For the most part, drug related violence and crime is limited to the country’s border area’s and trafficking routes. The Riviera Maya is on the East Coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, and well removed from any troubles. If it wasn’t safe, we wouldn’t be living here. Of course, it makes sense to leave your cell phone, wallet/purse and passport locked away for safe keeping while out diving. You wouldn’t leave them on the beach in your own Country now would you...?
Don’t take our word for it, check with your local Mexican Embassy or Consulate.
As with most airports, on exiting the terminal, you will be offered transport services at variable rates ;-) We can arrange a private transfer to take you directly to your accommodation, or our facility for $120 (for 1-3 people) and $160 (for 3-10 people) one way. Tulum is 90-120 minutes’ drive from Cancun. Alternatively, there are air conditioned ADO buses leaving every 30 minutes that travel to Tulum via Playa Del Carmen, they may take 3-4 hours, but cost less than $20. If you intend to dive independently during your stay, we recommend booking a rental vehicle online before arrival to get the best deals.
We are in the heart of Tulum, in the Pueblo (Town), a 5 minute drive from Tulum beach, so for convenience, we usually recommend that you stay close by. There are plenty of local accommodation options, from backpacker hostels to cheap and cheerful hotels to boutique hotels, all within a few minutes’ walk of our facility. Self-catering apartments and luxury villas can be found on the outskirts of town. The Tulum beach area is home to all the “eco-chic” hotels that generally go for $200-$700 per night, although great online deals can be done in low-season. The beach is only 8kms away, but driving is slow and can take 30mins… The beaches North of Tulum, all the way to Cancun, are home to the “all-inclusive” beach resorts, often a good option for families with young children, good deals including flights can be found through your travel agent. Let us know what you are looking for and we can help point you in the right direction.
Riviera Maya weather is usually amazing, and there are only two seasons. The cooler and drier season ranges from November to April. The heat and humidity are greatly reduced this time of year. Although it may still rain, it comes in very quickly and leaves just as fast. The average temperature in the dry season is about 27 degrees Celsius or 81 Fahrenheit. A cool breeze often rolls in off the sea and keeps things cool. The warmer and wetter season ranges from May to October. Heavy rainfall usually occurs at night and can last for hours or just a few minutes. One advantage is that these storms tend to cool the area down and usually leave within a short time. Norte’s (or northern front storms) can cause overcast and humid conditions for a few days. The average temperature during the wet season averages around 31 degrees Celsius or 88 degrees Fahrenheit. Hurricane season is between June and October. Although Hurricanes are common in the Caribbean, they seldom make landfall in our little part of the world, and anyway, I think we are pretty safe underground ;-) The traditional holiday “high season” is from December to March, and the area is abuzz with divers and tourists alike, outside of these months it’s a far more relaxing environment, and often we will have the caves to ourselves…
Average water temps in the caves are 25c/77f.
I’m often surprised to hear questions like this, but here goes… The Riviera Maya is 120km’s of white sand beaches rolling into the Caribbean Sea, where swimming, kite boarding, or simply relaxing with a cold cerveza “may” take your mind off what is arguably the world’s finest cave diving :-) For a little bit of culture, you can visit stunning Mayan ruins in the middle of Tulum, or South at Muyil, and the world famous Chichen Itza is only a few hours’ drive inland. A scenic boat ride through ancient Mayan waterways in the Sian Ka’an Biosphere is a great way to spend half a day spotting manatees, crocodiles and numerous bird species. Kayaking and stand up paddle boarding in beautiful lagoons, adventure parks and eco-tours will keep the active amongst you busy. For those seeking a little more inner solitude, yoga and meditation is a big part of the Tulum lifestyle, with plenty of different studios to choose from.
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System is over 1000km long and second only to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in size. Although the shallow reef is “average”, there are sheer walls from 55m to 100m+ with outstanding visibility, good currents, and the possibility to see large pelagic species. Best done with a healthy dose of trimix and DPV’s :-)
Apart from the required diving gear and a sense of humor, it would be wise to bring a towel, a hat, and perhaps some insect repellant in the warmer months. Plenty of fluids to keep you hydrated, along with a packed lunch and some snacks will keep you fueled for what can sometimes be long tiring days (especially when they are training days).
YES (as long as it doesn’t come out of the tap). We all drink bottled purified water, all water in restaurants and bars is purified, as is the ice. So fear not, your frozen margarita is perfectly safe :-)
Although the large hospital is 40mins North in Playa Del Carmen, Tulum has an emergency hospital and a 24hr Red Cross station, along with numerous clinics and pharmacies. There are 2 hyperbaric facilities in Playa Del Carmen. Private medical insurance is always a good idea should something go awry…
Cash is always King, we accept both USD and Mexican Peso in exchange for our diving services. Credit card payments can be made via PayPal. Bank transfers are also ok. Local businesses (restaurants/bars etc.) prefer Peso, but USD is generally accepted in hotels. Many restaurants don’t accept credit cards. Safe ATM machines and money changers are in plentiful supply.