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Trip List by tannerduke

Top 10 Ruins in Yucatan.

7 Apr 2006  Recently traveled Yucatan
4.0 of 5 bubbles based on 21 votes

If you're an archaeology buff or not, these ancient structures will put you in awe of Yucatan's rich history.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: Uxmal, Chichen Itza, Campeche, Cozumel, Quintana Roo, Tulum, Ek Balam Village, Coba, Cancun
  • Category: Best of
  • Appeals to: Couples/romantics, Honeymooners, Singles, Families with small children, Families with teenagers, Large groups, Students, Budget travellers , Active/adventure, Tourists
  • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. Uxmal Archaeological Zone
    Temples of Uxmal, Uxmal

    Soaring graceful structures built on rolling terrain make this one of the most beautiful Mayan ruins that you'll ever see. The sound and light show is extraordinary and beats the one at Chichen Itza.

  • 2. Chichen Itza
    Chichen Itza, Chichen Itza

    This is one of the most well-known ruins and hence one of the most visited. Make sure to arrive early to avoid the bus loads of tourists in the late morning. Exceptional buildings and craftsmanship.

  • 3. Calakmul Archaeological Zone
    Calakmul Archaeological Zone, Yucatan Peninsula

    Home of the tallest known Mayan temple and situated deeply within a biosphere reserve, this mega-ruin puts you at eye level with howler monkeys and parrots. Few lucky explorers have spotted jaguars and pumas.

  • 4. Becan Archaeological Zone

    If you like to explore and clamber around ruins, this is the place for you! Meander through palaces, pyramids, tunnels, and hidden passageways. Recently, a 1,500 year old mask was discovered here.

  • 5. San Gervasio
    San Gervasio Mayan Archaeological Site, Cozumel

    Located just off the Cross-Island Highway on Isla Cozumel, this is the most rewarding and accessible of all ruins. Major Mayan causeways connect the structures; explore the temple of Ix Chel, a small but well-preserved building that was probably a shrine.

  • 6. Kohunlich Archaeological Zone
    Kohunlich, Yucatan Peninsula

    This rarely visited site is home to extremely well preserved stucco masks.

  • 7. Tulum Ruins
    Ruinas Mayas de Tulum, Tulum

    Located in one of the most scenic spots, these may not be the biggest ruins. The terrain includes its own beach and stunning ocean views.

  • 8. Ek'Balam Archaeological Zone
    Ek Balam Mayan Ruins, Ek Balam Village

    You will find this lesser visited site just 18 miles north of Valladolid. Restoration only began in the mid 90s. Marvel at the unique Mayan art and design, including winged figures reminiscent of angels.

  • 9. Coba Ruins
    Coba Ruins, Coba

    At the height of its civilization, this site was home to more than 50,000 inhabitants. Once clearly a major political, economic, and social center, Coba is believed to become one of the largest Mayan excavations on the Yucatan.

  • 10. Ruinas El Rey
    El Rey Ruins (Zona Arqueologica El Rey), Cancun

    Located in the Zona Hotelera of Cancun, this site consists of several platforms, two plazas, and a small temple and pyramid. Today, the ruins are home to hundreds of iguanas, which make a visit here even more interesting.