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Posts Tagged ‘Coba’

The first scheduled stop on my day’s tour, Punta Laguna, did not excite me. I’ll admit it. My initial thought – skip it. I looked ahead. I thought, let’s head straight to the ancient ruins of Coba and spend more time understanding the mystique and magic of the Mayans. Or perhaps add a second cenote to the itinerary. Ever since my discovery of these sacred, swimmable sinkholes I can’t seem to see enough. But Punta Laguna was on the way, so we stopped. And actually, I am glad we did.

A monkey spotted in the sun, I took a picture.

When we arrived, I grabbed my camera and we hired a guide to help us search for the local Spider Monkeys. Not five minutes and one hundred meters into the jungle our guide already heard them in the distance. We changed course and started tracking the troop.  We listened and watched in silence as they moved swiftly from tree to tree searching for food. The monkeys never seemed to mind our presence.

I certainly tried to capture a few photos, but just like when on African safari searching for the Big 5, I didn’t have a telephoto lens and actually, the monkeys blended with the shade. But also, just like on safari, sometimes I didn’t raise my camera and click. Nope. I just appreciated being so close. I enjoyed a glimpse of life in their world, a chance to just feel the jungle from under its canopy.

Then as the monkeys wandered further into the jungle, our guide turned us around and we headed down the main trail to the lagoon. Originally, I thought we might paddle out on the water, but when I arrived to see the lagoon it was not the heat that kept me ashore. The crystal clear water and its stunning reflection almost seemed ask to not be disturbed. So calming. I just decided to savor a moment. This moment.

sometimes its just about the view....

Yes, the rest of the day lived up to its expectations. The Mayan Ruins at Coba and the breathtaking beauty of Cenote Multun-ha were definitely highlights of my entire two weeks in the Riviera Maya. But the silence and stillness of the lagoon made the highlights too. The beauty of the moment taught me a valuable lesson. A lesson to not overlook any stop on a journey as beauty exists in all destinations. And my few minutes on the water’s edge of Punta Laguna reminded me of that very fact. Thank you.

Stay adventurous, Craig

Also, a special thanks to Riviera Maya for being an excellent guide and host.

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My guide walked toward the cenote, but I couldn’t see any cavern entrance or surface water. Confused my paced slowed even with the sudden rainfall and darker skies. She started to descend. Stairs?

the descending stairs....

A spiral staircase descended below the surface and I followed her into the earth.

After 20-30 steps and still no sight of the cenote I thought, “How deep were we going?” Still deeper we traveled. Fifty steps, maybe more. I didn’t count. But when we finally came to the opening. Wow.

To my surprise a huge wooden deck platform was built over a vast a pool of crystal clear blue water in a deep, hollow cavern. Incredible. And all this infrastructure created underground for this single cenote. And now it was just the two of us. Essentially a private cenote. Simply amazing.

I’ve explored a few centoes in Tulum on a prior visit to the Riviera Maya and recently enjoyed a magical cenote swim at Hacienda Tres Rios, but this was different. I realized each cenote swim was different. All seemed to contain a magic of their own.

The Coba Ruins close by...

When we first arrived, I changed and rinsed to clean off any chemicals as instructed in an effort to keep the cenotes clean. But the few empty shower stalls made me question why this cenote? No one else was here. The itinerary listed Cenote Multun-ha, but I noticed other cenotes closer to Coba. And I noticed other tourists heading to those.

But now looking over this cenote, I smiled to my guide. I thanked her. Apparently, she knew. She knew of this special place. A place that before today I always wanted to swim in. Now I would. A breathtaking moment.

And after I dove in and swam a few strokes in the sacred pool, I actually started to lose my breath. I dove down to pick up a small stone, and surfaced with the need to pause, the need to catch my breath. I sat on the rope across the water surface to rest for a few seconds. Was I ok?

Yes. Suddenly ventilation switched on and oxygen started to be pumped in. And although we lost the calm of silence, I did appreciate a return to breathing normal.  Apparently, the beauty of this Cenote truly did take my breath away.

the breathtaking cenote-multun-ha

Stay adventurous, Craig

Day 17 of 20 day Mexico Bicentennial Tribute. Day 2 of Cenote Week.

Also, a special thanks to Riviera Maya for being an excellent guide and host. And special thanks for providing my access to this cenote. Magical.

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