The grandest archaeological site on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, a UNESCO World Heritage area which is of immense cultural and historical significance.
The famous Chichén Itzá is the largest of the archaeological cities of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization, located near the small town of Piste, on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. Chichén Itzá is one of Mexico’s most visited tourist destinations.
It was the sophisticated urban center of the Maya Empire which thrived from around 600 A.D. to the 1200s. It was of immense cultural and historical significance, as it was once a religious, political and ceremonial site. The Mayans’ were technically intelligent, highly skilled and astronomically advanced. They were noted for highly decorated ceremonial architecture of – temples, pyramids, palaces and observatories, all built without metal tools.
Among the most impressive temples is El Castillo, with its 365 steps, 52 panels and 18 terraces. It is the towering icon of Chichén Itzá, and the Maya Observatory. During the fall and spring, the sun’s shadow forms an enormous snake’s body, which lines up with the carved stone snake head at the bottom of the Castillo pyramid. Near El Castillo, is the Temple of the Warriors or the Temple of the Thousand Columns, and other smaller interesting buildings.