When your cruise ship docks in the port of Costa Maya, embark on a 3.5-hour shore excursion to Chacchoben. Explore the ancient Mayan city, where mysterious pyramids and temples remained hidden until the late 20th century! Your informative guide will tell you about the original occupants of this significant archeological site, as well as the native animals – including toucans and jaguars – that inhabit the surrounding jungle. Round-trip transport by air-conditioned vehicle included.
Start your shore excursion with pickup from the Costa Maya cruise port and head to the ancient ruins of Chacchoben, located in the jungle about 45 minutes from the coast. Upon arrival at the ruins, your experienced guide will lead your group on a circular path through this important archaeological site, explaining the significance of several excavated and restored temple pyramids, as well as the many walls and staircases that comprise the ancient city. Hear insights into the mysteries of the Mayan civilization that inhabited the site, which lay buried in vegetation and was known only to local farmers until the 1970s. You’ll learn how the Mexican Institute of Archaeology and History (INAH) excavated and restored the site in 1994 and eventually opened it to the public nearly a decade later. Be sure to look for traces of red pigment that originally coated the structures, and try to decipher the hieroglyphic inscription at the base of the largest pyramid.Chacchoben, meaning ‘red corn,’ was most likely settled by the first inhabitants of the Costa Maya region during the late pre-classic period around 200 BC. However, it wasn't until the early classic period (200-600 AD) that the monuments and main governmental buildings were built, only to be abandoned and then partially repopulated during the post-classic period (900-1519 AD).Your guide will share knowledge of the area’s flora and fauna, including a wide variety of tropical plants, such as the magnificent Coroso palm trees, which are common to many Mayan sites. Keep an eye and ear out for toucans, spider and howler monkeys, deer, gray fox and armadillos that inhabit the tropical forest around Chacchoben, and learn about the jaguars, ocelots, pumas and tapirs that can be found deeper in the jungle. After your tour, you’ll have an opportunity to visit the gift shop before your driver returns you by air-conditioned transport directly to the port. Worry-free Shore Excursion:We will ensure your timely return to the Costa Maya cruise port for this activity. In the rare event your ship has departed, we will arrange for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend this activity, your money will be refunded. See our terms and conditions for full details.