Tulum Snorkeling in 2024: The ONLY Guide You Need

tulum snorkeling with turtles


You’re in the right place to discover all things Tulum snorkeling. As I’ve been living in Mexico since 2018, I have had the chance to explore various snorkeling spots in Tulum, learning about the best places for an unforgettable encounter with marine life.

If you’re interested in snorkeling in Tulum Mexico, consider this guide your go-to resource. We’ll cover the must-see locations and the essential tips for an unforgettable underwater adventure. We’ll also answer common FAQs, like where to snorkel in Tulum (and when). 

Whether you’re looking to snorkel among the coral reefs or the incredible cenotes of the region, Tulum offers a range of fantastic snorkeling experiences. Ready to snap some colorful fish pictures? Let’s jump in, as we experience the best snorkeling in Tulum Mexico. 

The 7 Best Tulum Snorkeling Spots 

Tulum offers a variety of incredible snorkeling locations, each with its unique charm and array of marine life. Here is my Tulum snorkeling guide to the best spots: 

1. Tulum Ruins Beach (Playa Ruinas)

playa ruinas tulum ruins beach
Tulum Ruins are one of the best Mayan Ruins in Mexico, and one of the must-see Tulum sites.

The Tulum Ruins Archeological Site are not just about ancient Mayan history — the adjacent Caribbean Sea offers excellent snorkeling opportunities.

Below the ruins, there’s a beach where you can enjoy marine life. It’s an excellent Tulum Ruins snorkeling spot for those who appreciate a blend of history and nature. 

Playa Ruinas (AKA Tulum Ruins Beach) is a small beach area, and while there’s a chance you’ll see some things while snorkeling just off-shore, to get to the best spots, you’ll want to take a boat tour.

There are sometimes boat tours leaving from the beach, but not on any kind of schedule. To secure your spot, make sure to book this tour ahead of time so you get to do some snorkeling near Tulum Ruins Archaeological Site.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

2. Xel-Ha Park

xel-ha water park near tulum

Xel-Ha Waterpark (pronounced shell-ha) is an eco-water park, and one of the coolest snorkeling destinations near Tulum. It combines a natural setting with park amenities, offering snorkeling, floating on a donut, zip-lining over water, and cave exploration. 

It is perfect for families and snorkelers of all levels, providing an engaging snorkeling experience in a safe, eco-friendly environment. It’s an excellent choice for a full adventure tour with plenty of activities besides snorkeling.

To visit, you need to purchase tickets for Xel-Ha Water Park. 🤑 Pro Tip: They’re almost always cheaper online. The price includes not only some of the best snorkeling near Tulum, but lots of other fun activities, as well as a buffet and open bar.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

3. Laguna Yal Ku Lagoon

yal-ku akumal mexico
The crystal clear waters of Laguna Yal-Ku offers one of the best places to snorkel in Riviera Maya.

Yal Ku Lagoon is a fantastic snorkeling spot located in the small town of Akumal, Mexico. This hidden gem is about 27 miles (43 km) north of Tulum, making it an easily-accessible day trip for those staying in Tulum. 

The lagoon is a unique blend of fresh and saltwater, creating an environment rich with diverse marine life. It’s mainly known for its clear, calm waters, making Yal Ku Lagoon snorkeling perfect for beginners and anyone looking for a peaceful snorkeling experience.

Amenities like snorkel gear rental, palapas for shade, and nearby facilities enhance the comfort and convenience of your snorkeling experience. 

Arriving early is recommended to avoid crowds. If you are short on time, I recommend combining Yal Ku Lagoon with a visit to Akumal Beach, which is famous for its turtle sightings. Note: You need to book a tour to swim with the turtles in Akumal.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

4. Akumal 

akumal beach mexico
A sea turtle snorkeling Tulum experience is one of the best turtle experiences in Mexico.

Akumal, which translates to “place of the turtles” in Maya, is an important nesting and feeding site for green turtles. They hangout in Akumal Bay year-round to feed on the abundant seagrass on the ocean floor, so visitors can (pretty much) always see them.

