Visitors on one of Tulum’s beaches got a surprise recently when they noticed a crocodile swimming in the water, and according to reports the reptile still has not been captured. The sighting took place outside of the Casa Malca hotel and a short time later guests at another hotel also reported seeing a crocodile. This time the sighting was outside of the Selina beachfront hotel, only a short distance away from the location of the other appearance of the large but reportedly calm reptile.
The tourists that noticed the crocodile enjoying a peaceful swim in the Caribbean Sea immediately reported the sighting and officials responded. When the Civil Protection authorities arrived on the scene of the sighting they attempted to capture the huge reptile but were unable to do so. It has still not been reported that the crocodile was caught but so far, no more sightings have been reported.
The Governor of Quintana Roo, which is the state that Tulum is in, took to his social media accounts to share images of the crocodile swimming in the ocean. Governor Carlos Joaquín accompanied his image with a statement, stating that “a crocodile went for a walk on the beaches of Tulum. Part of the biodiversity of our paradise.” While some might think seeing a huge reptile in the water near where tourists are swimming is scary, the Governor pointed out that nature and biodiversity such as this is what makes the Mexican Caribbean so special.
The Yucatan Peninsula is known for its broad spectrum of nature that goes beyond the Caribbean Sea. Visitors can find everything from ancient Mayan ruins to jungles surrounding various cities in the Riviera Maya region to natural swimming holes called cenotes, all within a short distance of cities like Tulum and Cancun. While many tourists visit the area specifically for the beaches, the nature throughout the peninsula is just as worth seeing.
It wasn’t long ago that tourists spotted another large reptile in Tulum, but this time it was swimming in one of the area cenotes. Cenotes are sinkholes naturally formed within limestone rock that fills with water from rain and from underground water. They make for amazing swimming spots because not only are the surroundings usually breathtaking but the water maintains a cool temperature throughout the year.
It is unusual to see a crocodile in a cenote near people but in this case one was noticed by swimmers in the water near them at the Casa Cenote in Tulum, and apparently it is a frequent visitor to this specific cenote. In fact, this crocodile has even been given a name and is known for peacefully swimming alongside visitors at the cenote. Panchito is of the Moreletii species, which is a type of Mexican crocodile.
One of the tourists that were in the water when, what may have been Panchito, appeared most recently posted a video of the reptile on Tik Tok and since then it has received over a million views. In the video viewers can see a handful of tourists racing to get away from the slow-moving crocodile, which was reportedly just swimming calmly through the waters and not bothering anyone. This is not the first time the reptile has scared visitors but no attacks have ever been reported.
The Riviera Maya area is a popular destination because it sits on the coast of the Caribbean Sea but further inland there is so much to explore. More and more visitors are beginning to realize this and it is only helping the much-loved tourist destination become even more popular than ever before. Crocodiles in the ocean are just another amazing sight in the area to see, even if it is a little scary.
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