Archaeological sites of the Pu’uk route, appreciate the Mayan architecture.

The traditional Pu’uc route, ancient Mayan architecture.

If your tastes are based on pre-Hispanic architecture, Puuc style or simply the history of Mayan culture, this route is for you!

In the south of Yucatan the Mayan cities are concentrated that in the antiquity developed an abundant style in decorations, their buildings were full of masks and figures that form patterns.

These ancient cities are: Uxmal, Labna, Sayil, Kabah, Xlapak; same that you will visit when making this route.
Normally it is called “puuc” route that derives from the Mayan word “PU’UK” interpreted as: hill, mountain range of low hills or mountain; they are in the highest territory.

This route has become famous due to the proximity of the cities and the variation of pu’uk style buildings.


This route must be done with a car, those who try to go backpacking will take a long time; Most cities are on a very narrow and little traveled road.
The archaeological sites close between 4 and 5pm, remember to allocate the appropriate time to your sites of greatest interest to visit them all.


The puuc (pu’uk) architecture marks a period in the Mayan culture of transition between the Classic period and the post-classical period, since most of these cities were built at the end of the classical period.


Travel Route:

This route is planned to start in the city of Mérida, from here you will have to head south to reach Uxmal and then to the other Mayan cities that you will visit.

From the center of Mérida, drive south on Avenida Itzáes towards Campeche; follow the signs to Uman and when you get to this town you will follow the new signs to another town called Muna, be careful because you can easily get diverted by another road that leads to Campeche and if so you will have to return to Uman to return to the right path.

After the Muna village you will find the archaeological site of Uxmal, along the road there are signs.

We recommend you start the trip at 7am, to get to the archaeological site just when they open, remember that you only have from 8am to 4pm to visit 5 places.


It is the first destination on the road, it is one of the largest cities in size and number of restored buildings in the pu’uk region, visiting the whole area requires approximately 02:30 hours due to size.

Among the most important buildings is the pyramid of the fortune teller located at the beginning of the route, this structure does not have external corners for its peculiar oval contour.

How to go Uxmal


It is the second city on the route, when leaving Uxmal, drive south on the same road where you will find the archaeological zone on the left.

The place is small, but it keeps a great beauty in its decoration; the pu’uk region lacked wells (cenotes) and the obtaining of water was very difficult, therefore they had as a fundamental deity Chaac (god of rain) to provide water.

Discover what are the cenotes in Yucatan
Yucatan Travel Guide


On the same road keep driving south, until you find the signs of the puuc route and turn left to get to Sayil.

The representative of this small area that covers 3 square kilometers is the main palace with three levels and small structures like the viewpoint.


This smaller site is very similar in architecture, its development happened at the end of the classic (800d.C to 1000d.C.) And was very important point of trade thanks to the high agricultural production in the area.

This is the smallest place on the whole route *


This is the last puuc-style Mayan city of this route, it is also famous for an arch structure, which is preserved in good condition. It was also very productive in agriculture because it is located a few kilometers from Xlapak.

Labna is the end of this route, to return to Merida you have two options: the first is to return by the same road, and the second option is to continue on the road to the Oxkutzcab village to take a road with better conditions and wider to return to Merida.

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Very close to Labna are the “grottos de Loltún” that you can walk.


Where to eat:

Muna is the last town, where you can find a store or food stall in the market before arriving in Uxmal; after this you will only find very small ejidos in which we do not observe food stalls or restaurants.


Where to sleep:

Right in front of the archaeological zone of Uxmal, crossing the highway is the hotel “Hacienda Uxmal” with rooms from $ 1,500.00. Another cheaper option is to drive to the town “Santa Elena” located after Uxmal a few minutes and before Kabah, rent rooms and houses type “cabin”.


Stuff you will need:

  • Backpack
    (Half of the time on this route will be walking, therefore carry a backpack to store what you need most, for example: water.)
  • Sunscreen.
  • Long clothes to cover the sun.
  • Water to drink.

Costs and Prices:

  • Acces Mayan Sites
    $50.00 Labná
    $00.00   Xlapak
    $50.00   Kabah
    $50.00   Sayil
    $207.00 Uxmal

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Chichén Itzá and some cenotes in Valladolid | Travel Route

Walk on a Sunday this route, visiting the archaeological site of Chichen Itza, one of the seven wonders of the world and two cenotes near the magical town of Valladolid; remember to bring your swimsuit and comfortable clothes to know these very important places in Mayan history.