I have personally done the Akumal turtle swim, and absolutely LOVED being able to see so many turtles while snorkeling. You do have to book a tour to access most areas of Akumal Beach — and this was the Akumal turtle tour I took

Although there is a public beach where you can swim without paying for a tour guide, a guided Tulum Akumal snorkeling tour is necessary to access the main spots. In plain terms: If you’re serious about seeing turtles, book the tour.

In order to protect the turtles, this activity is heavily regulated, with only a few snorkelers and their guide in the main turtle area at any given time. These areas are roped off with limited access, and only certified guides can enter.

Among other things, the guides are there to protect the turtles and their habitat, to ensure people don’t touch or bother the sea turtles, and to keep you safe. A portion of your tour cost also goes to turtle conservation in Mexico.

I’m glad I booked this guided tour, as only certified guides can access the specific corridors of Akumal Bay where the majority of turtles hang out. Had we not entered these areas, we likely wouldn’t have seen any turtles that day.

Still, it’s up to you. However, if Tulum snorkeling with turtles is on your bucket list, Akumal is where you need to go to see the sea turtles in their natural marine habitat.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

5. Punta Allen Beach

punta allen sian kaan reserve
The Sian Ka’an UNESCO Biosphere reserve is one of the largest protected areas in Mexico

Punta Allen, located in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, offers a unique Tulum reef snorkeling experience. It also has some of the most pristine virgin beaches near Tulum. 

As the largest town in the reserve, the small Mayan fishing village of Punta Allen Mexico is about a 31 mile (50 km) drive from Tulum.

Note: Though close, this can be a two-hour drive because of tough road conditions. While you can sometimes drive here in a car, it’s not generally advised because it’s a long drive on a harsh dirt road, so most visitors book a guided tour of Sian Ka’an, or go in a 4X4.

The snorkeling at Punta Allen is distinguished by its location on the Sian Ka’an Reef, part of the extensive Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System. This less-visited spot allows you to explore vibrant coral formations and diverse marine life in transparent, quiet waters. 

Local guided tours are recommended for an enriching experience. They offer insights into the area’s marine ecology and adhere to sustainable tourism practices. 

For the best snorkeling near Tulum Mexico, visit Punta Allen. It offers not only a snorkeling trip, but also a glimpse into the traditional lifestyle of its Mayan community.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

6. Playa Paraiso Beach

tulum slanted palm tree at Playa Paraiso Beach Tulum
The famous Tulum slanted palm tree on Playa Paraiso Beach, the best snorkeling Tulum beach.

If you plan to bring your own snorkeling gear, Playa Paraiso is an excellent choice to explore the underwater world and do some Tulum beach snorkeling. It’s also known as the best beach in Tulum, and home to most of the best beach clubs in Tulum too.

The coral reef, bustling with marine life, is relatively close to the shore at about 650- to 975-feet-out (200-300 m). However, you’ll want to be a proficient swimmer if you go all the way out, due to the distance, but you can still snorkel closer to shore. 

Despite some of the Tulum hotels on the beach here, Playa Paraiso remains a public beach where independent snorkeling is possible. This makes it a great spot for those who prefer spontaneous and self-guided snorkeling Tulum Mexico adventures.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

7. Soliman Bay

woman at Soliman Bay tulum Mexico
Looking to do some free snorkeling Tulum? Head to Bahía Soliman Bay to swim and snorkel without any admission cost.

Soliman Bay is a more secluded snorkeling spot near Tulum, known for its calm waters and abundant marine life. The bay’s sheltered nature makes it ideal for snorkelers of all levels, including beginners. 

Here, the coral reef is a bit further from the shore, providing an opportunity to see a diverse range of tropical fish, freshwater fish, manta rays and other sea creatures. But this also means that the best way to visit this area is with a guided snorkeling tour. 

Soliman Bay’s less crowded environment compared to more popular beaches offers a more relaxed and quiet Tulum Mexico snorkeling experience. It is located on the north side of the Tulum Beach Road, near many of the best all-inclusive resorts in Tulum.

