• Home
  • Blog
  • destinos
  • Cenotillo, The City of Cenotes
<span id="hs_cos_wrapper_name" class="hs_cos_wrapper hs_cos_wrapper_meta_field hs_cos_wrapper_type_text" style="" data-hs-cos-general-type="meta_field" data-hs-cos-type="text" >Cenotillo, The City of Cenotes</span>

Cenotillo, The City of Cenotes

11 march 2018
3 min. de lectura

If you think its name is related to cenotes, you are right. This municipality, located just over 100 kilometers from Mérida on the road between Izamal and Tizimín, owes its name to the large number of cenotes ("dzonot") found there, and particularly to a small one located in the municipal seat.


When you arrive at the center of this town you can breathe an atmosphere of tranquility. In its central square you will find a kiosk, benches and gardens... but very few people, since the hot conditions make life go by very early at dawn or when the sun goes down.

At one side is the municipal palace that stands out for a clock tower dating from 1884 and that works today marking the hours with chimes. You can also visit the churches of Santa Clara, which has a cenote for observation in the back; and the one dedicated to the Virgin of the Nativity, both built in the 17th century. On the outskirts of the city is the town of Tixbacab where you can visit the former hacienda or the archaeological remains of Tzebtún.


 But let's get back to what you are probably waiting for, the cenotes of this town. To know them you have to know that what stands out from the inhabitants of Cenotillo is their kindness, especially to tell you how to discover those hidden cenotes that only they know, since most of them are located on common land with access for locals.

In Cenotillo you will find open cenotes and others located in caverns or caves.  There are 12 cenotes registered for tourism purposes by the environmental authorities; however, locals speak of more than 130 cenotes. The most important open cenotes are Catak Dzonot, Itzamná, Mul'Dzonot, K'ai-pech, which are suitable for bathing, diving and observation; A'yin, Xoch and San Miguel are only for observation. 


The most important is the Usil cenote, a semi-enclosed type inside a grotto 2 kilometers from Cenotillo, on the Buctzotz-Tizimín road. It is accessed through a side entrance and descends by stairs to reach the blue water mirror that measures 20 meters long by 6 meters wide. Its great depth of 112 meters makes it extremely attractive for diving. It is advisable to wear a life jacket even if you are just swimming, avoid using sunscreen and be very careful when descending the slope.


Usil is a cenote that has many stories because it is believed to be inhabited by a guardian that some have identified with an old man or a snake that lives in its depths. What we can tell you is to be cautious and go with a local. Another cenote located 4 kilometers from Cenotillo is Xooch. It has palapas, life jackets and conditions to practice spelunking at the Tsonot Kaaj tourist stop. To get to these cenotes do not hesitate to get on this route is ideal for a tricitaxi or mototaxi in the center of town. Remember to wear comfortable clothes and shoes.

This route is ideal for those who are looking for different cenotes to discover, for those who love adventure and nature as well as coexistence with the locals. 

Violeta H. Cantarell

Author: Violeta H. Cantarell

“Meridana,” traveler, animal lover, passionate reader, commentator, and enthusiastic promoter of the natural and human beauty of Yucatán.

Get the latest articles and much more from the best of Yucatan in your inbox!

Main topics that may interest you

Related articles