Tulum ruins and Swim with Turtles

(28 customer reviews)

PRIVATE TOUR: Early access private tour! Private guided tour of Tulum ruins, followed by a swim with turtles at the Akumal bay and a delicious lunch at a local restaurant.

  • Pick up and drop off at your hotel with private air-conditioned transportation
  • Experienced certified private guide
  • Entrance fees and national park bracelet at Tulum ruins
  • Marine park fee at Akumal
  • High quality snorkeling gear
  • Cool drinks in the van (waters, soda)
  • Lunch with one main course a la carte

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    We advise 06:45am from your hotel.

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    We advise 07:30am from your hotel.

    We advise 07:45am from your hotel.

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Tulum ruins and Swim with Turtles Private Tour

Swim with turtles tour … with Tulum ruins! When it comes to making the most of your trip to the Riviera Maya, there are two things you should definitely do: visit a Mayan archaeological site and enjoy the stunning natural beauty of the Caribbean Sea while snorkeling. This all-inclusive package, which combines a guided tour of Tulum with the chance to go snorkeling with sea turtles, will check both of those activities off your list. Better still, this private tour is ideal for families and those who are new to snorkeling!

We’ll start the day by visiting the ancient Mayan ruins of Tulum, a key trading post that was used by the famous civilization during their Post Classic period.

They traded all kinds of items here, from honey and textiles to precious stones and coffee beans. Your professional guide will lead you to all of Tulum’s most popular attractions, including the main temple El Castillo and the fascinating artwork in the Temple of the Frescoes. You’ll also have plenty of time to soak in the amazing views of the nearby Caribbean Sea, and of course take as many photos as you like.

Once your group is finished enjoying the wonders of Tulum, we’ll visit Akumal, a protected bay nearby where you can go for a swim with turtles! We’ll provide all of the equipment you need, and a professional certified guide will accompany you to ensure that everyone has a fun, safe time while snorkeling with these majestic creatures.

After a morning packed with exploring ruins on foot and swimming with turtles, you’ll undoubtedly be a bit hungry. That’s why our final stop is a local restaurant in Akumal, where you can sit back, relax, and enjoy a traditional Mexican lunch with your friends and family.

You will be back to your hotel beginning of the afternoon and still have plenty of time to enjoy the pool or the beach!

General info

  • Private Tour: Only you, the guide and the driver, nobody else!
  • Duration: 6/7 hours
  • Physicality: Easy
  • Age: 4+
  • Snorkeling: Basic swimming skills required. This excursion suits everyone from novices to experts.
  • Swim with turtles: Absolute Adventure is working with a local cooperative according to the Mexican law.(Consult Akumal Swim with Turtles regulation.)
    In the event of the port being closed by the authorities making swimming with the turtles unauthorized, the tour will be amended to the Tulum Cenote tour and the price adjusted according to the option chosen.
  • What’s on the menu? Selection of quesadillas, tacos,fajitas, grilled chicken, grilled fish … with vegetarian, fish, shrimp, chicken & meat options. With corn or flour tortillas. We can accommodate special diets and allergies, just let us know!
  • Mobility: We can adapt this tour for people with disability.

Price includes

  • Pick up and drop off at your hotel with private air-conditioned transportation (Booster car seat and baby car seat available on request)
  • Experienced certified private guide
  • All entrance fees
  • Tulum CONAP fee (mandatory)
  • Akumal bay cooperative fee and CONAP fee (mandatory)
  • High quality snorkeling gear (mask, snorkel, life jackets)
  • Cool drinks in the van (waters, soda)
  • Lunch in a restaurant with one main course a la carte

Price excludes

  • Ruins: In case you bring a go pro camera, a video camera or a phone with a selfie stick, there is a 50 pesos (less than 3USD) per device charged at the entrance of each archeological site, to be paid in pesos (INAH tax) – Drones and Tripods for video/cameras are forbidden.)
  • Drinks at the restaurant
  • Tips


Our tours are scheduled at the best hours to avoid high traffic and heat on the sites.

07:00am: Private transportation from your hotel to Tulum
08:00am – 10:00am: Visit of Tulum ruins
10:00am – 10:30am: Transportation
10:30am – 11:30pm: Swim with turtles
12:00pm – 01:30pm: Lunch in a restaurant
01:30pm – 02:00pm: Transportation to your hotel

Itinerary is based on a departure from Playa del Carmen.
Pick up time is recommended time to avoid the crowds. We can leave later if you want to.

