Cenote Diving

Cenote Chac Mool: The One That Has It All!

cenote chac mool

Nestled in the heart of the Riviera Maya, just south of Playa del Carmen, near the town of Puerto Aventuras, lies a hidden aquatic gem — Cenote Chac Mool.

This cenote is part of a complex that includes two cenotes: Cenote Kukulkan, and Little Brother, which both give divers an opportunity to experience unique and stunningly beautiful underwater environments.

It’s a great beginner cenote dive, but also for experienced divers too, as it has so many unique features. Chac Mool Cenote is a great choice for divers who only have one day on their vacations to go cenote diving. It’s like the ‘Disneyland’ of cenotes as it has all of the cool geographical nuances and features contained within the two cenote dives.

Read on to find out more…


Exploring Cenote Chac Mool: The Two Cenotes

Cenote Chac Mool is one connected cavern system, with two distinct freshwater entries, known as Kukulkan and Little Brother.

The name Chac Mool itself means “Jaguar’s paw”, and Kukulkan means “Feathered Serpent”.

The Chac Mool Cenote system was one of the first cenotes to be opened and accessible for divers, making them a famed favorite, to this day.

Kukulkan, usually taken as the first dive, is an expansive space, illuminated by natural light that streams through the cenote’s opening. The second dive, known affectionally as Little Brother, has all of the features you could possibly want in a cenote diving experience. Its roof is adorned with stunning stalactites, an air dome, and a halocline layer, and the light that beams through like lasers is stunning.

Cenote Little Brother Entrance
The entrance to the cenote ‘Little Brother’

Features of Chac Mool Cenote

Laser Light Show

One of the most enchanting features that divers love most when swimming through Cenote Chac Mool is the dazzling laser light show. On a sunny day, the natural sunlight that beams through the trunks and branches at the cenote’s entrance creates laser-like beams of light that shine through the crystal-clear waters. It creates a spectacular display, with some comparing it to an intense light shining through church windows, adding a magical touch to the diving experience.

The light within Little Brother is also stunningly beautiful. This part of the cenote is more closed, but as you swim through and see the light opening at the far side, you can let out a gasp at the natural beauty – it’s like being inside the Avatar movie!


Halocline Layer

While swimming through Little Brother at Cenote Chac Mool, you’ll be able to experience the presence of a halocline. This is where saltwater and freshwater converge, producing captivating visual effects, and often a change in temperature. In certain parts of the dive, at depths of around 14 meters, you’ll be able to witness the boundary where these two water types meet, creating a mesmerizing, blurry moment. You’ll almost feel as though your mask has fogged up, or your vision has been impaired.

It can be unusual to swim through a halocline like this, but is a unique experience nonetheless. If you swim underneath the layer into the salt water and look up, it is like seeing an underwater river flowing above you!


Rock Formations

Cenotes were once dry caves, and thus boast intricate rock formations, stalactites, and stalagmites. Chac Mool has some of the most beautiful formations around.

You can also see how life has changed through the fossils, and shells that can be found inside. It may sound unusual to find ocean creatures fossilized within a freshwater cavern in the middle of the jungle! Your guide can show you during your dives.


Air Dome

In Little Brother, there’s another cool feature – the air dome. A part of the ceiling has collapsed, leaving a handy pocket of air. Divers can surface here, catch a breath, and check out the tree roots and creatures that live in this unique space.

It’s a refreshing pause in the underwater adventure, adding a unique twist to your dive!

chac mool cenote
Chat Mool Cenote from above

Historical Significance of Cenotes

Beyond the natural beauty, cenotes across the Yucatan and Quintana Roo hold historical and cultural significance. The collapse of limestone into underground river systems created these mystical portals into an ancient world.

The Peninsula’s geological history, including its rise and fall beneath the ocean, has resulted in extensive cave systems, often containing remnants of ancient Mayan pottery and bones, offering a fascinating glimpse into the region’s past.


Diving Experience and Safety

As there are plenty of open spaces and close-by exit points Cenote Chac Mool caters to divers of all levels, from beginners to experienced cavern and cave divers. The caverns’ clear visibility and moderate water flow provide an ideal setting for those new to cenote diving.

All divers wishing to dive in cenote Chac Mool with DivePoint must be Open Water Certified, with at least 10 dives of experience.

Safety is paramount for us at DivePoint. Cenote groups are kept small, with a maximum number of 4 divers per guide. You will also receive a detailed briefing about the differences between cenote diving and ocean diving, including the route, dive plan, and other important information.

As with all Cenotes, Chac Mool offers a consistent water temperature ranging from 24-26°C. In this moderate temperature, it’s recommended that you wear a long wetsuit. The cenote’s waters remain inviting year-round, rain or shine.

Cenote kukulkan sign
Are you ready to dive?

Underwater Photography at Cenote Chac Mool

When exploring the underwater world, many divers wish to bring underwater cameras to create lasting memories and to show to their land-loving friends. At Chac Mool personal cameras are not allowed to enter the cenote due to conservation purposes. They want you to be able to concentrate on the dive, as often divers with cameras can be distracted and more likely to damage the delicate environment.

If you would like pictures, at times there is a photographer within the Kukulkan Cenote, who can snap some pictures of you during your dive. Post-dive, you can view and purchase your pictures, without obligation to buy. This is a service provided by the cenote operator, and not DivePoint directly.


Dive Cenote Chac Mool with DivePoint

Ready for an epic dive at Cenote Chac Mool? DivePoint is your go-to crew. Safety first, fun second – our guides know Chac Mool like the back of their hands. From the cool air dome to the underwater light show, we’ll make sure you see the best bits.

Why not combine diving Chac Mool with some ocean dives with our ‘Best of the Riviera Maya’ package, or choose it as day 1 of exploring the best cenotes in the area.

Happy Diving!

We hope you liked this blog post on Cenote Chac Mool.

Have you ever experienced a Cenote dive?

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