Sargassum seaweed is currently making landfall along Cancun’s coast, causing a buildup on the shore and an unpleasant smell. While Cancun authorities are working to limit the spread of the seaweed, it cannot be fully controlled. Travelers heading to Cancun should expect a higher incidence of seaweed on beaches this season but can always visit cenotes instead for an escape. Cenotes are natural pits filled with clear waters and were once used by ancient Mayans for sacrificial offerings. Below are some frequently asked questions about sargassum seaweed in Cancun.
What is sargassum seaweed?
Sargassum seaweed is a brown algae that can grow in large quantities, creating a buildup on beaches. It is not harmful but can have an unpleasant smell and blemish the glistening white sands of Mexico’s Caribbean beaches.
Why is there so much sargassum seaweed in Cancun?
There is no clear answer as to why there is an increase in sargassum seaweed in Cancun. Some theories link it to climate change, ocean currents, and nutrient pollution in the ocean.
Is it safe to swim in seaweed-filled water?
Swimming in seaweed-filled water is safe, but it may not be enjoyable due to the buildup on the water’s surface. Additionally, some people may be sensitive to the smell of the seaweed.
Can authorities control the spread of sargassum seaweed?
Authorities in Cancun are working to limit the spread of sargassum seaweed, but it cannot be fully controlled. The seaweed is a natural occurrence in the ocean and can be affected by various factors, making it difficult to predict and manage.
What are cenotes?
Cenotes are natural pits filled with clear waters and are found in the Riviera Maya. They were once used by ancient Mayans for sacrificial offerings and are now a popular destination for tourists looking to escape seaweed-filled beaches.