Chichén Itzá

Expect pyramids and temples galore as you travel back to Mesoamerican Mexico at this UNESCO-listed Mayan city.

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Chichén Itzá: Our most recommended tours and activities

Chichén Itzá: Skip-the-Line Entrance Ticket

1. Chichén Itzá: Skip-the-Line Entrance Ticket

Enjoy one of the most visited archaeological sites in Mexico with a variety of architectural styles. Discover how this large pre-Columbian city played an important role in the Mayan civilization from around 600 to 1200 AD, and remained a center of worship and pilgrimage until the arrival of the Spaniards. Even today, it is still considered sacred by the Mayan people of the Yucatan peninsula. Like many of the cities of ancient Mexico, the site was abandoned, and its ruins were hidden in the jungle. Experience its rich history and stunning ruins.

Cancún/Riviera Maya: Chichén Itzá, Valladolid & Cenote Tour

2. Cancún/Riviera Maya: Chichén Itzá, Valladolid & Cenote Tour

Travel back in time as you explore the Mayan  archeological ruins of Chichén Itzá on a guided tour. Connect with nature as you swim in the azure waters of the cenote of Saamal. Eat a mouth-watering buffet lunch and take a guided walking tour of Valladolid. Benefit from pick-up at your hotel, or a nearby meeting point, and then journey to one of the most important monuments on the Yucatán Peninsula.   Upon arrival at Chichén Itzá, look at the step pyramid of Kukulcan (El Castillo), known for the play of light from the equinox that casts shadows on each step to create an image of a serpent descending.   Go to the ancient cenote of Saamal and experience one of the sinkholes that form part of a network of underground rivers sacred to the Maya people. Enjoy a delicious buffet meal and take a stroll around the colonial city of Valladolid to complete your experience.

Riviera Maya: Cobá and Chichén Itzá Tour with Cenote & Lunch

3. Riviera Maya: Cobá and Chichén Itzá Tour with Cenote & Lunch

Journey to the sacred archeological sites of Cobá and Chichén Itzá on this action-packed trip through the jungles of the Yucatan peninsula. Leave bright and early from your ideal starting point in Riviera Maya, and beat the crowds to truly take in the majesty of each landmark. Head to Cobá first, whose ruins date back to 100-300 B.C. Learn about the significance of the 5 nearby lakes, and appreciate the striking architecture of the vast stone structures. Trek to the top of Nohoch Mul to be rewarded with beautiful jungle views. Venture deeper into the jungle to relax at the mystical Cenote Saamal, the perfect place for a swim and some dazzling photos. Savor a delicious buffet lunch during your adventure. Save the best for last by visiting Chichén Itzá, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Feel lost in time in the lovingly-kept pyramids, and discover the genius of the city’s unique structures. Take time to rest and reminisce on your drive back home.

Chichén Itzá Exclusive Early Access with Cenote & Lunch

4. Chichén Itzá Exclusive Early Access with Cenote & Lunch

In this GetYourGuide Exclusive, your guide will give you an in-depth tour of Chichen Itza. Listen as they provide background information to help you better understand the history of this place. End the tour with lunch at a local restaurant. Beat the crowds and the heat by arriving early in the morning at the Chichen Itza Archeological Site. Be the first to enter this Wonder of the World and take amazing pictures with the place almost completely to yourself. Learn how this large city played an important role in Mayan civilization from around 600 AD to 1200 AD and remained a center of worship and pilgrimage until the arrival of the Spaniards. The site was abandoned and its ruins were eventually hidden by the jungle. In between the tour, enjoy a typical Mexican buffet lunch at a local family-run restaurant. Swimming at the Saamal Cenote (entry included) and a visit to Valladolid are also on the itinerary.

