Mérida Ecotourism
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The title and description are a bit inaccurate, as there is no snorkel provided, only a mask. It also neglects to include in the description that a free lunch is provided. We met the guide, Edgar, at Parque Santa Lucia, then walked about 20 minutes south to the transportation center, where we waited about 30 minutes for a public transportation bus that took us about an hour to get to Homun, where we got our life jackets and switched to small moto-taxi that drove us around to three cenotes. The first was medium-sized and had a tree growing through the hole to the sky. There were about 60 other people there (very few gringos), and we stayed for about 45 minutes. We rode to the next one (slowly, on bumpy roads), which was the coolest because it had a large platform to jump off of, lots of birds and fish flying and swimming around us and a rope swing. It was about half-full at 120 people. We finished at the smallest one that was the same size as its opening. We finished with a local lunch.

This was an outstanding trip. Our driver and guide Wilbur was excellent. The time for the journey from Merida to Celestun was only about 1 hour and 20 minutes, although we were a little late getting going. The wildlife tour was truly sensational. We saw hundreds of flamingos, many other bird species (our guide pointed out we were especially lucky to see so many), and even two crocodiles. The tour goes through a narrow mangrove forest - quite stunning - insect repellant is important. There is a short hike also and a chance to swim in a spring fed pond. After the wildlife tour, we went to the beach where we had a perfectly reasonable lunch at a restaurant. The beach is very nice and we had plenty of time for a walk and a swim. Mainly due to the wildlife part, this is a great tour. It was pretty expensive compared to other tours we have done in Yucatan but definitely worth it.

From Mérida: Ria Celestun Biosphere Reserve Tour Reviewed by Anonymous, 09/03/2020

Guil was our driver and guide for this tour. We were picked up at our designated location on time and a total of 6 passengers were in the van. Guil explained what the day would entail then he drove to Celestun. After a bano stop, we boarded a boat to explore the rio, see flamingos, glide through a mangrove tunnel, see a nearby cenote and enjoy many varieties of shore birds. After the boat ride, a short drive brought us to a very nice restaurant at the Celestun shore for lunch. Time allowed for a nice walk on the beach before boarding the van for the return to Merida. Guil was like having a personal naturalist as a guide. Very knowledgeable, versed in English and an excellent driver. The van was comfortable and clean. Highly recommend this tour.

From Mérida: Ria Celestun Biosphere Reserve Tour Reviewed by William, 01/03/2020

Mar was a great guide! She shared interesting information, made engaging conversation in good English, and made sure we were going at a pace everyone was comfortable with (you have time at each cenote to swim and she checked regularly if we needed to stop for water/bathrooms etc) The tour was a fab experience; definitely wouldn’t have been able to navigate to these places on my own. Transport to and from was smooth (public minivan to a small town then 4-seater motorbikes to each cenote; an experience in itself!) The cenotes we visited were magic... they were small ones that I’d not come across on Google and we had them mostly to ourselves. The family lunch was delicious. Great value tour — highly recommend!

It was all up to being lucky with the cenotes. The large tourbus groups always arrived when we were already leaving. The family lunch was canceled by the family but we went to a nice restaurant. The thing with the herbal medicinal plants didn't take place, but we weren't exactly interested in that anyways. The tour guide was really great. And by chance no other party had booked the tour so we had a private tour. It really was a great day.