Chikin Ha Cenote

Chikin Ha is a Mayan word which means "Western water". The word "Ha" refers to the water that's why many cenotes names are composed with it.

 It is a private land that belongs to a Mayan family , located about 25 kilometers from Playa del Carmen, near the cenote "Jardin del Eden -Ponderosa" on the highway 307 heading south of the Riviera Maya.

After the main entrance on the freeway , enjoy the ride and observe the variety of trees in the dense Mayan jungle.

 It will take another 10 minutes drive to reach the parking lot well equipped with a typical Mayan palapa and very useful tables to help the group of divers set their gear.

This beautiful land hide 3 different charming cenotes.

Take a look at the first cenote called Xtabay - a Mayan term referring to a mythological woman-   as it is the one that is part of the Ponderosa cave system , the neighboring property. It is a good place for snorkeling and also for divers in training for their cavern and cave diving course.

Follow the path on the right to the cenote Chikin Ha , walk down the stairs and you will find an amazing natural pool , with superb light effects on a sunny day.The cavern entrance could look a bit dark at first sight although when on the first stair by the crystal clear water your eyes will get used to the low light and you will discover a huge cavern and will be able to see the other entrance of the tunnel.

Your underwater journey begins just here ! Let your experienced full cave guide  take you away for a very special discovery !!!

Approximately after 20 minutes into the dive through a large tunnel with a halocline , the permanent guideline leads to the cenote Taakbil Ha which means hidden water, although cave and cavern divers from the Riviera Maya call it the Rainbow cenote because of the colorful effects when looking at its surface.

Surfacing in the sacred cenote Rainbow is an awesome adventure as the cavern roof collapsed thousand years ago , forming a little island in the center of the cavern. Luxuriant plants and roots finding their way to the water are part of the surroundings . Look for the "elephant foot " , the root of the ficus tree that crosses the fragile limestone to reach the water ! You may also hear a strange noise during spring and summer season , this is the song of the " toh"  bird, a turquoise browed "motmot" bird that build its nest in the cracks of the cenote and is sacred to the Maya civilization.

You will head back to the cavern of Chikin Ha following a different guideline to end your dive by the other entrance where you can admire many fossils of corals, shells and  sea urchins.

The maximum depth of this dive is 13 meters or 40 feet , just the depth you need  to reach the salt water and dive under the strong halocline.

 

This cavern dive is the ideal choice to combine with the cenote of the neighboring property "El Eden-Ponderosa".