On my Yucatan Peninsula road trip I decided to visit all the cenotes near Valladolid and found some hidden gems you won’t often see in other Valladolid travel guides. With Cenote Suytun and Ik Kil being so immense popular people are forgetting about those cenotes a little off the beaten track, but these ones are just as gorgeous.
On a busy day the cenotes Ik Kill, Zaci or Suytun can be extremely busy and overrun by tourists. I found two cenotes that don’t really have that issue. To get to cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas it takes a little drive away from the Valladolid city center and it is kind of impossible to get to Palomitas and Agua Dulce by public transport. But isn't that already a great reasons to make your way to the cenotes of Agua Dulce, Palomitas or even the nearby Xcanche or Aua Sac?
Cenote Palomitas and Agua Dulce vlog
See here a quick video of both cenotes and get a better feel of what they look like from inside.
1. Where are the Agua Dulce and Palomitas cenotes
You can find both cenotes next to each other, only 200 meters apart, about 35 minutes outside of Valladolid Mexico. They are located 35 kilometers to the northeast of the city.
2. How to get to cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas
The easiest way to get to Cenote Palomitas and Agua Dulce is by car. Even when backpacking Yucatan Peninsula renting a car is worth it. Keep in mind that you can only rent a car in either Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Cozumel, Tulum, Merida or Costa Maya. Unfortunately there are no car rental companies in Valladolid Mexico.
Rent a scooter in Valladolid
A great way to see the Valladolid cenotes is by renting a scooter. If you are up for a little adventure this makes one of the best day trips. Renting a scooter in Valladolid cost 500 Pesos ($25) per 24 hours or $5 per hour. It is not really cheap, but totally worth it for visiting cenote Agua Dulce, Palomitas. One of the many adventures I had backpacking Yucatan for 2 months was renting a scooter in Cozumel.
I tried to figure out for you how to get to cenote Palomitas and Agua Dulce by public transport but I honestly failed. It kind of says enough that I couldn’t find someone who could tell me if there were public busses passing by. The only option you have is probably finding a colectivo going in the direction of Yalcoba. From Yalcoba it is only 3 kilometer (2 miles).
3. Private property
Both cenotes are located on private property and unlike cenote Xcanche and AUA Sac which belong to a community.
4. Opening times cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas
The cenotes open early and you can already visit Palomitas and Agua Dulce at 08:00. Last entrance is around 4:30pm and 5:00pm the cenotes are closed.
5. Entrance fee cenote Palomitas and Agua Dulce
As of April 2019 the entrance fee for cenote Agua Dulce is 100 Pesos ($5). The entrance fee for cenote Palomitas is the same also 100 Peosos ($5).
Unfortunately they don’t have a deal for visiting cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas. If you want to visit both cenotes you will pay 200 Pesos ($10). There is no discount for visiting both cenotes on the same day. This felt a little like a rip off to be honest and I would not recommend you to pay for both cenotes.
7. Which cenote is better?
Both cenotes are kind of similar in shape and look a lot alike. Because they both charge 100 Pesos each I would not recommend you to pay for both cenotes. If you need to make a choice I can help you out: Cenote Agua Dulce is more beautiful. Although if you like cliff jumping then it is better to visit cenote Palomitas.
There are cliff jumping opportunities at cenote Palomitas from 3 t0 5 meters (9 to 15 feet).
8. Most beautiful closed cenote
Both cenotes are closed cenotes with a couple small holes in the roof that let in some natural light. This is not enough to light up the cenotes and therefore there are spot lights installed to make you see the countless stalactites hanging from the roof. I have seen almost 20 cenotes in Yucatan and to me cenote Agua Dulce is the most beautiful closed cenote around Valladolid.
The best time at both cenotes for the light beams is between 11:00am and 1:00pm according to the staff. I didn’t see this myself as I was there at the end of the day.
9. Cenote Agua Dulce has two entrances
This stunning closed cenote has two entrances and one is already an adventure in itself. The cramped winding staircase leading to a floating platform in the middle of the cenote is an amazing way to go down and to get a first impression of cenote Agua Dulce. You could leave a towel or so at the platform but if you bring a bag I would recommend you to use the normal staircase on the other end of cenote Agua Dulce.
10. Rappelling into cenote Agua Dulce
There is a third way to enter the Agua Dulce cenote and that is through one of the holes in the roof. Rappelling into cenote Agua Dulce cost another 80 Pesos on top of the entrance fee.
11. Big water bodies
Both cenotes have a big water body and are great for swimming. Life vests are for rent (30 Pesos) and swimming is of course on your own risk. I read that there is a lifeguard on duty, but at the time I was visiting I didn’t see anyone.
This is cenote Palomitas.
12. Depth cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas
Cenote Palomitas is much deeper and reaches a depth of 60 meters (180 feet). Cenote Agua Dulce is much shallower and the bottom is around 15 meters (45 feet) deep. The water in cenote Agua Dulce is so clear that you can easily see the bottom.
13. Kayak for rent in cenote Agua Dulce
When you go down the winding staircase at cenote Agua Dulce there will be a kayak attached to the floating platform. You can rent the kayak for 50 Pesos for 30 minutes.
In and between the cenotes there is an onside restaurant. Prices are moderate and you can find local meals for under 100 Pesos ($5), beers are 40 Pesos ($2).
I hope all thes tips for cenote Agua Dulce and Palomitas were helpful. If you could help me in return by sharing this travel blog on the internet that would be amazing. I am very thankful for every share on Facebook, pin on Pinterest or tweet on Twitter!