The 7 Best Tulum Cenote Snorkeling Spots 

Exploring cenotes around Tulum offers a unique snorkeling Tulum cenotes experience, combining natural beauty with crystal-clear waters. Here are five highly recommended cenotes Tulum snorkeling spots to check out if you want to do some Tulum cenotes snorkeling. 

🚫🧴 Note: Sunscreen of any kind is prohibited in the cenotes, as the oils can harm their unique ecosystems.

1. Casa Cenote (Cenote Manatí)

boy snorkeling in tulum at Casa Cenote Manatí
Case Cenote is the perfect place for snorkelers and scuba divers, and water activities like kayaking.

Casa Cenote, located approximately 5 miles (8 km) from Tulum, is a fully-open cenote connected to the ocean, giving it a unique mix of saltwater and freshwater.

The cenote, set in a beautiful mangrove environment, offers diving and snorkeling to see various fish and even cormorants (one of the most unique types of birds in Mexico). There’s also the famous cenote crocodile named Pancho (or Panchito), who lives here.

Casa Cenote’s clear waters and natural setting make it a favorite among beginners and experienced snorkelers. It’s important to note that admission is $150 MXN pesos (about $9 USD), and locker rentals are available to secure your belongings. 

Kayaking and snorkeling gear is available for rent, and there’s a small restaurant nearby to relax and dine post-snorkeling. The beach is right across the street as well, so you can enjoy some time in the Caribbean Sea after exploring Casa Cenote AKA Cenote Manati.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

2. Cenote Azul (Xpu Ha)

woman at cenote azul
Cenote Azul (Blue Cenote) is one of the best snorkeling cenotes Tulum has.

Cenote Azul, a collection of open-air pools connected by walkways and diving platforms, is located northeast of Tulum in Xpu Ha. This cenote is particularly popular with families due to its shallow areas suitable for younger children. 

The main cenote is the deepest, surrounded by jungle and rocky shelves, providing a relaxing atmosphere with dappled sunlight. Small species of fish may nibble at your feet as you chill on partially submerged rocks. 

The entry fee is $120 MXN pesos (about $7 USD), and the site includes a small store offering snacks and drinks. Cenote Azul, meaning “blue cenote,” is widely considered one of the best cenotes near Playa del Carmen, and usually quite crowded — so arrive early!

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

3. Dos Ojos Cenote

kids snorkeling in Tulum at cenote dos ojos
Wondering, Is Cenote Dos Ojos worth visiting? Yes, it’s an amazing experience.

Cenote Dos Ojos, meaning “two-eyed cenote,” is situated about half an hour north of Tulum. This popular cenote is renowned for its expansive underground caverns, which is part of the Sistema Sac Actun, one of the longest underground rivers in the world.

The name Dos Ojos refers to two connected cenotes, or two eyes. The clear, fresh waters of Dos Ojos reveal a world of stunning rock formations and abundant marine life, particularly small fish in large numbers.

The cenote offers various amenities, including snorkeling gear and life jacket rentals, lockers for storing belongings, a restaurant for dining, showers and restrooms.

While cenotes snorkeling Tulum is a popular activity here, Dos Ojos is also a premier location for scuba diving, offering a unique experience of exploring its submerged caverns. This is the perfect cenote if you are looking for dive and snorkel Tulum options. 

The entrance fee is $350 pesos MXN (about $18 USD), which includes a life vest. This is a cash-only cenote, and you can’t buy the entrance ticket online in advance; it must be done in person when you arrive.

🌟 Tulum Travel Tips: Dos Ojos can get crowded, especially at the first platform. For a more tranquil experience, visit the second platform. You can also consider visiting early in the day when they open, or later in the day after many have left. 

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

4. Cenote Cristal 

man jumping off diving platform at tulum cenote cristal
For one of the highest cenotes jumps, and a cenote snorkeling Tulum experience, head to Cristal Cenote.

Cenote Cristal, located three miles (4 km) from Tulum, is a beautiful open-air cenote that is part of a duo with Cenote Escondido. With one entrance fee, visitors can enjoy both of these picturesque sinkholes. 

