One of the excursions that we went on while in the Mayan Riviera took us to this incredible Yucatan natural wonder which is called a CENOTE (say-no-tay). There are hundreds of these sinkholes in the Mayan area, (2400 registered, but thought to be at least 6000), but few are open to the public.
From the top of the Cenote, there is lush vegetation surrounding a very wide open area, which when you get close enough, turns out to be a very huge, deep cavernous hole, with vines plunging down into the water below.
The water is a beautiful turquoise blue, created by an underground fresh water river passing through the porous limestone rock of the area. The water is not warm, but feels refreshing when you consider the 40* air temperature at ground level.
You can choose to swim in the Cenote, or walk the 90-100 slippery steps down to view the cavern from the bottom.
As you descend the staircase, there are balconies where you can stop and take pictures, or just a resting point for those not used to the heat and exercise.
Once you are at the bottom level, you can enter the water at this level, or from diving platforms which are from 1 to 5 metres high off the surface of the water.
I had seen a documentary on these Cenotes last year, but never in my wildest imagination did I think I would be there in person! It was a special experience that is, for me, a major highlight of this trip to the Mayan Rivieria.