaping from the edge or plunging through one of the cracks in top of rock into its natural pool.

Cenote Calavera: Jump or Take the ladder?
Cenote Calavera: Jump or Take the ladder?

Surrounding the cenote, you can find a few wooden benches and tables to place your belongings before plunging into its depths. Once in the water, you’ll discover an open space where you could swim around freely beneath the roof of rock overhead.

Soak up every second here – it’s one of If you’re looking for fun and adventure while in Tulum, Calavera Cenote is a must-see! You can easily spend hours exploring its unique environment. To ensure an enjoyable experience, remember to pack snacks and drinks as there are no shops onsite. Additionally, investing in quick-dry travel towels and slip-on waterproof shoes will make your visit even more comfortable – trust me when I say that these items are invaluable!

When you arrive at the cenote, be sure to rinse off any sunscreens, bug sprays or lotions. This step is essential in preserving the delicate ecosystem and will need to take place at all of the area’s cenotes. Fortunately, Cenote Calavera offers basic showers and restrooms for visitors’ convenience. I don’t mind this precautionary measure at all – afterall it helps keep pesky mosquitos away!

Things To Do at Cenote Calavera:

Swimming: Cenote Calavera is larger than it appears! Even though this cenote isn’t as massive as other renowned ones, its underground swimming area encompasses a circumference of approximately 160 meters – further beyond the “skull” you can see from the top.

Snorkeling: Although the water in this cenote looks a bit murky, it is actually quite clear. Due to its partially underground location, however, shadows are more prominent and can cause an appearance of darkness from some angles.

Diving: This magnificent cenote attracts divers from far and wide because of its captivating underwater cave system. Sadly, you can’t just dive in – you must be accompanied by a tour guide or an experienced certified PADI Open-Water diver to explore the depths.

Cenote Jumping: My absolute favorite activity to do here! Yes, you can dive right through the gaping wide mouth of the skull. You can also jump through the two tiny eye sockets of the skull if you’re feeling daring! Although, make sure to tuck your arms and legs in close to your body as you jump – I’ve heard many people scrape up their limbs on this attraction. So far my spatial awareness hasn’t failed me yet, touch wood.

Relaxing: With hammocks tucked into the lush jungle surrounding this cenote, feel free to pause and relax if you need a break from swimming or simply wish to enjoy the unique beauty of your surroundings.

The Perfect Day at Cenote Calavera

My recent trip to Cenote Calavera was incredible. I showed up by rental car before they even opened at 9am, so I had the entire place to myself. When one other couple arrived, they were lovely and we had plenty of room to do our own thing. This cenote can get quite crowded due to its newfound popularity, so again, arrive early (or late in the day near closing time if you aren’t a morning person.)

If you’re looking for a cenote to explore, jump, and swim in, this is the place for you. The water is calm and refreshing, and the surrounding area is beautiful. I highly recommend spending at least a few hours here – you won’t be disappointed!

Cenote Calavera Basics:

– Cenote Calavera welcomes its visitors from the morning hours of 9am through to 5pm.

– The current fee to access Cenote Calavera is a mere $250MXN, payable in cash.

–  Capture all your special moments with a cell phone – no charge! For any other type of camera, an additional $200MXN will apply.

– At Cenote Calavera, it’s bring your own supplies! Be sure to pack plenty of water and towels.

– Before entering the underground rivers, please remember to leave all creams, lotions, makeup and bug spray behind. If you have any of these products on your skin already, be sure to take a shower first. Doing so will help protect the delicate ecosystems that exist in these aquatic habitats and safeguard the lives of its inhabitants.

Read Next our favorite cenotes in Mexico:

And of course if you are up for a road trip make your way to Chichen Itza and the magical cenotes of the Chichen Itza park. We have also put together guides for the best cenotes for families in Tulum

And don’t forget to stay up to date with the latest safety updates on Mexico.

What to Bring to Cenote Calavera

When you visit Cenote Calavera, it’s important to remember that the facilities are very basic and there aren’t any concessions. Consequently, make sure to pack some essential items for your trip

  • Exact Change for the entrance fee
  • Plenty of water
  • Bathing Suit (my advice, just wear it under your clothes)
  • You phone (and a waterproof case if you plan to use it for photos)
  • Camera and/or GoPro
  • A hat and sunglasses are a must
  • A towel or sarong
  • A dry-bag
  • Snacks if you’ll be here all day

Cenote Calavera in Tulum is beyond a doubt one of my favorite discoveries during my time there. A few hours here make for an ideal day trip to Quintana Roo, plus you have several other nearby cenotes if you want to indulge in some cenote-hopping! I would hasten back without a moment’s hesitation and visiting this cenote is absolutely the best way to experience Tulum – let me know how it goes for you down below!

Other Things to Do Near Cenote Calavera

After you’ve explored this majestic Cenote, why not take part in some thrilling activities?

      • Take off on an intrepid expedition to uncover Tulum’s wealth of awe-inspiring cenotes! With such a plethora of stunning locations, you and your closest companions will have days full of unforgettable memories. 
      • Unwind and relax at the gorgeous Tulum Beach, and don’t forget to try one of the many amazing restaurants in town (try the tacos and local beer)
      • Take a trip to the ancient Tulum ruins, National Parks and, if you find yourself with extra time, venture even further to ruins of Chichen Itza – a stunning location and one of the 7 Wonders of the World!
      • Enjoy an unforgettable day trip to the magnificent Sian Ka’an Biosphere breathtakingly blue waters and get up close with dolphins and even some crocodiles!