We’ve been living in Playa del Carmen for nearly two months now and as much as we love living by the beach we were in need of some culture, so this week we had a few days away in the nearby cute colonial town of Valladolid.
Of course, our trip away coincided with the only rainy and chilly day we’ve had since we’ve arrived. Still, we’re British so despite our complete lack of warm clothes or umbrella we took the 45 minute bus ride out to Chichen Itza, the most famous Mayan ruins in the area and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.
We weren’t in the best of moods by the time we entered the site. We were cold, the car park was full with dozens of tour buses, and we were irritated by the strange double entry fee you have to pay at separate desks, one to the local government and one to the federal (I think, anyway). As we’ve found with many of the tourist sites near Playa prices have gone up considerably, and it now costs a total of 182 pesos ($14.36), which we think is overpriced, especially as Tulum and Coba ruins are only 57 pesos.
Despite our reluctance, El Castillo, the Mayan pyramid in the centre of the ruins is undoubtedly impressive, and the grey skies only added to the drama.
The ruins also stood out for the many carvings on the walls—of skulls, serpents, and interestingly, what appeared to be an early game of noughts and crosses (tic tac toe). There’s also a huge sacred cenote that was used for ceremonies and sacrifices—including humans.
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