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Costa Maya's Chacchoben Mayan Ruins

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Tour Details
Tour Details

Chacchoben, "the place of red corn" in the Mayan language, is a ruin which may date from 200 B.C. The structures found here date from 700 A.D. The site is quickly becoming one of the most popular along the Costa Maya excursions.

Due in part to its location away from large cities and cruise destinations, and with the more famous Mayan sites such as Tulum getting all the attention, the ruins of Chacchoben, an excellent example of the most brilliant civilization of the new world, remained in obscurity. As you walk through the jungle filled with evidence of temples, courtyards and pyramids, you will feel the connection and harmony between nature and history. Along the way, your guide will tell you the journey the city has taken, from the myth of its creation through the collapse of the great Mayan civilization. As you stand in the heart of this abandoned Mayan ceremonial center, your senses will begin to adjust to the sounds of nature. This Costa Maya excursion covers more than two square miles in an area known as the "Region of the Lakes," due to the number of lakes and lagoons in the area.

Most of the walking is over even-packed dirt and grass on a circular path that passes three excavated and restored pyramids, as well as walls and staircases. The site is far from being completely uncovered, and you will see excavation on several mounds that are known to contain additional structures. Some structures still bear traces of the red pigment with which they were originally coated. At the base of the largest pyramid is a large stone slab called a stela with a Mayan hieroglyphic inscription.

Climbing on the temples is restricted out of respect to the deceased and their spirits.

The ruins site has a service area that includes restroom facilities and a cafeteria. Locals from Chacchoben village have a small shopping area at the site, where they offer handmade souvenirs from their village. Keep in mind that in places like Chacchoben, you are expected to negotiate the prices, so be ready to exercise your Espanol and have some fun!

Please Note: There is a fee to use a video camera at the archeological site (not included, approximately $4 US). Credit cards are not accepted at the site for fees or shopping, but US dollars and local currency are.

Shore Excursion Size
Shore Excursion Type
Shore Excursion Duration
4 Hours
Activity Level
Shore Excursion Leaves From
An approximately 15 minute walk from the Cruise Center. (Full details will be provided in your electronic ticket upon confirmation.)
Food/Beverage Provided
Beverages are included.
Recommended Dress
Comfortable long sleeve shirts and long pants are suggested due to the strong Mexican sun and potential for insects in the jungle. Sensible, flat-soled, closed-toe walking shoes, sunscreen, and sunglasses are recommended.
The minimum age to participate is 3 years. Guests must be able to walk approximately one mile over packed surfaces during the 90 minute tour of the site.
5 Stars5Based On 269 Reviews Review This Tour
5 Starsvery good experienceSeptember 03, 2018

Reviewer: Dorian Yeh
Very experienced tour guide and very good experience

5 StarsThe Guides were knowledgeable and friendly!August 30, 2018

Reviewer: Melanie Bittinger
Our guides were the best. They keep the groups small, so you can hear the guide and ask questions. The ruins are very interesting and the guides bring them to life by the stories they tell about the ruins and the surrounding land. We were beside some large groups and people couldn't hear and were getting left behind, so we were thankful for our guide.

5 StarsGreat excursionAugust 28, 2018

Reviewer: Bridget M
Our tour guide, David, was very knowledgeable. The walk to the excursion starting point we a little sketchy. Otherwise, everything was fine.

5 StarsChacchobenAugust 27, 2018

Reviewer: Rama Aditya
The tour was great and our guides Fabiola, Abel were awesome.

5 StarsMayan RuinsAugust 20, 2018

Reviewer: Juliet Grainger
This was a fantastic tour of a fascinating site. Our guide, Juan, was extremely knowledgable and friendly. He would talk to the group as a whole and also had plenty of time to talk to people individually. The ruins were beautiful, definitely worth the visit. The minibus journey was comfortable and plenty of water was provided.

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