Cenotes Casa Tortuga, Tulum, Mexico

Cenotes Casa Tortuga

One of the cool things about the Yucatan are the cenotes, which are underground rivers where the ceiling has collapsed to create a great place to swim.

After looking at some different places – there are quite a few – we decided to try Cenotes Casa Tortuga, which has several cenotes to swim in.  There are other places in the area with a similar name, so make sure you are at the right place.  Tulum is almost 2 hours south of Cancun.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Map

Cenotes Casa Tortuga is at Carretera cancun-tulum km239 in Tulum, and I would say it was about a 20 minute drive from downtown Tulum.  We took our rental car, but I believe there are some tour companies that will take you there as well.

Casa Tortuga Cenotes Tulum

The one road sign was a little tough to see, but Google Maps did a pretty good job of getting us there.

Casa Tortuga Cenotes

Once we pulled in, there is a guard at the gate, and we were able to tell him that we wanted to get to the cenotes.  You drive up a dirt road a bit until you get to the check-in area for the cenotes.  We paid for our tour and were provided with life jackets, and if you wanted, snorkeling equipment.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Tulum

Note that you have to shower off before going in the cenotes, to remove things like sunscreen, bug spray, or other things that could contaminate the water.  There wasn’t a lot of sun exposure during our time here, so it was ok to go without sunscreen.  We encountered this on much of our trip to Mexico, so plan on using reef-safe sunscreen and/or washing off.

The first cenote is Cenote Caracol, which is a very short walk (about a minute) from where you check in.  (Ignore the sign along the path – we were heading to Caracol first!)

Casa Tortuga Cenotes

You can either jump in or walk in on rocks.  The guide headed in first to lead the group through the cenote.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Caracol

Everyone heading into the cave!  The ceilings were very low, but there was still enough room to have your head above water at all times.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Caracol

The water was beautiful!

Casa Tortuga Cenote Caracol Tulum

The second Cenote is Cenote Wisho, which was about a minute walk from Cenote Caracol.

Casa Tortgua Cenote Wisho

For Cenote Wisho, you have to walk down a set of stairs to get to the cenote.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Wisho

After a short swim through the cave, the swimmers reached the exit.  The guide (in the black wetsuit on the right side of the photo below) was really great in leading everyone through the caves.

Cenotes Casa Tortuga Tulum Mexico

My kids are 8 and 10 and had no problem swimming through the cenotes.

Casa Tortuga Cenote Wisho

The third cenote at Cenotes Casa Tortuga is a large, open cenote, where we were told we could swim as long as we liked.  This cenote requires a short hike – maybe 5 minutes.  This is a larger one that is all open, and you can swim in more of a loop.

Casa Tortuga Cenote

The kids swam in the river part of the cenote for about 2 minutes…

Casa Tortuga Cenote

That was, until they heard there was a spot you could jump off a cliff.  No exaggeration – I think they jumped off that cliff for at least 1.5 hours until we told them we had to go because we were late for our next excursion!

Casa Tortuga Cenote Tulum Mexico

They had so much fun jumping off the ledge, and everyone else left after about 15 minutes, so we had the place to ourselves.

The water is just beautiful!

Casa Tortuga Cenote

There were some neat fish in the water too.

Cenotes Casa Tortuga Tulum Mexico

At Cenotes Casa Tortuga, there are bathrooms, changing rooms, and a restaurant on site.

Casa Tortuga Restaurant

We had a fantastic time at Cenotes Casa Tortuga.  Now, one of the main reasons we chose this tour is because we saw a video of people ziplining over Cenote Tortuga online, which of course wasn’t part of the three cenotes we visited.  We asked at the end of the tour and were told that the water wasn’t as clear but that we were welcome to check it out.  It also looked like there was a platform over the third cenote that may have been used for a zipline in the past.  The kids were very disappointed, but the cliff jumping made up for it.

There is a photographer there to take your pictures, but the photos are expensive.  It is an option if you want some pictures from the trip and you don’t have a camera with you.