Cenote Cristal is known for its clear, inviting waters, and is less crowded compared to other popular cenotes in the area, like Cenote Dos Ojos or Gran Cenote. In my opinion, this is one of the best cenotes in Tulum for snorkeling and avoiding crowds.

It features three separate platforms, providing easy water access making it particularly family-friendly, even for kids and toddlers. It even has a guide rope just above the water’s surface, handy for resting or moving around the cenote. 

The entrance cost for both Cenote Cristal and Cenote Escondido is $150 MXN pesos (about $8 USD), offering excellent value for a full day of exploration. When it comes to free and cheap things to do in Tulum, don’t miss these two cenotes.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

5. Cenote Escondido

cenote escondido tulum mexico
Cenote Escondido is my favorite Tulum snorkeling cenote.

If you ask me about the best Tulum things to do, I’d suggest a visit to Cenote Escondido, which is located just across the street from Cenote Cristal. Meaning “hidden cenote” in Spanish, Cenote Escondido offers a quiet escape, surrounded by unspoiled nature. 

It features fresh, crystal-clear waters that are inviting for both beginners and seasoned snorkelers. The visibility is usually excellent, but you will need your own snorkeling equipment, as they don’t rent it here.

This large, open cenote doesn’t typically feel overcrowded, making it an ideal spot for anyone looking for a peaceful and quiet experience in Tulum’s famous Mayan pools. When it comes to natural cenotes in Mexico, this one can’t be beat.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

6. Cenote Zacil-Ha

stair in cenote zacil ha
Zacil-Ha Cenote provides one of the best cenote Tulum snorkeling experiences for families.

Cenote Zacil-Ha, located about 5 miles (9 km) northwest of Tulum, offers a unique blend of natural beauty and recreational facilities. This open-air cenote, famous for its crystal-clear waters, is ideal for swimming and snorkeling. 

A highlight is the zipline, which adds an adventurous element to the experience. The cenote also features swimming pools, a restaurant with bar and hammocks, catering to various preferences. There’s also cabanas at Zacil-Ha Cenote, if you want to stay overnight.

Remember, it’s a cash-only destination with an entrance fee of $300 MXN pesos (about $17 USD). Zacil-Ha’s accessibility and range of amenities make it a versatile choice for a day trip from Tulum.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

7. Cenote Garden of Eden (Jardin Del Eden)

garden of eden cenote

The so-called Garden of Eden Cenote (El Cenote Jardin Del Eden AKA Cenote Ponderosa) is a large, open-air cenote located approximately 25 miles (40 km) from Tulum. It’s actually not too far from Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

This cenote stands out for its size and natural beauty, surrounded by lush greenery and featuring clear waters that are inviting for snorkeling and swimming. Also, as the name indicates, this cenote looks like a magical garden.

The depth varies considerably across different areas, offering both shallow and deeper zones suitable for various activities, including cliff jumping from a 12-foot-high jump platform (3 m).

This cenote offers facilities like life jackets and snorkeling equipment rentals, bathrooms, showers, and small palapas for shade. There’s no snack bar on-site, but a picnic area is available. 

The entrance fee for adults is $200 MXN (about $10 USD), and it’s important to note that only cash is accepted. In fact, if there’s something to know before you visit cenotes, it’s that the majority are cash only.

Tulum Snorkeling Guided Tours vs. Independent Exploration

man snorkeling in tulum cenotes

When choosing between guided tours and independent exploration for snorkeling in Tulum, there are several factors to consider. 

Independent exploration offers flexibility and can be more budget-friendly. Renting a car is a good option for anyone who wants to explore at their own pace and visit multiple spots in one day. 

However, for specific activities like snorkeling with whale sharks or exploring protected areas like Akumal Beach, guided tours are your best bet.

These tours are led by knowledgeable guides who ensure safe and respectful interaction with marine life. They also handle logistics like transportation and equipment, making the experience hassle-free so you can spend all your previous travel time just enjoying Tulum. 

