Mexico Panoramic Photo

This is what many people are thinking about when they say "Mayan Ruins". Chichen Itza is one of the most famous Mayan sites on the Yukatan Peninsual, although it isn't the largest. The largest site in area, and also the highest pyramid, is Coba. Chichen Itza is probably more developed and refined because it is a lot closer to the tourist towns of Cancun and Playa del Carmen. There are modern, air-conditioned coaches that come from all over the Yukatan Peninsula to Chichen Itza. Our bus trip took all day from Akumal and included a buffet lunch and a cenote swim.

You can see in a few photos the array of columns or "Hall of 1000 Warriors". There are really a lot less than that. The large pyramid is alligned with the sun so that the shadows of the steps form a serpent's body that ends at the large heads at the spring and fall equinox. There are many stories to be told and it's probably worth it to get a guided tour. Business is pretty good at Chichen Itza. You can no longer climb the pyramid here. If you want to climb a Mayan pyramid, you need to go to Coba.

Here is my Public Service Announcement. It is going to be HOT. Get a hat and cover you skin with light clothing or sunscreen. Bring some water. The photo in the center above shows the daily fainting of someone who is not prepared for a long walk in the hot sun. That area with the hoops on the walls is the Mesoamerican Ball-Game court.

These photos were taken in 2008.