Take a break from Tulum’s ruins and jump straight into this emerald sinkhole. Part of the Ik Kil Archeological Park – also home to Chichén Itzá, a pre-Columbian city built by the Mayans – this swimming hole is just one of about 7000 cenotes (the word means natural well) dotted throughout the Yucatan Peninsula, thanks to an elaborate underground river system.
It’s a 26-metre drop from the lip of Ik Kil to the water. If you’re brave enough you can take the plunge – the water is about 40 metres deep, so you’re not about the hit the bottom. For the rest of us, there’s a set of stairs carved into the limestone for a more sedate entry. Get there early, or leave it till the late afternoon, to avoid the tour buses.
Cenote Ik Kil is located about 200 kilometres from Cancun.
Entry to cenote costs about US$6 without a tour. Cenote Ik Kil runs tours to the Chichen Itza ruins and Cenote Ik Kil, which includes entrance fees and air-conditioned van, English-speaking driver and buffet lunch starting from US$80 a person.