Xel ha Park is essentially a natural aquarium that provides many activities to fill your day with adventures. Because the entry fee pays for an all-inclusive admission, we didn’t need to bring food, towels, snorkeling equipment or even money for lockers which simplified this adventure. We walked into the park and made our way to a tube ride which led us through a mangrove forest before expelling us into the snorkeling lagoon.
Here you could participate in numerous activities such as cliff jumping (which Susan braved) zip lining into the water (which we all braved) and other adventurous activities. Because we were pressed for time we were limited in what we could do but besides the tube ride we were able to
- see and hear about 10 parrots
- see a toucan close up
- walk onto a glass bottom boat and look at the colorful fish below
- discover many coati animals which are indigenous to the area
- discuss what a cenote is, although we didn’t have time to see or jump into one
Some of the adventures available here that we would definitely want to investigate next time include:
- Sea Trek® Xel-Ha – allows you to safely walk on the bottom of the lagoon without requiring scuba training
- Snuba – combines snorkeling and scuba by allowing you to use snorkeling equipment that is attached to compressed air tanks located on the surface
- Swim with the manatees
- Stingray encounter (swim with them)
- Zip Bike – a bicycle on a zip line gives you a bird’s eye view of the landscape
As is evident, there is a ton of extremely cool adventures available at Xel Ha. We absolutely loved this adventure and would go back and spend an entire day here so that we could take part in all of the activities. Although we were not able to squeeze in snorkeling during this trip, others in our party who did said that although they had to swim longer distances (than in Akumal) to find fish, when the schools were found they were as vibrant and plentiful as what you see on the Xel Ha brochures.
I think the biggest lesson learned here was that it is ok to, in a safe environment, step a little bit outside your comfort zone and take a calculated risk and enjoy the adventures that are in front of you. Susan set this example for the girls by jumping off the cliff even though it was intimidating. Hopefully the cliff jump planted a seed for the girls to enjoy life and to take a chance sometimes.