Sargassum-proof vacation in Riviera Maya

Don't let the weather or the sargassum limit you to discovering the Riviera Maya. There are many places that you will love and where you will surely have an incredible time.

Sargassum-proof vacation in Riviera Maya. Photo: Flickr
Sargassum-proof vacation in Riviera Maya. Photo: Flickr

If you love beach destinations and your plans include visiting the Mexican Caribbean, there are two things you need to know. The first is that in Mexico, the rainy season runs from May to November, so it is very likely that if you come in those months, you will get some cloudy and rainy days.

The second is that, with the increase in pollution of the global seas and the aggravation of climate change, there has also been an increase in the sargassum of the equatorial seas, which, dragged by the currents, reaches the Caribbean coast, including the Riviera Maya. Although hotels and municipal authorities do everything to clean up the beaches, the arrival of the seaweed is unpredictable.

The bright side of the rain and the presence of sargassum in the Riviera Maya is that they have made tourism leave the all-inclusive resort scheme, turn their eyes to the jungle and become interested in local proposals. Here's a varied selection for you to put together a sargassum-proof plan.

Underworld wisdom

The limestone nature of the peninsular soil has caused rainwater to seep into the subsoil for millions of years, forming systems of rivers and underground wells, better known as cenotes.

The ancient Mayans considered these places to be sacred, as they were portals to the underworld. Today, they are places of recreation for visitors who look for different options in the cenotes to have fun and get to know each other.

One of the most important recommendations when visiting a cenote is that you DO NOT wear repellent, sunscreen, cream or any other skincare product, since everyone, including organic ones, irreversibly damages the ecosystem of the cenotes and may even extinguish endemic organisms.

Among the most accessible options is the cenote Chaak Tun, 15 minutes from downtown Playa del Carmen. To get there, you have to take the avenue that leads to the Centro Maya shopping center and go straight on for 10 kilometers. Before starting the visit, you will be provided with all the necessary equipment: special shoes, visor, snorkel and even a wetsuit for the cold ones.

The visit in Chaak Tun is ideal for those who love nature and science, because its guides give you valuable geological and biological information about its two caves, Xibalbá and Paxén, both in a magnificent state of conservation. Its caves have a roof covered with stalactites and stalagmites of all sizes and ages, from 2 to 8 million years old.

And since the cenote is still part of a Mayan community, the altars dedicated to the aluxes, nature's guardians, are preserved at the entrance. You can complete your experience with the Yucatecan buffet offered right there, prepared with very good seasoning. Of course, there is lime soup, cochinita pibil, roasted fish and fried plantains.

100% fun

For those who prefer a mixture of jungle and adrenaline in a much more standardized scheme, Grupo Xcaret Xenotes tour offers you to visit four types of cenote while doing adventure activities. This is a tour dedicated only to fun, with no scientific or cultural data. In the open cenotes, you can dive from the zip line, swim and kayak; in the closed and semi-closed cenotes, you can abseil and snorkel.

The tour has two advantages: it includes transportation to and from the hotel, as well as lunch, which consists of a buffet with drinks, comforting soup, and a bar to prepare a salad or a gourmet sandwich.

Strategic location

To realize this plan, it is essential to find suitable accommodation, in a strategic location, with versatile services and, above all, an accessible price, because what you save on the hotel you can use for car rentals, park entrances, and dinners. Playa del Carmen is located in the center of the region and has practically become a city with a good offer of services.

Source: Mexico Desconocido

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