Chichen Itza Travel GuideBrowse 22 travel reviews, 31 travel blogs and 3,647 travel photos from real travelers to Chichen Itza.
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Chichen Itza Overview
Chichen Itza is one of the much-talked-about Mayan ruins sitting in the center of the Yucatan Peninsula, and is considered one of the modern Seven Wonders of the World. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1988, but its importance as a center for visitors was established thousands of years ago when it was first built. Most people visit the ruined city as a day trip from places like Cancun, but the best way to experience all that Chichen Itza has to offer is to stay in one of the Mayan communities that are spread around the surrounding region, celebrating the Mayan culture and heritage and allowing you the opportunity to spend several days exploring the ruins and immersing yourself in the majesty of what once was.
Chichen Itza was one of the major centers for the ancient Mayans, and the size of the place is enough to make one pause in simple amazement at just how epic the accomplishments of those architects and builders are. While it is possible to take it all in by yourself, local guides are available who can give you a more detailed trip through the area, with English being spoken and understood by almost everyone here. Keep in mind that the entire city is an ancient site, and walking is the only mode of transportation, so bring comfortable boots and hiking gear. Also be prepared for some fairly high temperatures in the daytime, with almost no shade available, so bring plenty of water and sunscreen.
There are literally dozens of buildings to explore while you are in Chichen Itza, ranging from the Temple of the Warriors to the Temple of the Jaguars and the Pyramid of Kukulcan. The surrounding countryside is filled with Mayan ruins as well, meaning you can spend literally weeks here if you want to truly capture the Mayan experience during your trip to the Yucatan.
At the entrance you will find various shops and lots of information about the site. Chichen Itza has been deemed one of the New Seven Wonders of the World and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and earns the reputation easily. Within the park you will find many unofficial vendors of Mayan decent who are selling various interesting things as well.
Chichen Itza is well worth the visit, but be sure to get there in the morning. It tends to get busy in the afternoon and when it is the hottest. Be sure to check out all of the temples and the cenote. Although a long walk, it is worth it.