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Actun Tunichil Muknal
Actun Tunichil Muknal

Actun Tunichil Muknal

Free admission
Tea Kettle Village, San Ignacio, Belize

The Basics

Reaching the remote parts of the cave requires hiking through a rain forest, crossing three rivers on foot, swimming through parts of the cave, and even going up a narrow ladder to get to its deeper, darker chambers. Efforts are rewarded with the sight of the “Crystal Maiden”: the skeleton of a young female, fully preserved, from thousands of years ago.

Along the hike, there are also ancient ceramics to see and the chance to immerse yourself in Maya culture. Actun Tunichil Muknal is protected by the government and is only accessible through a guided tour.

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Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
$120.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Totally Recommend
This was by far the best tour my husband and I have done, and we’ve done a lot. It was the best experience. Our tour guide was so knowledgeable and answered all our questions. Recommend it to everyone and I will totally do it again when I visit Belize again!
Lucero_R, Jan 2022

Recent reviews from experiences in San Ignacio

star-5
ATM: most intriguing
Doha_I, Jan 2022
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave Adventure
The whole experience was exhilarating. The hike to the cave involved crossing the river 3 times (swimming and walking). One enters the cave swimming and the fun starts. Manuvering the cave, squeezing between tiny pathways and crevices, in and out of the water. Then seeing the Mayan ritual site. Our guide was very knowledgeable and informed us of the history as well as the geology of the cave.
star-5
Fantastic Tour
Gabe_H, Dec 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave Tour and Picnic
Our guide Hector was fantastic and gave us a terrific tour. The cave itself was incredible. The lunch afterwards was delicious. Definitely a must do tour in Belize.
star-5
Amazing! Once in a lifetime experience! You CAN do it!
Sarah_W, Dec 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal with Local Tour guide & Belizean Lunch
Incredible! This tour challenged everything I had in me! Our guide Abraham even brought me back from the brink of a claustrophobic freak out to do the entire cave tour. Bring shoes to get wet, wear shorts that will stand up to sliding down rocks on your rear end, and trust your guide to show you the wonders of the cave. I still can't believe we did it! If I did it on my 52nd Birthday with my 11 year old kid you can do it too! It is AMAZING!
star-5
An unforgettable Belizean experience
Vichea_C, Dec 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal with Local Tour guide & Belizean Lunch
swimming around the caves, seeing the formation is just an incredible experience. Everyone must do this excursion in Belize. It’s a life time of experience
star-5
Most adventurous tour I've ever done!
Jessica_H, Dec 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
If you come to Belize, this tour is a MUST. You will be spelunking which includes climbing, swimming, and squeezing yourself through rocks so be prepared for an adventure. Patrick was a great guide, very knowledgeable and charismatic.
star-5
Really interesting
Lana_R, Aug 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
Really interesting tour! Our guide Eric was amazing (very knowledgeable with 25-years of experience)!
star-5
Highlight of our trip
Jacob_W, Aug 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave Tour and Picnic
Our tour of ATM cave with Eric was the highlight of our trip! Eric was very educational and made sure that we had fun the entire time. Also, lunch was delicious!
star-5
A must do in Belize
Mayne_C, Aug 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
Great experience with experienced guides. I’ve never done anything like that before, would totally recommend it
star-5
Wonderful adventure
Izumi_T, Mar 2020
Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) Cave (Caye Caulker / San Pedro)
Wonderful adventure to explore the archaeological reserve. Special thanks to the local guide and the driver Richard who help me to get the lost item back.
star-5
Amazing Experience
Yasmin_L, Jul 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal with Local Tour guide & Belizean Lunch
ATM is definitely a must do when visiting Belize. Our guide Glis was super knowledgeable about Mayan history, and even taught us a few words. The pacing was awesome, and it was an exciting but safe experience. Highly recommended!!
star-5
A real adventure!
Emilia_W, Aug 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave with Local Lunch from San Ignacio
Truly a not to be missed experience! The caves are almost indescribably fascinating with beautiful rock formations, crystal clear water and fascinating Mayan artifacts. Eric was our tour guide and he did a great job of balancing the serious and somber history of the caves with still keeping the tour fun and engaging. Going through the caves is a bit strenuous, with a lot of climbing and swimming, but he gave safe guidance on how to navigate through. This is really a must do in Belize!
star-5
An experience you will not forget!
Amanda_A, Jul 2021
Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave Tour and Picnic
You MUST book a tour of the ATM Caves with Juan Carlos (AKA Dos Carlos) you will not regret it! The experience exceeded my expectations, Juan Carlos is hilarious sweet and extremely knowledgeable, and the lunch is PHENOMENAL (especially the rum punch!)

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Cameras are not allowed inside the cave.

  • You will be in the cave for about three hours, navigating some very constricted, confined areas; because of this, it’s not recommended for people who suffer from claustrophobia.

  • Bring water shoes, socks (you will need to remove your shoes at one point on the tour), and an extra set of dry clothes, socks, and shoes.

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How to Get There

Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) is a 45-minute drive from San Ignacio. Most tours offer round-trip transportation from there. There is no public transportation that travels directly to the cave. You can hop a bus from Belmopan to the village of Teakettle, which is 7 miles (11 kilometers) from ATM, and arrange to meet your guide there.

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When to Get There

During Belize's wet season, (late June to August), the cave may be flooded and inaccessible to travelers. April is one of the country’s driest months, which makes it a good time for exploring natural attractions such as Actun Tunichil Muknal, but you can also expect larger crowds when the weather is nice.

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Caracol

A 2.5-hour drive from ATM, near the Guatemalan border, Caracol is an ancient Maya city. It’s the largest archeological site in Belize, covering about 65 square miles (168 square kilometers), and including more than 35,000 structures and five plazas. The site is only accessible with a military escort due to its proximity to Guatemala.

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