Inside Chichen Itza

About Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza, once a vast pre-Columbian city constructed and developed by the historic Mayan Civilization, is now a significant archaeological site. An outstanding example of Mayan culture, it attracts visitors from across the world to uncover the secrets and mysteries of Chichen Itza inside and also added to the list of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007, elevating its appeal among visitors.

Chichén Itzá complex comprises the Observatory, the Temple of the Warriors, the Ball Court, and the most famous Mayan pyramid, EL Castillo or the Temple of Kukulkan. El Castillo, the site's main draw, is a 90-foot-tall pyramid with 365 steps that represent the number of days in a year. The Mexican government funded an excavation into Chichen Itza Por Dentro in the mid-1930s, which resulted in the discovery of two smaller pyramids, a staircase beneath the north side of the pyramid, and another temple beneath the larger one.

Visitors were permitted to view the inside of Chichen Itza from behind bars before 2006, after that only archaeologists had access. El Catillo continues to entice tourists to admire this feat of architecture and discover its religious significance for Mayans.

What’s Inside Chichen Itza?

  • Chichen Itza comprises many structures, but the Pyramid of Kukulkan or El Castillo, located in the centre, is the main attraction.
  • Archaeologists have been investigating Chichen Itza inside for almost a century to know about its historical and architectural significance.
  • Devotees and tourists visit the site during the Spring and Fall Equinoxes to experience the magnificent Serpent shadow scene when the feathered serpent God Kukulcán is said to descend from the heavens, bless his followers on earth, and then proceed to Xibalba, the underworld.
  • El Castillo is one of the most recognisable Mesoamerican pyramids for its amazing radial symmetry, orderly steps, and temple. It was not meant to get inside as priests used its stairways to get to the temple located on the top of the structure.
  • Archaeologists found a second pyramid temple built between 800 and 1000 CE underneath the larger pyramid at Chichen Itza Por dentro during the 1930s excavation.
  • They discovered that the pyramid had nine levels, a stairway, a sanctuary with human remains, a jade-encrusted puma position of royalty, and a divine male figure, known as Chac Mool, who was seated and holding a bowl in the subsequent excavations.
  • In the middle of the 2010s, archaeologists used non-invasive imaging techniques to explore Chichen Itza inside and discovered one more pyramid underneath the other two. They presume it to be constructed between 550 and 800 CE and may have included an altar and a single stairway.

Checkout: Chichen Itza Private Tour

Facts of Chichen Itza

Here are some facts about Chichen Itza:

  • Chichen Itza Por dentro, a complex of Mayan ruins thought to be around 1500 years old, is one of the New 7 Wonders of the World.
  • The name Chichen Itza is a combination of the Mayan words CHI (mouth), CHEN (well), and ITZA (of the Itza tribe).
  • El Castillo, a historic pyramid, is the tallest building in Chichen Itza at 98 feet tall and the complex's main attraction.
  • The Osario Pyramid, the Temple of the Warriors, the Temple of Xtoloc, the Great Ball Court, and the Observatory are some of the complex's other noteworthy buildings.
  • According to archaeologists' beliefs, Mayans used to perform human sacrifices at Chichen Itza inside to end the drought.
  • It is believed that Mayan astronomers closely observed the planet Venus at the observatory.
  • There are several "complexes" or zones at Chichen Itza, representing a distinct architectural style and developmental stage.
  • Numerous graveyard carvings on the Platform of Skulls were supposed to be used as a form of intimidation against adversaries.

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Know Before You Book Chichen Itza

How to Reach


  • Monday to Sunday: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (last entry at 4:00 pm)

Best time:The best times to visit Chichen Itza are early in the morning right after the site opens, or late in the evening just before closing for pleasant weather and less crowd. Also, weekdays are preferred to enjoy the attraction with only a few people around.

Location: Yucatán, Mexico

Read More: How to Get to Chichen Itza from Playa Del Carmen

To reach Chichen Itza, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World located in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, you can follow these steps:

  • By Car: Chichen Itza is a 2- to 4-hour drive from almost any location on the Yucatan Peninsula.
  • By Bus: ADO offers regular bus service between Chichen Itza and Valladolid, Merida, Tulum, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Cancun.
  • By Colectivo: To save money, take the Colectivo (a small van), which typically departs when it is full. Colectivos leave frequently for Chichen Itza.
  • By Tours: Choosing tours that include round-trip transfers is the best option because it saves you the trouble of arranging transportation. You can choose to be picked up in Playa del Carmen, Riviera Maya, or Cancun and dropped off in the same location at the end of the tour.

Do Checkout: Chichen Itza Tour from Valladolid

  • Book your Chichén Itzá tickets online in advance.
  • Put on sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat for sun protection.
  • Wear comfortable sports shoes.
  • Schedule your trip for the early morning or late evenings on a weekday to avoid the crowd.
  • Carry enough cash.
  • Book a guided tour to improve your overall experience and learn about the site from your knowledgeable guide.

Suggested Read: Transport to Chichen Itza from Merida

FAQ's of Chichen Itza

Where is Chichen Itza located?

Chichén Itzá is located in Tinúm Municipality of Yucatán state in eastern Mexico.

How old is Chichen Itza?

Historical sources indicate that Chichen Itza was in its early stages of development between 600 and 750 A.D., making it more than 1,500 years old.

When was Chichen Itza built?

Although archaeologists are unsure of precisely when Chichen Itza's construction started, historical records reveal that the city was a significant centre in the Northern Maya Lowlands from 600 to 900 AD (the Late Classic period) through 800 AD to 900 AD (the Terminal Classic period) into 900 AD to 1200 AD (the early Postclassic period).

Who built Chichen Itza?

The Maya, an ancient community that lived on the Yucatan peninsula, built Chichen Itza Por dentro.

Why was Chichen Itza built?

According to historians, Chichen Itza was established and became well-known because of its close proximity to an underground freshwater source, the Xtoloc cenote. Mayans from all parts of the Yucatan Peninsula lived in Chichen Itza at its peak. The city features a variety of architectural styles, including Puuc and Chenes, which are typical of the Northern Maya lowlands and central Mexico, respectively

Can you climb El Castillo?

No, you cannot climb El Castillo, the main attraction of Chichen Itza, because it is being preserved by local archaeologists and conservationists for future generations.

What is the tallest building in Chichen Itza?

El Castillo, a historic pyramid, is the tallest building in Chichen Itza with a height of 98 feet. It stands 79 feet without the temple and 98 feet with the temple included as the temple itself is 19 feet tall.

What is inside Chichen Itza?

Chichen Itza complex is made up of many marvels like El Castillo, the Temple of Xtoloc, the Great Ball Court, the Temple of the Warriors, the Osario Pyramid, the Sacred Cenote, and more. After numerous excavations and 3D noninvasive imaging procedures to find what is inside of Chichen Itza, archaeologists discovered two smaller pyramids beneath the El Castillo pyramid, suggesting that the current structure was built on top of the old pyramids.

What are the complexes of Chichen Itza?

There are a number of complexes at Chichen Itza that showcase various architectural styles and developmental phases. The Great North Platform contains the El Castillo, the Great Ball Court, and the Temple of Warriors monuments, The Osario Group contains the Temple of Xtoloc and the Osario pyramid, while the Central Group contains the observatory, Akab Dzib, and Las Monjas.

Why is Chichen Itza a Wonder of the World?

Chichen Itza was named one of the New Seven Wonders of the World in 2007 due to its wealth of historic and culturally significant man-made marvels, as well as its popularity among international voters.


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