Top ChoiceArchaeological Site in South of Mérida

Uxmal Ruins

Uxmal Ruins

Pronounced oosh-mahl, Uxmal's size and uniqueness make it a fascinating stop for ruin-lovers and novices alike. The top draws are the oddly shaped Magician's House, the Pigeon House (a structure with a delicate...

Top ChoiceArchaeological Site in Ruta Puuc

Labná

This is the Ruta Puuc site not to miss. Archaeologists believe that, at one point in the 9th century, some 3000 Maya lived at Labná. To support such numbers in these arid hills, water was collected in chultunes...

Top ChoiceEstancia in South of Mérida

Hacienda Yaxcopoil

If you visit one hacienda, make it this one. This vast estate grew and processed henequén (agave plant fibers, used to make rope); many of its numerous French Renaissance–style buildings have undergone...

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Cuadrángulo de las Monjas

The 74-room, sprawling Nuns’ Quadrangle is directly west of the Casa del Adivino. Archaeologists guess variously that it was a military academy, royal school or palace complex. The long-nosed face of Chaac...

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Palacio del Gobernador

The Governor’s Palace, with its magnificent facade nearly 100m long, is arguably the most impressive structure at Uxmal. The buildings have walls filled with rubble, faced with cement and then covered in a thin...

Estancia in South of Mérida

Sotuta de Peón

Sotuta de Peón, 32km south of Mérida, is the only working henequén hacienda in the world. Jump aboard a horse and cart and view the henequén process from plant to finished product, visit the original homestead,...

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Casa del Adivino

As you approach Uxmal, the Casa del Adivino comes into view. This 35m-high temple (the name translates as ‘Magician’s House’) was built in an unusual oval shape. What you see is a restored version of the temple’s...

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Uxmal

Uxmal, pronounced oosh-mahl, is an extremely impressive set of ruins, easily ranking among the top Maya archaeological sites alongside Chichén Itzá and Palenque. It is a large site with some fascinating...

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Gran Pirámide

The 30m-high, nine-tiered pyramid has been restored only on its northern side. Archaeologists theorize that the quadrangle at its summit was largely destroyed in order to construct another pyramid above it. That...

Archaeological Site in South of Mérida

Kabah

Kabah is one of the few Maya settlements in the area that has retained its original name (meaning 'the powerful hand'). Second only to Uxmal in the Puuc Region, this is a hugely impressive sight, spread out on...

Cave in Ruta Puuc

Grutas de Loltún

One of the largest dry-cave systems on the Yucatán Peninsula, Loltún ('stone flower' in Maya) provided a treasure trove of data for archaeologists studying the Maya. Carbon dating of artifacts found here reveals...

Archaeological Site in South of Mérida

Ruinas de Mayapán

Though far less impressive than many Maya sites, Mayapán is historically significant – it was one of the last major dynasties in the region and established itself as the center of Maya civilization from 1200 to...

Cave in South of Mérida

Grutas de Calcehtok

The Calcehtok caves are said to comprise the longest dry-cave system on the Yucatán Peninsula. More than 4km have been explored so far, and two of the caves’ 25 vaults exceed 100m in diameter (one has a 30m-high...

Archaeological Site in South of Mérida

Oxkintok

Archaeologists have been excited about the ruins of Oxkintok for several years. Inscriptions found at the site contain some of the oldest-known dates in the Yucatán, and indicate the city was inhabited from the...

Archaeological Site in Ruta Puuc

Sayil

Sayil is best known for El Palacio, the huge three-tiered building that has an 85m-long facade. The distinctive columns of Puuc architecture are used often here, either as supports for the lintels, as decoration...

Church in Tekax

San Juan Bautista

Dating from around 1609, Tekax' church has been looted a couple of times, initially during the Caste War and later during the Mexican Revolution. Most noteworthy is its shape, that of a three-tiered pyramid....

Archaeological Site in Uxmal

Casa de las Tortugas

The House of the Turtles, which you'll find on top of a hillside overlooking the Juego de Pelota (Ball Court), takes its name from the turtles carved on the cornice. The Maya associated turtles with the rain god,...

Archaeological Site in Ruta Puuc

Xlapak

The ornate palacio at Xlapak (shla-pak), also spelled Xlapac, is quite a bit smaller than those at nearby Kabah and Sayil, measuring only about 20m in length. It’s decorated with the inevitable Chaac masks,...

Museum in Uxmal

Choco-Story

You'll learn more than you ever wanted to know about chocolate at this interesting chain museum that follows a circuit through six exhibition spaces spread throughout the lush botanic garden, where there's also...

Estancia in South of Mérida

Hacienda San Pedro Ochil

There's no lodging (or old house) here, but it provides an interesting look at how henequén was grown and processed. From the parking lot, follow the tracks once used by small wheeled carts to haul materials to...