Chichén Itzá: Valladolid, Cenote, Tequila Tasting and Lunch

5. Chichén Itzá: Valladolid, Cenote, Tequila Tasting and Lunch

Explore the archaeological site of Chichén Itzá and uncover the history of Mayan civilization. Visit important sites, such as the step pyramid of El Castillo, and enjoy a buffet lunch. Get picked up from one of the meeting points in Cancun or Riviera Maya, or at your hotel if you select the VIP or Deluxe tour options. Then, travel to the pre-Colombian city of Chichén Itzá on the Yucatán Peninsula. Located in the Tinúm Municipality, Chichén Itzá is famous for its step pyramid of El Castillo. Benefit from the services of a guide to learn the history of the ancient city and journey back to the days of the Mayan civilization. Discover why the huge city played such an important role from the Late Classic period (600 AD) into the early part of the Post Classic period (1200 AD), and why it remained a huge center of pilgrimage until the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors. Enjoy a delicious buffet lunch at the site, with the option to include a non-alcoholic drink on the VIP and Deluxe tour options. After, visit one of the secret sinkholes, or cenotes, sacred to the Mayan people before returning to your starting point.

Cancun/Riviera Maya: Chichen Itza and Cenote Ik-Kil Day Tour

6. Cancun/Riviera Maya: Chichen Itza and Cenote Ik-Kil Day Tour

Explore the ruins at Chichen Itza with a guide on a full-day tour from Cancun and/or Playa del Carmen. Choose between a private or small-group tour and beat the crowds and the heat with early morning access. Learn about the history of Mexico with insightful commentary from your guide of one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Start your adventure with an early pick-up from Cancun or Playa del Carmen. Beat the crowds and the heat as you arrive at the ancient ruins of Chichen Itza. Follow your guide around the once-bustling complex, learning about the rich history, religion, culture, and daily life of the Maya. Wander around the Mexican pyramids, gaze at the spectacular stone carvings, and taking photos by the glorious steps of the ruins. Board an air-conditioned vehicle and leave right before the morning gets too warm and the crowds increase. Head to the charming town of Piste for a quick look around before making your way to Cenote Ik Kil. Marvel at its stunning views, take photos of the turquoise waters and lush vegetation, and maybe squeeze in a quick dip before going for lunch. After filling your belly with some local food, board the vehicle once more and make your way back to Cancun and Riviera Maya with nothing but knowledge and memories to remember your adventure by.

Cancún: Classic Chichen Itza Day Tour with Lunch

7. Cancún: Classic Chichen Itza Day Tour with Lunch

Chichen Itza, founded in the year 514 AD, was once the capital of the ancient Mayan civilization. Now you can visit the ancient ruins on a full-day trip from Cancún. Spend your day exploring this UNESCO World Heritage Site, also declared one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Your day begins with a drive that stops at an underwater grotto, Cenote Ik Kil, where you will be able to admire the unique formation and go swimming in its clear waters. After that, stop for a buffet lunch with fresh salads, soups, rice, chicken, fish, vegetables, and regional dishes. During lunch, you will be treated to a festive show where regional people perform traditional dances to folk music. After lunch, continue on to visit the archaeological site. Once inside, you will be taken on a 1.5-hour tour with a certified guide who will introduce you to the secrets of the Mayans. Your guide will explain the historical significance of all the most important sites before leaving you to enjoy the ruins on your own.

Chichen Itzá Guided Tour With Transfer Options

8. Chichen Itzá Guided Tour With Transfer Options

Following pick-up from your hotel or a pre-arranged meeting point, journey towards the archaeological site of Chichen Itzá. Visit the ecotourism center of Suytun and its sacred cenote (sinkhole) to refresh yourself with a purifying bath in the holy waters. Enjoy a buffet lunch at the restaurant at Suytun before making your way to Chichen Itzá. Take a guided tour of the ceremonial site and listen to an informed commentary about the ancient Maya civilization. Enjoy some free time to explore by yourself. Then, stop in the colonial center of Valladolid before getting dropped off at your hotel.

