Cancun & Riviera Maya: Chichen Itza Sunrise with Lunch
- Small group
- Pickup available
- Skip the line
Supposedly the great mythical city in Mesoamerican literature, this Mayan city stands today as one of the most popular archeological sites in Mexico. Read on for more on Chichen Itza history and Chichen Itza facts.
Archeologists believe the main monument, El Castillo, was dedicated to Kukulcan, the Mayan snake god, and was built between the 9th and 12th centuries A.D.
Chichen Itza translates to “at the mouth of the well of the Itza.” The Itza were a sea-warding subset of Mayan people.
It is likely that the city was built in this location on the Yucatan Peninsula because of two large natural “cenote” nearby that would have provided water to the population.
The total number of steps on the pyramid El Castillo, including the temple platform at the top, is 364—the total number of days in the Mayan calendar.
The Mayans were great athletes. Archeologists have found 13 ball courts for their Mesoamerican game; the best preserved and largest lies on this site just northwest of El Castillo.
Nothing is worse than setting out for a big day of exploration and getting hit with a spell of dehydration. Prepare ahead and bring lots of water, it cannot be overstated how hot this place can get. Bring a sturdy set of shoes and a hat or umbrella for sun. Bug spray is a must, especially in the rainy season when mosquitoes are running amok.
If you decide to rent a car, make sure to purchase a map and have a friend in the passenger’s seat navigating on the way to Chichen Itza. Be careful—some of the road is rocky or in disrepair. Be sure to keep your gas tank full, because there aren’t many gas stations along the toll highway. For a day trip from Cancun, the drive will take a little more than two hours.
Stop at Ik Kil to go swimming in this ancient water source, a popular spot open to the public.
Want to discover all there is to do in Chichén Itzá? Click here for a full list.
Ana Lilia was a fantastic guide! So much knowledge and true passion! The driver Claudio was great... got us to and from despite a horrible rain storm and traffic jam! Muchos García por todo! Highly recommend this tour! Plenty of water, rest, history, food, and care. Great for kids or adults. And for god sake... please don’t risk the guides licenses by not wearing a mask! We get it... none of us want to, but their livelihood depends on it!
This experience was great! It was our first time in Cancun and I definitely recommend doing this activity. Our guide Adan was awesome! I’m so happy we were able to see so many things. Instead of eating first at the restaurant, we decided to go swimming in the cenote and spend an hour there before going to eat which is your option. Truly recommend!
It was a very well organized trip! The hotel pick up was on time, the food was amazing too( typical mexican, so don’t expect american food!) Alain was our tour guide , he was absolutely amazing!! I recommend this trip !
Highly recommended and not to be missed when visiting Cancun. The tour guide was engaging and funny. The only downside is this took 13 hrs total and was exhausting, but well worth it for your money and experience.
It was almost 6-8 hours of driving depending on where your hotel is so if you don't like riding in buses I'd skip this one. I get motion sickness so that was a bit rough on me, but nothing to do with the tour.