Mexico´s underwater cathedrals concealed within the Yucatan Peninsula hide gems for divers and archaeologists
A network of more than 3,000 pools serve as entry points into the Yucatan’s underwater rivers. Famed underwater photographer Lia Barrett has captured the mystery and beauty of Mexico´s Yucatan cenotes in a beautiful collection. Lia is a photo editor at underwater photography magazine Dive Photo Guide. Barrett has explored exotic dive meccas such as Thailand’s Similan Islands and Indonesia’s Komodo and Raja Ampat Islands. More recently she shifted her viewfinder away from Technicolor reef creatures, in favour of featuring free divers.
“I could vaguely make out the limestone walls as we dove deeper inside the cavern. Our bubbles reverberated off the ceiling. Each Darth Vader-like exhale mutated into a locomotive thundering overhead. I loved swimming into the Car Wash, one of the famous cenotes of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. That one is a must-see destination for serious scuba and free divers.
(Credit Lia Barrett)
Lia spent five days scouting Mexico´s underwater cathedrals. Then two intense days shooting with two free divers. They dove as deep as 30m and were supported by safety divers who helped them replenish with assisted air. What emerged is a captivating co-mingling of art and adventure that will lure more divers to the cenotes.
The theme of the shoot reflects Barrett’s childhood love of fairytales. Hence the dreamy images of a Sleeping Beauty-like character and woodland animal silhouettes. But the over-arching goal was to create images that force viewers to look twice.
Live and let Dive
“I figure, if I can capture their attention through imagery, they’ll take more interest in the waters. I think many environmental activists get engaged by exploring. I hope my photos encourage people to come experience the cenotes for themselves. The hope is that in doing so, they will also discover a desire to protect them.”
Lomas Travel offers a wide range of cenote excursions through the regions most experienced providers. www.lomastravel.com