What to bring:

~ Swimsuit
~ Water shoes or at least some kind of shoe for hiking between cenotes
~ Waterproof camera
~ Money for entrance fee, also if you want to get drinks or food
~ Swim gear if you want your own (we brought our own snorkels and goggles – used the snorkels on the guided tour and the kids used their goggles for free swimming time)

Our other Mexico posts:

Our Mayan Riviera wedding
Aldea Zama condo rentals, Tulum
Avant Car Rental, Cancun
Cenotes Casa Tortuga, Tulum
Coba Ruins, Coba
Fiesta Americana Villas, Cancun
Muyil Ruins, Tulum
Hacienda Tres Rios, Playa del Carmen
Punta Laguna Nature Reserve, near Coba
Xcaret, Playa del Carmen
Yal Ku Lagoon, Akumal
Zazil Kin Beach, Tulum

 

 

By | 2018-01-31T03:32:36+00:00 December 10th, 2017|Travel|37 Comments

About the Author:

Busy blogger and mom of two girls! We love traveling and the great outdoors, and are always looking for our next adventure!

37 Comments

  1. Stacie December 11, 2017 at 10:18 pm - Reply

    That is an absolutely gorgeous place! I would love to take the family there. We’ve been to Mexico several times, but we’ve never been there before.

  2. Danielle December 11, 2017 at 10:19 pm - Reply

    Oh wow! Tulum looks like a great place to explore with the family. If we ever get there, we’ll be sure to stay at Casa Tortuga. It’s amazing.

  3. Sarah Bailey December 11, 2017 at 11:23 pm - Reply

    Oh my goodness this place looks absolutely amazing, those cakes are just beautiful and the colour of the water just WOW. I would love to get to experience it for myself.

  4. Jeanette December 12, 2017 at 12:04 am - Reply

    Oh my gosh I WANT to go there! What a fun vacation for your entire family! That looks beautiful!

  5. Joanna @ Everyday Made Fresh December 12, 2017 at 2:25 am - Reply

    Oh that is such an awesome vacation! We would totally love the snorkeling. What great memories y’all will have.

  6. Bill Sweeney December 12, 2017 at 2:42 am - Reply

    That is a wonderful place! We need to plan a family vacation there. Mexico is on our wish list, so why not?

  7. Joely Smith December 12, 2017 at 3:17 am - Reply

    Ahhhh this is my kind of place!! I love these little areas that are like in between a cave and a canal where you can swim into. I have seen them on travel shows and nat geo many times. So cool to see it here on your blog too! I want to go!!

  8. Victoria Heckstall December 12, 2017 at 7:52 am - Reply

    That was such a great experience! The place looks so peaceful! So adorable!

  9. Ricci December 12, 2017 at 10:23 am - Reply

    What a fun adventure! I would love to visit Tulum one day! It looks like you had a great time!

  10. Chubskulit Rose December 12, 2017 at 11:00 am - Reply

    Wow, this place looks amazing to explore. I love how clear the water is! This is the kind of place I would love to go.

  11. Jocelyn @ Hip Mama's Place December 12, 2017 at 12:01 pm - Reply

    The water is amazing and it’s awesome that the kids got to experience this with you guys! It’s really worth the trip once you see how beautiful it truly is.

  12. Kathy December 12, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

    Wow, this looks like such an amazing place to be. I have never been to Mexico before. I have always wanted to go though. I think I know where I’d like to stop if I do happen to get to Mexico someday.

  13. Leah December 12, 2017 at 7:07 pm - Reply

    This place looks absolutely amazing! I want to go there now!

  14. Up Run for Life Healthy Lifestyle Blog December 12, 2017 at 7:11 pm - Reply

    The cenotes look so pretty. I love the color of the water and would love to swim there. My boys would love to jump off the ledge too.

  15. Sheena Tatum December 12, 2017 at 9:12 pm - Reply

    It looks like you had a ton of fun! I’m jealous, I would love to visit that area! It looks warmer than here!