This tour doesn’t include Tulum centro/Tulum beach-hotel areas. Only Tulum Mayan ruins.

What to bring

  • Resusable water bottle: at Tulum Ruins, it is forbidden to enter the ruins with plastic water bottles. If you wish to bring water for the visit, please bring your own reusable water bottle. We’ll have water in the van for you to fill or refill.
  • Beach Towels
  • Swimsuit (We recommend wearing it in the morning and feel free to change after snorkeling activities)
  • Comfortable shoes for the ruins (We recommend tennis shoes)
  • Flip flops or sandals for water activities (Water shoes are optional but can be worn for added comfort)
  • Hat and sunglasses
  • Sunscreen and we recommend wearing a rash-guard/UV-Shirt for water activities*
  • Mosquito repellent*
  • Cash (for tour payment, tips, souvenirs…)
  • Camera/Underwater camera/Waterproof case for your phone
  • Ruins: In case you bring a go pro camera, a video camera or a phone with a selfie stick, there is a 50 pesos (less than 3USD) per device charged at the entrance of each archeological site, to be paid in pesos (INAH tax) – Drones and Tripods for video/cameras are forbidden.

* It is forbidden to apply sunblock and repellent before swimming or snorkeling activities to prevent water pollution and preserve the reefs, even if they are biodegradable products. Compliance with this rule is essential for the protection of the environment.
You can bring personal belongings you require during the tour (phone, camera, extra set of clothes…). While you are visiting or snorkeling you can leave the things you don’t need in the van. Our driver will always be in the van, so keeping your things safe!

28 reviews for Tulum ruins and Swim with Turtles

  1. Jonathon

    Fantastic tour of Tulum with Alex. We learnt so much and had an amazing experience. Highly recommend this group.

  2. Michelle

    Amazing. My husband and I had an amazing day with Arturo visiting the ruins and swimming with the turtles. He was extremely knowledgeable and we learned so many interesting things about the ruins. Arturo was also very accommodating and easy to talk to. We felt very comfortable with him and enjoyed a beautiful lunch as part of the tour.
    The guide that took us snorkeling was excellent especially as neither of us have snorkeled and I’m a basic swimmer.
    Well worth the cost of a private tour. This was the highlight of our time in Tulum

  3. Karen

    Memories that will live on….
    Best tour guide, Alex!!!! Gave you enough historical information without overloading us! We arrived at the ideal time when there were less tourists and left when the crowds arrived. Gave us do’s and don’ts tips, which was very helpful for our group! Our group had the best time in both Tulum and Akumal with a final stop for an authentic Mexican lunch at a local restaurant!

  4. Tom

    Just perfect to relax and enjoy the sites.
    Arturo, our guide, and the whole company experience was fantastic. We went early to avoid crowds and it was so worth it!!! We had the architectural sites to ourselves for photos and could hear the guide very well.
    The turtle swim was exceptional, and the lunch to follow was close by and worth it to not have to pack extra things to take care of ourselves.
    Arturo was amazing. Joshua was amazing. And I felt comfortable leaving my stuff with Carlos in the car.

  5. Christine

    We did Tulum ruins & snorkeling with turtles in Akumal. A great day with Rodrigo and Alex! Rodrigo is a safe and courteous driver. Alex is very knowledgeable of the ruins and Mayan culture- our learning started right away on the drive to Tulum, he also takes great photos! We were blessed to see turtles, starfish & stingrays while snorkeling. Our lunch was relaxing and delicious. Claire was available to answer questions I had via email and on the phone. Highly recommend Absolute Adventure private tours. ¡Muchas gracias amigos!

  6. Christine F

    We just had such a wonderful day yesterday! From pick up at our resort, to learning in the car on the way to the ruins, to our snorkel experience and then lunch! It was wonderful! No stress, no worries… just exploring and doing and seeing new things with our fabulous guide Alex. Definitely choose this company if you plan on doing of these outings. Can’t say enough good things. Gracias!

  7. d’erra

    Literally the best experience EVER!!! If you want to learn more about Mayan culture this the tour for you!!! If you want to experience nature up close and personal this is the experience for you. The guides are the kind, warm and knowledgeable people. Definitely a must do!!!!