Guided Tulum Mexico snorkeling tours are particularly recommended for unique or restricted snorkeling experiences, ensuring you get the most out of your adventure in Tulum.

The 5 Best Tulum Snorkeling Tours

man snorkeling with turtle in Tulum
Ready to book your Tulum snorkel tour?!

Looking for the best snorkeling tour Tulum has to offer? Whether you are looking for reef snorkeling Tulum or the best Tulum snorkel tours to swim with whale sharks, here are a couple of my favorite snorkeling tours that you can book.

  1. Tulum, Snorkel, Reef, Turtles & Cenote Tour — Rated 4.96 out of 5 Stars, with more than 1,100 positive reviews
  2. Snorkeling Adventure Tour in Three Ecosystems
  3. Snorkeling the Hidden Cenotes in Tulum
  4. Tulum Snorkeling and Underground Cenote Tour
  5. Private Underground River Tour with Snorkeling
Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Scuba Diving vs Snorkeling in Tulum: Which is better?

It depends — Scuba diving in Tulum and snorkeling in Tulum offer different ways to explore the region’s underwater wonders, so the “best” one is a matter of preference.

person doing tulum cenote diving

While snorkeling is accessible to almost anyone, and allows you to float on the water’s surface to observe marine life, scuba diving takes you deeper into the underwater world.

🤿 Want to learn how to dive in Tulum? Book this Tulum diving tour with Eduardo, a PADI Diver Instructor, Emergency First Response Instructor and Cave Diver Guide. After some instruction, he’ll take you to some of the best Tulum diving cenotes, like Cenote El Pit.

Tulum’s cenotes, with their crystal-clear waters and stunning rock formations, are particularly popular for both activities. While you can snorkel in most of the cenotes in Tulum, you can only dive in some, like Cenote Calavera and Cenote Corazon del Paraiso.

Scuba diving in cenotes like Dos Ojos offers a chance to explore intricate cave systems and see unique geological formations, while snorkeling provides a more relaxed way to enjoy the cenotes’ beauty.

The ocean near Tulum also offers great opportunities for both snorkeling and diving, especially at the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, where divers can go deeper to observe coral structures and a wider variety of marine life.

Snorkeling is a more accessible and surface-level experience, while scuba diving offers a more in-depth exploration of Tulum’s underwater realms. 

Tulum Snorkeling Guide & FAQ

Why snorkel in Tulum Mexico?

Tulum is a snorkeling haven with crystal-clear Caribbean waters and rich marine biodiversity.

The town’s proximity to the Mesoamerican Reef (AKA Great Mayan Reef) only make it that much better. This is one of the world’s largest reefs, and it offers snorkelers an underwater landscape filled with colorful coral and an array of marine life. 

However, snorkeling in the ocean is just the beginning, and for a unique experience, consider a cenote Tulum snorkeling tour. Cenotes are natural sinkholes or jungle pools that are filled with clear, fresh water — and the perfect places for snorkelers to explore.

cenotes tours tulum mexico

🐠 Best Tulum Snorkeling Tour

My #1 pick is this Tulum, Snorkel, Reef, Turtles & Cenote Tour because it’s the most complete tour, and one of the highest-rated.

If you’re looking for encounters with wildlife, you can do that too. Not to be missed, Akumal Mexico, just a short drive from Tulum, is renowned for swimming with sea turtles. There are also whale sharks in Tulum in summer, for an unforgettable encounter.

The snorkeling adventures in Tulum are endless — So why should snorkeling Tulum be on your list? It offers the chance to witness the beauty of ocean life and the cenotes in Tulum so you can connect with nature in a truly unique setting.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Is snorkeling in Tulum safe?

Yes — Snorkeling in Tulum is generally safe, thanks to the clear and calm waters. The region’s natural geography creates a protective barrier, ensuring tranquil snorkeling conditions. 

Moreover, most snorkeling spots are well-supervised, with guides and safety measures. However, it’s crucial to be aware of your surroundings at all times, follow local guidelines, and consider your swimming abilities.

With these precautions, you should be able to confidently enjoy Tulum’s serene and safe snorkeling experience.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Is there good snorkeling in Tulum Mexico?

