10 (March 13, 2014) Chichen Itza
We should start this journey early by leaving our
for a 40 minutes’ drive to Tulum. After visiting these ruins, we will
add two more hours on road to Chichen Itza, where we could combine the
visit to the archaeological site with some cenote.
We could come back to Chichen Itza by night to
enjoy the light & sound show and, after it, going to
The spots marked at map are:
2- Xel Ha
5- Chichen Itza
We take our breakfast between the foods remaining
in the fridge because we’re leaving the room. Then we check out and
carry the baggage to the parking lot. We take the car and drive for
almost one hour to Tulum archaeological site. We arrive at 9:30 AM.
We must pay 75$ to access to the parking lot, which is huge.
We park the car in front of a hut with some staff in order of adding
some extra security to our baggage.
Then we walk through the shops and 700 meters of road to the
entrance, where we purchase our tickets by 59$ each.
We follow the path inside, but soon we’re looking
for alternatives in order to avoid the big group of tourists. This is
the most crowded visit of this travel so far.
It’s cloudy today and it makes the extraordinary beaches here
are less bright than usual. The first one is a small bay below The
Castle and it’s closed because the turtles are spawning. We cannot see
a single one here, but there are a lot of iguanas around in the complex.
At the other side of the building known as El Castillo (The
Castle) is another beach, a larger one, with wooden stairs driving down
to it. It is full of people taking a bath on these warm waters.
Although the sun has not come today, the hot is permanent here.
In a bit more than one hour we’ve completed this visit to
Tulum ruins and take the exit at the opposite side to walk the road
back to the shops and parking lot. We use the toilet there and exchange
100€ by 16$ by euro. Then we get the car and take the road to the
interior to Valladolid.
We pass by Grand Cenote and Coba a lot before
reaching Valladolid. The road is an endless straight through the dense
vegetation, with speed bumps in every town and village.
As the way to Chichen Itza goes through Valladolid we stop by the hotel
Meson del Marques, at Cathedral Square, to check in and leaving the
Then we go on with our trip to Chichen Itza. Just
a few meters before reaching it we can see Cenote Ik Kil and our
thought is make a short visit when coming back. We’ve taken one hour
and a half from Tulum to the hotel in Valladolid and one more hour from
it to Chichen Itza, so when we’re in the archaeological site it’s 2 PM
and we’re after lunching before going around.
As outside we only have seen shops with vendors pushing
everyone going to the site for buying something from them, we’ve paid
the 188$ for the two kind of tickets each one must have for getting in:
a 59$ one and a 129$ one. Once inside we can see a big restaurant and
some small business around. In one of them we get a small pizza, a
burrito, coke and tamarind juice by around 300$.
The first thing you can see inside is the Kukulcan
Pyramid, the most popular building in Mexico. It is in a large flat
terrace with a lot of people around. A group with guide is clapping at
the feet of the pyramid to check how the temple of the top is answering
to that sound with a whistle.
We walk around the pyramid and can see it has two
of their four sides restored as new and the other two quite damaged.
We go to watch the temple with the long colonnade to explore
the area with the Temple of the Warriors, the temples of big and small
tables, The Market and the Square of the Columns.
The next area to explore is the one with the Ball
game court and, from there, we take the path to Cenote Sagrado.
We’ve been called by vendors all the time here, but this path
is between two long lines of souvenir stands where the sellers are
fighting each other to take your attention. This path is long and
tedious because of the vendor pressure so, when we reach the cenote at
the end of it, we think it is not worthy of such torment.
When we walk across the terrace with the pyramid to explore
the Observatory area we’ve got a clear idea of the amount of vendors
here, which recalls 8us to El Cairo. Again, all the path to The
Observatory and Las Monjas (The Nuns) is between the endless lines of
stands, one after the other, and all of them selling the same items.
We finish the visit we started at 2:45 PM, around 5 PM. When
leaving we ask about the sound & light show, but we’re
explained it is still suspended.
We’ve left just the time for doing that short visit to Cenote Ik Kil before it closes. We pay 70$ per
person and check inside we’ve got a wrong idea about this place: we
thought it was for watching a nature wonder, but it really is a
water attraction. There is a constant run of people through the stairs
to the water. The place is beautiful, but as business, it is more
similar to a public swimming pool than to anything else.
We’re done of visits for today. We’ve decided spending
tomorrow morning to explore the center of Valladolid, which is
recalling a lot to Antigua, and no going anywhere further than this. We
prefer being at airport as soon as possible to assuring our flight back
Tonight we’re taking a good dinner at hotel’s restaurant. I’ve been
able of getting some swims in the pool before sunset. As this is our
last night in this part of the globe, we’re resting it well.