This route that is done on your own is very spontaneous, the buses are long-lasting, some transports on the route are difficult to obtain and you may have to wait; with this we mean that you can take all day to do this route or have to spend the night unexpectedly in Valladolid or another town in case of losing the bus back.


The archaeological zone is located in the eastern limit of the state of Yucatan, a few kilometers from Quintan Roo; The Mayans built the city in that region because of the abundance of cenotes in the area, in which they practiced rituals, supplied themselves with water to sustain life and harvest.


Travel Route:

Start the route by taking a bus in the center of the city of Merida to Chichén Itzá, there are special routes that are specifically directed to this destination and other routes that pass through there.

At the ORIENTE and NORESTE bus terminals you can buy your ticket ($ 90 aprox), remember to leave early in the morning because the tour lasts 2h 30min to get to Chichén Itzá for the stops it makes in other towns, after passing the town Pisté a a few kilometers away is the archaeological zone.

The public transport bus of those stations that we mentioned does not enter the archaeological zone, so you will have to get off on the road and walk 800 m. at the entrance where the ticket office will be.

The day we recommend doing this route is Sunday because access for national residents (Mexicans and foreigners with nationality) is free by showing a valid credential that proves your nationality (Passport, driver’s license, etc.), the normal price is $ 220.oo MXN per person (check here more prices and information about Chichen Itza)

In the box office area you will find many crafts and gifts that you surely want to buy, we recommend waiting to leave because inside they also sell and the variety is immense.

The average journey in visiting the area is 3 hours, of course you can take longer if you make an exhaustive visit with a guide.

To continue with the route and swim in the cenotes, leave the archaeological zone in search of collective transport, in the external part of the parking lot you will find various means of public transportation such as: motorized taxis, vans and buses that continue their journey to the town of Valladolid In the least expected case you should ask for a ride on the road if you do not find public transport.

UXMAL archeological mayans site
Cenotes of San Antonio Mulix

Before arriving to Valladolid there is a deviation on the road to the town “Dzitnup”, there you must go down and walk 1km to the ecotourism center where the cenotes are, to identify a point on the road is a bit difficult because of the few signs, ask the transport driver if you know where you should get off, if you do not know, remember that after the village “Ebtun” two kilometers on the road there will be a restaurant with a stone arch in the entrance and next to the road (deviation) go to the village “Dzitnup”

To help you, we put here the location of the map where you should go down; When you reach the cenotes, you may spend 2 to 3 hours swimming and visiting the place.

When leaving the ecotourism center you will find taxis and collective transport vans (ask the workers of the center), these will take you to Valladolid where you can enjoy regional food, typical desserts such as the marquesita.

On this route you must be very aware of the time to visit all the destinations on time, the archaeological zone of Chichén Itzá opens at 8:00 am and closes at 5:00 pm, the ecotourism center of the cenotes closes at 4:00 pm .

To return you can take a bus from Valladolid to Merida, remember to buy your ticket and make sure you have the last time to take the bus, otherwise you will have to spend the night in Valladolid or ask for a ride on the highway.

Museum of the Mayan World
Canton Palace Museum of Anthropology

Where to eat:

Near the archaeological site is the town of Piste, there you will find a market, several simple food stalls and buffet restaurants with pools and other amenities; the only setback is that it is 20 minutes away from the cenotes.

Outside the ecotourism center there are very simple open-air stalls with regional dishes, there is also a buffet-style menu ($ 150 approx) inside the ecotourism center.

The third option is to eat in Valladolid, remember that it is the last destination of the route and you will arrive there after 5: 0pm approximately.

6 Pueblo magico Valladolid YUCATAN Derechos Reservados
Longaniza de Valladolid, regional dish | Yucatan

Where to sleep:

We recommend sleeping in Valladolid, there are some hotels and a couple of hostels to spend the night, remember to look for your options before traveling, the number of options is limited and availability can be a problem. Hotels vary from $ 500 to $ 1,800 and hostels from $ 120 to $ 180.


Remember to be aware of your time so you do not fall behind and travel the entire route, travel light to be able to move quickly, make sure your luggage is comfortable to walk without hindrances, bring some snacks to calm and satisfy your hunger in case of not reaching to eat .

Things you will need:

– A change of clean clothes.
– Sweater (in case of being cold) by bus air conditioning.
– Plastic bag to store wet clothes.

Prices and Money:

-About roundtrip $ 180
-Entrance to cenotes $ 100
-Economic food $ 70
-Entrance ruin $ 220 Sunday $ 0.00
-Dinner $ 80
TOTAL = $ 650 (430.00 without paying at Chichen Itza)

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