Yes — Tulum is renowned for exceptional snorkeling. It boasts clear waters, abundant marine life, and unique cenotes like El Gran Cenote Tulum (AKA Grand Cenote Tulum) and Casa Cenote.

women snorkeling at casa cenote tulum
Cenote Manatí AKA Casa Cenote is one of the best Tulum snorkeling cenotes.

Nearby, Akumal Mexico is famous for swimming with green sea turtles. In certain seasons, whale sharks can be spotted off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, and if you book a Tulum whale shark tour, you can snorkel alongside the whale sharks.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

When is the best time to go snorkeling in Tulum?

The best time for snorkeling in Tulum is between November and May, with the months of January through March being particularly ideal. 

During this period, the weather is favorable, and the water visibility is at its best. These months avoid the warmer, rainier season when visibility can be reduced.

Still, weather conditions can vary, so it’s always good to check the forecast. Avoid windy days for the best snorkeling experience.

If you find yourself in Tulum during the windy season, consider heading to areas like Cozumel, which are more protected from the wind.  

For anyone interested in snorkeling with whale sharks, the Tulum whale shark season typically spans from mid-May to mid-September.

However, many will say the best chances to see these magnificent creatures is usually in July and August. I went on my whale shark snorkeling Tulum swim in June, and saw about 10-15 whale sharks, so you never know.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

What can you see when snorkeling in Tulum? 

Snorkeling in Tulum offers a rich marine life experience. The waters are home to vibrant coral reefs, part of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the second-largest reef system in the world after the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia. 

snorkeling in mexico
The protected area of Akumal is one of the best snorkeling spots in Quintana Roo state.

In areas like Akumal, which is about half an hour north of Tulum in your rental car, you can see a variety of sea turtles in their natural habitat. 

The cenotes, unique to the Yucatan Peninsula, provide a different kind of snorkel Tulum experience with crystal-clear freshwater, rock formations, and local fish species. Cenote Dos Ojos, for example, is known for its small but abundant fish.

In coastal areas and cenotes alike, you can expect to see a diverse range of marine life, including colorful fish, coral formations, and sometimes even dolphins or other larger marine animals. 

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Are there reefs in Tulum?

Yes — Tulum is near the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef (AKA Great Mayan Reef), the second-largest coral reef system in the world.

This proximity offers access to incredible coral formations and diverse aquatic life, making it a great spot for reef snorkeling in the Caribbean Sea.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Is Tulum Beach water clear?

Yes — Tulum’s beaches are known for their crystal-clear waters, especially during the dry season of November to April.

This clarity enhances the snorkeling experience, offering good visibility of the rich underwater ecosystem. Of course, this isn’t a guarantee, as the Tulum seaweed (sargassum) can be a problem in certain months of the year.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Where can I swim with turtles in Tulum?

Akumal — A short drive from Tulum, this is the best place for swimming with turtles in Mexico.

swimming with turtles in akumal mexico
Meaning place of the turtle in the Maya lanugage, Akumal is the best place to see turtles.

Akumal Bay is a natural habitat for sea turtles, offering a high chance of encounters in their natural environment, especially from May to October. However, you can usually see them year-round.

If a turtle snorkeling Tulum experience is on your bucket list, make sure you book a Tulum turtle snorkeling tour during your visit. 

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

What are the best cenotes in Tulum for snorkeling?

Tulum’s best cenotes for snorkeling include the renowned Gran Cenote, with its clear waters and dramatic stalactites, and Cenote Dos Ojos, famous for its interconnected sinkholes. Casa Cenote offers a unique mix of fresh and saltwater ecosystems. 

Of course, there are hundreds of cenotes in Tulum, and thousands of cenotes in Mexico. While those are three great Tulum snorkeling cenotes, here are a few more options:

  • For a more secluded experience, Cenote Calavera and Cenote Carwash (AKA Cenote Aktun Ha) are perfect.
  • Traveling to Tulum with kids? Families and beginners will enjoy the shallow waters at Cenote Zacil-Ha.
  • For off-the-beaten-path adventures, Cenote Cristal and Cenote Escondido are ideal, offering clear waters teeming with fish.

