If you book a dive for the Cenotes in Cancun, it’s more than likely they will take you to Tulum or somewhere close to there, so if you’re going further south then wait until you get there to do those dives. But if you want to see the reefs around the Cancun then you can book at your hotel or contact the dive centres via the web.
There are a few dive centres dotted throughout the strip and a couple in town but they’re so far from each other that shopping around would take you a whole day! Do your research and know who you want to dive with before you go.
The reef diving around Cancun is great for all certification levels including beginners and there are some interesting sites to explore. If you love wreck diving as much as me, there are some great wrecks in the area such as the C58 Minesweeper, Ultrafreeze Wreck and the C-55 Gun Ship. If you love the reef then check out Chitales Reef for diverse marine life, Aristos reef for a fabulous, colourful reef, Punta Negra for all sorts of wonderful coral and fish and Media Luna for arches, channels and swim throughs. All dive sites area accessed by boat.
There is a lot of sea life here. Special things you might see are turtles, nurse sharks, schools of fish, snappers, groupers, lobsters, an octopus and even dolphins sometimes if you’re very lucky.
In my opinion, the reefs around the area are similar to most reefs around the world in the types of sea life and corals you can see. If you don’t have much time I would focus on the amazing Cenotes, as there are so many different ones to explore. They will be the highlight of your diving experience and you’ll never dive anywhere like it on the planet. If you do have time then explore as much as you can!
(By Kelly Luckman)
Cancun is the international hub of Mexico and you will probably land here when you arrive. It is separated into two sections: the main town and the 22km strip. The strip is full of huge hotels on the beach, dive centres, theme parks and some cool bars and restaurants but if you ask me it’s very Americanised (and expensive), which is ok if you’re after a week or two of all inclusive pampering, but not if you actually want a taste of real Mexico.
There are some gorgeous beaches, easily accessible by the local buses that run regularly. If you choose a beach in the first few km’s there are huge high rise buildings so you’ll have to keep moving to stay in the sun.
The town has a huge market that’s worth a look. It’s called Market 28 (mercado veintiocho in Spanish). Market 23 is another place for shopping. If you want to do any tours of the area then around here is the cheapest place to book it and they’ll pick you up from your hotel. I recommend the one day tour to the world famous Chichen Itza and the Cenote ‘Piste’. You’ll pay about $45 for the tour and that includes lunch as well.
I found a square in the centre called ‘Parque de Las Palapas’ where you can get all sorts of local foods and enjoy some entertainment on the weekends. Day or night this square is busy and the food is really cheap. Try some Chilli Rellenos (not as spicy as it sounds), which is chillies stuffed with cheese and covered in egg. Hmm delicious!
I enjoyed Cancun and the food; it’s worth staying here for a couple of days.
(By Kelly Luckman)