Are you planning a getaway to Cancun for a little rest and relaxation? If so, don't miss the chance to explore one of the most fascinating historical sites in the world: Chichen Itza. This ancient site is home to some of the most compelling ruins on Earth. Here is a closer look at this extraordinary attraction.
Chichen Itza is the ruins of a city built by the Mayan civilization over 1,000 years ago. For many years, it was one of the most vital and active cities in Mayan society. Mayan Civilization, however, was eventually vanquished by the arrival of European colonists. Chichen Itza, like other Mayan sites, fell into ruin. The city has been gradually excavated and studied by various archaeologists over the years.
Chichen Itza is located in the northern part of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. The site lies in the center of the state of Yucatan, about midway between Cancun and the Yucatan capital of Merida. The location makes it very easy to reach from Cancun, which is about 150 miles away. This makes it possible to take advantage of one of the many day tours to the site from Cancun. No overnight stay is necessary.
You will not be able to explore all of Chichen Itza in a single day trip because the ruins are spread over a large area. There are two particularly compelling attractions, however, that you don't want to miss.
- Kukulkan — The temple of Kukulkan is the largest pyramid at the site and has a magnificent 91-step staircase leading to a platform with an enclosed space. The overall height of the pyramid is about 98 feet, or 30 meters. There are 365 steps in total, one for every day of the year. The name Kulkuchan comes from one of the Mayan Gods.
- Great Ball Court — Close by the Kukulkan pyramid is the Great Ball Court. This large, open space, which is bordered by various temples, was one of the places where Mayans placed a game that involved a ball and two goals. The exact rules of the game, unfortunately, have been lost to history. You can see carvings of players dressed in their costumes, or uniforms, on the stone benches that line the court.
A trip to Cancun is a terrific way to enjoy some time in the sun and relieve the stress of everyday life. To make your trip even more enjoyable, contact a Cancun tour firm about a trip to Chichen Itza.