Akumal Bay snorkeling tour groups are once again allowed to enter the water to swim with the turtles under the following conditions: Continue reading
While the snorkeling tours in Akumal Bay continue to be halted by PROFEPA, the newest info suggests that individual snorkelers are being strongly discouraged from wearing fins as well. This is being done in order to help prevent snorkelers from standing on the coral (which kills the coral over time) as they adjust their masks, etc. For the least amount of disruption to your snorkeling experience, be prepared to snorkel in front of the Secrets resort instead of further north, and please respect the buoys/markers for now.
Vacationers traveling to Akumal in the next few weeks should be aware that PROFEPA (the Federal Environmental Protection Agency in Mexico) has temporarily suspended tour group snorkeling in Akumal Bay. The agency determined that the original ruling of allowing only a certain number of tour group participants to snorkel had been grossly ignored by tour companies, so PROFEPA is trying to determine how to permanently resolve this issue while protecting the turtles, coral, and other sea life in the bay. At the present time, individual snorkelers, for the most part, are allowed to swim and snorkel in front of Secrets Akumal and ABBWR without being harassed, but snorkeling north of this area may result in being told to get out of the water (the northern end of the bay is where most of the sea grass beds are and where snorkel groups typically have entered the water in the past). There are buoys marking these areas, but there is a lot of confusion right now about who is allowed in the bay and exactly where people are allowed to snorkel. Some reports state that snorkeling is allowed as long as life vests and fins are not used, while others state info to the contrary. If fins and life vests are not allowed, this seems to be a very unsafe snorkeling practice unless it is done immediately offshore.
For those of you planning a trip to Akumal Bay to snorkel with sea turtles, please be aware that there are new rules in effect for snorkelers who have signed up with tour groups. At present, the new rule states the following: Continue reading