Cancun is in a part of Mexico that was traditionally ruled by the Mayans, where important Mayan cities were built and the empire was run. To get a feel for these cities, you can’t beat visiting the Mayan ruins, especially with a tour guide who can explain what you’re seeing, who would have lived there, and the (sometimes gruesome) activities that took place. Joining a tour is the best way to visit these ancient cities, so here are the top 5 Mayan ruins tours departing from Cancun.
3-in-1 Discovery Combo Tour: Tulum Ruins, Reef Snorkeling Plus Cenote and Caves
On collection from your Cancun or Playa del Carmen hotel, this 3-in-1 tour will whisk you off to the impressive Tulum ruins, which sit on a clifftop overlooking the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean.
After a fully guided tour, you can cool down and experience those turquoise waters during the snorkel section of the tour. This part of Mexico is home to the world’s second-largest barrier reef, and is full of tropical fish and mind-boggling coral formations that you’ll get to appreciate close up.
Finally, you’ll be taken to an atmospheric limestone cave filled with stalagmites and stalactites, then take a jungle walk learning the different kinds of animal calls, before stopping off to swim in a cenote, an underground swimming hole that’s unique to the Yucatan.
Cost: from 109 USD
Chichen Itza English Tour, Buffet Lunch, Cenote,Tequila tasting & Valladolid
Chichen Itza is one of the region’s most popular, and largest, Mayan Ruins and they are easily accessible from Cancun.
This Chichen Itza tour picks up from most of Cancun’s resorts (as well as from other cities in the area, such as Playa del Carmen and Tulum). The basic package doesn’t cover your entry to the ruins, but the deluxe package, costing 105 USD, does and includes the following:
- Pick up and drop off from your hotel
- Entry to Chichen Itza, including a tour guide
- Buffet lunch with a drink
- A visit to the beautiful colonial town of Valladolid
- Take a refreshing swim in the underground cave at Cenote Saamal
Cost: from 36 USD for the Basic package, or 105 USD for the Deluxe package
Tulum, Coba, & Cenote: Full-Day Tour
If you want to incorporate more than one Mayan ruin into your day trip then this tour, which includes both Tulum and lesser-known Coba could be a great option.
First off is a visit to Coba, where you’ll have 90 minutes to learn all about the unique Mayan architecture style as well as to climb a pyramid and look out across the surrounding jungle, which is a rare activity, as most Mayan ruin sites have now banned visitors from climbing the ruins. Coba is in a secluded location in the center of a dense jungle, so expect to hear plenty of birds and animals as you make your way around the site.
Next, you’ll take in Tulum, and its prime oceanfront vantage point, enjoying a tour that will explain all about the Mayans that used to inhabit this historic city.
Finally, you’ll visit Cenote Chen Ha, a part-underground, part-overground swimming hole where you can enjoy a refreshing dip before making your way back to your hotel.
Cost: from 49 USD
Ek Balam Tour from Cancun Including Cenote Maya Park
This tour will take you to one of the lesser-explored Mayan ruin sites in the Mexican Caribbean.
After being collected from your Cancun hotel, you’ll make your way inland ready to explore the Mayan site of Ek Balam which is one of the more recently excavated sites in southeastern Mexico. Learn the history of this formerly great city, and climb the ancient pyramid to enjoy expansive views across the treetops of the jungle.
After you’ve had your fill of Ek Balam, you’ll visit Cenote Maya Park, where you can enjoy an adrenaline-inducing zipline, a sunken cenote, rappelling into a cave, and shopping for authentically crafted souvenirs.
Cost: from 148.99 USD
5 Days Mayan Heritage History Tour
If you already know you’ll love exploring the Mayan Ruins, this 5-day heritage tour won’t disappoint, with a customizable itinerary ensuring all your essential sites are included.
- The beautiful clifftop ruins at Tulum
- The southern Mayan ruin site of Kohunlich
- The ornate structures of the Chicanna ruin site
- The beautifully restored Mayan site at Palenque
- The impressive pyramid at Uxmal, near Yucatan’s capital city of Merida
You’ll learn an unbelievable amount about how the Mayans lived, what caused their rise and fall, and why their architecture looks the way it does. The tour includes all your entrance fees as well as 4 nights of accommodation along the route.
A real once-in-a-lifetime experience, this tour will provide you with unforgettable memories to take home.
Cost: from 922.29 USD
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