Mexico’s Mayan Chichen Itza

Located about a 1 ½ hr drive from Merida and 2 ½ hours from famous travel destination, Cancun lies the genius Mayan engineering of Chichen Itza in Yucatan, Mexico.

In an article by Patricia Shultz called, “A highlight of the Yucatan’s Mayan Heritage,” she wrote,“The most famous, spectacular, and consequently, most frequently visited of Mexico’s Mayan sites, the magnificent metropolis of Chichen Itza was the principal ceremonial center of the Yucatan.

If you are lucky enough to be here on the spring of autumnal equinox (March 21, September 21), you will marvel at the mastermind who positioned the temple of El Castillo de Kulkulcan: the play of late afternoon light and shadow creates a moving serpent that, over the course of thirty-four minutes, slithers down 365 steps to the giant’s head at the base of the pyramid’s principal façade before disappearing into the earth.

The 7-square-mile site at Chichen Itza was inhabited for about 800 years, beginning as early as A.D. 432 during the Mayan Classic Period and ending with the arrival of the Toltec people. No more than thirty of its buildings have been explored, leaving hundreds untouched.

Beat the bus caravan of day-trippers by staying at the romantic Hotel Mayaland set in 100 private acres at the edge of the ruins. Many of the rooms have views of the cylindrical El Caracol observatory. The flowering gardens and pools help pass the hottest part of the day; the only way to visit the ruins at night is with tickets for the sound-and light show…”