How to Visit Cenote Suytun in Valladolid, Mexico

Cenote Suytun is easily one of the most beautiful places my travels have led me to. The cenote has quickly become one of the most Instagrammable cenotes in Mexico, and it’s easy to see why.

A fully enclosed, underground cave, Cenote Suytun is just a few minutes outside of Central Valladolid and just over an hour away from Tulum. If you’re visiting Tulum, pair this cenote with the towns of Valladolid, Chichen Itza, and Coba for a fun day trip!

Before you go, here are a few things you should know:

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Cenote Suytun Location

Carretera Ticuch Km 8 S/n, 97780 Valladolid, Yuc., Mexico

Cenote Suytun is located in Valladolid, a city in Mexico just a 1.5 hour (102.5 km) drive from Tulum. Visiting Valladolid from Cancun is 2 hours and 15 minutes (156.2 km) driving.

Cenote Suytun Admission Fee

Visiting Cenote Suytun costs 120 pesos per person (approximately $5.55 USD and worth every penny) for 40 minutes.

When we went, a life jacket was included in the price of admission, however there have also been reports that life jacket rental is an additional 30 pesos. Admission is much less expensive than cenotes closer to Tulum.

How to Get to Cenote Suytun from Tulum

As someone who doesn’t drive, I hate to say it, but the only feasible way to get to Cenote Suytun is really by driving a rental car.

If you don’t have a rental car or don’t want to make the drive, you can take the ADO bus to Valladolid and then take a taxi from there.

Once you pass the entrance gate to the cenote, you’ll drive on some rough roads before reaching the path to the cenote.

For this reason, as well as the generally uneven, rough, speed bump-filled roads in Mexico, I would recommend getting an inexpensive rental car or something more lifted, like a Jeep Wrangler.

If you are driving to Cenote Suytun from Tulum like we were, make sure you fill up on gas before you leave. There aren’t many gas stations between Tulum and Valladolid.

The drive between Tulum and Valladolid is through the jungle and beautiful. Take it in!

Wear Walking Shoes

After parking your car, actually getting into the cenote requires a short trek through a narrow path in the woods and a descent down some very steep, slippery stone stairs with a rope for a railing.

Wear sneakers or sandals with good grip. I would not recommend wearing slides, wedges, etc. If you make that mistake (like I did), take off your shoes to walk down the stairs, it’s too steep.

Best Time to Visit Cenote Suytun

The best time to visit Cenote Suytun is early in the morning on a weekday. Plan your visit outside of the rainy season in months like December, January, and February if you want to see the platform above water.

We got to the cenote at 8:30 am on a Thursday and had the whole thing to ourselves for an hour and a half. It was one of the most incredible experiences I’ve been able to have, and I think visiting the cenote would have been a very different experience had we gone later in the day or on a weekend.

Technically we were only supposed to have 40 minutes, however the attendant allowed us to stay longer as no one else was there.

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Be Careful at the Cenote

Cenote Suytun is one of the shallowest Mexico cenotes at just one to five meters deep.

That said, the cenote’s cave structure makes it one of the darkest. The only light that comes in is from the small skylight at the top.

Even though this adds to the cenote’s beauty, it’s so dark and clear that it’s difficult to tell just how deep the water is at any given point.

Be careful when swimming for this reason. The water level fluctuates greatly, based on how much rain the region has received. I had never seen a photo of the iconic platform underwater prior to going, so imagine my surprise when the platform was submerged under about three feet of water!

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Don’t Wear Sunscreen at Cenote Suytun

In general, cenotes in Mexico ban the use of sunscreen.

Sunscreen poses a risk to both the water and wildlife in cenotes. The cenote is so dark that barely any sun gets in, so there’s really not much of a use for it anyway. Apply sunscreen after you leave for the rest of your day.

Drones are Banned at Cenote Suytun: Leave it at Home

Like many cenotes, drones are banned at Cenote Suytun.

Your bag will be checked at the entrance to ensure you don’t have one. Although it would have been cool to be able to fly, especially as the water is absolutely crystal clear, a drone would have been a hazard to the hanging rock as well as the bats in the cave.

To that point, yes, there are a few bats. However, they keep out of the way. There are nowhere near as many as we experienced at Gran Cenote in Tulum.

Fish at Cenote Suytun

Cenote Suytun is filled with hundreds of black fish (like so. many. fish). The fish will swim away if you come too near, but they will get close.

Observing fish and aquatic life is one of the best parts of visiting Mexican cenotes. They are unavoidable across the Yucatan and Quintana Roo. If you’re uncomfortable being near them, cenotes may not be the best activity option. Stick to the best beach clubs in Tulum instead.

Say Hi to Cenote Suytun’s Peacock

As we were paying admission, we noticed a beautiful peacock freely walking around the grounds! I was totally not expecting to see it, but it was a great surprise. Keep in mind that the peacock will get rather close to you if you let it.

xx,
E

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