  8. Toryunab

    Visited the Mayan ruins and swimming with turtles. Everything was amazing great views and experiences worth waking up at 6am for! Tour guides were great provided cold drinks and snacks!

  9. Poozee S.

    The best guide/tour experience I have ever done. The guides were super kind, helpful, and made sure to accommodate us multiple times throughout the day. I felt very safe and had a good time

  10. Nic B

    Organised a trip to Tullum and swimming with turtles with them. Alex G and Carlos really looked after us the entire day with both the history of the ruins and Mayan people as well as the tours themselves. The restaurant they chose for lunch was perfect also.
    They organised all the tickets and entry details and we spent all our time doing things not waiting.
    Prompt, efficient and answered all our questions and needs. Would recommend

  11. James

    Great company, good value, and definitely recommended
    We had a fantastic private Tulum and Turtle Snorkelling tour with Absolute Adventure. Right from the start, from booking and pre-trip communication, the service was slick, easy and professional. We were collected from out hotel on time and enjoyed a quick transfer to Tulum, without all the nonsense of having to drive around hotels collecting other guests. On the tour we had a great guide who looked after us and took us around the ruins and then the nature reserve. We finished with a lovely lunch of the best tacos we had eaten all holiday. Would definitely recommend this company.

  12. Kerry

    We did the Tulum and Turtle tour with Absolute Adventures. JJ, our guide, was friendly and knowledgeable and provided us with lots of information about what we were seeing. Snorkeling with the turtles was the highlight of our holiday. Would highly recommend Absolute Adventures.

  13. Lynda

    What a great tour! Claire was amazing with reserving and prompt communications throughout. Alex and Rodrigo made the day wonderful! We did the private tour of Tulum and snorkeling with turtles and then lunch. I must admit the 6am departure was no fun BUT we were the first to enter Tulum and as we left it was already very hot and swarms of people arriving! So thankful for that early departure 😜. Snorkeling with the turtles and lunch was good. Alex’s knowledge, energy and enthusiasm made the day! Rodrigo was a great driver allowing Alex to focus on us which was great! would highly recommend this company – they were great! Many thanks to all for helping to make our vacation awesome!

  14. Kayla

    Me and my husband were nervous to book a private tour but it was one of the best tours we went on the entire trip. Juan (JJ) was a fantastic tour guide! He was so fun and very knowledgeable about everything he was showing us. He took many great photos for us and knew how to beat the crowds! Omar our driver was also great and made us feel very safe with his driving which I can say is very rare compared to the other rides we received in Mexico.

  15. Karen

    Excellent tour guide – enjoyed our day! Our group of 7 family members had a fantastic time touring the Tulum ruins and swimming with the turtles at Akumal. We enjoyed the lunch as well. It was and excellent day. Rodrigo drove and got us there and back safely. Arturo was an awesome guide through the Tulum. He managed to steer us away from the crowds and we never felt rushed or crowded. We did leave early in the morning and there were lots of people walking in as we left. Arturo was knowledgeable about the ruins and the vegetation. We didn’t do a cenote swim as that was not something we wanted included. It was so nice to visit Arturo while we had an authentic Mexican meal at a restaurant near Akumal.

  16. elizabeth

    Loved our private Tulum and Turtle tour. We took the Tulum and Turtle tour with Dulce as our guide and Carlos as our driver. The hospitality of the private tour was so nice and easy. We had our 6-year-old with us, and they were very understanding of her needs. Dulce knows so much about Tulum, shared great information with us, and answered many questions. She even took the shadier path to the exit when our daughter was getting hot. Dulce made sure we found our way to all the things we needed in Akumal Bay (where to put our things, our snorkeling guide, changing rooms, etc). We had a delicious and lovely lunch after our snorkeling tour. We loved being able to leave gear in the van knowing it was secure. Highly recommend this group for a private tour!

    No sunscreen is allowed in Akumal Bay. We wore long sleeve rash guards and swim pants and didn’t get burned. We did see turtles! Also starfish and many kinds of fish.

  17. Jean

    Dulce was a great tour guide! She was very knowledgeable and accommodating. We snorkeled and swam w the turtles with Miguel and he was especially helpful to me as a nervous snorkeler. Our driver, Carlos, was a careful driver and we really enjoyed our day with the entire team. I would recommend them 100%!!

