Chichen Itza - Mayan ruins in Yucatan Mexico
A must see
Chichen Itza, the most famous Mayan temple city, served as the political and economic center of the Mayan civilization. The Kukulkan Pyramid (El Castillo) itself was the last, and arguably the greatest, of all Mayan temples. During the spring and fall equinox (March and September), visitors can enjoy a breathtaking spectacle: a corner of the Temple of Kukulkan casts a shadow in the shape of a giant ‚feathered serpent‚ that appears to slither its way down the side of the North staircase with the sun's movement. The Maya believed that on the Equinoxes, their god Kukulkan came down from the heavens to speak directly to their priests. This natural phenomenon of light and shadow is a unique experience that attracts visitors from all parts of the world. Unquestionably, the ancient Maya created a wonder of the world in the great Pyramid of Kukulkan. In 2007, Chichen Itza's KuKulkan Pyramid was named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World after a worldwide vote.
Day and Night
The site opens at 8:00AM so try to visit as early as possible to avoid the heat and the crowds. Visitors can also enjoy the ruins at night. Chichen Itza presents a sound and light show nightly.
What to expect
At the entrance to the site is a large visitors complex with cafeterias, restrooms, bookshops and a small but excellent museum. Mayaland Hotel and Hacienda Chichen are the closest hotels to the ruins. The village of Piste, located 2 kilometers from the ruins, offers other tourist services such as restaurants and craft markets.