When people talk about the best place to go snorkeling in the Riviera Maya, they talk about Akumal. Akumal is the most famous snorkeling spot in the whole area, but why? find it out here!
To answer the question why Akumal, snorkeling and diving are always connected.. in Mayan language Akumal means ‘the land of turtles’. Because you will find a lot of turtles here, Akumal has an ecological centre, to preserve the nature and to protect the turtles. For tourists Akumal is a really great place, because the ocean water is so clear and the sand is so white, which makes it the perfect place for hanging out on the beach and for swimming. You can spot turtles and tropical fish with all colors of the rainbow.. Akumal bay is the place to be for diving and snorkeling! On the beach there are several restaurants where you can eat or just have a drink. White sand, clear blue water with fish and turtles, something to drink, something to eat… all you need for a great day!
In Akumal you can spot the turtles all year long, though there is a nesting seasons. You can spot two types of turtles in Akumal:
- Loggerhead turtles: The nesting season of these turtles is between April and July. These turtles can grow to 1.15 m in length and they primarily eat shellfish (e.g. crabs or snails)
- Green turtles. The nesting season of these turtles is between June and September. These turtles can grow to 1.20 m in length and they primarily eat sea grasses.
Diving and snorkeling
If you want to go snorkeling you have different kinds of options. You can bring your own snorkel set and go by yourself, you can rent a snorkel set and go by yourself or you can rent a snorkel set and go on a tour, so you will be sure to swim with turtles. Renting a snorkel set will cost you around 120 MXN pesos. More below you will find some dive schools, where you can also arrange a snorkeling tour. If you want to go snorkeling by yourself note the following things:
- Around 50 feet from the beach you will find the turtles
- Around 100 feet from the beach the water is clearer, so you will see the turtles better
- If you see a turtle, do not touch it
It goes without saying that Akumal is not only a good place to go snorkeling, it is a good place to go dive as well! Below you can find some dive schools in Akumal so, so you can arrange your dive or snorkel tour there. Do you want to book your snorkel or dive tour in advance, but you’re not staying in Akumal? No problem! From Tulum and Playa del Carmen it is also possible to book a tour including transfer to Akumal, so you have plenty of options.
Dive schools Akumal:
- Akumal dive shop: (guided snorkeling tour is 50 USD). Located on the north end of Akumal Bay
- Akumal Dive Adventures: Located in the middle of half moon bay, next to vista del Mar hotel.
- Akumal Dive Center: Located more south, past LolHa.
How to get to Akumal?
Akumal is situated right between Playa del Carmen and Tulum. From the Highway 307 you can easily find Akumal from both sides, just follow the signs for Akumal. You have the option to go there by your own car, a taxi or a colectivo. A colectivo will cost you 36 MXN pesos per person (one way), either you come from Playa del Carmen or Tulum. Just tell the driver you want to get dropped off at Akumal.