El Eden cenote

El Eden Cenote, also known as Cenote Jardin del Eden, simply Cenote Eden, or Cenote Ponderosa, is one of the most beautiful cenotes in Playa del Carmen.

Cenote El Eden is a little slice of paradise on Earth! Often touted as one of the area’s unmissable cenotes, El Eden cenote is a large, beautiful pool of cool, clear water. Cenote is ideal for a relaxing dip if the Mexican sun has left you needing a break. Surrounded by stunning plant life and scenery, this cenote is a photographer’s dream.

Swimming and relaxing

As an open cenote, access to the water is very easy, and an amazing day out for all the family. Many people come just to enjoy the cenote’s beauty at surface level. Snorkeling here is a memorable experience and highly recommended, even just below the surface.

The water is incredibly clear, and many fish (e.g., Guppy, xiphos, cichlids), aquatic plants, small turtles, and freshwater crayfish exist. It is possible to jump into the water, where the depth reaches 4-5 m, from a platform and a tree. I saw children, adults, and even a lady in her sixties jump out of the tree.

Cavern and Cave diving

But, as with most of the best cenotes, cavern and cave diving are worth trying. Cenote El Eden has a large system of caves with rooms of all sizes. It’s the perfect choice if you are a less experienced diver, as the cavern line of Cenote Jardin del Eden will let you see a wondrous snippet of what cave diving offers. Swim beside various species of fish, keep an eye out for the slider turtles, and enjoy amazing views of the underwater caves and speleotherms.

This cave system has fresh and saltwater zones, with the halocline starting at (40 ft) 12-13 m depth. There are clear manifestations of freshwater drainage. The saltwater areas are typical examples of white Swiss cheese, while the freshwater area is visible in the decorations and sinter formations.

From Cenote El Eden, certified cave divers can access the entire Ponderosa cave system and explore other famous cenotes. These include Zacil Cenote, Little Joe Cenote, X’Tabay (Chikin Ha) Cenote, Corral Cenote, Azul Cenote, and Cristalino Cenote, as well as many other small cenotes throughout the cave system.

The most popular cave dives here are the River Run route, the upstream route to Cenote X’Tabay (Chikin Ha), and the route to Cenote Chapel.


Our Ponderosa system cave diving video


Ponderosa system cave lines map

Ponderosa system cave lines map
Ponderosa system cave lines map

The first explorers were Nancy DeRosa, Tony DeRosa, and Steve Gerrard in July 1990.

Other explorers were Shelly Baker, Bernie Birnbach, Mauro Bordigon, Steve Bogearts, Guy Bryant, Fred Devos, Pablo Diaz, Craig LaPorte, Gary Lemme, Dan Lins, Mike Madden, Bil Philips, Steve Pittman, Daniel Riordan, Harve Thorn, Tony Thorn, Gary Walten, Kay Walten, German Yanez, and others.


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