Top 10 Non-Touristy Cenotes In Mexico [2021 UPDATE]

10 non touristy cenotes in Mexico

If you've ever been to Mexico, chances are you've come across a fair amount of cenotes. These sinkholes of blue beauty have grown extremely popular over the years as tourists flocked to them by the dozens. Swimming in a cenote is a wonderful thing, but the hordes of tourists and sometimes even waiting lines can turn a fantastic experience into a check off a bucket list. I've stayed in Mexico for about a month, had my dose of touristy things, and decided to spend my last few weeks there exploring and searching for unknown cenotes, off the beaten path style. Here are the hidden gems that I've come across:

 

 1.CENOTE LOL HA

 

I found this Cenote while we were driving from Chichen Itza to Merida. I was randomly looking through Google maps and noticed 'Cenote,' clicked on it, saw that it only had 42 reviews (compared to the usual 300+ that you find at popular crowd-infested ones), and decided it would be an excellent place to explore. Needless to say, we were not disappointed. We had the place to ourselves for an entire hour until a group of locals came by to take a dip. When you get to the location on maps, ask anyone around you, and they'll point you to the entrance.

Entrance fee: 35 pesos

Drive time from Chichen Itza: 31mins


2.cenote la noria

 

There is hardly anyone there during the weekdays. This cenote is mostly open-air, but you do need to go down a flight of stairs to reach the water. There's a rope to swing on, high platforms to jump off from, and many people like go there for diving since it's approximately 18 meters deep and 47 meters wide. There are bats there, but they won't bother you as long as you don't bother them.

Entrance fee: 100 pesos

Drive time from Puerto Morelos: 27mins

 

3.cenote NICTE HÁ

 

The locals know this cenote, and they like to go there after work and during the weekends to relax. It's completely open-air, surrounded by luscious green vegetation, and some portions of the water even contain lilypads! I was surprised that there aren't many tourists who know about this place since it's so beautiful and near Tulum. Be sure to bring snorkeling gear with you, as swimming in this cenote is sure to leave you daydreaming.

Entrance fee: 100 pesos

Drive time from Tulum: 20 mins

 

4.Cenote Kin Ha

 

This partially underground Cenote is equipped with a zip line and a jumping deck made out of wood. It's a great place to spend a couple of hours in, and I recommend coming around noon (or earlier) but not too late or too early to maximize your time there while the light shines through the openings. The majority of people who know about this one come there to scuba dive as it's quite deep, but I've personally found that there aren't quite many interesting things to see underwater.

Entrance fee: 5$, you can bargain for less

Drive time from Cancun: 1 hour

5.Cenote Aktunzots

Cenote Aktunzots is a relatively new kid on the block and is as off-the-beaten-path as it gets when it comes to non-touristy cenotes. Just check out the video and be blown away. For the location: right now (Update: December 2020, still the same), the cenote doesn't show up in google maps when you search for it, so you either need to 1.] go to their Facebook page click on the map under their 'about' tab, and get the 'here' app available for android and apple devices, the location is shown on this app, or 2.] if you have an iPhone, go to Instagram and write 'cenote aktunzots', click on the first tag that appears (Esmeralda, Quintana Roo, Mexico), then click on the location shown on the map (above the pictures), and then open the location in MAPS (iPhone maps, not google maps, google maps will show you a false location, and if you go to their Instagram page and click on their location highlighted in blue, it will also show you a false one, even if you open iPhone maps from there).

Entrance fee: 100 pesos

Drive time from Coba: 30 mins.

 

6.7.8.9.CUZAMA CENOTES X'TOHIL [4 cenotes]

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While searching for cenotes to go to that weren't as touristic as other ones, I came across an article over at featherandthewind.com [the link is now broken]. It mentions a day trip from Merida to Cuzama to explore four very non-touristy cenotes. They also made a youtube video about it that does a fantastic job of informing and summarizing everything you need to know so, please check it out as I won't paraphrase for the sake of paraphrasing. Here's the link to their youtube video about their cenotes trip.

10.cenote Verde Lucero

 

     An open cenote with a couple of small caves inside of it, like a lot of cenotes on this list, this one also has a zip line and a cliff for jumping. There wasn't anyone there when we went, and it's easy to get to and near the highway, but when you get there, the area itself is so secluded that you feel like you're in the middle of the jungle.

Price: 120 pesos

Drive time from Puerto Morelos: 20 mins