Chichen Itza: Self-Guided Tour with Audio Narration & Map

9. Chichen Itza: Self-Guided Tour with Audio Narration & Map

Take a self-guided walking tour through the iconic archaeological site of Chichen Itza. Use your tour guide app for navigation and audio narration to uncover the site's buried secrets. Begin your tour at the entrance of the site. As you enter, admire the ancient wall that once surrounded this place. Next, see the iconic Temple of Kukulcán. Find out about its construction and how it was built to honor the equinox. Continue along to reach another amazing sight, the Great Ball Court. Here, Mayans once played an intense, elaborate game somewhere between soccer and basketball—but with a 20-pound ball. Learn not just about the game, but also the peculiar way the court was built. Then, pass the ominously titled Wall of Skulls, where the heads of sacrificial victims ended up. Arrive at the Platform of the Eagle and Jaguar Warriors. Find numerous intricate carvings and sculptures depicting the exploits of these highly trained, lethally effective warriors. After this is the Platform of Venus, which once held offerings to the stars. You’ll learn about the Mayans’ complex belief system as well as how they used this platform. Soon, arrive at The White Road, a white stone road that is one of the largest and most intact of its kind in existence. Find yourself at the Sacred Cenote, where ancient Mayans sacrificed people to appease their rain god. Up next is the awe-inspiring Temple of Warriors, a multi-tiered temple with a dark secret hidden inside. Follow the route to the Hall of a Thousand Columns, where people once shared meals together. Visit the Ossuary, home to the grave of a High Priest. Then it’s on to the Observatory to understand how the Mayans viewed the heavens, and what they believed the stars told them about their future. Finally, arrive at the imposing Nunnery and the Church. These 2 ancient structures are some of the most frequently photographed spots in the entire city, so keep your camera ready.

From Tulum: Chichen Itza, Cenote, and Valladolid Tour

10. From Tulum: Chichen Itza, Cenote, and Valladolid Tour

Start your journey by getting picked up in Tulum. Discover Chichen Itza, a spectacular archaeological site and a must-see for those interested in history and culture.  See renowned structures with your guide such as the Pyramid of Kukulkan and the Great Ball Court. Get a glimpse of the achievements of the Mayan civilization.  After Chichen Itza, head to Valladolid, a city where past and present come together. Be amazed by the colorful architecture and the local food culture.  Have lunch in the courtyard of a restored colonial mansion and wander the square and nearby streets. Take photos and enjoy shopping as you get a taste of the slow-paced Mexican life. To finish the day, go to a local community-run cenote, the perfect spot to get away from the crowds and cool down in the refreshing blue waters.

Frequently asked questions about Chichén Itzá

How can I visit Chichén Itzá?

Possible ways to visit the Chichén Itzá:

To enter Chichén Itzá, you need to have a ticket or be part of a guided tour.

Planning Your Visit

  • Chichen Itza Weather: How to pack & What to Wear

    Nothing is worse than setting out for a big day of exploration and getting hit with a spell of dehydration. Prepare ahead and bring lots of water, it cannot be overstated how hot this place can get. Bring a sturdy set of shoes and a hat or umbrella for sun. Bug spray is a must, especially in the rainy season when mosquitoes are running amok.

  • Rent A Car or Hire a Defensive Driver

    If you decide to rent a car, make sure to purchase a map and have a friend in the passenger’s seat navigating on the way to Chichen Itza. Be careful—some of the road is rocky or in disrepair. Be sure to keep your gas tank full, because there aren’t many gas stations along the toll highway. For a day trip from Cancun, the drive will take a little more than two hours.

  • Take a Dip in the Cenote for a Quick Cool off

    Stop at Ik Kil to go swimming in this ancient water source, a popular spot open to the public.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Open daily, 8:00AM to 5:00PM, year-round.
  • Is it expensive?
    Adult tickets start at 64 MXV (about $4) and continue upwards with tours, packages and other perks available.
  • Will I need a guide?
    With so much history to learn about, a guide is a great idea.
  • How to get there
    You can rent a car (parking is 10 pesos), take public transportation, or take a tour from Cancun or Cozumel.
  • Additional information

    • Try to arrive in the morning or later in the afternoon, as the sun is hottest at midday.

    • A light and sound show is put on each evening, and times vary by season, so plan to stay late if you can!

Other Sightseeing Options in Chichén Itzá

Want to discover all there is to do in Chichén Itzá? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Chichén Itzá

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 3,025 reviews

Had a great time on this tour. Caesar our tour guide was very enthusiastic and very knowledgeable about the history of the Mayan people and their culture. He kept our group engaged and entertained. Jesus our driver was terrific too. They made a great team. Highly recommend this tour.

Totally killer! Julio and Lalo the tour guide and driver were amazing! They made the trip completely worth it! Best guides that I have ever had!

Excellent. Thanks to the Guides Allan and Martin who were great. Very rustic city of Valladolid Nice and the Chichen Itza very interesting

Our guide Martin was sensational!!!! Well-founded knowledge with an incredible amount of background information! Highly recommended

Long transport overall but the Toru itself is worth it