Costa Maya's Chacchoben Mayan Ruins

special offer banner Chacchoben Mayan Ruins History in Costa Maya Region of the Lakes
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Choose Options My Cruise Itinerary
Shore Excursion Size ? Small
Shore Excursion Type Cultural
Shore Excursion Duration 4 Hours
Activity Level ? Moderate
Shore Excursion Leaves From ? An approximately 15 minute walk from the cruise ship pier.
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.
Restrictions 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.

Costa Maya's Chacchoben Mayan Ruins

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 amongst Costa Mayan excursions.

Due in part to its location away from large cities and cruise destinations, and with the more famous sites such as Tulum getting all the attention, the Chacchoben Mayan Ruins, 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.

5 Stars4.8 / 5  |  388 ReviewsReview This Tour
Hugo and Able
March 17, 2020
great tour. Hugo was very knowledgable and went beyond what other tour guides were talking about. On the way back he stopped at the stands that sell fresh sliced pineapple and no one else that did similar tours did not get to stop. Awesome tour. Highly recommended.
Reviewer: Brenda Forbear-Turner
5 Stars
Great Shore Excursion
March 16, 2020
We went on the tour on Feb 14, 2020. This was one of the best tours I have ever been on. Our guide Hugo was wonderful, very knowledgeable and willing to answer our many questions about the Mayan Ruins. Our driver, Miguel, was very nice and made sure we had water during the walking tour. I highly recommend this tour.
Reviewer: Marilyn
5 Stars
Mayan ruins
March 15, 2020
Guide was excellent ad extremely knowledgeable
Reviewer: Julie
5 Stars
Awesome tour
March 15, 2020
Carlos was our driver and guide. He was very knowledgeable about the Mayan ruins and gave a very memorable tour. He was so helpful and energetic. Lunch was very good at a local beach. This tour is a must! A++++++
Reviewer: Mitch Neal
5 Stars
March 13, 2020
This was a terrific excursion. The direction and map provided to the meet-up location was perfect. On arrival, the folks who checked us in were friendly and professional. We drove out to the ruins in a sprinter-type van, with our driver, Abel, and guide, Enrique, who were both excellent. Along the way, we were thoroughly informed on the history of the area, which was fascinating. The ruins themselves were spectacular and Enrique was very well-educated and well-informed. I can't say enough good things about him. His knowledge of and care for the ruins was clear. I only took this one tour of Chacchoben, but I can't imagine that the others were better.
Reviewer: Jeff B.
5 Stars
Ruins tour
March 13, 2020
The tour guide was incredible. Extremely knowledgeable and easily explained the historical aspects of the culture and ruins. The tour bus was new with a smaller capacity which made it a personal tour.
Reviewer: Edward E Breece
5 Stars