Cave of the Sleeping Sharks
Just off the coast of Cancun, Isla Mujeres is home to a dive site known as the Cave of the Sleeping Sharks. Discovered in 1969 by an island resident, the cave is home to sharks that appear to be “sleeping” instead of constantly moving like they typically do. It’s a mysterious natural wonder that has baffled some divers and marine biologists.
The cave sits roughly 60 feet (20 meters) underwater and can be reached on dive tours from Isla Mujeres. If you’re coming from Cancun, hop on the ferry to reach the island; they run roughly every 30 minutes. Once on the island, you can get around on foot, golf cart, or scooter; the island is just 5 miles (8 kilometers) long.
Things to know before you go
- Cave of the Sleeping Sharks is ideal for scuba divers looking for something different to impress their dive buddies.
- The cave is not recommended for beginner divers due to its depth.
- National parks and many other natural attractions in Mexico require that visitors use biodegradable sunscreen, which can be found at local pharmacies and tourist shops.
How to get there
The ferry to Isla Mujeres departs from Puerto Juarez, just outside Cancun, and arrives on the northern end of the island, within walking distance of local dive operators.
When to get there
Peak season to visit the Cancun area is winter, when the weather is warm and dry. The Caribbean’s hurricane season runs from May through September, which is unpredictable but can mean rain and cloudy skies.
Underwater Museum of Art
One of the most popular dive sites off Isla Mujeres is the Underwater Museum of Art (Museo Subacuático de Arte). Opened in 2010, the sculpture park is the work of artist Jason deCaires Taylor and was designed as a counterpoint to the effects of climate change on coral reefs. The sculptures will evolve as coral grows and the native marine life make the museum its home.
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- Kin Ha Water Park (Balneario Kin Ha)
- Playa Norte (North Beach)
- Isla Mujeres
- Mandala Cancun Nightclub
- Jolly Roger Pirate Ship
- Captain Hook Cancun
- Cancun Scenic Tower (Torre Escénica)
- Palapas Park (Parque Las Palapas)
- Cancun Christ the King Church (Iglesia de Cristo Rey)
- El Rey Archaeological Zone (Zona Arqueológica El Rey)
- La Isla Shopping Village
- Cancun Wax Museum (Museo de Cera Cancún)
- Interactive Aquarium Cancun
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