In the small fishing town of Dzilam Bravo they have one of those unique attractions that makes them a special destination. A few meters from its coast there are several springs, one of them is so special that National Geographic went on an expedition in 2003.

Dzilam de Bravo It is a small fishing village on the north coast of Yucatan, the last town east of the Emerald coast. In the excursions that leave by boat they take you to visit the wetland of Bocas de Dzilam, an ecological system very rich in biodiversity.

They offer different tours of the mangrove, bird watching, beaches and above all, its great attraction, an exceptional water hole.

Do not miss the best visits in the surroundings of Mérida

dzilam de bravo mouths of dzilam

What are the water eyes

The porosity of the limestone rock of the soil of the Yucatan Peninsula causes rainwater to filter through and fresh water to pass underground, to the water table. All these subterranean waters that run through the subsoil of the Peninsula, like the surface rivers, look for a place to exit. On the coast of Quintana Roo, a large part of the fresh waters flow into the Caribbean Sea, as in the cove of Yal-Kú, Xel Há or Xcaret.

Another way of leaving the water is in the form of a volcano, through holes that are created by the natural pressure of the water towards the surface. We call these exits water eyes, which are coastal cenotes or springs. We see these springs in a large part of the coastal area of ​​the Peninsula, in mangrove areas, lagoons, estuaries or in the sea.

The water eyes they are the suppliers of the lagoons and mangrove areas where fresh fresh water springs are created that gush from the depths.

Eye of water in Celestún, a source of groundwater

Cenote Elepetén, waterhole in Dzilam Bravo

From the quiet town of Dzilam Bravo you have a magnificent opportunity to get to know this natural phenomenon. In the mangrove area that you visit in Bocas de Dzilam you can bathe in the waterhole, known locally as Elepetén cenote.

Fish usually live in these freshwater springs and it is the natural trough for the living beings that inhabit the area. Many mammals and birds come to drink, watch carefully and in silence to observe the fauna on the beautiful wooden platform walk to the waterhole.

cenote elepeten
The reddish tone is due to the red mangrove that dyes the critaline waters.

Water eye Xbuya has

The other water eyes that you will see on your walk will be in the open sea. Just 400 meters from the coast there are several freshwater holes gushing a few meters from the sea surface. When you go by in the boat you see strange water movement forming constant circles, those are the water eyes.

At sight we are not talking about a spectacular phenomenon, but if I explain you about the water hole xbuya Ha You will see how you will see it with other eyes, it is unique.

water eye xbuya ha
Eye of water Xbuya Ha

This Eye of water Xbuya Ha It was a reason for National Geographic to make an expedition in the 2003. What is special about it? Through the hole in its diameter they can come out 3600 liters of water per minuteThis is outrageous. If you compare that in 1 minute of shower, approximately 19 liters come out (according to WHO data), imagine the amount of water coming out of that mouth. The Eye of water Xbuya Ha It is connected to other outcrops in the area. The National Geographic expedition is the one that provides this data.

As Genaro's talkative explained to us, the divers had to climb through the hole with a lot of weight to go down, as the strong current did not allow them to enter the cavity. When they did, they covered about 400 meters before the hole was narrow enough to end the adventure.

Clearly el Eye of water Xbuya Ha it's a unique natural phenomenon. At first glance it is a strong area of ​​moving water, but for those of us who are excited about these natural delicacies, you will surely appreciate how magnificent the place is. It's really cool to bathe and feel the force.

Tours prices in Dzilam de Bravo by boat

The trips towards the Bocas de Dzilam wetland They come out of the Dzilam Bravo lighthouse building. They are the facilities of the old Sayachuleb cooperative (aguada bird). Now they run the business in a particular way. The disintegration of the cooperative has supposed a neglect of the place when government aid for maintenance did not arrive. The boats and their natural environment are their most precious treasure to attract the little tourism that comes to them.

They offer various excursions, you can also camp on the beach, rent a kayak, go fishing (1200 mxn) and eat the fish in delicious ceviche on the boat. Some of the most common tours are the following, prices are per boat:

  • Travel: Eye of water Xbuya Ha, cenote Elepetén. Duration: 2 hours Cost: 750 mxn per boat, maximum 8 people.
  • Travel: Rio Angosto where birds are observed, water eye Xbuya Ha, Elepetén cenote. Duration: 3 hours Cost: 1200 mxn per boat, maximum 8 people.
  • Long route: They take you to the beach of the Bocas de Dzilam, eye of water Xbuya Ha, cenote Elepetén. Duration: 3 hours Cost: 1500 mxn per boat, maximum 8 people.
dzilam bravo mouths of dzilam
water eye xbuya ha
dzilam mouths
dzilam bravo

Dzilam de Bravo is one of those places that is definitely worth a stop on your way. Thank you very much for the trip to Genaro and Arturo, the morning was very instructive and fun. After the walk take a beer (beer) at the lighthouse restaurant is a great idea, eating by the sea always tastes better.

Explore Dzilam Bravo and its exceptional 1 water eye

Dzilam Bravo, nature

LOCATION: Dzilam Bravo is located 101 km from Mérida, along federal highway 176 towards Motul, passing through Cansahcab and Dzidzantún, to reach Dzilam Bravo (about two and a half hours by car). You can go from Progress traveling the 82 km of the beautiful Costa Smeralda highway. From Izamal it is 1 hour by car
HOW TO GET IN PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION? Sail combis from Progreso, Izamal, Tizimín to Dzilam Bravo. From Merida bus leaves on the Northeast line
ACCOMMODATION:there are cheap lodgings. In the towns of the coast as Santa Ana, San Crisanto, Telcach Puerto and so on to Progreso find lodging and rent houses for days. In nearby Dzidzantún is the recommended Hacienda San Francisco Tzacalha.
WHAT TO BRING?Comfortable and light clothing, and hat to cover your head. Protect yourself from the sun and insects, do not forget your swimsuit and a diver's mask. The workers usually wear sight glasses on the boat, but sometimes they forget them.

Good way,

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Sandra Salvadó Training photographer, traveler by vocation and certified tourism guide by the Government of Mexico. We promote natural wonders and contemporary Mayan culture. Great fan of pre-Hispanic history. Author of the blog and co-founder of The Shortest Path Travel, agency that guides you through alternative paths in Mayan lands. Social and sustainable tourism in the Yucatan Peninsula and Chiapas.
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