  18. OJ

    This was such a well done, organized, personal and truly vip experience with Alex as our tour guide and Jorge as our driver. We did the Ruins of Tulum and Swimming with the sea turtles. We highly recommend and suggest it. We can’t wait to come back to this part of Mexico and take part in their other tours.

  19. Oria

    Highly, highly recommend! We will definitely use Absolute Adventure Mexico again next time we are here. Alex, our tour guide and Jorge our driver were AWESOME! Jorge was a safe driver taking us where we needed to be and Alex was SO KNOWLEDGEABLE!! We ranged from 8-77 yrs old and he went above and beyond! Can’t say enough great things!

  20. Yani

    Dulce & Carlos were truly amazing, they were very sweet and very accommodating to us and our children. We went to the Tulum Ruins and to swim with the sea turtles. We were picked up exactly on time at our hotel lobby and arrived at the ruins early which was great because it got hot…as in super hot quickly! Dulce was very knowledgeable and answered all our and ours kids very inquisitive questions. She took many family pictures of us and was just overall a pleasure! They provided us with lots of water and other drinks to keep us hydrated. When you arrive to swim with the turles they hand you off to a snorkel person who is actually the one you go snorkeling with. We were provided all the equipment needed and were able to keep our valuables in the van which was great! I will point out, the snorkeling with turtles is off the bay where there is sea grass that the turles like to eat is, you do not get on a boat…you swim from the beach.
    We had a wonderful time and saw 4 turles and stingrays. The snorkel guy carries a life buoy in case anyone gets tired from the swimming. Overall I recommend this company, very professional and Dulce and Carlos were amazing! Oh and the lunch we had in Akumal (by the turles) was delicious!!

  21. Harry Boyer

    Arturo and Omar were our Guide and driver ..they both showed extreme patience with my daughter and i as we ran a little late they still made time to stop for coffee..Thank God..the day was truly pleasurable ..Arturo becomes an instant friend that goes out of his way to make sure you are taken care of and attends to your request as if he truly considers you his personal guest in his country..and even when hit with my daughter’s desire for an authentic coconut beverage in Mexico he made it a mission to make it happen..the turtle experience arranged by Absolute Adventures is a Wonderful Experience but make it A forever Memorable Day and ask that Arturo be your guide ..You will Be Grateful You Did!

  22. Valerie

    We decided to do this private tour to Tulum and Akumal bay. We were lucky to get the best tourgide. We had the most amazing tour with Arturo who showed us the most important places on the ruins and told us lots about the Mayan history. He was in a good mood for the whole morning and we felt very comfortable travelling along with him and his driver Ervin, who was the first driver we had we felt save with.

    Also we received a lot of photos taken by our guide during our tour which are amazing. Such a great photographer!

    Thank you so much for this amazing experience and fun day with the two of you.

  23. Oliver

    The tour guide was energetic and very informative. We enjoyed snorkeling, drinks, and relaxing on the beach! One of the best adventures every!

  24. Michelle

    We went first to Tulum. It was still early so we avoided crowds and heat. Then, Nicolas choosed the best cenote. It was beautiful and we were the only ones there! Finaly we went to swim with turtles. We had such a great time, the lunch was delicious. We could choose anything we wanted at the Mexican restaurant! Can’t recommend them enough

  25. Natasha

    We booked last minute for a Tulum/snorkel with turtles tour. It was to be or last adventure before leaving PDC the next day. Claire responded immediately and we were set to go. It was a private tour and well worth it! We also ate at a local restaurant in Akumal and it was wonderful.

  26. James

    Everything was well timed and organised by our guide Juan. We went at out own pace and took a lot of pictures. Juan was knowledgable and fun. It couldn’t have been better. Thanks Absolute Adventure Mexico!

  27. Brittany

    We did the Tulum and Turtles tour. It was fantastic! Tulum was beautiful and we were there before it was too busy. Our tour guide had a lot of interesting facts to share with us. Snorkeling with the sea turtles was so cool. We saw about 6 or so which was totally rad. We loved having the van to ourselves and getting to take as much time as we needed everywhere.

  28. Vic

    We highly recommend Absolute Adventure Mexico. Chris and Claire run an amazing tour. Safe, professional and most of all FUN!!! We will definitely be visiting again!!!!

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