A huge piece of history in this place! Chichen Itza is the largest and the best restored ancient mayan city in Mexico. It was build by the mayan people in the Yucatan Peninsula. Chichen Itza is was a sacred place for the Mayas and it held all the important religious seremonies within it’s temples.
Today Chichen Itza is an important archeological site, UNESCO World Heritage site and popular destination for the tourist. No wonder that it’s called on of new seven wonders of the world.
The site is vast and the history is filled with many stories so I would recommend a guided tour to start with. I went with a group for a guided tour in English for 1 hour so you learn more about the destination. After this I explored independently and you will have time to see everything.
The price for entry is currently around 250 pesos (just over 10€) which is very affordable. You can buy tickets at the desk when arriving or they will be sorted out for you if you arrive as a part of a guided tour. The tickets will you get you a full day of exploring.
You can find maps at the entrance but it’s guite easy to navigate so I just walked around.
Once you have entered Chichen Itza you will notice that there are many vendors trying to sell souveniers and other things but I wouldn’t be too bothered about this.
Highlights of Chichen Itza
Especially when going around with the guide first you will learn more about the temples and ancient mayan customs. I’ve always found history when interesting so this was a great little trip.
Temple of Kukulkan
This is the biggest temple in the middle of site which meant that it was the most important one for seremonies. We heard on the tour that people used to gather around for important events and seremonies.
The ball court
This is where the mayas played their own traditional ball game. The field has two hoops located high on the wall on each side and the first team to score won. And apparently after this their captain was sacrified. Scary right?!
The wall of skulls
Not too far from the main temple you can find this platform which
gruesomely served as a sacrificing site and the skulls are symbol for this. It was built in a T shape to seremonically make sure that the ashes of remains
speaded to all directions with the wind.
Around Chichen Itza
After exploring Chichen Itza you can move on the other things nearby in the region.
I would recommend heading to the Ik-Kil cenote if you have time. Ik-Kil is a large cenote located in the deep cave so to get down you need to pass quite a few spiral steps. This cenote is almost perfesctly round and about 50 meters deep.
Ik-Kil cenote gets very busy since it’s a popular sight near Chichen Itza so it might be easier to visit early morning or just before closing time to have more space.
Before heading back to the coast another nice stop is the city of Valladolid. It’s only around two hours away. Valladolid is really cute little traditional city so worth to have a look.
There’s so many more things that I need to share here!!