Uxmal is an ancient Maya city which you should visit during your stay in Yucatán. Declared a UNESCO Heritage Site in 1996, it is only 78 km from Mérida, about a one-hour drive south on Highway 261, past the town of Muna. Its name comes from "Oxmal" which is Maya for "three times built" or "what is yet to come".
Visit: Zona Arqueologica Uxmal, Uxmal, Yucatan PeninsulaUxmal was the greatest metropolitan and religious center in the Puuc hills in the late classical period.The most impressive structure and the tallest at 100 feet is the House of the Magician which you will find just beyond the entrance. According to ancient legend, this pyramid was built by Itzamna in one night. It actually appears to have been built in five phases, and it was situated so that its western stairway faces the setting sun at summer solstice.The Nunnery, another large building on the site, was named by the Spaniards as it reminded them of a European nunnery. It was probably used as a school for training healers, astrologers, shamans, and priests.The Governor´s Palace is an excellent example of stone mosaic work probably created by hundreds of masons and sculptors. It occupies five acres and contains many beautiful sculptures of the rain god Chaac, serpents and astrological symbols.Be sure to bring a hat, some sunscreen and good walking shoes. A camera is a must as well, as the buildings at Uxmal are very photogenic.