Wondering, What’s the best cenote for snorkeling Tulum? In my opinion, it’s Cenote Escondido, which has clear-blue water and rarely any crowds. However, that’s just my opinion.

In reality, there are many amazing snorkeling cenotes in Tulum Mexico. Each cenote in Tulum presents a unique snorkeling experience, combining natural beauty with aquatic wonders.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Is Tulum good for swimming?

Yes — Tulum offers excellent swimming conditions with its calm, clear waters in the cenotes and the Caribbean Sea.

tulum beach
For a refreshing swim, head to the famed for white-sand beaches of Tulum.

The beaches are generally safe for swimming, but caution is advised during rougher sea conditions. This usually occurs during the Atlantic Hurricane Season (June 1-November 30), and during the Tulum rainy season in summer.

Tulum Snorkeling Guide

Is snorkeling better in Tulum or Cozumel?

Are you comparing Tulum and Cozumel for snorkeling? While they’re both great, Cozumel Island often has better visibility and a wider variety of marine life due to its proximity to deeper waters and coral reefs.

It’s not just Cozumel either, as all the Mexican Caribbean Islands have great snorkeling — inclusing Isla Mujeres and Isla Contoy National Park.

However, Tulum’s unique cenotes offer a different and equally enchanting snorkeling experience. While there are a few cenotes in Cozumel, they aren’t great for snorkeling. 

Final Thoughts: Tulum Snorkeling in Yucatan Mexico

Looking for the best snorkeling in Tulum Mexico? Or the best place in Tulum to visit to snorkel with the turtles in Mexico? Hopefully, this article has answered those questions. 

Tulum’s unique blend of crystal-clear water cenotes, marine life, and proximity to the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef means visitors are never too far from the best snorkeling Tulum has to offer.

Whether it’s exploring the underwater marvels of El Gran Cenote, swimming alongside turtles in Akumal, or experiencing the serene beauty of Casa Cenote, Tulum caters to both beginners and seasoned snorkelers.

Its clear waters during the dry season enhance visibility, making every snorkeling trip a memorable adventure. As you plan your snorkeling adventure in Tulum, remember that each cenote and beach has its distinct charm waiting to be explored and cherished.

Tulum Travel Planning Guide

1. Should I buy Mexico travel insurance?

100% YES! — With basic coverage averaging just $5-10 USD per day, enjoy peace of mind with a plan from Travel Insurance Master, one of the biggest names in travel insurance. (Read more)

2. Can you drink the water in Tulum?

No — You’ll want to buy this Water-To-Go Bottle, which filters your drinking water so you don’t get sick from drinking water in Mexico, and helps keep you hydrated while traveling Mexico. (Read more)

3. Is it safe to rent a car in Tulum?

Yes — Renting a car in Mexico is one of the best ways to see the country! I always rent with Discover Cars, which checks both international companies and local Mexican companies, so you get the best rates. (Read more)

4. Will my phone work in Tulum?

Maybe — It depends on your company, so check with your provider. If you don’t have free Mexico service, buy this Telcel SIM Card. As Mexico’s largest carrier, Telcel has the best coverage of any Mexico SIM Cards. (Read more)

5. What’s the best way to book my Tulum accommodations?

For Tulum hotels, Booking.com is the best site, but for hostels, use Hostel World. If you’re considering a Mexico Airbnb, don’t forget to also check VRBO, which is often cheaper than Airbnb.

6. What do I pack for Tulum?

Head to the Ultimate Tulum Packing List to get all the info you need on packing for Mexico.

7. What’s the best site to buy Mexico flights?

For finding cheap Mexico flights, I recommend Skyscanner.

8. Do I need a visa for Mexico?

Likely Not — U.S., Canadian and most European Passport holders don’t need a visa for Mexico; but check here to see if you do a Mexico travel visa. The majority of travelers will receive a 180-Day FMM Tourist Visa or passport stamp upon arrival.