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Chichen Itza

Country
Mexico
State
Estado de Yucatan
City
Yucatan
Type of Location
Monument, Caves
About Location

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Places to Visit
How to Reach

By Road

Chichen Itza is on the main highway between the capital city of Merida and the resort city of Cancun. If you have time and are looking for a more adventurist route, the "libre' road that runs parallel to the toll highway goes through and by many villages and gives a better feel for the area. If you take the "libre" route, you will need to be more alert for pedestrians and animals on the road, as well as the numerous "speed bumps" you will encounter. If after dark, stick to the toll road. Come by automobile or take the very regular bus service.

By Bus

ADO bus service from Cancun costs 180 pesos one way trip and the trip takes three hours. You'll have about 4 hours to spend on the area if using the faster bus. A cheaper bus is available for 117 pesos and with travel time of four hours per direction.

If you are located outside of Chichen Itza, a number of companies organize tours, including Tours Aldebaran. Also,Chichen Services which is dedicated to offer travel experiences dedicated to Sustainable Tourism and to financially help the nearby town residents with their community projects and endeavors.

Key places to visit
El Castillo, Great Ball Court, Tzompantli, Platform of Venus, Cenote Sagrado, El Mercado, Steam Bath, Thousand Columns


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Places to Visit

El Castillo

 Dominating the center of Chichen is the Temple of Kukulkan (the Maya name for Quetzalcoatl), often referred to as "El Castillo" (the castle). This step pyramid has a ground plan of square terraces with stairways up each of the four sides to the temple on top. On the Spring and Autumn equinox, at the rising and setting of the sun, the corner of the structure casts a shadow in the shape of a plumed serpent – Kukulcan, or Quetzalcoatl – along the west side of the north staircase. On these two annual occasions, the shadows from the corner tiers slither down the northern side of the pyramid with the sun's movement to the serpent's head at the base.

Great Ball Court

Archaeologists have identified several courts for playing the Mesoamerican ballgame in Chichén, but the Great Ball Court about 150 metres (490 ft) to the north-west of the Castillo is by far the most impressive. It is the largest ball court in ancient Mesoamerica. It measures 166 by 68 metres (545 × 223 ft). The imposing walls are 12 metres (39 ft) high, and in the center, high up on each of the long walls, are rings carved with intertwining serpents.At the base of the high interior walls are slanted benches with sculpted panels of teams of ball players. In one panel, one of the players has been decapitated and from the wound emits seven streams of blood; six become wriggling serpents and the center becomes a winding plant.At one end of the Great Ball Court is the North Temple, popularly called the Temple of the Bearded Man. This small masonry building has detailed bas relief carving on the inner walls, including a center figure that has carving under his chin that resembles facial hair.At the south end is another, much bigger temple, but in ruins.

Tzompantli

Of all the monuments, the Tzompantli is the closest to what one would find in the Mexican Plateau. This monument, a low, flat platform, is surrounded with carved depictions of human skulls.

Platform of Venus

This platform is dedicated to the planet Venus. In its interior archaeologists discovered a collection of large cones carved out of stone, the purpose of which is unknown. This platform is placed between El Castillo and the Cenote Sagrado.

Steam Bath

This unique building has three parts a waiting gallery, a water bath, and a steam chamber that operated by means of heated stones.

Right Time to Visit

Information not available

Temperature