We have been doing road trips through the Yucatan for a couple years now, and we like to check out new places. We were looking into road trips from Merida when we came across the El Corchito Reserve, which is a raccoon reserve. We knew we wanted to definitely include this on our trip!
Getting to the reserve is easy. We drove in our rental car from Avant Car Rental, and found the reserve using Google Maps. From where we were staying in the city of Merida, it took under 40 minutes to get there.
The Reserve is located right off the main road. We saw signs as well as murals on the building, so we knew we were at the right place.
There is a large parking lot with plenty of parking.
We arrived right before 9am when they open and purchased our tickets at the ticket window. Adults are $90 Mexican Pesos (about $4.50 USD per adult).
There was one other family there when we arrived, so about 8 people total. We had to wait about 15 minutes to take a boat over to the island because it seemed like they were waiting on more tour buses.
The boat is small, but was sturdy and got us to the island quickly, within a few minutes.
We saw some wildlife on the short journey, including some herons and this baby crocodile.
When we got on the island, we were told we couldn’t have our bags with us, and that we would have to rent lockers. It was a little bit annoying not to be told this ahead of time, as we had to shuffle everything and get changed and then go back to the lockers. We would have changed ahead of time and planned accordingly if we had known. However, I do understand because we saw the raccoons trying to get into the employees bags.
The reserve is not a particularly large place. There are a few cenotes, and there are raccoons around the reserve.
As soon as we got to the island, we saw some raccoons. There is no tour here; you simply walk around. However, we noticed that there were tours being given by tour companies, so if you take a tour bus from something like a hotel, you may get an actual tour. Part of the tour was getting food to feed the raccoons, so we were a little bummed that we didn’t get to have that experience.
There are also plenty of coatis here on the island.
* Note that for swimming in cenotes, sunscreen or bug spray is not allowed. You can shower off anything you have applied to your skin.
I believe the first cenote we visited was called Cenote Helechos.
This cenote was designated for younger children, and resembled a swimming pool.
The largest cenote is a short walk from the others along a canal. This one is named Cenote Pajaros.
This cenote is large and offers space for swimming around.
The last cenote we checked out was Cenote El Corchito. This cenote is not very large and by the time we got there, it was pretty busy, since many tour buses had arrived with groups of people.
There is also a cenote with small fish – just for feet! Yes, it’s a fish spa!
There were some nice covered areas around the reserve that were a nice respite from the sun.
There were cute raccoons relaxing around the reserve.
There were some spots where employees and tour guides were feeding the raccoons, which was fun to watch. There were some raccoons squabbling over food, so while they are pretty tame, it was a bit chaotic as well!
We enjoyed the reserve, and when we were ready to go, it was a quick trip back to the mainland.
Overall, it was a nice visit to the raccoon preserve. It did get a little crowded mid-morning, and it seemed like there weren’t as many raccoons out when we got there first thing, maybe because the tour groups were feeding them later. However, it was fun to see the raccoons and check out a couple cenotes.
What to bring:
~ swimwear & towels for the cenote
~ comfortable shoes
~ sunscreen or bug spray
Check out our other Mexico blog posts.
About the Author: Marysa
Busy blogger and mom of two girls! We love traveling and the great outdoors, and are always looking for our next adventure!