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INTRODUCING CHOCHOLÁ

Go swimming in otherworldly cave pools. Marvel at treetop-skimming Mayan temples. Pop to Mérida for a city break in a day. Circled by forest, Chocholá feels miles from anywhere, but puts the pearls of the Yucatán within easy reach. It’s a little like a Mexican piñata: the deeper you go, the more you discover.

For downtime or high-spirited adventures, this tucked-away Mexican village is the perfect base.

Things to do

WATER

A visit to this part of Mexico wouldn’t be complete without a trip to a cenote – an ethereal, underground pool. These secret sites are splashed around the landscape, but Chocholá is home to a particularly special one. At San Ignacio cenote you can float in shimmering, azure water within a small, low-lit cave that’s fringed with stalactites. Spa facilities and changing rooms make this far from a caveman experience.

HISTORY

Chocholá places you deep in Mayan land, with major sites such as Chichén Itzá day trip distance away. But you’ll find intriguing ruins close to your boutique retreat too. Pay a visit to Oxkintok, an archaeological head-scratcher that has historians wondering why it was deserted. You can peer inside its ancient labyrinth and marvel at stone column sculptures, guessing at life here thousands of years ago.

NATURE

The caves around Chocholá aren’t just for swimming in. At Grutas de Calcehtok, grab a torch and get your hands dirty exploring the Yucatán’s longest cave system. Depending how adventurous you feel, you can choose a short tour or full-blown exploration that will have you crawling and climbing. It’s all worth it when you reach mysterious, vine-strewn caverns that were once Mayan ceremonial sites.

Make space in your suitcase when you come to Chocholá. In nearby Mérida you’ll find woven hammocks, Panama hats and locally made guayaberas (loose, light shirts).

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