Mayan Ruins of Cancun: The Complete Travel Guide

Mayan Ruins of Cancun The Complete Travel Guide

Mayan Ruins of Cancun are impressive ruins in Mexico that show the ancient civilization of Mayans. They were very advanced and spread by building several cities in countries like Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras. When you see these ruins, you may realize that they have had great knowledge of astronomy, architecture, and mathematics. Still, like beautiful archeological things, the pyramids and temples are well preserved to show as evidence of Mayans’ technologies.

Here is the complete travel guide for the Mayan ruins of Cancun.

Mayan Ruins of Cancun

What are the Mayan Ruins?

Apart from the stunning beaches in Mexico, Mayan ruins are one of my favorites in Mexico. The term “Maya” comes from the indigenous Yucatec Mayans’ language, who lived in the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.

Actually, Maya is a lifestyle that a community used to follow. And that community was inhabited in the area of Central American countries, including Mexico. They lived and developed their community to a peak level between 250 BC to 1800 BC.

Still, around 7 million people (current Mayan community) speak the native Mayan language instead of Spanish. And the unique feature of this community was their knowledge. And it can be highlighted as monumental architecture, complex mathematics, astronomical systems, hieroglyphic writing, and iconography.

Especially, the observational astrology and the agricultural practices are still combined with continuing their lives. Actually, they love nature and use sustainable agricultural practices. They use their own Maya calendar to plan all the agricultural things and grow crops like beans and maize.

And Mayans have around 150 gods for different purposes. They consider rain as a god (God of rain). And also God of death, God of agriculture, and many more.

Now you may think, what happened to this prosperous community. Actually, with the impacts of climate disasters and war conflicts, the old Mayan community was destroyed. But, as I mentioned earlier, the Maya people still exist and follow the old rituals. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Mayan Ruins of Cancun Map

Mayan Ruins of Cancun Map
Mayan Ruins

What ruins are near Cancun, Mexico?

Chichen Itza, Tulum, El Rey, San Gervasio, Coba, Ek Balam, Uxmal, the underwater museum, and the stunning beaches are Cancun’s highlighted things.

Are you looking for a hotel in Cancun?? Just search here for the best hotels that match your budget.

Mayan Ruins of Cancun

We all know that Cancun is world-famous for its paradise beaches, luxury hotels, and ancient ruins. Here is the information about the most highlighted ruins in Cancun.

Chichen Itza Cancun Mayan Ruins

Chichen Itza is the most highlighted and must-see Mayan ruin in Cancun. And this is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that runs history for around 1000 years. And around 18 structures have been revealed and restored on this site.

Chichen Itza Cancun Mayan Ruins

This Heritage Site includes one of the “New 7 Wonders of the World“. It is the most iconic pyramid image in Latin America, Kukulkan Pyramid, or Aka El Castillo. Years ago, you could climb 365 steep steps (75 feet) to the top of this pyramid, but now, you cannot. The records say that this pyramid was built for astronomical needs.

Chichen Itza is a sacred Mayan city in Mexico with around six square miles. So, the evidence shows it was home to more than hundreds of buildings in the old Mayan period.

The opening time is from 8 am to 5 pm, and the entrance fee is $15 per person. And in the daytime, the place gets so crowded. Therefore visit as early as possible. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

How far is Chichen Itza from Cancun?

Chichen Itza archeological site in Cancun exactly 120 miles away to the west side of Cancun in Quintana Roo. Well, I will give you the best options to reach this site with pros and cons.

The first option is you can rent a car. Driving in the Yucatan State is easy compared with the other states in Mexico. Since you can directly take the highway from Cancun to Chichen Itza, the journey gets easier than you think. And also, the highway is straight and flat. Therefore, it will take around 2 hours to get there. If you choose to rent a car, then it will save you time.

Or you can hire a private guide. If you have more money, then this is a good option to have your own visiting timetable. And, since you can plan the tour as early as possible, there are no overcrowded effects. You can travel and explore more about the Mayan ruins of Cancun comfortably.

Some other options

The next option is to join a group tour. It is profitable than hiring a private guide. You can easily join a tour group online, and they will pick you at your hotel. Or you can join the tour group of your hotel as some hotels run group tour traveling programs. And there are some disadvantages as well. Like: have to follow their timetable, maybe the group is not friendly, maybe the vehicle is filled with the maximum number of travelers, and when you arrive there may be so much of a crowd. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Taking a bus is a budget-friendly option. So, budget travelers, here we go. The Ado Bus company offers you direct bus services from Cancun to Chichen Itza archeological site. Daily turns start at 8.45 am, and it will take around 3 and a half hours for the tour. And the departures are normally at 4.30 pm. So, you can tour around all the sites and come back to the bus station at the correct time.

