Swimming with Wild Turtles in Mexico

Mexico has got to be the ultimate summer destination. The combination of ivory sands, cheap meals, relaxed vibes and incredible food makes for a holiday like no other. Mexico really has got everything. You can do practically anything in Mexico, like water sports, bar-hopping, historical sites and food tours. But one significant draw card has to be the nature and wildlife. A specific example is the wild turtle reserves on the coast of Mexico. This is where you can swim with wild turtles, and explore their natural habitat. Here’s your guide on swimming with the wild turtles in Mexico.

How to Get There

The best place in Mexico to swim with the turtles is a tiny coastal town called Akumal. The easier landing point is Cancun, on the Yucatan Peninsula. Fly into Cancun airport, an absolutely massive place, flooded with Americans on tour. You will then take a taxi for another two hours to reach the coastal town of Playa Del Carmen. From Playa, you can take a Collectivo. These are mini-vans that carry people, and usually collect passengers from bus stops. For a few pesos, you can jump on the Collectivo, and it will stop at certain bus stations along the highway. After half an hour in the Collectivo, you’ll arrive at the Akumal bus stop on the side of the highway. You will then follow a long, sandy road, heading straight into the shrubbery, towards the ocean. You’ll walk for about ten minutes, before a small town starts to appear. That’s when you know you’ve made it to Akumal.

You’ll pass an abundance of vendors, selling tours, water sports, wet suits, beach gear and food. Keep walking past all of these (No, Gracias) and continue towards the beach. Once you get there, you’ll be awestruck. This beach is truly the epitome of perfect beach. Bright white sand, perfectly aqua water, sparsely spaced palm trees. It’s absolutely glorious.

The Experience

You’ll get yourself organised with the gear, and slowly ease yourself into the warm tropical Mexican waters. It’s very shallow, and with the life-jacket, this experience is accessible for everyone. The guide will take you through the waters, to a section where sea grass grows and is the turtle’s environment. The first turtle you see will be really exciting. You can get up and close with the turtles, as they feed on the sea grass and slowly rise and fall through the water to take a breath. However, you cannot touch them. They will glide gracefully through the water, feeding and enjoying the warm water, as you slowly swim around them, taking photos and smiling like you’ve never smiled before. These creatures are truly enchanting and magical, you’ll want to watch them meandering through the water for hours.

Booking a Reliable Guide

You will need a guide to take you swimming with the turtles. There are some very strict regulations about exactly where you can swim, to protect the environment and local habitat of the turtles. When you get to the beach, ignore the multiple vendors to the left along the beach, they are not authorized and will charge a significant amount of money to let you swim with turtles. Continue to the wooden beach shack, it will have life jackets hanging from the roof. This is an authorised government organisation, and the money you pay will go directly to conservation. The experience will cost around $50USD each, including a personal guide for your group, life jackets, and snorkelling gear. Knowing that your cash goes to the right place will be extremely satisfying.

Relax on the Beach Afterwards

After the experience, it’s all you’re going to talk about. So grab your towel, and laze on the beach for a few hours, soaking in the Vitamin D. there are a number of hotels, stores and restaurants if you want to stay for longer.

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