  16. Ada December 12, 2017 at 9:38 pm - Reply

    Wow, the water is so clear! I’ve always wanted to go to Tulum. I’ve heard great things.

  17. Misty H December 13, 2017 at 1:57 am - Reply

    This looks like so much fun!! Gorgeous photos!

  18. Ashley B December 13, 2017 at 6:18 am - Reply

    This looks like an amazing place to visit. Your photos are spectacular! Thanks for the wonderful summary.

  19. Lynsey December 13, 2017 at 6:40 am - Reply

    Oh my gosh, the water is Beautoful! This sounds like it would be a fun place to take my family on adventures!

  20. sara lafountain December 13, 2017 at 11:11 am - Reply

    Oh my gosh, this looks like such an amazing place to visit! I would love to take my kids snorkeling here. Thanks for sharing this great spot.

  21. Lisa Favre December 13, 2017 at 2:58 pm - Reply

    Your photographs are absolutely breathtaking! What a fantastic compilation of scenic and adventure photos that make for the perfect travel diary. I have never been to Tulum but I have been wanting to for a while!

  22. Lynndee December 13, 2017 at 3:57 pm - Reply

    The water is definitely beautiful. It reminds me of an underground river in the Philippines. I would love to visit that place someday.

  23. Amanda December 13, 2017 at 4:58 pm - Reply

    This looks like so much fun! We love a good adventure and we love to travel! Unfortunately with the newborn this year we probably won’t have much opportunity to do so!

  24. The Cubicle Chick December 13, 2017 at 8:49 pm - Reply

    This looks like so much fun. I really must learn to swim so I can enjoy swimming with the girls. – yolonda

  25. Tim B December 13, 2017 at 10:40 pm - Reply

    What a wonderful experience! I want to go there and try that out for myself after reading this post. Looks like you had such a great time!

  26. Cyn Gagen December 14, 2017 at 1:18 am - Reply

    Oh beautiful! You are going to have amazing memories of this trip for years to come. I would love to visit.

  27. Ebony December 14, 2017 at 4:28 pm - Reply

    I went on a solo vacation to mexico and got to experience how beautiful the caves are. I’m glade you got to experience it.

  28. Amber Ludwig December 14, 2017 at 11:21 pm - Reply

    OH wow! It is truly stunning there!! We thought about going too when we were there but didn’t!! Now I really wish we did!! The cliff diving would’ve been such an amazing memory to have!

  29. Cassie Smith December 16, 2017 at 4:22 am - Reply

    This looks like a gorgeous place to visit. It is so beautiful.

  30. Rosie January 22, 2018 at 4:35 pm - Reply

    I never even heard of a cenote before.What an amazing adventure. I’d love to visit this area!

  31. Candy June 11, 2018 at 1:08 am - Reply

    I saw a special about these types of places. It would be awesome to visit and swim there

  32. Elizabeth O June 11, 2018 at 9:56 am - Reply

    Oh my this looks like such an incredible experience. The children looked like they had the time of their lives.What gorgeous photos and videos you captured to remember forever!

  33. Blair Villanueva June 12, 2018 at 5:08 am - Reply

    I like the idea of swimming inside the cave and discovering many fishes. That is a lot of fun!

  34. Jan F June 12, 2018 at 5:41 am - Reply

    Cenotes in Yucatan are one of the best experiences in many years of my diving all around the world!

  35. Sharon Chen June 12, 2018 at 11:00 am - Reply

    Looks like a fun vacation! These natural wonders are so wonderful.

  36. Yeah Lifestyle June 12, 2018 at 12:49 pm - Reply

    The Cenotes Casa Tortuga looks like such an amazing place to head to and go diving. Loving all the photos which you have shared of your experience and the cave looks exciting as well.

  37. Tizzy Says June 12, 2018 at 4:43 pm - Reply

    WOW! That looks like quite the adventure. I love the little swimming spots in the caves. I sure hope I get to do something like this in my life.

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