Find out where Chichen Itza is: a Yucatecan paradise close to the Riviera Maya and other fabulous attractions. Get to know the Sacred Cenote, see Kukulcan descend through his pyramid during the spring equinox, and create unforgettable memories.

The climate varies in temperatures that exceed 20ºC throughout the year, but it seldom reaches 40ºC. Yes, it’s tropical; you won’t need a sweater, just sunglasses and sunscreen.

Chichen Itza is located between Merida and Cancun. It is 115 kilometers from Merida, Yucatan, and about 200 km from Cancun, Quintana Roo.

“The city on the edge of the Itzaes well”: this is what Chichen Itza means, a wonder of the world. It was founded in the 4th century AD. by the Itzaes, Mayans, who, once mixed with the Toltecs, made it the most important capital of the Yucatan Peninsula. It was abandoned several centuries later.

Things to do in Chichen Itza, Yucatan

In this impressive Mayan city, you will be able to learn much more about one of the most important cultures in Mexico and the world. Explore the ruins and enjoy a walk in ideal weather.

1. Visit the Cenote Sagrado

Chichen Itza and its cenote: you can’t talk about Chichen Itza without mentioning this cenote. In the Sacred Cenote, mossy-green due to vegetation, sacrifices were made in ancient times. It is truly a sight to see!

Cenote Sagrado

2. Discover the Observatory

Also known as “El Caracol” due to the spiral staircase inside the tower. The observatory was a site where the Mayans studied constellations. Their calculations were so precise they predicted many astronomical events, such as eclipses and solstices, decades in advance.

observatorio maya

3. See the pyramid of Kukulcan

At 25 meters high with a striking stairway where the Mayans believed their God, “The Feathered Serpent,” descended. This building is the most iconic of the ruins at Chichen Itza, an archaeological site. Going up to the temple is not permitted, but you can take incredible photos of the pyramid from the esplanade.

chichen itza pyramid

4. Admire the Pelota Game area

This court will surprise you: they played using their hips and knees to toss a rubber ball through a hoop. It was not just a leisure game; it had ritual connotations.

Hours and entrance fees for Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza, archaeological site, is open Monday to Sunday de 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. You can confirm entrance prices on the website for Chichen Itza, which are as follows:

Adults $533 MXN

Children $80 MXN

Mexican citizens $237

Locals $80

The equinox at the Chichen Itza ruins

This legendary event happens during March, on the date when the spring equinox begins in the northern hemisphere of the planet. When you see this, thanks to their astronomical and architectural expertise, the Mayans made the sun’s rays go down step by step through the pyramid of Kukulcan at dawn.

This creates an extraordinary spectacle of a great path of light that winds and descends through the pyramid: their God, the Feathered Serpent.

Chichen Itza, Yucatan: Wonder of the World

In 2000, the Swiss foundation, New Open World Corporation, launched a campaign inviting the world to vote for the New Wonders of the World. Because of the 7 wonders of the Ancient World, only the pyramids of Giza remained standing.

More than a million votes were received, and finally, in 2007, Chichen Itza was announced as one of the 7 winners. The only wonder of the world in Mexico.

It was voted to the list due to the excellent condition of the archaeological site. Full of fabulous constructions which pay homage to how scientifically advanced the Mayans were and invite us to reflect on spirituality and earthly cycles.

Chichen Itza is also a place for concerts, festivals, and exhibitions, bringing it back to life and attracting more than a million tourists annually.

chichen itza

How to get to Chichen Itza?

It depends on your starting point. Here are some of the most common tourist sites with accommodations, starting points to go to Chichen Itza on your own, or how to hire a tour company to take you.

Cancun to Chichen Itza

Buses leave in the morning, as the excursion from Cancun is very popular. The drive on Highway 180 takes about 2 1/2 hours. You can also rent a car.

Playa del Carmen to Chichen Itza

There are different times to take a bus. The trip is 3-4 hours. If you do not want to rent a car, you can schedule a tour with transportation.

Merida to Chichen Itza

You can take a taxi, but many rent a car or take a bus. It usually takes about an hour and a half to get to Chichen Itza.

Nearby tourist attractions

  • Cenote Ik Kil. There’s nothing better than swimming in the cenote at Chichen Itza. Relax and revitalize yourself in its water.
  • Balankanche Caves. Tours are every hour. Here you will find caves where, when precipitation falls, a melody is created. The heat is intense, so be prepared!
  • The town of Piste. A few kilometers from the archaeological site, you can buy beautiful handicrafts and eat delicious papadzules.

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Now that you know how to get to Chichen Itza from Cancun or Merida. Book a flight to these fantastic destinations! Discover fares that allow you to travel lightly and affordably, and get ready to welcome the spring equinox at Chichen Itza.

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