If you need to see this archeological site’s aerial view, there are flight tour companies here. It is the easiest and fastest way to reach there (like within less than an hour). Try Fly Tours Cancun Company. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Tulum Cancun Mayan Ruins

Tulum is a walled city by the eyecatching sea in Cancun. It is just a few hours away from the previously explained Chichen Itza. And most importantly, you can watch these ruins while feeling the beauty of the Caribbean Ocean in Tulum. Since it is located along the Riviera Maya coast, the place attracts more visitors annually.

Tulum Mayan Ruins of Cancun

Between the 11th and 16th centuries, Tulum was one of the major commercial cities in the Mayan era. They have sold things like cotton, food, copper bells, turquoise, axes, and chocolate.

Personally, this is one of my favorites places among the Mayan ruins of Cancun. Because I could swim in the sea after watching the ruins, and this is the only coastal Mayan city. So, do not forget to bring your swimsuit.

The castle and Temple of Frescoes are the most highlighted and eyecatching things in Tulum. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

El Rey: Mayan Ruins of Cancun

El Rey Mayan Ruins of Cancun

El Rey, or the Mayan, meaning “the king” archeological site, is located at the southern end of the Cancun hotel zone or Cancun’s heart. There’s nothing many exciting things to see here. But yet, walking around those ruins create a sense of real history back in 1000 years. And it will take around half an hour for the whole tour. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Xel ha: Mayan Ruins of Cancun

Xel ha Mayan Ruins of Cancun

“Xel Ha” means the spring water in the Mayan language. Yes, it is a fabulous eco-park with a clear lagoon suitable for even snorkeling. A lovely Mayan ruin site is also there when you travel across the street. This site attracts a lack of tourists. So, you can enjoy the Pyramid, The House of the Jaguar like ruins on the site. And I suggest you to ready for snorkeling with your colleagues as well. Also for adventure water activities as well. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Mayan ruins of Cancun: Uxmal

“Uxmal” was a shinny Mayan city with more than 20,000 people. Having a Magician’s Pyramid, Uxmal is a more attractive ruin site. But, tourists are not attracting to this place. I don’t know why. However, I found this place very photogenic and calm with a sense of history. You can travel here from 8 am to 5 pm, and the entrance fee is $7.50 per person.

Underwater Museum

Underwater Museum in Cancun Mexico

This is one of the greatest ruins in Mexico. But, there’s no record of the relationship between the Mayan ruins and this amazing museum. 

Now, you can see it as a natural diving site as coral reefs, statues, sculptures decors this museum in a natural way. So, you can feel this beauty without any fee by scuba diving or a glass-bottom boat tour.

Suggested Reading: Costa Rica Beaches

Mayan ruins of Cancun: Ek Balam

The Meaning of Ek Balam is a “black jaguar.” And this is a newly discovered ruin site near Valladolid in Yucatan state with a different architectural style. If you love to explore more about Mayans, you can spend the whole day climbing around the site since there are around 50 ancient structures, including King Ukit Kan Lek Tok’s tomb.

Ek Balam Mayan Ruins of Cancun

The entrance fee for this amazing archeological site $4, and it is open until 4 pm from 8 am. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)


Coba has the tallest pyramid of the Mayan ruins of Cancun. I recommend you hire a bike and tour around this site to explore the ancient things with the surrounding. Because there are colorful birds, iguanas, exotic vegetation, and many more, and most importantly, you can climb the tallest pyramid to get a whole view.

Mayan ruins of Cancun: San Gervasio

San Gervasio is a historically important archeological site on Cozumel Island near Cancun in the Caribbean Sea. So, this journey is quite interesting since the site is not modified or preserved. The natural environment is also the same as the old Mayan times, surrounded by iguanas and jungles. So, it is definitely an authentic climate. And the entrance fee is $10 per person.


Before Chichen Itza took over, Izamal was a glorious area of Mayans. It has the heaviest pyramid structures out of all the ruins. But, after the invasion of the Spanish people, this was developed into a religious pilgrimage site. Still, Mexican Catholics worship Izama ruins.

The proof for that is, in 1993, Pope John Paul II had visited this place Therese aralso e interesting festivals that conduct annually in the months of April, May, August, and December. (Mayan ruins of Cancun)

Planning to visit Cancun?? You may need a trustworthy airport transfer service. Here’s the best service, Cancun Airport Transfers

Did you enjoy the post? Just pin it for later. 

mayan ruins in cancun